When I focus, both eyes are not sharp…

Andy raised a great question on the Focusing | Center and Recompose the shot or Use available focus points or that I wanted to share with you here, in case you do not read the comments on this blog.
Her question:

When I am following my 16 month old around, I keep the AF on continuous mode (C) and try to focus on one of her eyes. What I have found is that, when shooting in the range of f1.6-f/2.0 with my 50mm; the second eye goes a bit of out focus.

First off, kudos on your upgrade from the Nikon D40x to the Nikon D700! Excellent camera choice. Secondly, another kudos for braving to chase around your 16 month old with your camera! LOL… I know all too well what a challenge this is.

My suggestion: Using the continuous focus setting is the correct choice when your subject is moving toward you. For the out of focus eye, try shooting with a larger Depth of Field (smaller aperture) such as f/3.2-f4.0. Turn your ISO setting up a notch or two if you need too (D700 performs amazingly well at High ISO settings). When subjects are moving, it is going to be very challenging to get them sharp at 1.6-2.0, especially both eyes. If your subject is standing still and both eyes are on the same focal plane, you may get them both tack sharp… maybe. :-).

**UPDATE** Leann Marie brought to my attention that it would be kind of weird to chase around your “16 yr. old” with your camera. HAHAHA! This comment brought me to laughing hysterical. I have updated the text to 16 month old, as it should be. Thanks Leeann! You made my day!!! Nothing better than started off the day laughing your but off. Have a great day!

Comments 5

  1. hahaha! Agreed Leeann, that would be creepy chasing a 16 yr. old. I am laughing my but off right now. Time to edit that typo. Thank you! Glad you are enjoying the tips.

  2. I thought I read 16 yr old! LOL When I first got my 50mm I was very annoyed at the fact that I couldnt get a tack sharp picture up close. Then read up on DOF and it cleared things up still not as sharp as I want it but its a start then again I havent tryed adjusting the Iso also. Cant wait to try it. Thanks!

  3. First of all, thank you for the feed back. That may be me one day chasing Gaby around when she is16 yrs, “where are you going” but just to clarify she is currently 16 months. 🙂
    You did hit a good point about turning up the ISO setting to compensate. I’ll post a few pictures on the blog illustrating what i was originally talking about with your suggestions. I have found that setting my AF-C to 21 points, and hovering right around f/2 – f/2.5 I get both eyes very sharp. I tried this yesterday and it worked. The 50mm is amazingly fast so it is my “kid’ lens for now. David, thank you for the great platform to discuss these points. You rock !

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