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Cannot get sharp images


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Sorry i'm completely new to photography so patience is appreciated. I keep looking up recommended settings for indoor portrait photography with my a6000 and cannot for the life of me get the highest quality portraits.

I'm currently using a sigma 60mm art lens. My setup is in my basement with the only lighting coming from a softbox with an umbrella light diffuser, The light is about a foot from me and the camera is about 4 and a half feet or so from me.  I'm at 1/60-1/80 shutter, 200 iso, f.28, in memory recall mode. I'm not sure if the camera just isn't focusing in enough time while i have the 10 second timer running or something. Whenever i just pick up and shoot an object I can get a great picture but my portraits are not nearly sharp enough. I see sample images people have taken using this lens and it's frustrating i can't come close. I am shooting in RAW as well.

 

Sorry for the long winded post!

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You might want to try cleaning your lens.  I had the same issue with my a6000.  I also have an a7Rii and an a7iii.  But I did not have this issue with them.  Also try changing modes as your camera will differently each time.  It should still achieve focus...just in a different way.  But I had a small piece of dust on my lens.  It was trying to focus on that...just an idea.

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I surmise that you are using the camera on a tripod? I'm not familiar with the lens, does it have Steady shot? - if so you want to turn it off, when mounted on a tripod.

As you are taking your time to make the shot, and the distance from camera to subject is "fixed" - it might be worth using manual focus.

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As soon as you press the shutter button to initiate the self timer, the camera acquires focus. If you're trying to take a self portrait and are not in front of the camera yet, the camera will focus on something in the background. Whatever comes in between the background and the camera when the shutter is fired will be out of focus. Best use manual focus in this case (like @thebeardedgroundsman suggested) or use a remote trigger.

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4 hours ago, Pieter said:

As soon as you press the shutter button to initiate the self timer, the camera acquires focus. If you're trying to take a self portrait and are not in front of the camera yet, the camera will focus on something in the background. Whatever comes in between the background and the camera when the shutter is fired will be out of focus. Best use manual focus in this case (like @thebeardedgroundsman suggested) or use a remote trigger.

Yeah this makes the most sense. I really should just get to know the camera more in depth. But yeah I think it's focusing on the backdrop and then when I step in it still isn't in focus. 
 

I appreciate all of the replies and I will report back.

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