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Looking South

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Hi all,
whilst out cycle training last early evening, I saw the workers out, bringing in the hay, and compounded with a great looking sky, got home, washed up, and back out to the location for 7.30pm.
I used a polariser, and a 121S ND grad filter, but still had a bit too much light, so dropped to -2/3rds for this exposure.
I didn't realise how much difference it can make in finding the right position, with regard to bales, to get a half decent composition, so I would appreciate some feedback/critique about this image, and a mod or 2 if you feel like it.
V1 is layer masked for sky colouring, and for some right-to-left light/shadow.
V2 is adjusted for levels only

Shot settings:
ISO 100
0.8 sec s/speed
F11
Tripod mounted

Camera:Canon EOS 30D
Lens:10-20 Sigma @ 10mm
Recording media:JPEG (digital)
Title:Looking South
Username:arhb arhb
Uploaded:6 Aug 2009 - 12:23 PM
Tags:Digitally manipulated, Landscape / travel
Votes:Voting Disabled
Critque wantedCritique Wanted
Has Modifications Modifications Welcome (Upload a Modification)
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Comments

This photo is here for critique. Please only comment constructively and with suggestions on how to improve it.
Cheekymunky
6 Aug 2009 - 12:47 PM

Like it. The bale to the right looks just in the right place for me. (not a pro but it looks good) its not dominating the photograph, but makes itself enough of subject so the picture looks composed rather than happy snapped. definitely prefer image 1.. gives the feeling of a summer evening. nice work.

Martin

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NEWMANP
NEWMANP e2 Member 61587 forum postsNEWMANP vcard United Kingdom574 Constructive Critique Points
6 Aug 2009 - 12:53 PMConstructive Critique!This comment was flagged as constructive critique! 

hi,
a nice shot, not new ive seen it many times before but its well controlled.
from the v2 its clear to see you have made a significant difference to the sky which is now rather nice and colourful without being ott. the exposure and colours are good.

there is sharpness front to back and generally everything is there that should be there.

why then does it not stir me like Paul Morgans similar version from last year. the fact that i remember it from 12 months ago speaks volumes.

i think its that the composition is a little flat and predictable, the bales almost head on may well have been better if you could have been a little closer and slightly more at an angle to the position of view. just adding a little dynamic. Paul also did a workflow with his which shows how he obtained athe near 3 d image with luminous lighting in which i think he used about 10 layers and various blending and erasing teqniques.

i would say its a very good attempt but just short of being a winner.
but its a very nice shot non the less.
Phil

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BillyGoatGruff
BillyGoatGruff e2 Member 7191 forum postsBillyGoatGruff vcard England199 Constructive Critique Points
6 Aug 2009 - 12:54 PMConstructive Critique!This comment was flagged as constructive critique! 

This is a well handled exposure, Andrew, and I think your adjustments for V1 are definitely in the right direction. You've given the image a lot more density and achieved a much better tonal balance and colour. I think I would have pushed the contrast, particularly the foreground, a little more.

The biggest "problem" for me is the composition. I don' think the large expanse of empty space in the foreground is helping the image. Getting much closer to the closest bale would have helped make a more dynamic composition, I feel, although it would have an effect on the spatial relationships with all the other bales: as you say, it's not easy to find the sweet spot when you've got so many elements to deal with!
[It can be quite surprising how close you can get with the 10 - 20 - I've only ever shot one bale and ended up recomposing many times, resulting in being about 10 inches away! I was gobsmakcked!!]
Another solution would be to take a few steps forward and to the right whilst turning to the left to keep the foward bale more prominent at stage right - difficult to achieve now, I should think, because they will likely have been moved!
You could also consider a more panoramic crop, which would give more prominence to the bale whilst still retaining the lead lines to the horizon.

Hope this was helpful.

Cheers
Bill

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thebopper
thebopper  5 United Kingdom
6 Aug 2009 - 12:59 PM

Brilliant exposure and contrast. Out of the two shots, I much prefer the first one! Well Done!

Mike

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graceland
graceland  92378 forum posts United Kingdom2 Constructive Critique Points
6 Aug 2009 - 2:39 PM

for me i like 1 because of that sky #

super

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banehawi
banehawi Critique Team 10901 forum postsbanehawi vcard Canada2898 Constructive Critique Points
6 Aug 2009 - 4:13 PM

Hi Andrew, - lots of good comments here already, so I wont repeat whats been said already.

Just yesterday I read two very good articles, excerpts from a book soon to be published which would be interesting for you Im sure.

Often a question like youre posing is hard to answer, - like whats the meaning of life!

heres the articles:

http://www.luminous-landscape.com/essays/art1.shtml
http://www.luminous-landscape.com/essays/art2.shtml

Have fun,

Regards


Willie

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SurreyHillsMan
SurreyHillsMan e2 Member 627 forum postsSurreyHillsMan vcard England2 Constructive Critique Points
6 Aug 2009 - 4:57 PM

Great clour and detail Andrew... I do agree about the "space" that needs filling in the foreground though.. wonderful depth otherwise

Jon

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redshank
redshank  5 United Kingdom1 Constructive Critique Points
6 Aug 2009 - 5:54 PM

Super shot, great comp.
Martin

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arhb
arhb e2 Member 72330 forum postsarhb vcard United Kingdom68 Constructive Critique Points
6 Aug 2009 - 6:08 PM

Thank you all for the comments and critique - all taken on-board.
The dead space at the front of the image had occurred to me on a sub-liminal level, and that has now been confirmed.
Bill, thanks for your input and for the resourses you gave me via pm - most helpful.
I have spent the day messing with curves adjustment layers(thanks Phil for a push in the right direction), so tomorrows upload will feature some of my new found technique, on a different composition from the same shoot.

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maratsuikka
7 Aug 2009 - 9:33 AM

You are learning and driving fast,TTM

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AlanBullGuernsey
AlanBullGuernsey e2 Member 4AlanBullGuernsey vcard United Kingdom
28 Jan 2011 - 11:48 AM

My only criticism is the framing. I would make it a panorama Crop it about one inch bellow the RH Bale & also cut so only half the RH bale shows.Tongue

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ianrobinson
ianrobinson e2 Member 41108 forum postsianrobinson vcard United Kingdom8 Constructive Critique Points
13 Dec 2011 - 10:25 PM

v1 for me the colours are more correct than v2, i have seen this type of shot done a lot however you got a great shot in v1 with sharpness front to back, good colours and good exposure settings.

Ian.

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SimonSatria
23 Apr 2013 - 3:59 AM

No doubt...... a superb shoot!
Congratulations!

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Fogey
Fogey  169 forum posts United Kingdom13 Constructive Critique Points
18 Jul 2014 - 9:51 AM

The problem with this photo is composition, as has been pointed out already.

If you do a search for Golden crop.jsx on Google, you will get a script that lays out various ways to compose a photograph, within Fibonacci's ratio called Divine proportions, now known as phi. Download and place this script in Photoshop's plugin folder.

I've uploaded a modification showing just two of the nine variations available in this script, giving the best crop for the photograph instantly.

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