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Purple Iris

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Took this photo tonight with the camera's flash. Wanted only the flower so I used Photoshop to blacken in the background, but there is no modification of the flower. Manual focus, F-stop f/8, Exposure time 1/60 sec, focal length 40mm. 1st upload to ephotozine.

Brand:NIKON CORPORATION
Camera:Nikon D5200 Check out Nikon Nation!
Lens:AF-S Micro Kikkor 40mm 1:2.8G
Recording media:JPEG (digital)
Date Taken:3 Dec 2013 - 6:58 PM
Focal Length:40mm
Lens Max Aperture:f/2.8
Aperture:f/8.0
Shutter Speed:1/60sec
Exposure Comp:0.0
ISO:6400
Exposure Mode:Program AE
Metering Mode:Center-weighted average
Flash:On, Return detected
White Balance:Auto
Title:Purple Iris
Username:arthura arthura
Uploaded:4 Dec 2013 - 3:33 AM
Tags:Flowers & plants, Wildlife / nature
VS Mode Rating 101 (53.85% won)
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Comments

This photo is here for critique. Please only comment constructively and with suggestions on how to improve it.
ali63
ali63 e2 Member 2474 forum postsali63 vcard United Kingdom1 Constructive Critique Points
4 Dec 2013 - 9:03 AM

Beautifully sharp, I may have been tempted to present it in portrait style ,great first up load,

Ali SmileSmile

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NEWMANP
NEWMANP e2 Member 61583 forum postsNEWMANP vcard United Kingdom574 Constructive Critique Points
4 Dec 2013 - 10:50 AM

nice and sharp, lovely colour against the pure black great record but just a couple of tweaks takes it somewhere else.

try a square crop because the two large areas of black are not adding any interest and distract from the subject area.
secondly the single unopened flower at the bottom left should be connected to the main stem or not there at all and it could be painted over or cloned.

slightly tone down the stem in its bright areas (but this could be my office monitor setting)

i guess it would look nice in a frame or on a card too.

Phil

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mrswoolybill
mrswoolybill Critique Team 7394 forum postsmrswoolybill vcard United Kingdom965 Constructive Critique Points
4 Dec 2013 - 11:23 AM

Hi, welcome to the site and to the Critique Gallery, I see that this is your first upload!

What works here is the formal elegance of the flower against the black background. As noted above, the image is good and sharp.

Criticisms: you have used flash, at a relatively close distance, and that has produced a rather garish effect. Are you using the camera's pop-up flash? It needs diffusing - just draping a Kleenex hankie over the pop-up would soften the effect, make it subtler.

The harshness of the flash has caught the little 'hairs' on the petals, and the dots of light have been exaggerated in compression for uploading. Are you resizing pictures for uploading here or leaving it to the site? The site uploads at a maximum of 1000 pixels per side for e2 members, 600 pixels otherwise. Larger files are automatically (and rather aggressively) compressed. White dots such as here may be scarcely noticeable in the original file on your hard drive, but resizing will exaggerate them. Always resize the file yourself. Add any sharpening after resizing not before, and check the file over for any issues.

So here I would like to reduce brightness a bit, and do some de-spotting.

Composition-wise the balance of the unopened bud is potentially a strong feature but as Phil says you need more stem at the bottom, to connect the two. Having detached stems entering the file separately is always risky, it looks awkward.

There is no rule that says that you have to use 3 x 2, or landscape, or place your subject centrally. There are different crops/placement options available, I'll upload a Modification or two to demonstrate. They will appear in due course under the Modifications button below your upload, click on the thumbnails to view.
Moira

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mrswoolybill
mrswoolybill Critique Team 7394 forum postsmrswoolybill vcard United Kingdom965 Constructive Critique Points
4 Dec 2013 - 11:32 AM

I've uploaded three Mods, I haven't touched light as I have to go out, these really are about composition and placement.

Last Modified By mrswoolybill at 4 Dec 2013 - 11:33 AM

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arthura
arthura e2 Member arthura vcard United States
4 Dec 2013 - 5:55 PM

Thank you both for your comments and suggestions. I hope to be able to retake the photo tonight and take in more of the stem and use the Kleenex. I let the site resize, so I will resize before uploading. I will look at the mods.
Thank you,
Art

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mrswoolybill
mrswoolybill Critique Team 7394 forum postsmrswoolybill vcard United Kingdom965 Constructive Critique Points
4 Dec 2013 - 6:32 PM

Thanks for the feedback, it's often difficult to know if we are helping or not! Looking forward to seeing more.
Moira

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paulbroad
paulbroad  681 forum posts United Kingdom842 Constructive Critique Points
4 Dec 2013 - 9:10 PM

This is technicaly well done and the flash, actually, very well handled. Why all the black on each side? Either a portrait format, a tall thin composition, or landscape with the bloom well to the left.

Paul

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arthura
arthura e2 Member arthura vcard United States
5 Dec 2013 - 6:34 AM

I was not able to get a good photo this evening. I think the cold got to the bloom and it was not as brilliant. I will try and capture when the next flower blooms.
I did experiment with the Kleenex and saw how it gave a softer effect. Thanks for the modified examples, especially the difference between the floating bud and having it attached to the stalk.
Art

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