Back Modifications (3)
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By suejoh
Granada cathedral, New Forest sunset, birds from Scotland, flare from Photoshop and idea from a book.

I thought it was OK but now I wonder if the view through the arch should be more startling.
So views on that.
I added the flare because of the light on the floor in the cathedral. I added the birds because otherwise it was a bit meh!

I have just started playing with composites and tried it with horses, but that was hard with manes and tails, so this was a bit more straightforward to accomplish.

Tags: Spain Mosque Digital art Cordoba Andalucia jpeg made

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chase Plus
16 2.3k 589 England
6 Aug 2020 10:04AM
Hi Sue and welcome back to the Critique Gallery.
I like this generally, a very photogenic structure.
I'm not sure all the flare is adding to this, but I can see why you added it, perhaps removing the three flare spots would make this a little more convincing as a sunrise/sunset.
The sky is pretty and I must admit to liking the birds you have dropped in kinda thing I suppose. Maybe two too many and perhaps need to be a little smaller and higher up in the arch space, but they do make a difference here.

I will see if I can do anything with a mod to show you where I am coming from.
chase Plus
16 2.3k 589 England
6 Aug 2020 10:44AM
I did do a quick mod.

Cloned away the flare spots.
Added a few sunday's on the floor with a levels layer and put them where I thought they would make a difference.
Removed the 5 birds and put 3 back in, a little higher in the frame just to keep the viewers attention to all the frame, not just the bottom half.
Just be careful when you add something to a frame, where the sky meets the building along the upright edges there were darker tell tale signs that the sky was added, right on the edges. I removed those as best as I could with the clone tool set to lighten at 100%
A touch of burning along the bottom, where the pillars meet the ground to drop a better shadow in there.
General but gentle sharpening and removed the noise in the sky (that could have been caused by reduction in size from the original ).

The difference is perhaps minimal to a really nice composite and may give you a different look to this for your consideration.

Thanks for providing us with all the information in your description, it does make a difference when we have an idea of what you wanted to achieve and why.
pamelajean Plus
15 1.6k 2238 United Kingdom
6 Aug 2020 4:02PM
Hello, Sue, and welcome back to the Critique Gallery.

That archway lends itself to having a nice scene introduced, and you have chosen well. The one little thing that strikes me immediately is that the inside of the cathedral, especially at the top of the arch, is quite light, considering the sun is setting outside.

I agree with Janet about the flare spots and the edges of the arch, and I even wondered what the image might look like without the flare altogether.
Also, your birds are great, just what the stark sky area needs, but I think they might look better further to the right so that they are starting to fly across the gap instead of nearly arriving at the left side of the arch. The eye likes to follow such a feature and have space in front of it, not behind.

I have done a modification. I didn't want to attempt to straighten any verticals because it looks ok as it is, but I did want to offset the arch a little more than you have, so I cropped the right side and got one of the diagonals to sit into that corner. I did the same at the bottom by cropping to get the left wall to finish in that corner. I removed those sun spots and also the red rope, bottom right of the arch. It kept pulling my eye, being red.

I know I've picked at it a lot, but I really do like your idea, and especially the empathy of the tones you have chosen to use.

dudler Plus
18 1.7k 1884 England
6 Aug 2020 5:05PM
This is way outside my area of competence - I don't do composites, so you may want to discount anything I write by 50%, at least...

It's striking and pretty effective: and there's a big but, too. That is that I always find I want to work out a credible way for the light to be as it is. And here, the building seems to be well lit by diffuse natural light from the top - I suspect a clerestory or similar. I could go with it if the lighting was obviously artificial, but it is as though there's a rift in the space-time continuum at that rear wall... Does that make sense?

Allied to that, with the sun there on the horizon, I'd expect some rim lighting to be visible on the stonework, where the sun's rays would be glancing off it.

Am I being unrealistic, or unnecessarily downbeat? I suspect if you'd given it a SciFi title, so that I was expecting that rift to become visible, I'd be fine...
banehawi Plus
17 2.6k 4274 Canada
6 Aug 2020 5:11PM
To me this doesnt look right for the reason mentioned by dudler; the light in the cathedral isnt coming from the outside as this suggests.

Whats done technically is well done, but better if its believable.
banehawi Plus
17 2.6k 4274 Canada
6 Aug 2020 5:54PM
Ive attempted a mod using a different view through the arch, trying to work with the light. Used a photo I took recently, and added in a few birds. Darkened the brightest area at the top of the arch. Its gives a different impression, - does it work?

suejoh Plus
17 257 United Kingdom
6 Aug 2020 6:58PM
Thank you for the critiques and mods. I am very bad at the finishing touches so must do better. On the lighting - that is really useful and sounds like it could be quite fun. I will definitely look at that and to play with shadows too.

Willie - I liked the scene you added but I still felt that the bright light on the floor needed a reason so I went to look at the original photo - to see if I felt that there. Well, apologies all round, this is actually the mosque / cathedral in Cordoba. And, dudler is quite right, there is some very bright light coming down in that area whereas the rest of the building, both mosque and cathedral parts, are dimly lit.

3 Nov 2020 10:05PM
Hi suejoh,

As an amateur your sharpness, composition and exposure are spot on, on a perpestive to fresh eyes i would say walk away from the computer and come back after editing, in reality the inside of the cathedral is very lit up compared to the sky, i would say the inside needs to be - 2/3 stops to feel realistic to the human eye. Xx

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