Back Modifications (4)
Views: 48 (20 Unique)  Award Shortlist   

Hidden Blossom

By DanQS
Opening of the Cherry Blossom festival in DC.

Tags: Event Flower Flowers and plants Natural lighting

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This photo is here for critique. Please only comment constructively and with suggestions on how to improve it.


banehawi Plus
13 1.8k 3862 Canada
27 Mar 2011 5:14PM
Welcome to EPZ Dan.

I remember being in DC years ago this time of year, - its beautiful around the Mall with the flowering trees.

This is a nice shot overall, - one a few Ive seen with the Sigma 50mm.

The shutter speed is a little slow, so I assume you had good support against the tree as its reasonably sharp. In general, the minimum shutter speed for had held is 1/(focal length * crop factor) which in this case is 1/(50 * 1.6) = 1/90, - so 1/00 is the closest speed over the minimum. However this would have needed a hiogher ISO or a wider aperture, so its worked out well.

Ive loaded two mods with some suggestions.

First is sharpened a little more and cropped a little tighter, into a 10 X 8 format; Ive also adjusted curves to lighten shadows and slightly reduce the red tone; mod 2 has that crack in the tree filled in, - I though it might look better as it tends to draw the eye away from the flowers.

A good start Dan, hope you find this helpful and look forward to more uploads.



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NEWMANP 10 1.6k 574 United Kingdom
27 Mar 2011 9:24PM
i like this, i like the use of diagonals and the softness of the petals against the hard texture and form of the bark. i like the diagonal split line in the bark.

i think there is a bit of a magenta caste which can be removed and i think the shadows are a little blocked but i suspect this is post processing and since you had the forsight to shoot raw, you are able to produce different versions. possibly the blacks were pushed up during processing and the contrast and saturation are a little too much for my taste.

i would suggest that it may be of use to apply selective sharpening to the flowering section but allow the bark to slightly be softer, may even try a little bit of selective blurring but not so as to lose detail overall, just to put total enphasis onto the flower.

its a very nicely seen detail, but im not sure that this is the very best quality image that could be pulled out of the raw file. the big bonus is the raw file is all there and the detail is in there all across the image.

best regards
DanQS 7
28 Mar 2011 4:46AM
Simply remarkable and constructive critiques. I truly appreciate your time and effort.

Willie, I was blind to the effect of crop factor on hand holding. Following the general 1/length is something which is tucked in the back of my head. Thinking about it, it should have been apparent that the cf would play a roll in hand holding as well, it makes total sense. This knowledge will likely also help in fixing some self-observed "soft" focus issues.

Phil, you're exactly correct, I pushed the blacks in processing (ever so slightly). I enjoy contrast, but it seems I take it too far. I'll work with selective sharpening/blurring, and see what happens. Willie is right, the largest crack seems to pull from the flower, softening that and reducing the blacks should get that crack less attention.
DanQS 7
28 Mar 2011 6:56AM
Started from scratch with the RAW, used a tighter crop, selective blurring and selective sharpening.
wajid 7 Pakistan
28 Mar 2011 5:33PM
perfect shot!! awsome!!


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