Back Versions (3)
Modifications (6)
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Saxy man

By Imagecrafter      
This is a portrait of my good friend Colin who plays a mean saxophone. Was hoping for some feedback on which version works the best. All comments welcome.

Tags: Portrait Saxophone Musician Jazz Portraits and people

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

Comments


paulbroad 8 114 1033 United Kingdom
23 Jan 2013 8:46AM
The best, by far, is the sepia version. Warm tone suits. It is a pity that you are so close to the background, giving the shadow, but the result is a fine portrait in many ways. If you are going to crop the top of his head, and I don't mind that, you need to re-balance the rest. Some off the bottom and right. Doesn't matter if you loose some Sax, it's obvious what it is.

I find myself wondering about the density of the black on all three. There is not a hint of any tone or detail and it might be nice to have something. Have you tried some judicious dodging?

Paul

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Imagecrafter 5 2 1 Scotland
23 Jan 2013 10:58AM
Thank you, Paul, that's great. Lots of good tips here. I take your point about the shadow on the background. Will try some more cropping, and will see if I can bring some texture back to the jumper. Your feedback is much appreciated.

Lesley
cats_123 Plus
12 4.5k 26 Northern Ireland
23 Jan 2013 11:02AM
am no expert..but to me V1 looks a little dull and unexciting....much prefer V2 but have had a play in Lightroom trying to lift some of the tones Smile
banehawi Plus
12 1.4k 3457 Canada
23 Jan 2013 4:23PM
Its a nice shot Lesley, and which version is best is completely a matter of personal preference, especially as you havent uploaded the original colour shot, which may have been the best! The detail in the sax is excellent. His expression appears worried, - maybe a little more relaxed would be better next time.

Paul makes some good points. For me, when toning, I would be careful about the whites of the eyes, - and the loss of contrast that is caused by toning. The shadows will be darkened and more obvious with toning applied.

I believe youve cropped the top of his head simply to include all of the sax, whereas this might not have been necessary using a shorter focal length, or moving back, to leave his had in, and room to crop at the bottom.

I have to assume, since you shutter speed is very slow for the focal length, that this is tripod mounted, and the subject was incredibly still!

Anyway, working on V1, I have uploaded 2 mods. One with some space on the left, and the subject off centre, and the other cropped to an 8 X 10 aspect ratio, losing some of the sax. I wonder does it make any difference in portraying the subject as a sax player? In both, Ive reduce the toning in the eye whites, accented the catch lights dulled by toning, and slightly brightened.

I would loke to see the colour version.



regards



Willie
Imagecrafter 5 2 1 Scotland
23 Jan 2013 6:13PM
Hi Willie,

I have uploaded the original as version 4. Will be very interested to hear what you think, as now that I see it again, I can see that I might have lost something in the toning. All the points you make are things I will give thought to. I'm always a bit afraid to whiten the eyes too much in case it's too obvious, but I agree that they look a bit dull in V1. I am also reconsidering the cropping and will have another shot at that, as I can see that your mods are a bit better balanced. I did use a tripod, and my model was very good ad sitting still!

Thanks so much for the CC.

Lesley
Imagecrafter 5 2 1 Scotland
23 Jan 2013 6:19PM

Quote:Am no expert..but to me V1 looks a little dull and unexciting....much prefer V2 but have had a play in Lightroom trying to lift some of the tones Smile


Thanks, Cats_123! Yes, I can see that you have managed to brighten it considerably, and it's more interesting to see texture in the dark jumper. Also the brightening of the face is an improvement. Think I went a bit overboard with what I thought might be 'moody' toning. Will give it a go myself for practice and experience.

Your feedback is much appreciated. Cheers!

Lesley
cats_123 Plus
12 4.5k 26 Northern Ireland
23 Jan 2013 7:11PM
like v4 Smile
banehawi Plus
12 1.4k 3457 Canada
23 Jan 2013 7:22PM
Hi Lesley, Ive come back to this, and think the toning is not quite sepia, and its too heavily applied. So Ive uploaded yet another mod with a lighter application of a less dense sepia tone. But now I see the colour! So will take a closer look at that.


regards


Willie
Imagecrafter 5 2 1 Scotland
23 Jan 2013 7:38PM
I really like your modification. More subtle and the eyes are captivating. The toning I used was the 'Duplex' option in Colour Efex Pro, and I agree that it looks heavily applied. I like your mod much better. This is so helpful. It makes it possible to view my own work more objectively.Grin
banehawi Plus
12 1.4k 3457 Canada
23 Jan 2013 10:24PM
Lesley, - I really like the colour, and Ive uploaded a mod. Mainly a little sharpening, brightening the eyes, bringing out shadow detail in the sweater. I added a little more height. I think the sax looks best in colour, - especially like the pearl inserts in the buttons, and the player looks less worried for some reason!


Hope the mod works for you,


Regards


Willie
paulbroad 8 114 1033 United Kingdom
24 Jan 2013 9:07AM
I still like your V1, given my comments. A lot of different ideas here and thus very interesting. May be the sepia is a bit warm and I normally comment on that, but think it suites quite well here. A good shot.

Paul
Imagecrafter 5 2 1 Scotland
24 Jan 2013 10:14AM

Quote:Lesley, - I really like the colour, and Ive uploaded a mod. Mainly a little sharpening, brightening the eyes, bringing out shadow detail in the sweater. I added a little more height. I think the sax looks best in colour, - especially like the pearl inserts in the buttons, and the player looks less worried for some reason!


Hope the mod works for you,


Regards


Willie



That looks great, Willie! These adjustments make all the difference, and I've come back around to really liking the colour version. Thanks so much for taking the time to help.

Lesley
Imagecrafter 5 2 1 Scotland
24 Jan 2013 10:20AM

Quote:I still like your V1, given my comments. A lot of different ideas here and thus very interesting. May be the sepia is a bit warm and I normally comment on that, but think it suites quite well here. A good shot.

Paul



Thanks for your input, Paul. It helps so much to get some objective feedback. Really interesting to see your mod. I think I have a tendency to go too dark and lose detail.

Cheers!

Lesley
24 Jan 2013 10:34PM
great work
24 Jan 2013 11:25PM
Excellent shots full of detail
mike
25 Jan 2013 3:57AM
:Brilliant
ChiliMan Plus
9 135 17 Singapore
25 Jan 2013 7:33AM
I really like the tone in the sepia but it's a wee bit too dark for me. I prefer V2 'cos there's more light and detail AND his skin looks better there...'cos of the elevated brightness.

V3 is too grainy for me. V4 is a fabulous original! That said, if you'd placed a soft reflector or just a sheet of white paper to the left of his head, it'd bounce some light onto the left side of his face and give a bit of illumination there. That's a minor issue, though.

V2 is wonderful, though.

Lemme try a mod with V1 and see if I can make it brighter...

A...
ChiliMan Plus
9 135 17 Singapore
25 Jan 2013 7:44AM
Ok...just did a Mod on the sepia shot. In Paint Shop Pro, I increased Gamma Correction by 30% and then Contrast by 10%. Then I applied the LucisArt Sculpture filter in Photoshop.

Andrew
Imagecrafter 5 2 1 Scotland
25 Jan 2013 9:06AM
Really lovely, Andrew. There's a big difference, and takes away the heavy look of mine. I'm not aware of the LucisArt Sculpture filter. Is that a plug-in?
ChiliMan Plus
9 135 17 Singapore
25 Jan 2013 12:09PM
Thanks, Lesley. Yup, it's a plug-in for Photoshop. PM me your e-mail address if you fancy it. It's only 724K in size so it's definitely e-mailable.

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