Back Modifications (4)
Views 167 Unique 45 Award Shortlist   

Something in the air

By blohum  
We found this small tunnel which made a nice lead in line to the sunrise, my friend was standing behind me and we noticed how the draft had caught his cigarette smoke... I thought this would make an interesting element in the shot so we took several shots and used the smoke from 2, along with a different shot for the sunrise. I tried to emphasize the difference by making the WB to cooler for the smoke/tunnel.



Tags: Atmosphere Sunrise Smoke Tunnel Landscape and travel Smoke trails

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Comments


29 Feb 2016 10:25AM
Great capture.
Sylvia
blohum 5
29 Feb 2016 10:45AM
Thank you Sylvia! Smile
mrswoolybill Plus
14 2.7k 2377 United Kingdom
29 Feb 2016 11:01AM
Hi Tim, welcome to ePHOTOzine, I see that you joined last month and this is your first upload.

You've uploaded to the Critique Gallery - this is where you forego the chance of votes and awards in exchange for more in-depth commenting.

I have to say that I think this would do extremely well votes-wise, it's a strong and involving image. It takes me there. The hint of warm light catching the end of the tunnel is particularly effective, and so far as I can tell that's where you focused. (With fish-eye the point of focus is not that obvious... )

Now a big question - would you by any chance be a friend of Shaun's? Because if not we have one of the biggest coincidences ever in the CG - see here !

I was delighted to read that the smoke was real, not manipulation as I assumed on opening the image. My favourite word is serendipity, the knack of making unexpected happy discoveries. This is a classic instance.

Off-centre placement, atmosphere... this is ticking the boxes. I think I might not have cooled the smoke quite so much, that has given a slightly artificial look which was what aroused my suspicion when I first saw this. Otherwise, maybe a bit more light for more inside / outside contrast. Just a bit.

This also needs a slight anti-clockwise rotation, to straighten the horizon. One thing that never slopes is the sea...

And I'm dying to try b&w...

My modification will appear in a little while, under the blue Modifications button. Click on the number to view. But I would repeat - this would do well with voting etc enabled.
Moira
29 Feb 2016 11:03AM
I can attest to the smoke being real Moira, i was the one blowing it ! Wink
mrswoolybill Plus
14 2.7k 2377 United Kingdom
29 Feb 2016 11:18AM
Now how did I guess... Wink
blohum 5
29 Feb 2016 11:51AM
Hi Moira,

Thanks for the feedback, Shaun has been badgering me for several weeks to post something on here! Wink

The main reason I chose this image first is because I felt the processing wasn't quite hitting the mark... I'd originally planned for a B&W conversion but as Shaun has chosen B&W I though I'd go in a different direction, saying that the B&W version does seem to make the smoke more pronounced which I like.

I'm also annoyed with myself for missing the horizon, straightening it is normally my first port-of-call!

Thanks,


Tim
mrswoolybill Plus
14 2.7k 2377 United Kingdom
29 Feb 2016 12:13PM
Thanks for the feedback, this bit of the site always works best when we get a dialogue.

One thing that I noticed when adjusting the colour in this is that once you warm it up a bit that really brings out the light on the stonework, around the end of the tunnel and on the right of the frame.

Smoke tends to look its best in b&w. Eerier.
29 Feb 2016 12:26PM
This is a lovely photo - I'm no critique and am new myself but I do read the comments the team give other members in order to learn things myself so thanks Mrs woolybill Smile

Helen
banehawi Plus
16 2.4k 4219 Canada
29 Feb 2016 1:47PM
Welcome, and this is a nice shot. Happy to know Shaun is not schizophrenic too.

I think that a warmer tone enhances the smoke a lot better than a cooler tone, and have tweaked this in the mod; it has the effect of making the smoke whiter, while the rest becomes warmer, making the smoke stand out.

Apart from the slight tilt, I would crop to a 16 X 9 format, and sharpen a little as in the mod.

Enjoy the site.


Regards

Willie
blohum 5
29 Feb 2016 1:55PM
Thanks for your time Moira... I think I might plump for a B&W conversion actually as it seems to tie the elements of the shot together a bit better... I'm still feeling that the colour version looks a bit more unnatural.

Interestingly, I've noticed that your edits look sharper on the website than the original does... is there an optimal size to export images in to get maximum sharpness on the site?

Thank you Helen! Smile
TanyaH Plus
17 1.3k 409 United Kingdom
29 Feb 2016 2:09PM
The amount of times I've offered to blow smoke across other people's shots, when out with other photographers, and no one ever takes me up on it Sad There's some real disadvantages to being a social leper!

My initial thought when looking at this was "Wow, what a great composite!". Of course, reading your description and subsequent comments I now realise it's not. Which impresses me even more Smile I would love to have this image in my portfolio, I like it that much! If it had been in the main gallery, and not the critique gallery, it would have got my vote and quite probably UA without any hesitation.

I tried several different looks with Photoshop's Color Lookup adjustment layers, all variations of which look great, but actually don't add anything useful for you so I haven't uploaded a mod. By the sounds of it, you're more than capable of adjusting it how you want in Lightroom.

Welcome to the site! I'm looking forward to seeing more of your work (and hopefully I'll be able to show that appreciation by you enabling voting!!).

Tanya
mrswoolybill Plus
14 2.7k 2377 United Kingdom
29 Feb 2016 3:37PM

Quote:Interestingly, I've noticed that your edits look sharper on the website than the original does... is there an optimal size to export images in to get maximum sharpness on the site?

That's curious because I didn't add any sharpening or change the file size.

I personally prefer to keep sharpening to the minimum. Files upload here at a maximum of 2000 pixels per side, and although the site will resize automatically and its system is much subtler than it used to be I still prefer to resize images myself so that I can check the results.

But I very often find that images, whether my own or modifications, look different here to how they appear on my hard drive.

Life is full of mysteries...
paulbroad 13 131 1293 United Kingdom
29 Feb 2016 4:09PM
I like this. well thought out and executed. Looks like ghosts I would stay with colour, but a careful mono might have some value. I might just darken the background view a touch. Mono can be a bit of a fad and it depends what the final image is intend for.

Sharpening also depends on use. If intending or screen use, then minimal sharpening is usually best although it is often better to check sharpness after resizing. Almost ALL digital images require some sharpening. If a print is intended, then rather more sharpening is best but care not to get white lines round major tonal differences.

Paul
jdenman 12 19 5 Spain
29 Feb 2016 5:41PM
Great image to start your portfolio with on EPZ.
dark_lord Plus
16 2.8k 753 England
29 Feb 2016 8:50PM
Welcome from me too.

At first i thought how uncanny there's a second image in the CG taken at the same place as one posted a day ago!

I too am glad it's real smoke. I must admit it didn't look artificially added (which if it was would have been extremely well done.

the mods bring out that little bit extra. Sometimes it's difficult to know how much adjustment to make especially if you don't want to overdo an effect by too much processing. a tweak to far, for example.

I do like the mono version, but on balance the colour has that little more magic, essential for something like this.

I see faces in the smoke. The higher one smiling down, the one on the left mouth agape in horror.

Ghosts, certainly...
blohum 5
29 Feb 2016 9:27PM

Quote:I like this. well thought out and executed. Looks like ghosts I would stay with colour, but a careful mono might have some value. I might just darken the background view a touch. Mono can be a bit of a fad and it depends what the final image is intend for.


Thanks for the kind words Paul, at the moment I'd just consider myself and enthusiast, the only intention for the final image is to have a nice picture! Smile By "the background" are you referring to the sunset part at the end of the tunnel?


Quote:Files upload here at a maximum of 2000 pixels per side, and although the site will resize automatically and its system is much subtler than it used to be I still prefer to resize images myself so that I can check the results.


Thanks for the info Moira, I'll make sure I use 2000 pixels max in the future!


Quote:I would love to have this image in my portfolio, I like it that much! If it had been in the main gallery, and not the critique gallery, it would have got my vote and quite probably UA without any hesitation.


Thank you Tanya! Out of interest what does UA stand for?


Quote:Sometimes it's difficult to know how much adjustment to make especially if you don't want to overdo an effect by too much processing. a tweak to far, for example.

I do like the mono version, but on balance the colour has that little more magic, essential for something like this



Thanks Dark_Lord... I think I was struggling with the balance on this one, this is my second attempt at processing, the first one was far more OTT so I'd toned it down quite a bit from there. I usually like to push things but not that far that they look pushed, if you get what I mean!

TanyaH Plus
17 1.3k 409 United Kingdom
1 Mar 2016 12:39PM
Tim, 'UA' is short for User Award. As members, we can choose to give our UAs to whichever images we choose to. My own personal criteria is to award images that I'm massively jealous of for whatever reason, and wish I'd taken myself (or thought of, or have hugely inspired me ...) Grin

Tanya
mrswoolybill Plus
14 2.7k 2377 United Kingdom
1 Mar 2016 4:39PM
I'm just going to come back with a further observation. For landscape work, shutter priority is not generally a major consideration. But this needed a relatively fast shutter speed in order to freeze the swirling smoke, and 1/125 second was just fast enough. Any slower and we might not see those enigmatic shapes and lines.
blohum 5
2 Mar 2016 9:32AM
Thanks for the information Tanya!


Quote:I'm just going to come back with a further observation. For landscape work, shutter priority is not generally a major consideration. But this needed a relatively fast shutter speed in order to freeze the swirling smoke, and 1/125 second was just fast enough. Any slower and we might not see those enigmatic shapes and lines.


I've never tried smoke before so this was more by luck than judgement, I was actually shooting bracketed for HDR and ended up using single shots rather than the whole sequence... something I will bear that in mind in the future!
dudler Plus
17 1.5k 1814 England
2 Mar 2016 11:22AM
A belated welcome from me, too.

Willie's mod works well, but loses the blueness of the fag fumes. I suspect that the more subtle among us, who do layers, could increase the warmth of the outside part of the shot and the coldness inside. I may have a go at increasing saturation...

Nice work!

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