Back Modifications (5)
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Surfer in the sunset

By driesied  
Taken at the beach of a small town called Strand, near Cape Town South Africa.
Nikon D7100, 1/60 sec, ISO 400, Tokina 11-16 mm lens, f8

Tags: Landscape and travel Sunsets windsurfers surfer

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pablophotographer 8 1.4k 357
21 Feb 2014 8:44PM
Awesome moment, well captured.

I disagree with the title a bit, I see three surfers and I am struggling to accept the picture as it stands with the pair on the right... I would have preferred to have only one surfer in the frame, the one who is in the centre of your photo.

I recognise that inviting feeling of the sea, the light breeze and the chill... we had a family friend who died answering the call of the sea one evening, he was mad with (wind-)surfing; I would have called this picture ''the call'' I know wind-surfers who had a small bell outside of their houses, when the wind was strong, it would alarm them to go downhill and jump into the sea, yes, if you are not mad you know nothing about it...

What I particularly like in the picture is that it combines a beautiful sky (which balances warm colours on the top left with colder colours on top right) with some interest most landscape pictures tend to be void of, it captures human presence and activity. I also like the fact that the human figure closest to you is in the middle of this moment of the sky, underneath the blue sky opening above its head, it is at a point of conduction of four different triangles, not many people compose using triangles, but this is a very good example of such composition. For the ones who fail to see it, I would invite them imagine an egg-timer (shaped as hour-glass) with the top part bigger than the bottom one.

The image deserves high praise and I wouldn't be surprised if you'd print it and hang it on the wall of your living room.


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PranavMishra 7 52 18 India
22 Feb 2014 1:20AM
everything pablo said...
but i would keep the three of them, as the two surfers are very precious to the image.. they have a charm of their own.. and so i wont change the image a bit, its fine to me, i would just change the title and make it 'the surfers......'
mrswoolybill Plus
13 1.7k 2119 United Kingdom
22 Feb 2014 9:02AM
Hi André, welcome to the Critique gallery - I see that this is your first upload here. You've been a member of the site for a while though, so I hope that you have already benefited from it!

I like the mood here. I disagree with pablophotographer, the three figures work. There's a story - the two more distant figures engaged in conversation, the lone figure more intent on her activity. I like that balance. And you have allowed them plenty of space. The relatively low viewpoint adds to the sense of human smallness. Plus you have also timed this very nicely for body language, the movement of the legs is perfect.

The light and colour are beautiful - subtle, soft pastel tones.

I have just one minor quibble, and it's really a matter of personal taste. I'm not sure whether it's down to small aperture, focusing point or processing, or most probably a combination of the three, but the three figures seem equally sharp, as though in the same plane, and that gives the more distant pair a hard, cut-out look. I would rather see them a little softer than the foreground figure, to place them more comfortably (for my eye) in the distance.
paulbroad Plus
12 131 1288 United Kingdom
22 Feb 2014 9:30AM
Very pastel but pleasant for it, but get rid of the logo, really an eye puller and I could clone it out in seconds. Not too bothered about the title as the surfer referred to is dominant, but the composition is very right biased. It needs a heavy left crop to balance the figures, but then the super sky is ruined.

Which way to go? The best image is a different viewpoint in the first place, retaining the full sky but placing the figures differently.

However, pretty good as is.

pablophotographer 8 1.4k 357
22 Feb 2014 12:36PM
Hello again all.

Paulbroad's comment regarding the 'very right biased' composition confirms my initial doubt of the necessity of the two surfers appearing in the specific frame... and I wouldn't want to 'see them a bit more softly' as mrs woolybill suggests; why would anyone wish to see further objects less vividly in reality, can you imagine being tested for eye vision and only being able to count figures while not being able to read anything from the table with the letters on the opposite wall? This is shot as it happen. It's reality. And why not be happy about it?

I wonder if you would shout to the surfer on the centre to turn around (and delay him/her) until the other two enter the sea and leave your frame.

Mike43 8 108 21 England
22 Feb 2014 2:14PM
A very pleasing picture to the eye with lovely pastel colors, for me the only neg point is the three surfers I would have no problem with their number if they were more balanced within the photo but they are all placed within the left hand side.
If it was my shot I would be tempted to clone out the middle surfer.

But still as I said a very nice photo.
NEWMANP 11 1.6k 574 United Kingdom
22 Feb 2014 11:07PM
hi, a lovely scene and beautiful sky. also i really like the headland top left. the pastel tones are nice here too but since you already have that i adjusted to darker in both my above mods as alternatives.

compositionally three figures are a good number but the juxtaposition is not comfortable.

the main figure on centre should be nearer you and to the left of centre to balance and the other two are moving out of frame to making a harmonious relationship difficult

in the first mod i used the distortion of the perspective tool to pull the image across to the left to show what i was trying to explain, did a duplicate layer and multiplied at 50 pc opacity to enrich the colour as an alternative to pastel and did a letter box crop to emphasise the horizon line.

in the second mod i did the crop and the multiplication of layers and added a little nik efex glam glow after removing the other two people from the shot.

hope you like them,
let me know


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