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Symmetrical & Perspective Pylon

By strokebloke  
Well Pamela, you asked for it.
It's been reasonably dry here today, and an hour ago the sun returned with intent GrinGrin
So, it was back to the field, to find that the central area of the base of the pylon to be a mass of nettles and thistles.
And my good intentions to plot exactly the intersection point are blown into the weeds, so to speak.

This is a free standing job, on uneven ground.
I don't stand very steadily even on good solid and level ground and looking vertically upwards was a trifle disorientating. GrinGrin
But as Paul says the difficulty of the shot should never prejudice the outcome of the critique. Wink

The second shot, V2 is merely similar, but taken from one side to try to interpose the jib through a gap in the strut.

Tags: Photo journalism General Perspective Pylon Symmetry Wildlife and nature Humour and fun

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


tocketts 5 9 United Kingdom
10 Jul 2011 8:00PM
Both nice shots but V1 is my fave, Thought of a square crop?

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strokebloke 7 493 17 England
10 Jul 2011 8:22PM
Yes Rick, originally a square finish was my intention.
But it would have cropped too much of the shot away.
If you haven't followed from the original shot of the pylon, this was a specific exercise, suggested in that critique, by PamelaJean Grin
This as almost a 'fun-response'. Except that I'm sure the critique on it won't be of a fun nature at all. This, for me, is a learning forum.

These shots are not as compositionally strong as the original and there is far more cloud; and it was shot at a different time of day.
And I decided to get as much of the 'straight-out-of-the-camera' as I could. Hence the landscape presentation.
cats_123 Plus
12 4.6k 26 Northern Ireland
10 Jul 2011 8:28PM
symmetry is the word... Smile
tocketts 5 9 United Kingdom
10 Jul 2011 8:30PM
Thanks Mark, As you have said, I've not followed this from the onset. I haven't been posting or commenting on this site for very long, I just logged on and came across your photo and made a comment. I hope I haven't said anything untoward or upsetting to you , If I have I apologise,
paulbroad 9 116 1063 United Kingdom
10 Jul 2011 8:41PM
V1 is quite excellent - extremely strong with the symmetry ideal. Like it a lot and could not improve other than a darker sky - wonder what it would look like with a stop less. V2 is technically OK, but not in the same class compositionally.

strokebloke 7 493 17 England
10 Jul 2011 8:46PM
Not at all Rick.
You question was perfectly valid. And for 99% of situations would have been the way to go. So please don't apologize. I certainly appreciate your contribution, as the way I see it, you are taking time to enable me to improve my shots. So I'm effectively in your debt.
It's good to have you on-board; and your view/take on a subject is as justified and as valued as anyone elses.

In this gallery, if you post an image, you're basically saying that you're prepared to receive whatever critique is provided.
So please, keep on contributing.
And if you feel that you'd like to upload some of your photos, please feel free to do so.

Jestertheclown 8 7.4k 249 England
10 Jul 2011 8:50PM
Hi Jack,
It worked then! In fact I'd go so far as to say it's worked well.
I assume that you have at least looked at it as a square crop? I know that's not the idea but it does look good and by placing the corners of the crop box on the uprights, you can see just how accurate the symmetry in this is.


@Rick, you'll have to try harder than that if you want to upset Jack!
strokebloke 7 493 17 England
10 Jul 2011 8:50PM

Quote:wonder what it would look like with a stop less

Paul, not long after I'd posted it, I thought 'I wonder if I should have dialed in a bit of neg comp, just to give the shot a bit of 'body'.'
Too late then.
But, your observation certainly suggests that it may have been a good idea. Thanks
strokebloke 7 493 17 England
10 Jul 2011 8:56PM

Quote: ......... as to say it's worked well

Hello Bren.
It's not quite as accurate as I'd like it, but given my stability, I'd consider that it can be classified as 'a good attempt/next time, take more water with it'.
It does, in fact, ratify the observations that we made about the difficulty in obtaining precision, when Pamela first suggested the idea.
Jestertheclown 8 7.4k 249 England
10 Jul 2011 9:21PM

Quote:It does, in fact, ratify the observations that we made about the difficulty in obtaining precision,

It does indeed Jack but if you crop it to a square and I've uploaded a mod., the corners sit almost precisely in the centre of each upright. It's not absolute but there's very little inaccuracy.
In fact, we're talking about tiny amounts here. And who's to say that the pylon is actually square in section anyway?
strokebloke 7 493 17 England
10 Jul 2011 9:32PM

Quote: ... sit almost precisely

Indeed. "almost"

You can be sure that the pylon is absolutely square Bren.
If they are not spot-on, they don't survive [even the relatively mild rigours of English weather]
There are records of them coming down & it has always been due to poor construction - never poor design.
strokebloke 7 493 17 England
10 Jul 2011 9:35PM
Paul, I think you are right. I have uploaded a mod which as far as I can guage, I have reduced by approx 1 stop.
It certainly has a marked visual effect.

So thank you Grin
strokebloke 7 493 17 England
10 Jul 2011 10:08PM
What is noticeable Bren, and the square crop exaggerates it, is a small amount of barrel distortion due to the focal length of the lens used.
18mm. As wide open as this lens will go.
Even in the 'landscape' it is evident, though not quite as obvious.
paulbroad 9 116 1063 United Kingdom
11 Jul 2011 7:29AM
Yes, that 1 stop helps improve what is already good. I was always taught two thins tend to stop people in exhibitions - filling the frame and instant impact. If a shot stops you and makes you look, it has achieved something important.

CathR 9 151 564 United Kingdom
11 Jul 2011 10:45AM
Excellent work Jack in difficult circumstances. I am sure I would have ended up on my bum in the nettles Grin I quite like V2 - just a bit different and for some reason I like the barbed wire.

Have you thought of going mono? The structure is mono anyway, so it's about helping the sky to blend in with the rest - see mod. Just a thought. I used the channel mixer by the way and fiddled with the filter presets, and settled on red in the end.

Best wishes

strokebloke 7 493 17 England
11 Jul 2011 12:39PM
Mono V1 above Catherine.
I must admit, though not being a great fan of mono, that I do quite like it.
Certainly your Mono V2 brings out detail in the structure, that gets lost in the colour version.

By the way I didn't fall on my bum in the nettles; but I did wobble about a fair bit.
One elderly couple passed on a nearby footpath and I was conscious of them looking to see what I was doing.
They eventually passed, whispering to each other and shaking their heads, having seen me tottering about.
I think they assumed that I'd been on the rocket fuel again. GrinGrinGrin
strokebloke 7 493 17 England
11 Jul 2011 1:48PM
Phill, Pamela.
My 62mm & 72mm polarising filters arrived from Kowloon HK this afternoon.
So washed out skies and reflective water are things of the past. GrinGrinWink
strokebloke 7 493 17 England
11 Jul 2011 4:38PM
Please don't take this the wrong way.
I'm not looking for pats on the back, or to have my ego massaged.
But, I just do not understand what it is about this (these) shot(s) that you obviously agree is (are) good.
The question (and the answer, obviously), for me, is part of the learning process.
If I don't understand why something works, I'm unlikely (except by luck) to be able to repeat it.
And, if I don't understand why something doesn't work, I will very likely fall into exactly the same trap again.
So knowing, is important to me.
pamelajean Plus
10 969 1832 United Kingdom
11 Jul 2011 4:49PM
Sorry to be so late getting here, Jack.
I feel honoured that you took time to return to the pylon and try out my suggestion, what a marvel you are. I have to admit to having reservations about that suggestion afterwards because I knew it wouldn't be easy for you to do. BUT YOU DID IT. And what a result. It has been interesting reading all the comments and viewing the excellent modifications. Nothing more for me to say. Oh, except that it would look good with a sunset sky.......oops.
Glad you got the filters, Jack.
Just came back to add a bit and your comment above appeared. I think we all like to see symmetry well done, and I suppose this sort of shot is more of an abstract, which always appeals to me. It is also probably the fact that we see pylons on landscapes and find them an unnatural intrusion, but when photographed on their own and with creativity and thought, they start to become interesting. For me, this is thinking outside of the box. I have seen this done with other constructions, and most interestingly with the Eiffel Tower, and that I thought was very clever. Now, this is not to say that I didn't like the other shots you took of the pylon, in fact I thought they were good, so please don't think you did anything wrong there. I hope that others will try to answer your question and say why they think this is good, too. For me, I look at so many pictures on this site, and really appreciate what you have done here because it has taken time, effort and a ot of thought, which is impressive, unlike a straight click-shot of a pylon in a landscape.
strokebloke 7 493 17 England
11 Jul 2011 6:11PM
Thank you, for all of that Pamela.
Much appreciated Grin

Quote: ..... it would look good with a sunset sky.......oops.

You don't know how tempted I am GrinGrinGrinGrinGrinGrinGrinGrinGrin
pablophotographer 5 672 269
15 Jul 2011 7:01PM
Congratulations, it's a very daring shot. I can't believe how close pylons are to houses in some areas...

On the photograph now, I believe it's a nice picture, I have no problem at all with the format you have chosen.
I have used both my hands to cut off the view partially and saw the picture from a square perspective.
The main focus became the first square appearing fully with 4 sides,
but it appears to be a little bit far away as if your lens, or you needed to be closer so we appreciate the size of the object.

My suggestion would be to try to shoot it on at a time of the day when you have no shadows on any side of the legs of the pylon
before sunrise or after sunset or on a cloudy day.

Try monochrome or b/w fim.

Good luck.

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