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Tired .& all whacked out

By devlin
Purely as an experiment and to practice post processing techniques in PS, i tried some self portraits today, tripod was used with Camera tethered to laptop, liveview with 10 second delay had no idea as to how to pose so set it up to take a series of 10 continuous shots with 5 secs delay. In PS used the Hue / saturation adjustement layer to convert background to black and then finished off in Silver efx pro, probably not the best method to do this so alternatives open for suggestion, originally had planned to use a black background setup but couldnt get my hands on the right material. V3 & 4 are the originals from which 1&2 are derived.

Tags: Up Portraits Close General People

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


SueEley 12 279 96 Wales
29 Jan 2011 5:46PM
I like the gritty feel of the mono, 1, but you don't seem to have the depth of field you need? The eyes are pretty sharp, but the mouth is noticeably not sharp and this detracts from the shot for me. You also were holding the camera quite low - might have been better more straight on as this introduces distortion and makes your hand (which is also not in focus but not really out either) very large in the frame. Like the catch lights in your eyes.

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banehawi Plus
13 1.8k 3877 Canada
29 Jan 2011 6:22PM
V1 and V3 - which are the same pic are the best. Your processing in V1 is really good.Its very difficuslt to do a self portrait, and you have to be commended for a very good outcome.

As Sue mentions, - and if the exif data is correct, your depth of field is too shallow, exif says you used f/1.8, and you would have been better with 5.6 or 8 for thse, you can see where your nose is fuzzy, and the rest is sharp.

I do really line 1 and 3, - and the only mods I would perform I think is a little sharpening, which Im off to do now.

Hope this helps,

paulbroad 10 123 1240 United Kingdom
29 Jan 2011 6:22PM
V3 and 4 not so good needing much tighter crops and higher contrast, the other two quite strong and interesting. V1 could have been excellent but your hand is as big as your face and was not needed at all. Always be careful when bringing hands up to faces, they easily look too big, and could belong to someone else.Your face also needs brightening a bit.

V2 is best, a strong well composed mono with a lot of impact.

devlin 7 653 39 India
29 Jan 2011 7:32PM
Thanks sue, Willie, Paul- appreciate your feedback, V3 & 4 are actually just the originating unedited images from which 1 & 2 were derived. I think i will try this again with a higher f number rather than 1.8, plus minus the hand....Smile
Eviscera 11 1.1k 149 United Kingdom
29 Jan 2011 7:45PM
I quite like this Devlin.

Good advice about the ap and proportions , although its good to be creative with the "wrong" d.o.f as long as the sweet spot ends on the right focal point. In this case the eyes, so well done on that !

Im not so sure about your workflow (hue/sat and nik filter) , its kinda worked , but the ears and wristline look "cut" p.p , and the totally black b.g confuses the viewer as to where the hairline ends and the background begins.

Try this work flow (although Im not a fan of global filters)

1. Do your hue sat adj.
2. dupe that layer.
3. Do your nik global.
4. Add a layer mask to 2 and 3
5. Use a soft round brush (10%) mark,and paint back the light of the well exposed parts so you have a subtle line between the b.g and face in both layers.

erm , just a thought.
devlin 7 653 39 India
29 Jan 2011 8:01PM
Thanks Eviscera ill give that a try...Smileas you can see in the originals (3 &4) the background wasnt very ideal so i had to do some work on it in PS..but i see your point about differentiating the hair line and i think your workflow will work Smile

thanks again..
Sooty_1 7 1.5k 221 United Kingdom
30 Jan 2011 12:47AM
Just a leftfield suggestion here, but if you want a black background, why don't you use....a black background?

It doesn't have to be the "right" material, just move a long way away from it and get it well out of focus. Alternatively, use a lamp, quite close, to light your face, and the fall off of light behind you will make the background dark anyway. You are way too close to the wall, almost leaning against it in these shots.

If you want to get a hairline, have the lamp slightly above you, and the curvature of your head will give it a much more natural look than the cut-out effect you have here.

devlin 7 653 39 India
30 Jan 2011 7:23AM
Thanks Nick, makes sense..i can definitely give the lamp thingy a try Smile
devlin 7 653 39 India
30 Jan 2011 11:09AM
Thanks Frank...

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