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Trees in the morning mist

By m11ekd
Trees taken in the early morning mist.

Tags: Trees Flowers and plants

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mrswoolybill Plus
13 1.7k 2119 United Kingdom
14 Oct 2018 2:11PM
Hi Mike, welcome to ePHOTOzine, I see that you have just joined us. And welcome to the Critique Gallery, you ticked the critique box when you uploaded, I hope that was intentional. It has the effect of disabling votes and awards, but invites more in-depth commenting.

I like the fact that you will try to photograph just about anything, that suggests that you are able to respond to situations, to opportunities, and that's what I'm seeing here. This is all about atmosphere, the feel of the moment. Mist is very difficult to convey photographically, because the very things that make it attractive when we experience it are things that work against the image. It flattens everything, destroys the sense of depth and distance that we normally look for in an image...

You've gone with that flatness, and it's very effective. All we are aware of is the ghosts of trees lingering in the air.

A couple of quibbles. I'd like to know what processing you have done, it looks as though you have added a light vignette and I don't think that works, particularly in the bottom corners. And looking into the image there's more colour noise than I would expect to see. I also want to see just a bit more of the trees on the left, for compositional balance. If you have processed this, could we see the original file please? You can upload it as a modification, just click on the blue modifications button below your image and follow the instructions.

(Can I add that there are also at least three quite large dust blobs in the sky, they're very faint and scarcely noticeable here but I think your sensor may need a clean!)

By ticking for critique you allow members to download the file and modify it. I have uploaded two modifications. You'll find them under that blue button. I toned down the vignetting particularly at the bottom, and lightened the file overall before using the burn tool very gently on the trees on the left.

I find the hints of colour more of a distraction than an asset, this is essentially a natural mono image. So I had fun with a b&w conversion worked in Nik Silver Efex, using a film effect, a lot of contrast, a hint of toning and a frame. I really like the result, it has an elemental feel, as though from the early days of photography. It may not be what you want though.

I hope you will enjoy the site and find it useful. If you have any questions, the Critique Gallery is the place to ask them.

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dudler Plus
16 996 1553 England
14 Oct 2018 3:00PM
And welcome from me, too!

As Moira says, it would be good to see the original file: and I'd like to know not only how you processed, but what you were aiming for. Did you deliberately defocus this? It's a good idea, sometimes - not least because it stirs up the camera club Colonel Blimps who expect everything to be sharp, always!

The white vignette doesn't work well with the pale-grey background, I feel - it's an effect that's used far too often, and only really seems to work when it's producing a realistic effect of lens fall-off.

I'd be tempted to go for either the heavy, griany look of Moira's seconds mod, or to shoot sharper, and then do a John Blakemore minimal-tones job - I'm not sure if that can work without some sharpness. But, having put the idea in my own head, I shall try...

And I'll add to Moira's comment that it's great that you'll try anything. The adventure continues!

m11ekd 1 1
14 Oct 2018 7:56PM
Origanal file uploaded, your comments welcomed
dudler Plus
16 996 1553 England
15 Oct 2018 5:05PM
Thank you for the original.

Given that, I suspect the AF was struggling - or, as I wondered before, did you seek the softness?

I've also clocked that you didn't use any exposure compensation, and used spot metering. Both will tend to lead to erroroneous exposure.

A mod from the original coming...
m11ekd 1 1
15 Oct 2018 8:23PM
Thanks both for your input and thoughts, its nice to get the views of others together with ideas on how to improve, This photo was taken a few years ago and hopefully i have imporved since then. I am still new to post processing and so any changes are still very limited. I agree the white vignetting was not a good idea and perhaps a darker one would make it better. Not sure if the spots were on the lens or sensor.

I liked the idea of a ghostly image, which is what I had in mind when taking the phtograph but the image did turn out flatter than i wanted, I tried to darken the trees but thought it lost the ghostly effect i wanted and tried o keep it lighter.

Your comments are very encouraging

dudler Plus
16 996 1553 England
16 Oct 2018 7:11AM
Spots on the lens are far, far less visible than those on the sensor. To show up, they would need to be big and opaque, whereas a tiny bit of dust shows up if it's on the sensor itself. I have a fisheye lens that was hit and badly marked by some flying gravel (I was photograhing a car rally), and that only shows up in some circumstances, despite fisheyes making more of an image of any mark than most lenses.

The dark vignette in my mod was not deliberate - the Nik filter exaggerates tonal differences, so it's due to the darkening of hte subject towards the bottom corners.

You will, generally, find that posting recent pictures (where you remember detials from when you took them) helps you progress fastest. Older pictures are useful where there's a specific problem that you've never worked out.

Darkening the trees would be a matter for a Levels or Curves adjustment, and some burning in - these are two of the first few tools to master in any editing software.

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