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University Nottingham Golden Hour

By marcsneddon
Interested in critique - i am not experienced in landscape photography but took this earlier today and wondered what you all thought of it.

Tags: Water Landscape and travel

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dudler Plus
16 1.2k 1646 England
24 Mar 2020 8:40AM
A couple of thoughts...

The basic rules are always the same: correct exposure, decent focus... But the detailed application to landscape can take a little extra thought and practice.

I like the layered complexity here: planes of plants, and graduated intrusions from the sides. A large swan near the lower right third would add more interest, but you've got a good viewpoint, nice light, and sensible settings. Possibly a tripod and a smaller aperture, plus hyperfocal focussing would give even better sharpness from front to back, but this looks pretty good.

The exposure seems rather dark, though: as if you'd dialled in some negative exposure compensation. My mod lightens a bit, unsing Levels to brighten highlights, and then midtones.

This doesn't look particularly golden: AWB may be to blame. If you want to record changing light colour reasonably faithfully, stick to Daylight WB: or shoot RAW and make adjustments to suit your own perception of the scene.

Finally, is there a tiny tilt? I'm nto sure, but rotated my mod by a quarter of a degree anticlockwise.

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Robert51 11 7 99 United Kingdom
24 Mar 2020 8:49AM
I really like the image . The reflections and the winter colours works well. Also that wonderful sky (nature really does help sometimes). The thing is, due to the dark tones the eye doesn't get drawn in to the image. Also the foreground foliage is a little high.
The mod I just lightened the image in the centre and the eye pulls you in. If you click on and off the number 3 mod you will see the effect.
mrswoolybill Plus
13 2.1k 2210 United Kingdom
24 Mar 2020 12:45PM
I know that view well, my daughter studied at Nottingham, we walked round the lake most visits.

Just to add to the above - there's a lot of light bouncing off that water, that is what has tricked the camera's 'brain' into underexposing. A plus 0.7 exposure compensation would have helped.
dark_lord Plus
16 2.5k 664 England
24 Mar 2020 3:05PM
I spent three years at the University so it's nice to see this scene again.

Definitely underexposed, as Moira describes.
While it's best to get things right in camera all is not lost, as my mod shows.

I boosted exposure and tweaked contrast in the land and sky separately using different Curves adjustments. I applied some warming to the lower half to help the golden look of the tree. The exif doesn't put this as taken in the golden hourassuch thoug the light at that time of year is warm in tone, and I guess was making the scene attractive.

I also tried a mono conversion and a sepia toned version.

pamelajean Plus
14 1.3k 2133 United Kingdom
24 Mar 2020 6:35PM
You have cleverly framed a reflection scene with a reflection scene, and the whole comes together very nicely.

The foreground plants are a bit too intrusive on the left side because I find the curve of the left-hand trees very attractive, and could be a picture on their own, their reflection were showing.

So, compositionally, I think you have a good eye for a landscape and, apart from the underexposure, I see little to critique. John's idea of a swan included in the image is a nice thought, and a focal point would elevate the appeal, but I think there is enough of interest to keep a viewer content.

chase Plus
14 1.6k 360 England
25 Mar 2020 12:11PM
A very pretty scene, with lovely reflections.
I think the light reflections at the bottom of the image look a bit odd as do the two about a third of the way up.
A bit on the dark side of 'Golden Hour' though.

I did a very quick mod,
Cropped from the bottom and very slightly from the top to give this a bit more of a letterbox frame.
Cloned in the two odd shapes in the water.
Brightened using the levels tool in Photoshop and added a touch more contrast.
Altered the white balance to 'sunny' in Photoshops' Camera raw filter.
A Swan would be the finishing touch but there wasn't one...shame.

banehawi Plus
16 2.2k 4126 Canada
26 Mar 2020 1:50PM
I had made a detailed comment, - the first comment actually along with the first mod, shortly after your upload, this seems to have vanished.

So to encapsulate what I said in a shorter comment: I believe youve replaced the sky in Luminar and it hasn gone well as far as the water recollections concerned with odd white shapes, which Ive removed and cropped I had asked for you feedback on this to see if I am on the right track or not.

Also, the date in the exif file shows this wasnt shot earlier that day, but later last year, so perhaps your camera date and time are off, or youre referring to when you processed it.

The image overall needs to be brighter, with warmer white balance.

The scene itself is quite nice.



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