Back Modifications (4)
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Watching you

By IanSR    
Shin Ying Park, Taiwan

Samantha was on a rocking horse. I could feel a slight breeze blowing from right to left. I had my camera set to Aperture Priority and waited.
Something caught her eye and she looked in that direction.
The wind blew and I like the effect of her hair blowing to the left.
She can be difficult to photograph. Depends on her mood.

I was after expression and a bokeh to help bring more attention to the subject.

I'm thinking maybe I should darken the background. Again, to bring attention to the subject and not the background.

Canon 7D
18-135mm Kit lens

Tags: Portrait Park Children Black and white Bokeh Canon 7d Kit lens Portraits and people

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mrswoolybill Plus
15 3.4k 2543 United Kingdom
26 Mar 2014 3:58PM
This really is delightful, it captures a sense of fun and movement. Small children take their pleasures so seriously...

The things that stand out - the breeze blowing wisps of hair across Samantha's face, without obscuring her eyes; the space that you have left for her to look into; the fact that she is looking to our left, not the classic rightwards look - this adds a nostalgic, wistful feel, and it also makes the brain work a bit harder because it is unexpected. What is she looking at that is so much more interesting than we are? Plus F5.6 has isolated her beautifully against a gentle, soft background that supplies just enough information about the setting.

Mono avoids so many distractions - I can imagine the background being annoyingly bright and green... And the toning is attractive, sepia can look flat and muddy but this is a clean, bright, sunlit sepia.

Remember that when you add toning you lose a small degree of detail and image quality. It's important to check the light balance afterwards, I'd like to add just a bit of clarity. And ideally I'd like to rotate a little bit anti-clockwise to straighten the tree trunks - that would mean cropping a bit more off the top of her head so I might try skewing a wee bit instead, with a slightly tighter crop on both sides. Get rid of the light band to the left of the tree and a bit off the right because space behind a head is usually wasted space.

It's a pity that the light wasn't catching her eyes, catchlights would bring add sparkle. It is possible to cheat there...

Those are only minor tweaks, I really love this. It reminds me of my own daughter (now 37) at that age. Some aspects of childhood really don't change.

Mod to follow shortly, I hope...
paulbroad Plus
15 131 1294 United Kingdom
26 Mar 2014 3:59PM
I do like this. Breaks a few rules, eyes etc. But does it with class and great success. I bet it looks good in colour too, and would normally prefer that for a child shot but the sepia here is soft and delicate. Very nice.

A few others need to study this.

26 Mar 2014 4:20PM
It is a lovely image excellent presented ! The only remark I could make is that more space on the top of the image concerning the top of the head of the child would improve the balance of the image.
dudler Plus
19 1.9k 1950 England
26 Mar 2014 5:39PM
Looking backwards into childhood...

This is really beautiful, and while all the comments from Moira and George are helpful, it's perfect as it is, and you will treasure this picture for many years.

I think that darkening the backgrond would make the shot rather heavy, and woudl make "wistful" into "regretful" - I'd be tempted to lighten soem of the darker parts to reduce the competition with Samantha...
salopian 10 3 28 United Kingdom
26 Mar 2014 6:28PM
I agree with John - it's perfect as it is but the mods are interesting variations as well.
I was fascinated by Moira's suggestion of "cheating" re catch lights in the eyes so I had a try. Done more skilfully than I have managed to do I think it might move the score along from 99% 100% !!.

26 Mar 2014 7:18PM
I just want to say I like it Grin
IanSR 8 United Kingdom
27 Mar 2014 6:25AM
mrswoolybill, paulbroad, GeorgePlatis, dudler, salopian, chr1sm45on.

Thank you all very much for your comments.
I am blown away by your kind words.
I was pretty nervous about posting this picture, as I read that you should not really have people looking to the left, but are't rules made to be broken? She was simply in that position and it's one of those moments that "If you have the opportunity, take the shot."
I am going to have this shot printed as I personally do like it a lot.
I am fully open to any comments as I am learning everyday and just love what can be produced and what people are producing.
When I see something that a photographer has done and it gives me that feeling, I have to get out and try it.
To everyone, thank you and have fun.
mrswoolybill Plus
15 3.4k 2543 United Kingdom
27 Mar 2014 8:24AM
Thanks for your feedback. I would add - be aware of rules but don't be afraid to break them.
I hope we'll see some more of your work here.

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