Back Modifications (8)
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Tatty old stone wall

By AM74
Just took this shot on a busy road, walking home from the shops. Mainly changed white balance in Lr. Attaching original too. Cannot decide which white balance looks better.

Tags: Road General Bus Stone wall Footpath

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Comments


alfpics Plus
18 374 4 England
23 Dec 2017 10:23AM
I rather like this! If being picky, a personal preference would be to see a (very) little bit more of the wall to right of the in focus area, thus removing a bit of the blank space on left hand side - but that's a minor issue. Otherwise its different and that's great!
dudler Plus
17 1.3k 1696 England
23 Dec 2017 11:06AM
A couple of thoughts, Annie -

WB gets simpler if you set it to soemthing other than auto when shooting, I think. One or two people who may comment work the other way, but AWB often gives a rather perverse result. (Oddly, though, I usually keep it set to sunny, so that a cloudy day records as rather bluer than most people will want it. But it IS bluer...) I prefer the corrected front version to the very magenta bias of the original.

I agree with Andy about a little more space on the right, less on the left.

There's a tilt to the picture, and it seems to be a very common thing - I did it myself a few days back - to be so intent on another aspect of the image that one forgets to check that it's all looking level (or artistically skewed, of course!)

You clearly love limited depth of field shots... So do I! The effect is more pronounced at longer focal lengths and wider apertures, as you know: my extra thought for today is to use increased ISO to allow you to go the other way, and see how the same composition looks at f/22...

And I absolutely love the fact that you take your camera to the shops, and pause to take pictures on the way home. I do the same (I always have some sort of camera with me, and usually it's not just the one on my mobile!) This is a pretty healthy addiction, as addictions go.
ddolfelin Plus
8 103 3 Wales
23 Dec 2017 11:28AM
A unique view - very good.
23 Dec 2017 1:03PM
Thank you John for finally solving my White balance dilemma! Smile

I really struggle with seeing whether photo level or not, unless on a tripod. Maybe need to acquire that skill!

I try to take my camera to as many places as I can, although it can be impractical and a bit of a faff, and it embarrasses my teenage children who don't like the 'looks'! For now, I don't care. Hope the novelty and addiction don't wear off!
23 Dec 2017 1:06PM
Love your modification btw- it looks so much better!
banehawi Plus
16 2.3k 4163 Canada
23 Dec 2017 2:11PM
There no real mystery with WB.

There is also a big difference between which WB look you prefer, to which WB accurately records the light at the time of the shot. You can set WB to whatever look or effect you prefer, but its nice to know what is the most accurate WB, closest to the ambient light at the time of shooting.

AWB does a reasonable job of correcting Incandescent light or some flourescent light, but its really a wild guess in daylight.

Shooting in RAW with AWB gives you the opportunity to correct WB in post processing, - the preferred approach; otherwise chose a setting that matches the scene, daylight works well most of the time.

I have uploaded 4 mods. Two of them are screenshots from the file that show how the colour is distributed in the scene, and how a correction is made that significantly reduces the amount of Magenta. The next two are of the scene, corrected, verticl, and a close crop with no traffic.

Question, is this blur 100% from the camera as shot, or have you enhanced it using post processing blur?


Regards


Willie
dudler Plus
17 1.3k 1696 England
23 Dec 2017 2:18PM
Don't fret about keepign the camera level al lthe time - it's a very simple thing to correct in editing, as it was in the darkroom (you just rotated the paper easel until everything was true!)

One of the few really constant things in my way of doing htings is to check that it looks level. And 30 seconds to correct, usually, if not...
23 Dec 2017 2:38PM
Thank you Willie and John.

So far, I had been shooting RAW with AWB. After John's comments today, I changed the setting to daylight. But good to know it can all be fixed post processing.

Histogram screenshots are really helpful with your comments and arrows demonstrating it all so clearly!

Surprised by mod 5 with no traffic- so there was a photo within the photo that I did not see!

The Blur was 100% from the camera as shot, I don't even know yet how to create it post processing. Does it look like it was enhanced afterwards?

Annie
dudler Plus
17 1.3k 1696 England
23 Dec 2017 3:21PM
To my eye, no - it does look natural. The sharpness falls off progressively, but rapidly, jsut as I'd expect at f/5 and 70mm.

The telltale for digital softness is that there's often something that is the wrong sharpness for its distance, or the fall-off is not progressive. For instance, if there's soemthing interesting in the otherwise-soft background that is sharp, I'm pretty sure that there's been digital playing around. If you are used to using limited depth of field, it's often easy to spot...
dudler Plus
17 1.3k 1696 England
23 Dec 2017 3:40PM
I'm scanning very old negatives as I type. I've uploaded an irrelevant mod that I did a few minutes ago - how odd that it is, in some ways, very similar to your shot. Taken in 1969-70, using a Braun Super Paxette 2BL and 50mm f/2.8 Tessar lens, probably at full aperture.
mrswoolybill Plus
13 2.3k 2265 United Kingdom
23 Dec 2017 4:02PM
I like the way you are exploring the world. I enjoy shallow depth of field and I know how very seductive it can be when you first start to use it seriously. I do think now that it's something to be used with care. Like a lot of things that I enjoy it's possible to overdo it... Here I really like the way the twisted dead ivy stalk is sharply defined against background blur but I would like the stone textures to recede into blur a bit more gradually, to give a bit more substance to that acid green moss.

One aspect that I thought of immediately, but I don't think it's been mentioned on this upload - you tend to lead into your shallow dof images from the right, that's counter intuitive because we are trained from very early to read everything including images from the left. Where the dof is as shallow as this I think it's easier on the viewer's eye and more engaging to the imagination if you lead from the left. I've added a mod with a tighter crop, horizontal flip, plus I wanted to get that lamp post somewhere nearer to vertical.

I used the dodge tool set to highlights, burn tool set to shadows, both at 3% exposure and with a very large brush, over the dead ivy. This enhances texture and gives a more 3-dimensional feel. It helps the foreground come forward to the eye.
Moira
pamelajean Plus
14 1.4k 2157 United Kingdom
23 Dec 2017 4:19PM
All good reading above, Annie.

I would have taken this shot as in Willie's modification number 4. It's the detail of the plant and the blurred wall background that make the shot for me.
The drainpipe, traffic and bright spots are simply distractions from a simple and effective image.

Pamela.
23 Dec 2017 4:27PM
Thank you all again for your very useful, helpful and valuable insight.

It gives me confidence John , seeing your old photo. that I am following in good footsteps! Smile

Really love your mod Moira. Just need to learn to use this dodge and burn tool, as you seem to use this a lot to make pics alive!

Re your comment above [but I would like the stone textures to recede into blur a bit more gradually, to give a bit more substance to that acid green moss.]- it frustrates me that I cannot make the blur gradual without losing the shallow dof. Does that need a slightly higher f stop? Or is skill specific and not camera specific and beyond my scope at the moment!
Tongue
paulbroad 13 131 1289 United Kingdom
23 Dec 2017 5:42PM
God you carry the camera regularly, as do I, and good to see attempts at something different. However, in this case, all I see is a very blurred bus and street furniture. The composition doesn't work for me at all as the sharp bit is fairly mundane and not very demanding.

You needed the sharp bit rather larger in frame, or a very drastic left side crop to a thin vertical image. Most of the above attempts to make something of what is here. I'm not sure that will work.

Pqul
mrswoolybill Plus
13 2.3k 2265 United Kingdom
23 Dec 2017 9:38PM

Quote:Re your comment above [but I would like the stone textures to recede into blur a bit more gradually, to give a bit more substance to that acid green moss.]- it frustrates me that I cannot make the blur gradual without losing the shallow dof. Does that need a slightly higher f stop? Or is skill specific and not camera specific and beyond my scope at the moment!

Basically yes to the first bit, try a slightly smaller aperture. F8 here would be good. Do remember that there are three things that affect depth of field: aperture, focal length and how close your focused subject is to the camera. You were using a longer focal length here than for example here, or here, and focusing nearer to the camera, so blur sets in much quicker.

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