Back Modifications (5)
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Walk in the park

By AM74
Took the shot in the park today. It was over-exposed I think as I found it difficult with snow everywhere. I am afraid I did put it through LR to make it look a little better. Any comments on what I should have changed would be welcome.

Tags: Park Snow General Bench


dudler Plus
17 1.3k 1696 England
10 Dec 2017 7:31PM
H, again, Annie!

There's nothin in particular I'd suggest changing, except using exposure compensation to address the dark background, and shooting RAW, which will give you the best chance of getting back detail if the exposure's not spot on.

I think I might have taken half a step back, so that I could include all of the bench on the right. But I have an obsessive side, and maybe you should ignore that...
ddolfelin Plus
8 103 3 Wales
10 Dec 2017 8:29PM
An excellent composition with a great lead-in.
mrswoolybill Plus
13 2.3k 2265 United Kingdom
10 Dec 2017 9:17PM
The figures really bring this to life. They add a sense of movement, vitality.

I agree with John about moving back a bit in order to include the complete bench. If you go back, look for an angle that gives greater importance to the bench's structure, less to the empty expanse of tarmac.

I've uploaded a modification, only minor changes to light. I mainly used the dodge and burn tools at large brush settings, to even out the light a bit. The really overexposed area is the snow on the bench - even with an overcast sky, light is hitting it fairly directly at 1.58pm.

And then, just for comparison, I flipped horizontally, to give the lead-in from the left...
dark_lord Plus
16 2.6k 694 England
10 Dec 2017 9:52PM
I'll second what John and Moira have said about composition and exposure.

Exposure is tricky in snow but the most common problem is underexposure because of the high reflectane of the snow.
Where strong light catches the snow directly (and this can mean through a gap such as a doorway or gateway) there is more lielihood of burned out detail. A little less exposure then and lift the shadows in post processing. there will often be tiny spot (specular) highlights, especially when the sun is out that won't be able to have any detail recovered but that's different to having large areas blown out.
Not that there's any real issue worht worrying about My eye is taken with the detiail in the wood, the path, trees and then to the figures.
dark_lord Plus
16 2.6k 694 England
10 Dec 2017 10:02PM
I've just done a couple of modifications that I felt would go well with this image.

The first is using Nik Analog Efex to give a film like look. Contrast handling, less than careful exposure and proicessing/printing all had in effect years ago. This does remind me of some of my early photos taken in the winters of the 1970s and 1980s.

Second mod uses Nik Silver Efex to create a mono image, something winter scenes tend to look good in. You may or may not go for that, though there are many other alternatives.
10 Dec 2017 10:12PM
Thank you all again, very useful comments.
Love all 3 modifications!!
Careless of me to not include all of the bench and too much of the tarmac. I feel there are so many things to think about when taking a shot and there is too much pressure to get it right!
I have set the camera to shoot RAW but so maybe I can do more with it LR but am still finding my feet with it, as it is such a complex software. At the moment, it is a case of moving the cursor to see what looks better! Not very scientific or technical I am afraid.
All your comments here have made me realise what I did not even know I didn't know!! Such a valuable resource.
banehawi Plus
16 2.3k 4163 Canada
11 Dec 2017 12:11AM
You like these long shots.

A bit too warm for me, judging by the asphalt. You have good detail front to back.

Loaded 2 mods. cropped out a lot of sky.

With LR, each adjustment has an Auto mode, - try them first to see what you think; sometimes they work well.


dudler Plus
17 1.3k 1696 England
11 Dec 2017 9:42AM
I find Lightroom confusing, compared with Elements and Photoshop.

However, if you find and learn to use dodge and burn, crop, white balance and levels, and concentrate on them for the moment, it may be simpler. Others may be able to advise how to do all of these in Lightroom.. I don't know. It feels as if it's a trendy piece of software, but not as obviously effective for simple stuff (which is al I do, myself...)
dark_lord Plus
16 2.6k 694 England
11 Dec 2017 11:50AM
I wouldn't put yourself under any pressure to 'get it right'. Just take pictures and review them in comfort later.
Looking back at my early work I can see what I'd have done differently but I wouldn't class then as failures. Indeed it still happens now!

Moving the sliders in LR is a good way to learn, and seeing what improves the look is what it's about. The trick is remembering and understanding what you did to get the result so that next time you know what's needed and what to do.
Essentially there are only a few adjustments that you'd need to consider most of the time. Black and White points, Colour Temperature (colour balance), Shadows and Contrast. if those were the only controls you had, 99% of images would still be able to be adjusted effectively.

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