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Pebble Collection

By Disee      
Where ever I travel, beach or river, I collect pebbles and shells, Spain, UK, Italy, Kariba (Zimbabwe), Vilancoulos (Mozambique) and South Africa. This collection is in a large bowl on my coffee table. I filled the bowl with water to create interest and bring out the colours which I think has worked quite well. I also enhansed the colours a little.

Tags: General

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This photo is here for critique. Please only comment constructively and with suggestions on how to improve it.


pamelajean Plus
12 1.0k 1996 United Kingdom
7 Oct 2010 2:03PM
Hello, Dinah. I love pebbles, rocks and stones, for their colours, textures and shapes, and can understand why you collect them. This could have been taken on the seashore or in a rock pool because you have cleverly filled the frame with the stones with no suggestion of a container. Wet stones are always far more colourful and interesting than dry ones, so the water is a great idea, see how they sparkle. I also like the idea of some being submerged and some being partly submerged. As a personal choice, I would have had them all in focus. Also, it would be nice to have more contrasting colours and shapes within your frame. There is a lovely pink stone bottom right and a red one top centre, for instance, and the largest stone is just plain grey. Another interesting idea might be to include just one shell within the frame, which would provide a focal point.

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Alvar 11 23 2 France
7 Oct 2010 5:34PM
I like it. Well done.
SueEley 11 279 96 Wales
7 Oct 2010 7:11PM
Great idea and very pretty. The biggest problem for me is that some parts have gone completely to white, and I can see the meniscus in a few places. Having the stones damp on a bed of damp sand and staying clear of strong direct light sources can help with these issues and reduce the amount of white in the shot, which does detract, I feel.
Paintman Plus
11 1.2k 177 United Kingdom
7 Oct 2010 8:48PM
I think if you used a diffuser, ( a simple sheet of white cloth or tracing paper placed between the light source and your subject ) the highlights wouldn't be so burned out and the dynamic range would be narrowed so your camera will have more of a chance to capture the very dark tones and lightest tones without either being clipped.

As already said it needs a focal point and choosing an interestingly coloured or textured stone as the main subject within the composition would improve the impact of this shot.

In the mod I increased the contrast, with the exception of the highlights. I did this using a layer mask to mask out all the lightest lights.

I changed the colour balance so the warm and cool colours balanced out better.

A final selective sharpening and save to web.

I think the idea's fine but it needs more impact through a better selection of the main pebble and the rest of the composition. You could play around with more than one light source or a couple of reflectors to bounce the light around. It's a case of experimentation. A black and white conversion works well with textured pebbles. Also play with depth of field. See how a very shallow DOF gives a completely different feel to a shot that's sharp from front to back.

This is only an opinion and not meant to offend.

Disee Plus
8 21 United Kingdom
18 Oct 2010 9:31AM
Thank you all for comments, I have so much to learn. Dinah

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