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Activity : Photo Comments



Hope you like the variety I have tried to bring in my portfolio. Most of the images have been put here for comment and that is always appreciated. I spend quite a bit of time in the Critique section and I know many visit my portfolio because I have passed comment on their work. Hope you think my work is of a reasonable standard.

I know that, even with 50 years experience there are still things to learn and that technology changes quickly.
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  • iPhone meets old phone

    Content OK. Tonal range? Oh dear! Very un-natural I fear - hits me between the eyes.

    • 15 Aug 2017 12:44PM
  • fancy sunshade

    A perfectly good pictorial record of a Greek boat. It lacks anything to hold my attention as a third party viewer. Dramatic lighting, angle or a wider view to set the place and add locational interest perhaps.

    • 15 Aug 2017 12:41PM
  • The Yeoman

    You need to supply the EXIF for sensible comment.This looks like a huge crop as sharpness is going and detail a touch mushy. The tonal range is also flat and compressed looking slightly HDR.

    The content is good, but technically there are issues despite comments above. Content is, almost always secondary to quality. Almost.

    • 15 Aug 2017 12:36PM
  • Klaipeda City , Lithuania

    You do realise this is a critique section? Your title is an advert for your photography, not an image title.

    There appears to be a problem with your processing as there is an overall green cast and a very flat tonal range. You do need to supply EXIF information if you want sensible comment - not even camera there. How did you process - what is your intent?

    Take it from me, if you are trying to promote a business, you do need to discuss quality.

    • 15 Aug 2017 12:29PM
  • Another Heron

    Yes, nice shot. I think I might work on the bright water a bit with the burning in tool and brighten the bird just a touch.

    • 15 Aug 2017 8:04AM
  • Sunayya

    I think Willie means which focus point are you using? The head here is rather too far to the left - needs space in front of it, but the main problem is the overall softness which is simple camera shake.

    The light was obviously low so you needed to up the ISO or use flash. I might have gone to 1600 ISO as shape with a bit of grain is better than soft when it should be sharp.

    Always think about camera shake!

    • 14 Aug 2017 5:40PM
  • Look into my eyes and you'll find me.....

    You are heavily over compressing. As Willie says, this is compression banding. I use JPG all the time, but never save the same image over and over. I also only ever ave JPG at maximum quality or, if really necessary, go from 12 to 11, but NEVER less.

    After work and image completion, just save as a maximum quality JPG - that will be good enough for almost any purpose.

    That is why this image is a touch green and slightly soft, too. The idea is very good but I would crop a strip off the top as the eyes are too low and the ears not needed. also crop ca bit from the left to restore the balance.

    • 14 Aug 2017 5:36PM
  • old neibourhood

    As Willie says. A bit washy and needing more depth of field and contrast. Does not really show transport without any kind of vehicle? For me more than half the image is a blurry wall which does not really make for great interest.

    • 10 Aug 2017 2:28PM
  • Summer

    Once more, a nice family image. The white line is a minor distraction. Once more, really needs to be sharp on the eyes. Concentrate on your focusing and make sure you use focus lock - half press the shutter button with the spot focus square where you want sharp. Recompose keeping the shutter button half compressed to lock focus, then complete the exposure.

    • 9 Aug 2017 2:58PM
  • The flight of the heron

    You just needed a -1 compensation. I keep checking this when shooting flying birds at Bempton - or I use an incident light reading from a hand meter and manual.

    Otherwise, not a bad shot at all. I have quite a few where they are flying away and here you can see the head and eye. It gives a good indication for the naturalist of wings and flying posture.

    Try shooting with automatic bracketing set. I do it regularly with the Fuji. A great asset. I think it should be available on your Nikon.

    • 9 Aug 2017 7:40AM
  • Swan

    Good image showing skill. Just not so keen on the strange white background.

    I went digital in 2001 when I took early retirement and sold my darkroom gear off. Never missed it! So much easier in front of a computer and so much easier too. As a long time darkroom worker - started in 1962 when I was trained in a well equipped industrial darkroom on a steelworks - I tend to use Photoshop mainly to do what I did in the darkroom.

    Adjust exposure, contrast, dodge and burn with the great added bonus of sharpening and cloning out undesireable features. All the other wonderful features I use rarely. Aim to master the darkroom compatible features first, then progress from there if you wish.

    • 8 Aug 2017 3:40PM
  • Bowled

    You have actually done very well with the main subject but the background does nothing for the final image. It is very messy. When considering depth of field, remember relative distances. You could have tried wide open here as all the action is in a fairly tight plane and you would probably have got away with it better. As we have said before, though, these long zoos rarely are at there best wide open.

    however, even a couple of stops wider is going to leave quite a bit of confusing background and it is going to be difficult to deal with. You could try selecting the figures, then blurring the background but it so often looks contrived.

    This is why the sports pros have wide aperture long lenses of good enough quality to use wide open. 300 f2.8 and 500 f4. Got a spare £8000?

    • 8 Aug 2017 3:32PM
  • bridge

    The idea is good, but to be completely successful, you need to get those foreground blooms, or some of them, pin sharp. You appear to have a little camera shake as nothing is totally crisp. Sharpness at the focal point of a composition is important.

    • 8 Aug 2017 9:45AM
  • A Summer Day

    Much as above. The composition is not terribly good with two subjects and many chocolate box images are rather well done - that's why they finish up on the chocolate box to attract attention.

    The lighting is too bright, causing total burn out on the road and the front of the car is sharp but there is a rapid fall off.

    I fear you can forget chocolate box and post card due to the contrast of the lighting. You needed less exposure and f11 or 16, focusing part way into the scene to use depth of field to increase overall sharpness. Then you would need to recover the shadows in software.

    Compositionally, the tree needed to be at the very edge of the frame, or the trunk completely out of frame. John has the composition right.

    I have an MX-5 Sport Cabriolet at 72, and it's great. 146 BHP in a soapbox.

    • 8 Aug 2017 9:32AM
  • Blackpool by day

    A lot of comment above. Basically the image is very soft all over due to the low shutter speed. F29 is also going to cause significant lens aberration causing softness. Huge depth of field is not needed here and f11 would be quite enough.

    Even at fairly wide angle, err on the side of a reasonably fast exposure, or a tripod. I would have been at 1/200 here.

    • 8 Aug 2017 9:24AM
  • Arundel Castle

    Shows how opinions differ. I am more of a traditionalist and draughtsman. We do need more EXIF but this could be an excellent scene but has a terrible weak green cast and is very flat indeed. I appreciate a little boost in processing but the result here is terribly un-natural.

    I showed it to the better half, who is not a photographer, but is quite crafty and arty - very crafty sometimes! Her first comment was 'what on earth has been done to it?'

    Back to something rather more conventional for me and if you intended this, well, so be it. I can assure you that submission to any library would result in rejection.

    • 8 Aug 2017 9:20AM
  • Zebras

    I really wish people would look closely at images. There is no point telling people they have a first class image when it is heavily technically flawed. It does nothing to improve there photography. Read John's comments which are totally correct.

    The hairs on the Zebras neck on the extreme right are near sharp, the rest is not. You also have under exposure and a heavy brown cast which will partly be the under exposure. The idea is good, the equipment, I suspect, is not up to the job.

    I have had three mirror lenses in my time, all not terribly good. The best was a 500mm Tamron SP but for anything but set piece tripod work it was technically virtually useless even at 500mm, not 1000!

    Seems a bit harsh, I know, but for an image to be successful for other than family use, it must be correctly exposed and sharp where it needs to be. Experiment with the lens on a tripod, and if it is inherently soft, as I suspect, use rarely!

    • 8 Aug 2017 9:14AM
  • Sumayya

    The dreaded f1.8!

    This is nice and would have great potential but the depth of field is so tiny that some of her hair and jumper are near sharp but her eyes are not. You do not need 1/3200 and f1.8 is too wide open. Do not assume that because you have that setting you need to use it. F5.6 here to get some depth of field and careful focusing on the eyes.

    I would crop just a little tighter although the idea of the composition is very good.

    • 8 Aug 2017 9:06AM
  • Pushing The Boundries

    Unfortunately, everything is slightly blurry. The rider and bike are sharper than the background but the general effect is out of focus rather than speed. You need to practice panning a little more. The ideal image is bike and rider sharp, wheels with motion blur, background blur due to horizontal movement.

    It's not easy at all. experiment with shutter speeds too. I might have been at 1/80 to 1/100 but it depends on the speed the subject is moving at. It's like shooting. You hold the subject exactly in the sights moving smoothly with him but keeping him in exactly the same place in the viewfinder. Squeeze the trigger at the appropriate time but keep the panning motion going throughout.

    I would also be on servo auto focus and continuous shutter to allow bursts of shots.

    • 8 Aug 2017 9:02AM
  • Hay Bales

    A classic type of harvest shot, but I would have had the bales on the left not the right. This lacks compositinal balance.

    You really do not need such filters - all mine are in a box in the false roof except polarisers. I can see the need for the odd neutral grad but you will ruin more than you improve. This is very warm indeed at the bottom.

    • 6 Aug 2017 2:38PM
  • Kilchurn Castle

    This is first class, and with such a fine image you should deliver yourself a sharp slap on the wrist for that tilt! Should not get past your processing stag.

    • 6 Aug 2017 2:34PM
  • Dragonfly

    An amazingly good image with entirely the wrong gear! we see many not as good with the right gear. The only negative is a slight flatness to the image which is easily corrected.

    well done.

    • 6 Aug 2017 2:31PM
  • Iceland

    It is a good image of it's type but, for me, it lacks lasting interest. Purely personal, but I see no formal composition and thus nothing to hold my attention.

    • 6 Aug 2017 2:27PM
  • Autumn Ferns

    Some strange tones here including a touch of green in the sky? Why ISO2000? much to fast and the main reason for the flat tonal range and strange colours I would think.

    There is potential but there is general over exposure even with -1 stop and the top of the image is significantly over. A generally darker image would be better, but a lower ISO and tripod for quality.

    I would come in closer, making the image a smaller number of ferns making them a very sharp subject, then with ošnly f5.6 to get some selective focus

    • 6 Aug 2017 2:23PM
  • The Long Way Home

    A classic viewpoint. it does have to much very bland sky for me - I would crop most of that off, then a bit of each side to improve dimensional balance. Ideally, a tiny figure, in the distance walking away - never there when you need them!

    • 6 Aug 2017 2:15PM
  • Red Squirrel

    A super shot, but entirely with Willie. You should not use spot metering with automatic modes without great care. You are just a touch under exposed but that is easily corrected in software.

    • 4 Aug 2017 8:12AM
  • The Barbican

    Not a bad cityscape at all, but I think I detect a touch of HDR/ Quite well handled but just visible as slight tonal compression.

    How do you get a whole portfolio stolen? Was it on line at full resolution? Logos are a bit unfortunate in this section and low res images are only of value on a web site, but that is where so many go these days.

    • 4 Aug 2017 8:09AM
  • St Michaels Mount Cornwall

    It's an OK aerial pictorial record, but is quite contrasty and a bit soft. A microlite will not be the ideal steady photographic platform and I assume considerable vibration. As such I would have been at ISO 400 and 1/800 sec to avoid camera shake, or reduce it.

    A bit of work with the burning in tool on some highlights would help too.

    • 3 Aug 2017 8:51AM
  • Golfing in the Sun

    For me the sun is to bright, much too bright. The huge lens flare spot doesn't do a lot to enhance the image either. You need the sun lower than this and loosing intensity, or behind some light cloud, then the effect could be quite attractive.

    • 3 Aug 2017 8:47AM
  • the lookout

    Back to spot on an auto setting. This is quite sharp enough but it is over exposed quite a bit and very warm. Teasels are not that colour. You should not use spot metering on auto. It is criyical that the spot is placed on a part of the subject which equates to 18% grey, for which the spot metering is calibrated. Otherwise you will need compensation as here.

    The content is very good, and it is a real pity. I hope you bracketed and shot several frames. I would have shot at least a dozen here. Ideally you needed a much lower ISO as that may be why it is so warm - the EOS system tends to produce warm images at any time which get warmer as the ISO goes up. ( I have a 7D )

    Ideally, 100 or 200 and a tripod or monopod to handle the then reduced shutter speed.

    • 3 Aug 2017 8:38AM