Back Modifications (4)
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On a Wet Day

By PeterLaw
Taken yesterday at 13.48pm coming onto the level crossing at Beckingham near Gainsborough Lincolnshire.
B1 Class 4-6-0 61306 Mayflower on a excursion from Ealing Broadway to York. The rain had just stopped as the train approached

Tags: Transport Mayflower 1306

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dark_lord Plus
16 2.7k 699 England
18 Nov 2019 4:23PM
Hi Peter,

Welcome to the Critique Gallery.

Before we can offer some relevant critique it would be useful to know some answers to the following questions:

What is your reason for requesting critique?
What inspired you to take this photo?
What were you hoping to achieve?
Do you feel that you succeeded or failed?
Are there any specific elements of your photo that you want help with?
Do you want advice on camera settings, processing, composition, or something else?
Do you have any particular questions you would like answered?

That will help is to help you.

pamelajean Plus
14 1.4k 2160 United Kingdom
18 Nov 2019 4:43PM
Looking at your portfolio, Peter, I think this is your first venture into the Critique Gallery.
You arrived here because you checked the "Critique Wanted" option. I assume that was your intention. From your portfolio, it appears that you are very competent at taking this type of shot. So it would be helpful if you gave us an idea as to why you have put this image in the CG, so that we are more able to help.

This is the part of the site where you can't get votes or awards (as in the main gallery), but you can be pretty sure of focused and constructive comments on your pictures.

Is this a crop of a larger file? This is a small file, only 900x581pixels. So the quality of any cropped modifications is going to be poor, as is my own. I have cropped, maintaining your aspect ratio, taking one of the rails into the bottom right corner, removing some "dead" space from in front of the engine and adding some canvas to the end, so that it's not so tight in the frame. The crop also eliminates the small light area bottom left.

I brightened the image because it's underexposed, lifted shadows and sharpened. I cloned out the electricity pylon.

I like the way the smoke fills the sky area and blends in with the bit of sky that remains.
Your angle on the engine is quite classic, and it's nicely positioned.
The name is nicely defined. You focused well on that area.

Quite often, a rainy or dull day will enhance the colours of a photo, and it's not always a case of "bad" weather. The dullness just needs a bit of attention in post-processing to bring out the best of the image.


PS: Keith and I were typing at the same time.
banehawi Plus
16 2.3k 4169 Canada
18 Nov 2019 6:47PM
If you do want critique, apart from providing the information above, DO NOT resize the image, leave it at its original size, and EPZ will size it to the maximum allowed size, it will look a lot better.
dudler Plus
17 1.3k 1715 England
19 Nov 2019 6:37AM
And welcome from me, too.

Although to do the job really well, we need the information others have asked for, I have some suggestions straight away.

First, the engine is very central in the frame: you need either to arrange AF points so as to pick up an off-centre subject, or crop to recompose in the way that you have done in most of yoru other engine images. Yes, have space in front of the train for it to move into, but don't have vast amounts of empty space there. The two mods deal with this slightly differently, but both well.

Second, the slight underexposure may be because you set shutter priority, and then used a low ISO setting... The camera opened up the aperture as far as it could, f/4, and then ran out of headroom. Either raise the ISO in dull conditions (my preference), or set it to auto and yoru exposures will improve under conditions like these...
mrswoolybill Plus
13 2.3k 2274 United Kingdom
19 Nov 2019 11:52AM
I'm a bit late here, but a warm welcome from me too!

Things that I enjoy here: the north country grittiness, first of all; then you used a relatively low pov, which gives a sense of power and weight to the loco; you allowed space on the right for it to move into (though I think too much space, see below); and the composition starts with that pylon which is a very subtle framing element.

But the first thing that I noticed is that there is a tilt in the image. The pylon on the left tapers upwards, so the left side is not vertical as it appears here. Equally you can see the tilt in the stakes along the edge of the track.

I've uploaded a modification - I rotated clockwise, then made a few other adjustments. I cropped to reduce the space on the right, it doesn't need that much and by cropping you can create a nice framing device with the arch of evergreen foliage.

Then light. The need here is to bring out detail in both the dark loco and the light steam. That requires some processing, to exploit the potential lurking in your data. I lightened shadows and darkened highlights by 10% each. I used the burn tool set to 3% exposure on midtones to bring out the textures in the steam. Then 7% added brightness.

I've also uploaded a second mod, with less space at the bottom, more on top for more height of steam. It's worth considering portrait format for a shot like this.

Shutter speed priority would be my choice here, (with a somewhat faster shutter and higher ISO). The large aperture is OK with careful focusing. If the light drops on shutter priority you risk underexposing, but it's easier to correct underexposure than a blurred image, which would be the risk if the light dropped and you were on aperture priority!

It would be useful if you let us know what advice you are looking for, and whether what we have done here helps. The Critique Gallery works best when we get a conversation going.
21 Nov 2019 6:00AM
The comments on my mod failed for some reason, but the points have been covered my others. My other point was to shoot RAW as opposed to Jpeg, as this will allow you to make the adjustments needed more easily. Finally, take care not to over sharpen and if this is being done in camera for Jpegs, then suggest turn the feature off.

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