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War Memorial

By Philo  
This was taken at the frozen lake of Newmillerdam near Wakefield. It was such a bleak day that the original shot had virtually no colour so a mono conversion seemed appropriate.
f/8, 1/25s, 14mm, ISO 400, hand held
All thoughts and mods welcome.

Tags: Black and white Landscape and travel

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CathR 15 151 564 United Kingdom
4 Jan 2011 10:15AM
Brave of you Phil to go for such an obvious upright structure with a very wide angle shot. The top of the cross looks nice and straight - the bottom is not level but it looks as if it was built that way.

Also brave to go hand held at 1/25 which must be on the margins of what is possible without camera shake. Yet everything is very sharp from front to back.

I have uploaded a mod for you. I used the dodge and burn tools to get a bit more contrast in the sky. It's quite subtle though. While I was in that area I cloned out the bird.

I also lightened the cross a little without (hopefully) wrecking the atmosphere. You have some blocked out shadows there. While I was working on the cross at increased magnification I noticed that there is a very hard white line going round the cross. I don't know where this has come from - oversharpening or did you do some hdr processing on the shot? Anyway I cloned most of it out, drawing on the greys roundabout in the sky.

It's a very good shot. Just needs a few tweaks to bring out the best of it.

Thanks for posting your camera settings Phil - it makes such a big difference to have some info to work with. And lots of luck with the photography in 2011.

Best wishes

phil87 15 United Kingdom
4 Jan 2011 10:15AM
Hi Philo

I agree nice mono upload,
I have uploaded a mod; I felt the image lacked some tone and detail especially in the sky and around the monument, so I have done some burning and dodging to enhance the sky and to bring out the details in the monument. finished of with brightness and contrast, and finally cloned out the blemish that was well spotted by Focus-Man.

Hope you like phil
looboss 15 3.1k 7 United Kingdom
4 Jan 2011 4:09PM
I was looking at the image and wondered why it didn't work for me.
the thing is the lead in lines, in the cobbles and then what appear to be a path on the lake, leading the eye to follow to .... nothing, so I cut it out and left a mod of the main subject.
Philo 12 99 83 England
4 Jan 2011 4:10PM
Firstly, thank you all for the comments and especially the mods. Compositionally I had a dilemma: I wanted to include all the octagonal base but had to sacrifice a little sky to do so. In that respect I do like your mod Frank.
Well spotted on the halo Catherine. The only thing I can think of that may have introduced it is a selection I made of the cross to adjust exposure on it.
Phil your mod certainly adds drama to the sky but it is possibly a little overdone and on this occasion I prefer Catherine's more subtle mod.
Based on the feedback I think this is worth revisiting the RAW file and reprocessing.
Thank you all again for your contribution.
Philo 12 99 83 England
4 Jan 2011 4:19PM
Hi Luis your comments and mod must have landed whilst I was typing. I do see your point and I think Frank tried to address this by cloning out the broken ice. Your mod does work and provides a good alternative.
User_Removed 14 26 2 United States
4 Jan 2011 7:14PM
Love the composition here and the subject matter.
PeterDSmith 14 13 46 United Kingdom
9 Jan 2011 12:10PM
I looked at the original photograph and I thought that it was good. Then I looked at the modifications and I thought that they were good too. Given that you can't make a silk purse out of a sow's ear, if what I thought about the modifications is true then what I thought about the original photograph must also be true.
DRicherby 14 269 726 United Kingdom
11 Jan 2011 3:25PM
1/25s is pushing it a bit for a hand-held shot, even at a very wide focal length. The shot is basically sharp so you've got away with it, really, but the mortar between the cobbles around the memorial looks a bit harsh to me, as if something slightly soft has been sharpened quite a bit to stop it looking soft. At 14mm, you get bags of depth of field even at fairly wide apertures, f/6.3 and 1/40s would probably work.

This is a shot I'd prefer to take with a tripod, at ISO-100 but I read your comment about Santa's helpers at Amazon letting you down and I realise tripods aren't really an option if you're on a family walk or something.
Philo 12 99 83 England
11 Jan 2011 6:41PM
You are probably right Dave, f/6.3 would probably have been adequate.
I selectively increased contrast on the cobbles but perhaps over did it. As you can imagine this shot was quite flat and I was looking for a high contrast mono conversion.
Still learning!

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