Back Modifications (2)
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By quick
taken with a m42 optomax lens i chose this because of the drop away focus at both ends

Tags: Flowers and plants Fern

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dudler Plus
18 1.8k 1892 England
4 Mar 2015 9:20PM
As you've been a member of the site for a very long time, I assume that posting in the Critique Gallery is intentional, and you're looking for some feedback. (Some newcomers arrive here by accident...)

The shot has arrived without EXIF data, and it would be useful to have as much information as possible, both on the technicalities, and the processing. I realise that using an old manual focus lens will mean there's no EXIF data from the lens, such as focal length and aperture...

And it's worked: I'm guessing the Optomax is a tele zoom, or a long focal length, so that you can get very restricted depth of field. All fine. It's often fun playing with older lenses, and seeing how their characteristics (often, lack of what now constitutes 'high quality') delivers pictorial benefits.

In this case, shallow depth of field, which you'd achieve with any lens offering the same focal length and aperture.

There are then two questions: first, is there a better composition to be had? My feeling is 'probably'... A sideways twist to make the spine of the bracken diagonal?

Second, what's the advantage of the processing? This would work at least as well as simple monochrome, or maybe in the original colour.

I've done a mod, cropping and rotating, and then using Nik Efex for a sepia effect.

I wonder if this is a sort of 'proof of concept' picture, en route to making real use of what you're exploring? If so, it would be worth knowing it.
quick 16 14 United Kingdom
4 Mar 2015 9:39PM
love the mod cropping nd rotation nd nik efex ,i would hang this on my wall tnx
banehawi Plus
17 2.7k 4281 Canada
4 Mar 2015 11:07PM
Its very nice. Great detail in the in focus areas. Its a while since Ive seen a 10D shot, and its good to see the image quality.

Theres a lot you can do with a blue fern, and one of them is to make it green!

I had a play with this and ended up with a green, and placed the "rib" at a diagonal, leaving the curve as it falls off; added some tilt/shift blur that increases the existing lens blur; brightened; increased contrast; added a slight glow and a frame.


pamelajean Plus
15 1.7k 2242 United Kingdom
5 Mar 2015 5:05PM
This has worked out well, Paul. I like the soft focus on the outer parts of the fern.
I have always found ferns, or bracken, lovely subjects for photography, whether green or golden in autumn.
But the blue doesn't look right. However, I think that a slightly softer and lighter blue tone would give the suggestion of winter frost.

You will notice that both modifications show the centre line of the fern on a diagonal. When you have a single strong subject like this, you need something to give it impact, and a diagonal line can do just that.
The eye often looks at the bottom left of an image first before working across the shot to the top right corner, so it's a good idea to have a line which follows this path.
You can achieve this type of composition at the time of shooting simply by adjusting your angle.

Filling your frame with a subject like this has more impact, too, with as little background showing as possible. The fern has attractive repeats, curves and patterns that you can emphasize in this way.

dark_lord Plus
17 2.9k 793 England
5 Mar 2015 8:02PM
It's a bold move going for a blue tone.
I'm quite partial to blue toned images so this one sits ok with me.

Whatever colour or mono conversion you choose, it is true that having the leaf diagonally does give a more dynamic image.

There is what looks like a piece of spider's web in the bottom left of the image which is best removed preferably at the taking stage with a little flick as that'd be quicker than in software. How many times have we all missed a little distraction like that!


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