Critique #4

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Critique #4

Postby Andy » Mon Nov 28, 2011 3:55 pm

This is another image by CTYANKY, posted for critique:

Image
Andy

If it sounds too good to be true, its probably . . . .


ctyanky
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Re: Critique #4

Postby ctyanky » Mon Nov 28, 2011 7:34 pm

Andy: thank you for posting this photo for me. I welcome any and all responses for your friendly beginner who has good intentions!

Al, the sun does shine in Connecticut and I am thrilled that my sky is blue for a change! :wink: Ok, the wire needs to be removed. My subject is the silo (I think. :? ) Would it (the silo) have the same effect of being challenged by its two barns if it were not centered? I know Al suggested that I not center my subject......

This farm is in north central CT. I go here for ice cream (too often) made from their cows down under the barns. Just thought I would add that piece of jolly information. :D

Go for it.

deaner1971
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Re: Critique #4

Postby deaner1971 » Tue Nov 29, 2011 8:16 am

Thanks for sharing!

Obviously it was probably a bit later in the day than you would prefer but light isn't too bad. I think it does result in the sky needing a bit more blue and the barn needing to be pushed a bit more toward a deeper red.

I do wish we could see a bit more to the right. That appears to be a hay bail conveyor going into the barn to the right and that might have been an interesting inclusion. That being said, for all I know there was a huge Monsanto sign just out of site and you picked that limit for a reason.

Question for you and the masses, if the contrast and/saturation was tweaked, would a conversion to black and white be at all interesting?

From_the_NEK
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Re: Critique #4

Postby From_the_NEK » Tue Nov 29, 2011 2:03 pm

CT, you sound concerned that the silo is centered. However, the middle of the silo is actually about 10% left of center which keeps you from flagrantly violating that "rule" :D . I think there is a nice balance here between the silo and the peak vent on the top of the barn. Just a little more grass showing in front of the barn would be nice as well.

Andy
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Re: Critique #4

Postby Andy » Tue Nov 29, 2011 2:30 pm

CT: When I look at this image, I see several things:

First, there are certain appealing compositional elements in a shot like this one:

Color
Form
Texture

I think “form” is the primary element, here, though and color and texture enhance and relate to that form. To me, the placement of the elements within the image frame are important in order to create flow and balance in the photograph. I took the liberty to crop the image, with your permission, to try to illustrate what I mean. I would much prefer to be able to be on site and make some of these adjustments on my feet, however. I think the crop removes too much of the barns, particularly the barn on the left and disturbs the “size” balance between the two barns.

The issue I see with the silo is a larger concern. Artists have for years used the “golden mean” in trying to create balanced composition. In most cases, there is good reason – it is pleasing to the eye and mind, and more dynamic. I think that applies here. I do not like the way the silo sticks right up through the middle of the frame. First of all, I don’t think the silo is the primary subject – but it is an important part and it gives vertical balance and context to the image. I would almost always try to place an element like that in or near one of the “quadrants” created by the “rule of thirds.” Hence, you can see that I have moved it to the left in my crop (the image didn’t really allow for moving it the other way). But doing so, meant I had to sacrifice too much of the barn (I do think from NEK's comment about the cupulo/vent and the silo complementing each other is valid, but I think the silo itself is too massive to balance the vent so close to it). I think you could move your position on site and accomplish moving the silo and still maintain better balance between the relative barn sizes. This is why I think composing on site, and thinking about these elements and relationships is so important.

Because in my view, color contrast between red barn and blue sky creates drama and dynamics in the image, I darkened made the sky a deeper blue (I used a “quick and dirty” technique that darkened the clouds more than I would have liked, but using better Post Processing techniques would accomplish this in a better way). I also made the red slightly deeper.

Finally, the texture on the barn siding and particularly on the cement state silo adds to the image, so I sharpened those areas a bit to bring out the textures (again, my sharpening was “quick and dirty” for illustration only and I would have used a more painstaking technique for a final print or presentation – note how the roof tiles on the right barn show oversharpening after I am done).

Minor technical elements. You have gotten the horizon straight nicely. Exposure is pretty good (just ever so slightly blown out highlights – almost not enough to mention – but shows on the histogram, and ever so slightly a gap at the shadows on the histogram). The wire doesn't bother me, as it is a realistic element of the scene and doesn't "pull" my eye away from anything important.

The main challenge to this image – like my first post here of Athens Pond – is the light. This is just plain harsh light. Very hard to do much about that except “be there” when the light is right :)

Image
Andy

If it sounds too good to be true, its probably . . . .

ctyanky
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Re: Critique #4

Postby ctyanky » Wed Nov 30, 2011 6:45 am

Andy: This new rendition of my photo is beautiful! At first glance, it is not so hard on the eye with the silo moved to the left and now the red barn on the right becomes more appealing. The color intensity in the sky and barn is perfect. Would I say now that my subject is the red barn on the right?

I can see now that the silo in my first photo was overpowering and that to have 3 large objects in the picture was too much for the eye to look at in my opinion. Now that it is cropped and the silo and barns are not all staring me in the face at the same time, I can see what you have done to make this photo more visually appealing.

It looks great. Thanks Andy for the transformation!

Dean: Never thought of black and white but I don't have the capability at this time. Thanks for your response and yes, Andy's saturation of color did wonders!

deaner1971
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Re: Critique #4

Postby deaner1971 » Wed Nov 30, 2011 8:03 am

CT,

When you say you don't have the capability at this time, is that a software limitation?

Thanks, as always, for sharing!

Dean

abby
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Re: Critique #4

Postby abby » Wed Nov 30, 2011 4:35 pm

Hi CT,
I really like that silo and those barns and see why you wanted to photograph them.
Andy's edit is fantastic. Great job on that Andy!
Carol

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Re: Critique #4

Postby autzig » Wed Nov 30, 2011 8:33 pm

CT, your photo proves that you do get some sun in Connecticut. Actually, I've been there when the sun has been shining, it just seems that you get stuck with clouds and gloom when you are photographing it. The clouds in this photo are great; much better than a plain blue sky.

I think Andy is right on with his critique. The one thing I noticed right away is the diagonal line created by the barn roof, the cupola and the silo. That is a very nice feature; creating movement in stationary objects. While it can be seen in your original photo, it is much more striking in Andy's version. This diagonal leads the eye right to the subject of your photo.

One thing in your original photo that is troubling is the open door and window on the lower right. I find it very distracting and I would have cropped it out in the field. Of course, had you done that, your silo would have even been more centered. I don't like the sign on the barn on the left, but there is nothing you can do about that in-camera.

While there are some hot spots on the roof of the silo, I don't think they are burned out. I think your exposure is as good as you could get, given the conditions.

Al

ctyanky
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Re: Critique #4

Postby ctyanky » Thu Dec 01, 2011 5:41 am

Carol: I do love barns! We have lots of them here in Connecticut and they are well taken care of - I don't see too many in disrepair. They are a link to our past. They are special and fun to photograph.

Al: Thanks for your critique. I think of you and Andy a lot when I'm out with my camera. I did find the hayloft on the far right distracting once Andy put the photo up. Even Dean noticed it right off. I'm glad I did get a blue sky and some interesting clouds finally!!!!

I'm not sure what you mean by hot spots on the roof of the silo - do you mean glare from sun?

This centering thing I've been careful about in the past but apparently, not this time. It does make a world of difference as evident in Andy's tranformation which I think is beautiful.

Thanks Al. You have been so helpful and I welcome your comments as always. :D

deaner1971
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Re: Critique #4

Postby deaner1971 » Thu Dec 01, 2011 9:49 am

ctyanky wrote:Even Dean noticed it right off.



Hey! :x

:D

ctyanky
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Re: Critique #4

Postby ctyanky » Thu Dec 01, 2011 12:29 pm

Oh dear! Dean! I didn't mean to insult you. :oops: I only meant that you "also" noticed it (the hayloft off to the right). I didn't mean to infer that your photography expertise was substandard. Emails are hard to decifer sometimes aren't they???? I hope you forgive me!!!!!! Anyways, I find your responses quite informative and I have learned a lot from your questions, etc.!

P.S. Glad you added the happy face! That made me feel better!!!!! :roll:

Andy
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Re: Critique #4

Postby Andy » Thu Dec 01, 2011 4:02 pm

Oh oh, CT: You'll never hear the end of this one. I am looking forward to meeting "Even Dean" one of these days :mrgreen:
Andy

If it sounds too good to be true, its probably . . . .

deaner1971
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Re: Critique #4

Postby deaner1971 » Fri Dec 02, 2011 4:13 pm

CT, Of course I knew what you meant and I was just kidding.

And Andy, I am looking forward to meeting all of you. Provided that is, that I get my chance to photograph that barn and sugar house that the rest of you have all shot so well.

abby
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Re: Critique #4

Postby abby » Fri Dec 02, 2011 4:27 pm

Hi even Dean (You know that's your new name now, right?????? :lol: I can hook you up with that shot anytime you like. Just let me know and I'll be glad to go there with you.
Carol



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