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Thread: A Peaceful Place

  1. #1
    dje's Avatar
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    A Peaceful Place

    I took these this morning at one of the Brisbane botanic gardens, mainly around the Japanese garden feature. Just trying out the new lens (Sigma 17-70mm f2.8-4). CC welcome.

    Cheers Dave

    A Peaceful Place


    A Peaceful Place


    A Peaceful Place


    A Peaceful Place


    A Peaceful Place

  2. #2
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    Re: A Peaceful Place

    Very nice shots Dave. I love going to our Botanical Gardens and shooting the Japanese gardens. Love those Maples.

  3. #3
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    Re: A Peaceful Place

    Dave

    A very nice set of images.

    #1, #3 and #4 look just slightly too bright on my monitor. I wondered if taking the exposure back by even just 0.5 or 0.75 of a stop would add a bit more strength? And I also wondered if you had applied any Local Contrast Enhancement? I find that it's great for giving shots like this more 'pop' as it brings up the texture in that dense foliage.
    Last edited by Donald; 26th August 2011 at 07:38 AM.

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    Re: A Peaceful Place

    Hi Dave,

    I'll 2nd Donald's comments - I've made some quick adjustments to one of the images for you (hope you don't mind), just to give you an idea as to what we're meaning. It almost looks like the foreground has been flash-illuminated, so I've put a graduated filter over it - adjusted the levels - adjusted the saturation - slight vignette - output sharpen, and ...

    A Peaceful Place
    Last edited by Colin Southern; 26th August 2011 at 07:47 AM.

  5. #5
    dje's Avatar
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    Re: A Peaceful Place

    Thanks Joe, Donald and Colin for your comments and advice. I see what you mean. I will spend some more time on pp. I haven't really done much more than basic RAW processing on these. Colin your edit makes a huge difference. The sky conditions were cloudy but on that image only the front part of the subject was illuminated well and the rest was in a fair bit of shade. If I owned GND (glass) filters, I probably could have used one when taking the shot. But with pp software, I guess it doesn't matter so much.

    Cheers Dave

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    Re: A Peaceful Place

    No worries Dave,

    Digital GND is one technique - it can work well, or it can fail miserably -- mostly depending on the dynamic range of the scene, and how well one exposes it. In this case I'd have exposed for the brightest portions, and then used the fill light slider to reveal any desired shadow details, possibly / probably with a Digital GND.

    I'd be happy to take a look at the RAW file for you if you'd like me to.

  7. #7
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    Re: A Peaceful Place

    Quote Originally Posted by Colin Southern View Post
    No worries Dave,

    Digital GND is one technique - it can work well, or it can fail miserably -- mostly depending on the dynamic range of the scene, and how well one exposes it. In this case I'd have exposed for the brightest portions, and then used the fill light slider to reveal any desired shadow details, possibly / probably with a Digital GND.

    I'd be happy to take a look at the RAW file for you if you'd like me to.
    Hi Colin. I would be most interested in supplying the RAW file for you to weave your magic. How do we do this ?

    Dave

    Edit : Just seen a post from Jiro on another thread which explains how to upload.

    http://www.mediafire.com/?p0vjgzsyb2f5rdp
    Last edited by dje; 26th August 2011 at 07:48 PM. Reason: link added

  8. #8
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    Re: A Peaceful Place

    I've done some more pp on these. Hopefully they have a bit more punch now.

    A Peaceful Place

    A Peaceful Place

    A Peaceful Place

    A Peaceful Place

    A Peaceful Place

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    Re: A Peaceful Place

    Hi Dave,

    It was trickier than I thought - no matter what I did, I still wasn't 100% happy with the local or global contrast -- but here's what I came up with in the end ...

    A Peaceful Place
    (Click on image for bigger / better view) (recommended!)

  10. #10
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    Re: A Peaceful Place

    Quote Originally Posted by Colin Southern View Post
    Hi Dave,

    It was trickier than I thought - no matter what I did, I still wasn't 100% happy with the local or global contrast -- but here's what I came up with in the end ...

    A Peaceful Place
    (Click on image for bigger / better view) (recommended!)
    Thanks very much for that Colin. It looks very good to me. I had originally cropped out the bottom because of the white clipping in one spot of the water but the full image, stretched horizontally, gives a much better perspective and more interesting shot. I like what you've done with the lighting and contrast. Is there any simple way you could give me the full details ? If not a summary would be much appreciated. This is a pp learning excercise for me. There is so much to learn in this area. Oh and also would it be possible to post the full res jpeg on mediafire please ?

    Thanks again Dave

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    Re: A Peaceful Place

    Quote Originally Posted by dje View Post
    Thanks very much for that Colin. It looks very good to me. I had originally cropped out the bottom because of the white clipping in one spot of the water but the full image, stretched horizontally, gives a much better perspective and more interesting shot. I like what you've done with the lighting and contrast. Is there any simple way you could give me the full details ? If not a summary would be much appreciated. This is a pp learning excercise for me. There is so much to learn in this area. Oh and also would it be possible to post the full res jpeg on mediafire please ?

    Thanks again Dave
    Hi Dave,

    You're very welcome. Often with water shots like this, one can get away with some blown highlight (in fact, it's essential to have as least some so that the image uses the full tonal range) - the exact amount becomes critical at print time though; if I were to do a 22 x 44" canvas print of this (my normal landscape size) then the bigger the blown area, the greater the area of "naked canvas", and past a certain point is just starts to look too obvious and bland.

    Generally I like to use a 2:1 aspect ratio for landscape -- I've always found that it just gives it a bit of a nice panorama feel to it. Often this can be assisted with cropping, but if that fails then I just tell Photoshop to stretch it; it's amazing how the eye tolerates it so well - even when there are people or round objects in the scene (probably because their relationship to other objects in the scene doesn't change).

    In terms of "what did I do" ... this probably isn't going to be a good learning exercise as it was a very tricky image to get right (the "theory" and the "practice" just didn't line up at all). I started with a digital GND filter to darken the foreground, but after that there was a LOT of pushing and prodding levels & saturation in various areas - and even then I didn't get it 100% right (I'm about 80% happy with it). Normally I'd be delighted to talk people through what I did, but this one was a bit too complicated for me to even remember all the steps (sorry). Possibly the best thing I can say would be next time, a GND filter in front of the lens might balance things up a bit more at the time of capture.

    You're most welcome to have the retouched file back - can give it to you as a PSD, JPG, or both if you like - which would you prefer?

  12. #12
    dje's Avatar
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    Re: A Peaceful Place

    Quote Originally Posted by Colin Southern View Post
    Hi Dave,

    You're most welcome to have the retouched file back - can give it to you as a PSD, JPG, or both if you like - which would you prefer?
    Both would be fine thanks Colin.

    Dave

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    Re: A Peaceful Place

    Quote Originally Posted by dje View Post
    Both would be fine thanks Colin.

    Dave
    Just uploading now for you Mike - I included the DNG as well, so you can see what I did with that.

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    Re: A Peaceful Place

    Quote Originally Posted by Colin Southern View Post
    Generally I like to use a 2:1 aspect ratio for landscape -- I've always found that it just gives it a bit of a nice panorama feel to it. Often this can be assisted with cropping, but if that fails then I just tell Photoshop to stretch it;
    Colin, would you mind advising what tool or whatever is being used to "stretch it?" And also - in this description, does the 'stretching' begin at a 2:1 aspect ratio? And does the stretching change the aspect ratio? Thanks!

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    Re: A Peaceful Place

    Quote Originally Posted by Lon Howard View Post
    Colin, would you mind advising what tool or whatever is being used to "stretch it?" And also - in this description, does the 'stretching' begin at a 2:1 aspect ratio? And does the stretching change the aspect ratio? Thanks!
    Hi Lon,

    The aspect ratio is simply the ratio of long side -v- short side. Most DSLR image are 1.5:1 out of the camera (ie half as long again as they are high), so an aspect ratio of 2:1 is just "twice as long as it is high".

    Normally I'll crop the image to get rid of the bits I don't want anyway (and if it happens to make it more panoramic in the process then so much the better), but after that I'll typically just (in Photoshop) click on Image -> Image Size then key in 44" wide by 22" high @ 180 PPI (if it's a canvas print) or 1024 pixels x 512 pixels (if it's for display on my website). Basically you can put in any figures you like so long as constrain proportions isn't checked.

    Ultra-Wide Angle shots are a good example of what often lends itself to 2:1 or even 3:1 panoramas as often there are huge amounds of sky and foreground that can be trimmed off.

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    Re: A Peaceful Place

    Aahh, Colin - thank you so much! Now you've seen the evidence of my lifelong membership in 'Overthinkers Anonymous!' I knew about aspect ratio and using image size but somehow I went down the road of thinking that stretching it meant employing an arcane technique buried deep in a missing manual, discussed only by photoshop savants in hushed voices, in secret places; and that somehow I could lure you into revealing it. What a disappointment!!!

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    Re: A Peaceful Place

    Quote Originally Posted by Lon Howard View Post
    Aahh, Colin - thank you so much! Now you've seen the evidence of my lifelong membership in 'Overthinkers Anonymous!' I knew about aspect ratio and using image size but somehow I went down the road of thinking that stretching it meant employing an arcane technique buried deep in a missing manual, discussed only by photoshop savants in hushed voices, in secret places; and that somehow I could lure you into revealing it. What a disappointment!!!
    Hi Lon - sounds like you're thinking of what's called "content aware resize" which is slightly different.

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    Re: A Peaceful Place

    Colin,

    How do you make a border with the shadow on the right and bottom to make it look like it is raised out from the border?

    Deb

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    Re: A Peaceful Place

    Quote Originally Posted by wommby View Post
    Colin,

    How do you make a border with the shadow on the right and bottom to make it look like it is raised out from the border?

    Deb
    Hi Deb,

    It's a Photoshop action that I wrote - in essence it just uses the canvas size & drop shadow commands.

  20. #20

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    Re: A Peaceful Place

    I'll have to have a go as it looks great
    Thanks - Deb

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