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Thread: Cropping Advice Please

  1. #1
    arith's Avatar
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    Cropping Advice Please

    Cropping Advice Please

    I almost always crop close to the original, but can it be done better? Should I have waited for the train halfway and hiding part of the signal box? ect ect.

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    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Re: Cropping Advice Please

    I think the position of the train relative to the signal box is good.

    What I do wonder about is whether the points and the criss-cross of rails in the foreground, draws attention down to that part of the picture and away from the engine and the signal box? Or to put it another way, view it as a 4:5 ratio, retaining the exiting top and side edges (i.e. crop the bottom), and does it become a stronger or weaker image?
    Last edited by Donald; 2nd October 2011 at 06:21 PM.

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    shreds's Avatar
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    Re: Cropping Advice Please

    Steve,

    Always a good question. I would actually have tried to shoot just prior to it half covering the signal box, any later and you will be cloning out the finials again as with your other shot. I would also liked to have seen a little more of the carriages, though I guess your close crop on that side was to exclude a load of clutter!

    Agree with Donald in respect of the rails going out of the frame to the right, do send the eye away from the main subject.

    I like the fact that the signalman is in shot as it becomes less 'sterile'. Whilst your subject is the train, the folk who run the service and their fare paying passengers form an essential raison d'etre, and there is no reason why adding a little life to the scene is going to detract.

  4. #4

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    Re: Cropping Advice Please

    I suppose the first question is what did you actually shoot and what options would this present.

    Personally, I would like to have seen a little more of the carriages on the right, as Ian said, with the train about the same position with regard to the signal box.

    But quick action shots like this leave little room for 'thinking time' while you are actually shooting.

    However, with regard to what we have here. I agree with Donald and would crop the bottom where the rails join. You should be able to lose a little from the left side of the image and still keep the signal box intact. This would keep the 4 x 5 ratio.

    Another idea was to crop closer at the bottom and change the ratio to 5 x 4 which I think might just work but it is getting a bit tight; which is why I would like to see a little more of the carriages etc on the right side to give more 'working space'.

    Either way, this shot has the potential to be an excellent scene so I think it is worth a little experimentation to get everything absolutely perfect.

  5. #5
    arith's Avatar
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    Re: Cropping Advice Please

    Quote Originally Posted by Geoff F View Post
    I suppose the first question is what did you actually shoot and what options would this present.

    Personally, I would like to have seen a little more of the carriages on the right, as Ian said, with the train about the same position with regard to the signal box.

    But quick action shots like this leave little room for 'thinking time' while you are actually shooting.

    However, with regard to what we have here. I agree with Donald and would crop the bottom where the rails join. You should be able to lose a little from the left side of the image and still keep the signal box intact. This would keep the 4 x 5 ratio.

    Another idea was to crop closer at the bottom and change the ratio to 5 x 4 which I think might just work but it is getting a bit tight; which is why I would like to see a little more of the carriages etc on the right side to give more 'working space'.

    Either way, this shot has the potential to be an excellent scene so I think it is worth a little experimentation to get everything absolutely perfect.
    OOPS, my excuse is I'm disabled and don't get the practice

    The only reason I crop is to remove errors, after all I print these to A2 size and expect pin sharp from very close or a foot distance. I do, I do

    Cropping Advice Please

  6. #6
    arith's Avatar
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    Re: Cropping Advice Please

    Donald makes a good point Ian, but actually I got A3+ paper and I know it's silly but don't like to waste it. A3 or any A size with the rails cropped looks quite nice actualy.

  7. #7
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    Re: Cropping Advice Please

    Maybe it's just me, but I like the rail convergence. I've tried this with various crops and prefer it just as it is. If you remove the junction with a close crop you still have the rails running in on the right which I find distracting unless you go very tight and do a bit of cloning, but then why not just shoot the front of the train to begin with? At the moment it fits nicely into thirds, why would you want to change that?

  8. #8
    arith's Avatar
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    Re: Cropping Advice Please

    Cheers Chris; that's what the registration points in my viewfinder are for. I hardly ever set one different to centre but did earlier that day,mostly I only use them as a guide to thirds.

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