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Thread: Forth Bridge #4

  1. #1
    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Forth Bridge #4

    And finally ........ in this little series of images of the bridge(s) over the River Forth that I started last weekend, is this one.

    One of the comments in response to Forth Bridge #3 was that it maybe had too much on the left and that a closer crop on the bridge itself might work. Well, this is that image.

    It replicates a shot I took last year and which, although okay, needed too much processing for my present-day tastes (I think I'm continuing to develop and, hopefully, get better). Also, this one, as you can see from the info below the image, has a 30 second exposure, as opposed to the 15 seconds on Forth Bridge #3. That also enabled me, I think, to be even more extreme than I was in Forth Bridge #3 in pulling back the contrast using Silver Efex Pro 2, but again putting in SEP2's 'Soft Contrast'. That gave me the soft light that I was seeing as I took the photograph and what I wanted to re-create in this image.

    And, again, sharpening was restricted to Capture Sharpening with DxO Optics at Raw stage and Output Sharpening with the GIMP when I re-sized it down for posting on here.

    As always, your comments about whether you think it works, whether the approach I took is appropriate, how you might have seen it differently, what the strengths and/or weaknesses are, etc., are welcomed.

    Forth Bridge #4
    Canon 40D, EF 24-70 f2.8 L @ 27mm. ISO100. 30s@f22. Singh Ray Vari ND
    Last edited by Donald; 23rd September 2012 at 05:15 PM.

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    Re: Forth Bridge #4

    The overall composition of the foreground bridge is exactly what I was imagining and is the primary reason that the other image that you mentioned does not appeal to me as much as most of your other images. You even managed to find an angle that attractively includes the background bridge.

    Love the processing, the composition, the feel -- everything about it!

  3. #3
    escaladieu's Avatar
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    Re: Forth Bridge #4

    Good work.

    J

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    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Re: Forth Bridge #4

    Thank you, gents. Glad to read that this one is closer to the mark for you, Mike.

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    Re: Forth Bridge #4

    Donald brilliant image, I have yet to see you post a bad image.
    you really do know your craft.I visited your site the other day and it took my breath away, it is now in my favourites list, and will be getting re-visited frequently.
    Regards
    Glenn.

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    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Re: Forth Bridge #4

    Thanks for the compliment Glenn.

    I've just noticed what looks like a massive dust bunny up near the top right. Am away to the original to investigate. Never saw it until now. AAAAAAAAAAAARRRRGGGGGHHHH!!!!

    EDIT - To save my blushes, I have replaced the dust bunny version with the one above, from which the offending blotch has been eradicated!
    Last edited by Donald; 23rd September 2012 at 05:33 PM.

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    FrankMi's Avatar
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    Re: Forth Bridge #4

    Nothing quite like a little dust bunny to get your heart rate up!

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    Moderator GrumpyDiver's Avatar
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    Re: Forth Bridge #4

    A beautiful shot Donald, it brings back memories of our trip to Scotland a few years ago. I think that going B&W is very effective for a period shot like the bridge.

    I wonder about your cropping decision; is there perhaps a bit too much sky?

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    Re: Forth Bridge #4

    I like this one the most Donald. Great angle and B&W conversion.

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    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Re: Forth Bridge #4

    Quote Originally Posted by GrumpyDiver View Post
    I wonder about your cropping decision; is there perhaps a bit too much sky?
    I seem to have developed this liking for keeping the subjects quite low in the frame and allowing a lot of sky to be present. I think I need to go for a shoot in somewhere like Montana where, I believe, there are lots of opportunities for big skies.

  11. #11
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    Re: Forth Bridge #4

    Donald in my humble opinion the best of the series as it takes all the best elements of the others and puts them together in what is a simply stunning image of the bridge. I particularly like the scale and the way the bridge almost fades into the distance and the feeling I am looking at the bridge when it was new. I would love to produce an image even half as good as yours so I am asking Santa for SFX and promising to be a good boy for the rest of the year!!

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    Re: Forth Bridge #4

    Quote Originally Posted by Donald View Post
    Glad to read that this one is closer to the mark for you, Mike.
    You misunderstood. It's on the mark. Bullseye!

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    Moderator GrumpyDiver's Avatar
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    Re: Forth Bridge #4

    Quote Originally Posted by Donald View Post
    I seem to have developed this liking for keeping the subjects quite low in the frame and allowing a lot of sky to be present. I think I need to go for a shoot in somewhere like Montana where, I believe, there are lots of opportunities for big skies.
    Yes, I quite understand where you are coming from. Negative space is a powerful compositional element and is one I often struggle with.

  14. #14
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    Re: Forth Bridge #4

    Hi Donald, I really like this one. I like the tone, the slight mist, the contrast of the sharp lines of the bridge against the milky smooth water and sky. Excellent stuff. Your series of the Forth Bridge must be as good a photographic record as any that exists out there.

    Can I throw a spanner in the works? What did you use as your reference point for ensuring that it was totally level? I feel that it needs a 1 degree clockwise rotation to bring it level. I could be wrong, or it could be an optical illusion... ...but I drew a line along where the central concrete block meets the water and leveled it from that and it seemed to need about 1 degree. Admittedly this isn't the full resolution image so my results perhaps aren't as accurate as you can make them, but I'm wondering if you agree or not...

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    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Re: Forth Bridge #4

    Quote Originally Posted by RockNGoalStar View Post
    Can I throw a spanner in the works? What did you use as your reference point for ensuring that it was totally level?
    I was wondering/hoping about someone asking about that, becuase every time I look at it I think it needs that rotation. But because I used the vertical of the support pier of the road bridge, I convinced myself that it was an illusion.

    I told myself that what was throwing me, was the shoreline. Becuase it passes behind brdige pillars at various stages we are deceived into thisnking we are looking at one shorel;ine, when in fact we're looking at a shoreline that is closer and further away from us at various stages.

    However, I do need to go back and look at the way you have done it. Maybe it needs perspective correction (although I don't think it should have required that) to then straighten up the tower of the road bridge.

    I want to get this one right, because I do think it's a keeper.

  16. #16

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    Re: Forth Bridge #4

    If you view the largest image in the Lightbox and move it to the left until the tall part of the rear bridge is immediately adjacent to the edge of your monitor, I think you'll agree with me that it is perfectly vertical. I have never sensed anything unlevel or any keystoning in this image.

    Quote Originally Posted by Donald View Post
    I do think it's a keeper.
    You have such a firm grasp of the obvious.

  17. #17

    Re: Forth Bridge #4

    Very nice

  18. #18
    RockNGoalStar's Avatar
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    Re: Forth Bridge #4

    Hi Donald,

    I always try to use a point of reference that is close to the centre of the image for alignment as lens distortion can throw you out if you choose something nearer the sides. Unfortunately there isn't much that is long straight and vertical / horizontal to go off in this image.

    The more I look at it the more I think it needs that correction though.

    I make it about 1.08 degrees of CW rotation. You do need to add some perspective correction after that though, to ensure that the road bridge is vertical.
    Last edited by RockNGoalStar; 25th September 2012 at 01:34 PM.

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    Re: Forth Bridge #4

    Hey Donald,
    A very nice moody shot.
    I was wondering about the reference point too & then saw that it has been discussed. Interesting.

  20. #20
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    Re: Forth Bridge #4


    Wonderful image, Donald.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Buckley View Post
    If you view the largest image in the Lightbox and move it to the left until the tall part of the rear bridge is immediately adjacent to the edge of your monitor, I think you'll agree with me that it is perfectly vertical.
    Although this is true, I am not sure that it is an appropriate place for testing this image.

    Quote Originally Posted by RockNGoalStar View Post
    I always try to use a point of reference that is close to the centre of the image for alignment as lens distortion can throw you out if you choose something nearer the sides. Unfortunately there isn't much that is long straight and vertical / horizontal to go off in this image.
    The more I look at it the more I think it needs that correction though.
    I make it about 1.08 degrees of CW rotation. You do need to add some perspective correction after that though, to ensure that the road bridge is vertical.
    I do agree that this correction would be beneficial. However, the perspective should be left alone. Rotating as suggested would level the waterline, and it would make that distant tower tilt over very slightly to the right.

    However, the shot appears to have been taken from a low viewpoint, so the brain's perception of vertical perspective would be comfortable with the verticals in the image converging very slightly. Hence the distant tower should lean very slightly clockwise, and the right hand side of the bridge should lean very slightly anticlockwise (as it still does even after applying the suggested correction).

    Cheers.
    Philip

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