Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 24

Thread: I'm not sure of the right title yet ..............

  1. #1
    Moderator Donald's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Glenfarg, Scotland
    Posts
    19,709
    Real Name
    Just add 'MacKenzie'

    I'm not sure of the right title yet ..............

    ......... because I am very, very proud of this image and think it is possibly the best I have made.

    Is this man mad?

    Maybe!

    It may not be technically perfect - I'd be interested in your views on that. So what's making me so proud and pleased?

    I have sought to promote the idea of images being a narrative. And for me (and it is, I acknowledge, maybe only for me) this encapsulates the western highlands and islands of Scotland. Let me put it this way - If someone asked me to tell them about the western highlands and islands, I'd show them this picture.

    Now, of course, that's my take on it. Others who live and visit there, may have a very different picture of that area in their mind. But, as a Highlander, I do claim some local knowledge and understanding. This picture is pure and raw emotion. This picture is my country and who I am.

    I'm not sure of the right title yet ..............
    Canon 40D, Tokina 11-16 f2.8 @ 12 mm. ISO100. 1/15s @f16

  2. #2
    Digital's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Carrollton, Georgia (USA)
    Posts
    2,127
    Real Name
    Bruce

    Re: I'm not sure of the right title yet ..............

    Donald, I like this picture because it gives you a sense of wonder (e.g. where does the lane go). You have done a very good job creating a real sense of depth to the photograph.
    Now for the kicker: IMHO this is a very good photograph; however I do not think it is your best.

    Bruce

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    3,594
    Real Name
    Greg

    Re: I'm not sure of the right title yet ..............

    I like the perspective, Donald. Placing the vanishing point in the centre of the horizon works for me; it have the impression that this is the top of the world, and there is nothing beyond, but more bleak sky and dirt road. Is that what the highlands are like?

  4. #4
    Ken Curtis's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    New Jersey, USA
    Posts
    800
    Real Name
    Ken Curtis

    Re: I'm not sure of the right title yet ..............

    Hi Donald.

    The image may have more meaning to you because you know the area and have fond memories. I don't think I can feel the same as you because I have not been there. But, having said that, I like that the image makes the viewer use his/her imagination to wonder what lies beyond. Any image that makes the viewer think is a good image.

  5. #5
    tbob's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Dawson Creek British Columbia Canada
    Posts
    2,167
    Real Name
    Trevor Reeves

    Re: I'm not sure of the right title yet ..............

    I know a picture is worth a thousand words. I respect your deep attachment to this image and I am greatly intrigued by it. On it's own it is a great, simple image. Quite evocative of isolation and perhaps even foreboding . I am fascinated however that it moves you to the extent it does. I would really, really appreciate it if you could elaborate on why, of all the great stuff you have posted, this is the one image that crowns them all and defines you and your sense of place.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    I live a stone's throw away from Cuyahoga National Park (NE, Ohio)..
    Posts
    1,213

    Re: I'm not sure of the right title yet ..............

    Hi Donald, I like the image a lot. I will spare you my emotional reaction to it except to say it resonates with my personality. One suggestion is to deepen the sky's overall contrast a bit. Maybe even a bit more structure. It is a wonderful foreboding sky that I think you fail to exploit.

    karm

  7. #7

    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    northern Virginia suburb of Washington, DC
    Posts
    17,908

    Re: I'm not sure of the right title yet ..............

    This image moves me, so that's all that matters to me.

    You mentioned that it may not be technically perfect, so I have to ask: what part of the image lacks technical perfection in your mind?

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    New Zealand
    Posts
    220
    Real Name
    Pania

    Re: I'm not sure of the right title yet ..............

    What Trevor said. Though, having traversed many lonely roads, I wonder if this is in your feeling ..........

  9. #9

    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Johannesburg South Africa
    Posts
    2,550
    Real Name
    Andre Burger

    Re: I'm not sure of the right title yet ..............

    Road to my heart?

    Adding a bit of contrast and viewing full screen!
    Last edited by AB26; 15th June 2013 at 07:55 AM.

  10. #10

    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    North West of England
    Posts
    6,186
    Real Name
    John

    Re: I'm not sure of the right title yet ..............

    I think only you can answer the question Donald. We, for the most part, can only admire it for it's aesthetic merit and there is no point in suggesting how it might be altered since the strength of this for you seems to derive from association. It's a good image. It invites the imagination to explore what comes next. I also see you have used one of my favourite lenses.

  11. #11
    Moderator Donald's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Glenfarg, Scotland
    Posts
    19,709
    Real Name
    Just add 'MacKenzie'

    Re: I'm not sure of the right title yet ..............

    Thank you all for your replies.

    It's rather stating the obvious, but your comments do illustrate that point about each image we make being our image. Yes, we can hopefully make something that, as John says immediately above, is aesthetically pleasing to others. When it is an image that is powerful on a personal level, we can try to convey some of that, but know we can only do it to a limited degree.

    Quote Originally Posted by tbob View Post
    I respect your deep attachment to this image and I am greatly intrigued by it. On it's own it is a great, simple image. Quite evocative of isolation and perhaps even foreboding . I am fascinated however that it moves you to the extent it does. I would really, really appreciate it if you could elaborate on why, of all the great stuff you have posted, this is the one image that crowns them all and defines you and your sense of place.
    Phew, where do I start.

    I realise that this is about my history, my childhood. Last week was the first time I ever visited the island of Gigha, but it was just like home was when I was a child. It felt the same. It smelt the same. And this scene encapsulates so much of that for me.

    So much of the west highlands and islands of Scotland is made up of rough, rugged and bleak terrain. It can be very unforgiving. It can be very beautiful. But making a living out of this land is not a ride in the park. It's tough.

    There is a solidity in the character of the people, much like that dry-stone dyke (wall) that has stood there for oh-who-knows how long. Not drop of cement. Just the skill of a craftsman holding it together is such good condition.

    It's about the freedom of open spaces. Big skies and long summers of childhood. It's about the roadway that can take you to new opportunities or, which was the case for so long, emigration away from your home to the industrial areas of Scotland and England or abroad to the 'new world', through economic necessity, forced eviction or, indeed, the desire to take on the bigger world.

    I hope I'm making sense. If not, then it's at least cathartic!

    I could write an awful lot more. But I hope I've given some sense of what, for me, is in this picture. But, it is just a picture and needs to be appreciated as that, not as some great literary historical work that explores and analyses. As Ansel Adams said, "... you either get it or you don't get it, but there's nothing on the back of the print that tells you what you should get."

    It is what it is for me, with the life experiences I've had. And I hope it's also good enough to be enjoyed by others just as a picture in its own right.

    Quote Originally Posted by Digital View Post
    Donald, I like this picture because it gives you a sense of wonder (e.g. where does the lane go).
    On Gigha (Pop, 120), you go up or you go down! There is one road that runs the 7 miles from the north end of the island to the south ......... and this is it. Off it are farm tracks and tracks to some houses.

    I suppose that is also part of what this picture is about for me, and the fact that at any time of day, but particularly early morning or late evening, what strikes you about being on the spot where I got this photograph, is the silence. All you can hear is silence, ...... apart maybe from a bird crying-out somewhere or a sheep bleating. So many of us live our lives with a constant wall of white noise. We never experience silence. Go to a place like this and you can. And it is a sense beyond description. Peace, serenity, calmness are three words that spring to mind.

  12. #12
    Moderator GrumpyDiver's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Ottawa, Canada
    Posts
    12,354
    Real Name
    Manfred Mueller

    Re: I'm not sure of the right title yet ..............

    Having been to the western highlands and Northern Skye; yes I can see how the image does a nice job of relating to both the landscape and the people that live there. Three paths heading off to the horizon; one smooth, one rocky wall and one for the fence-sitters.

  13. #13
    tbob's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Dawson Creek British Columbia Canada
    Posts
    2,167
    Real Name
    Trevor Reeves

    Re: I'm not sure of the right title yet ..............

    I get a better sense of what this picture means to you. As well as the Ansel quote there is a similar one about jazz (paraphrase) "if you have to ask, then you don't get it". I will never get the full impact of what this image evokes in you, but is that at all relevant? I am glad you have this to stare at and get awash with emotion.

  14. #14
    Jos G's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Belgium
    Posts
    13
    Real Name
    Jos

    Re: I'm not sure of the right title yet ..............

    Well, Donald, I like the picture! How 's that?
    Because I have often considered taking the time to get off the walked paths of rules of composition and still get an interesting photo. This is one of those: the vanishing point straight in the middle, the horizon in the middle.
    Why does it work? To me because you found a place where the landscape is not symmetric - obviously. Firstly one has to be there at the right moment and see it of course. Secondly you used black and white with my favorite contrast. Almost like my favorite film did (Ilford FP4). Seeing this photograph - I would never speak of a picture when I see a photograph! - I think of Ansell who managed to bring in all the light of the scene in the result.
    Since I live in Belgium, which has quite different scenes than Scotland, I cannot know if this photo is the epitome for your habitat, but it sure looks awesome to me. I can walk this way and feel good and feel good all the way. I could hang it on the wall and feel happy every time I feel the soft wind in my face.

  15. #15
    Moderator Donald's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Glenfarg, Scotland
    Posts
    19,709
    Real Name
    Just add 'MacKenzie'

    Re: I'm not sure of the right title yet ..............

    Simon

    I shoot Raw, so all the colour data is captured in the file in camera. However, I have attempted to teach myself the concept of 'seeing in B & W'. Some people might think that a rather 'airy-fairy' notion, but I think it works. That's why, when looking at a scene and planning a photograph, I know at that stage whether I'm going to be making a B & W image. I shoot specifically for that. If I've shot for a B & W then I will never make a colour version of that photo ... and vice-versa. That's just a rule I impose on myself and is probably a throw-back to film days. In other words, I never look at a file on the computer and ask whether it would be better in colour or B & W. That decision was made when I pressed the shutter.

    What I do, however, is set the camera to 'Monochrome'. I'm still getting all the colour info in the file, but I then see a B & W JPEG version on the back screen of the camera. I've reached the stage, I think, where I don't need that to tell me what I've got, but I keep it there as my sort of 'comfort blanket', just to check that I've read the scene correctly in terms of tones.

    I convert the RAW file with DxO Optics Pro8 and then take that file (still with the colour info embedded) into Nik's Silver Efex Pro 2, via Elements 11 (The NIK software, although it can be used as stand-alone, is desigend to be and operates better as, a plug-in to one of the Adobe suite of programmes). I then do output sharpening for the web, resize for online and make a JPEG using the GIMP ('cause I think its Wavelet Sharpening tool is best for that job). Any prints that I make are done using Elements 11 printer interface.

  16. #16

    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    northern Virginia suburb of Washington, DC
    Posts
    17,908

    Re: I'm not sure of the right title yet ..............

    Donald,

    Two questions...

    Do I understand you correctly that you're converting from color to black-and-white before making global and selective adjustments to the color version? The reason I ask is that I have read only two sources (authored by Jason O'dell and Vincent Versace) and both of them recommend refining the color version as much as possible before converting to black-and-white.

    When you are viewing the black-and-white image on the camera's LCD, do you revert to the color version before releasing the shutter? The reason I ask is that the two versions will result in slightly different histograms. Despite that you've got plenty of latitude when adjusting the exposure and curve during post-processing, I wonder how picky you are about "getting it right in the camera." I understand that at least part of your thinking about this issue may be affected by how you think about the issue I raised in my above question.

  17. #17
    Moderator Donald's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Glenfarg, Scotland
    Posts
    19,709
    Real Name
    Just add 'MacKenzie'

    Re: I'm not sure of the right title yet ..............

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Buckley View Post
    Do I understand you correctly that you're converting from color to black-and-white before making global and selective adjustments to the color version? The reason I ask is that I have read only two sources (authored by Jason O'dell and Vincent Versace) and both of them recommend refining the color version as much as possible before converting to black-and-white.
    I think the answer to that, Mike, is that I am making lots of adjustments before going to the conversion. I say 'think' because I suspect the context may be different. I am doing almost everything, apart from the B & W conversion work, at the RAW stage in DxO Optics. So all the colour adjustments (not only WB), exposure, lighting, capture sharpening, contrast (incl micro contrast), straightening, dust removal, in addition to the automatic corrections made by DxO in terms of distortions, chromatic aberration, lens softness, etc etc, are done at the RAW stage. So, if O'Dell and Versace are referring to making as many adjustments as possible before B & W conversion, then, yes, I am doing the same thing. Any difference might be that they refer to doing that to a colour TIFF made from a RAW file, whereas I'm doing it all at the RAW stage.

    When you are viewing the black-and-white image on the camera's LCD, do you revert to the color version before releasing the shutter? The reason I ask is that the two versions will result in slightly different histograms. Despite that you've got plenty of latitude when adjusting the exposure and curve during post-processing, I wonder how picky you are about "getting it right in the camera." I understand that at least part of your thinking about this issue may be affected by how you think about the issue I raised in my above question.
    No, I don't go back to a 'Faithful' or 'Landscape' setting before pulling the trigger. I go with the histogram that I get from the B & W JPEG. Given I use Canon's Liveview a lot, I'm looking at that histogram before I actually take the shot and adjusting exposure based on that histogram that's visible on the back screen. I think it's experience that informs you what the RAW file is going to come up looking like, in terms of exposure, based on what histogram of the in-camera JPEG is showing. So I have an idea that I can push the in-camera settings beyond the right-hand side of the in-camera histogram and still have room to play with when we get onto the computer.

  18. #18

    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    northern Virginia suburb of Washington, DC
    Posts
    17,908

    Re: I'm not sure of the right title yet ..............

    All of that makes sense, Donald. Thanks for the clarification!

    Your conversion to black-and-white takes place in the same place of your workflow that both O'dell and Versace advise. Even if you or they were using TIFFs or JPEGs, such as when working with scans of slides, I'm confident that the workflow would remain the same in that regard as when using RAW files.
    Last edited by Mike Buckley; 19th June 2013 at 02:33 AM.

  19. #19
    davidedric's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Cheshire, England
    Posts
    3,042
    Real Name
    Dave

    Re: I'm not sure of the right title yet ..............

    Hi Donald,

    I've come late to this thread, and it is certainly a fine image. However, what immediately struck me (and I don't think it has been mentioned) is the contrast between the dyke, which could have been there centuries, and the post and wire fence, which clearly couldn't. And then I wonder about the history of the landscape and its people: what is lasting and what has changed.

    Thanks for sharing,
    Dave

  20. #20
    purplehaze's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    1,435
    Real Name
    Janis

    Re: I'm not sure of the right title yet ..............

    I loved what you had to say about what this photo meant to you, Donald, and I had to wonder if that big sky you were talking about was the reason so many Highlanders ended up here on the Canadian prairies. I remember well how I felt upon stepping off a plane in Gaborone, Botswana, after living for four months in Nairobi. I wanted to drop to my feet and kiss the ground I felt so at home under that enormous blue sky.

    I learned a new word today for a strong sense of place: topophilia. It occurred to me that that could be a title for your photo. I also thought of "A Road Well Travelled", which would express both your sense of familiarity and the long history of the place.

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •