Helpful Posts Helpful Posts:  0
Results 1 to 8 of 8

Thread: A calm spring morning, C&C please

  1. #1
    abhi's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    India
    Posts
    408
    Real Name
    Abhi

    A calm spring morning, C&C please

    I was out at the park with my wife a couple of days ago, when this dragonfly came and sat on a leaf really close to us. I took a series of photos creeping up to it, but turns out that the shot I like best is the one where my wife was sitting on the grass in the background, out of focus. I feel it conveys a sense of calmness with the dragonfly sitting still and her being in a relaxed state. So, I hope I have learned something new about composition and using out of focus subjects.

    A calm spring morning, C&C please

    Does the photo look too warm? Is there a way to bring out the green grass, without affecting the warm colors in the rest of the photo. Critiques and comments regarding composition, post processing or anything else are all welcome.

    And here's a close-up of the dragonfly:

    A calm spring morning, C&C please

    Thank you for viewing.

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Ariege, France
    Posts
    453
    Real Name
    Paul

    Re: A calm spring morning, C&C please

    Hi Abhi. My opinion (for what it's worth) is that the first shot just isn't working for me unfortunately. The idea of selective focus is a really good one and certainly worth exploring but in this shot ....
    ... pretty much every shot should have a subject or a composition that will lead the eye around the picture or a composition that will lead the eye to the subject. Most people will subconsciously 'zoom in' on a bright area in the photograph; in this shot it's your wife's white trousers, taking the eye immediately away from the dragonfly. Worse still I'm afraid people will see legs and follow them up, in this shot your wife's head is cut off so effectively the eye just exits the picture at the top. Not at all what you wanted and the dragonfly has pretty much the same tonality as the leaf so honestly at first glance I didn't even realise there was a dragonfly in the image Sorry to be so negative and this is just my opinion, the idea behind the shot was good and it's ideas that make photos. How would I improve it ? I'd have maybe had your wife topple over left so that her head was in the image and have her eyes making contact with the dragonfly, people follow eye contact when viewing a picture generally speaking and in addition she might have helped framed the dragonfly. Mind you by the time she'd done all this, in my experience the dragonfly would probably have flown off anyway. Post processing, my first thought would be to take down the exposure a half stop or so on all the out of focus areas, hopefully that would draw attention to the little beast.
    Second shot no problem, if you could isolate dragonfly and leaf and darken the background a bit in Photoshop or whatever that might make it even stronger.
    Sorry to be critical, if it helps most people ignore what I say anyway - wife especially

  3. #3
    Shadowman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    WNY
    Posts
    30,669
    Real Name
    John

    Re: A calm spring morning, C&C please

    Abhi,

    You and your wife get extra points for not startling the dragonfly. Regarding the warmth or excessive warmth of the photo, I would have to say that it is more of an overexposure issue than warmth. Your wife's skin tones look natural, it is the highlights that are affected in this image. What camera settings did you use?

  4. #4
    abhi's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    India
    Posts
    408
    Real Name
    Abhi

    Re: A calm spring morning, C&C please

    Thanks for your feedback John and Paul. The overexposure is a result of my post-processing. It did not look as distracting when I was working on the photo. And I agree that it would have been better to have my wife's eyes in the photo, looking at the dragonfly. But this was not the composition I had in mind when taking the photo. My entire focus was on the dragonfly, I was just taking shots as I was creeping closer to it. So, that's a lesson learnt. Thanks again for the time you took to provide me a detailed critique . My apologies for the delay in replying as I have been quiet busy with my job, and have not been able to spend as much time on my photography, or participating on the forums as I would like to.

  5. #5
    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Windsor, Berks, UK
    Posts
    16,290
    Real Name
    Dave Humphries :)

    Re: A calm spring morning, C&C please

    Hi Abhi,

    I would add to Paul and John's comments ...
    If possible, I think a composition with the damsel fly on the left, rather than right third, would suit your wife's position in the background better.

    I would clone out a few of the leaves and tufts on the grass.

    Both my comments above relate to #1, but the sharpening, on especially the second could be improved I feel, even when viewing the 1024px versions obtained by clicking the image.

    HTH,

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Ariege, France
    Posts
    453
    Real Name
    Paul

    Re: A calm spring morning, C&C please

    You're welcome Abhi - more shots soon eh ?

  7. #7
    abhi's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    India
    Posts
    408
    Real Name
    Abhi

    Re: A calm spring morning, C&C please

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Humphries View Post
    Hi Abhi,

    I would add to Paul and John's comments ...
    If possible, I think a composition with the damsel fly on the left, rather than right third, would suit your wife's position in the background better.

    I would clone out a few of the leaves and tufts on the grass.

    Both my comments above relate to #1, but the sharpening, on especially the second could be improved I feel, even when viewing the 1024px versions obtained by clicking the image.

    HTH,
    Thanks Dave. I need to find that little bugger to take a few more shots . I am still working on my post-processing skills and am always scared of over-sharpening. I think I have done a good job with a couple of other photos. I will post them over the weekend.

  8. #8
    abhi's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    India
    Posts
    408
    Real Name
    Abhi

    Re: A calm spring morning, C&C please

    Quote Originally Posted by bambleweeney View Post
    You're welcome Abhi - more shots soon eh ?
    Thanks Paul. I will post a couple of other shots this weekend, just need my lazy self to get on with postprocessing.

Posting Permissions

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