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I'm trying ... I'm really trying.

Discussion in 'Miscellany' started by Dr A, Jul 28, 2008.

  1. Dr A

    Dr A

    Feb 2, 2008
    State College, PA
    to improve my photography. Please help by critiquing these 3 images. I really tried to get meaningful shots instead of just shooting randomly at whatever happens to come around the bend.

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  2. The first one is great. I can't tell if it's 1938 or 2008! Great job!!!
  3. The second one leads the eye well with the railroad tracks. B&W is a great effect.
  4. waltny


    Mar 27, 2008
    Reno, NV
    Really like the first one, think the composition is dead on. I really enjoy the black and white job.

    The leading lines away from the view along with the low perspective really bring home the overall feel of the photo. Nicely done.

    Think the 3rd would look better in an "aged" black and white also.
  5. TheCommons


    Jul 2, 2008
    LA, CA ;)
    I like the 2nd picture the best
  6. Chris101


    Feb 2, 2005
    What are you saying with this triptych of images? The message is suggested, but not quite crystal clear. The first and second picture seem to repeat the same elements. Is that intentional? The third one is radically different. That gives it importance over the other two. Why is it so important?

    ps, these questions are rhetorical, and are my way of critiquing this set of images.
  7. the_traveler


    Mar 22, 2007
    en route
    I am assuming that these three pictures aren't meant to be a coherent series but only three examples of your work. I looked back at your previous submissions and these show definite progress in composition and thought.

    The way I work in trying to create a picture is to look for what is interesting, then try to eliminate any part of it that doesn't contribute either in the capture or the edit and then make any necessary changes to enhance what my original idea was.
    (I generally try to keep it in a standard aspect ratio both because I happen to like that look and because a non-standard ratio draws attention away from the image and to its shape.)

    One train picture.

    Great start, sweeping entry from left, curving around to upper. Nice sweep, nice image, reasonable conversion. I would crop to 4 x 5, taking off the vlown out sky at the top because it adds nothing and is so bright as to draw the eye away.. Then I would adjust the image to make it more contrasty to give it that gritty, harder look and because it is a little dull, flat now.

    (Just noticed how the more contrasty one on the right looks more curvy. Interesting )

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    Rust picture

    3 columns, 4 rows, very balanced, not so interesting, no drama or tension because everything is enclosed in the image. But within this is potentially a nice little composition.

    I would crop to give a composition with some interest some balancing elements, some tenion some interest. Then I would sharpen, even oversharpen to enhance the rust look. I don't mind trimming off edges because it leads the viewer to think there is something more outside the frame.

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    Nice progress.
    Marriage, death, children - all these are easy. Photography is hard.

    BTW, these are clearly only my opinions and other people may certainly differ and still be right.
  8. FotoPhocus


    Jun 15, 2008
    I know I've said this before, but I appreciate the thorough critiques, Lew. I can read your critiques of someone else's images, and come away with tips to apply to my own future work.
  9. Allen--great work! I like the use of leading lines and the b&W treatment in the first 2. The dark bridge and light building in #1 give it great depth. The disappearing rails introduce a sense of mystery--"what is round the bend?" And what "corporation might that be?

    #2--I like how the focus is on the rails-they lead the eye right to the station. The carriage in the back is context! I agree with the comments about the blank sky but I don;t like the suggested crop. The scene needs the tree tops. Perhaps some darkening of the sky tone?
    I do like #3--B&W with rust!

  10. Zee71


    Apr 1, 2007
    Queens, NY
    Wonderful captures...........# 1 is my favorite. From the looks of it you're doing well. I took keep trying to improve my images and techniques.
  11. Allen,
    In the first two, you've given us nonstandard (nonsnapshot) perspectives on the scenes. However, the rusty plate is just a head on boring snapshot. The composition could be improved per Lew's suggestion, but using a different angle to imply action would also help. I made no attempt to optimize the content/composition -- just simulated a different camera angle. For me, this gives it a completely different feeling. [This image will self-destruct in a day or two, or sooner if you wish.:smile:]

  12. Dr A

    Dr A

    Feb 2, 2008
    State College, PA
    Thanks for looking and taking the time to comment, I appreciate it!


    Thanks - glad you like the BW. I think it's either a Silver Efex or an Alien Skin - can't remember which.

    Thanks for looking!

    Lew (below) assumes correctly, these are not a coherent series. Your point is well taken, and I will keep these things in mind when intentionally posting a series of images.

    Thank you Lew, you have helped me out here more than you realize. It's easy to see other people's work and see the elements that make a good photo, it's not so easy when you're looking through the camera trying to see similar elements.

    Agreed - Lew is one of the more helpful cafe members I have run across.

    Thanks, Nick! It's great to hear that you like them, and I have to say that it is not easy for me to find good picture opportunities. RR tracks seem to be very photogenic.

    Thanks, will do!

    Thanks, Bob - I really like the approach. What caught my eye about that last shot was all the rust and what appears to be several different colors of paint. I was so enchanted by all the textures that it never occurred to me to try to show some action. It was taken on the side of the tresses that appear in the first photo. Next time I go to that spot, I will try to get a shot the way you suggest. Thanks for your input.
  13. Last edited by a moderator: Mar 15, 2017
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