Discussions (137)

what do ya think

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shutterguy is a group moderator shutterguy says:

was wondering where ya think i can improve my b/w shots

old headstone
7:04PM, 1 April 2008 PDT (permalink)

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shutterguy is a group moderator shutterguy says:

shed
ages ago (permalink)

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shutterguy is a group moderator shutterguy says:

inside old church
ages ago (permalink)

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shutterguy is a group moderator shutterguy says:

1822 headstone

any and all are welcome to reply and be brutal i can take it
Originally posted ages ago. (permalink)
shutterguy edited this topic ages ago.

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Damien Franco is a group administrator Damien Franco says:

Your subject matter seems fine. It's interesting and makes for great black and white photography. The composition on the first image doesn't really work for me. Furthermore, the first two images have rather distracting shadows suggesting that the photographs were taken in bright sunlight. It's good to pay attention to shadows and how they will affect the overall look of an image.
ages ago (permalink)

valuable grip [deleted] says:

hi, its more towards gray and very little contrast is there, it looks like a flat surface. no depth in ne of the pics.
ages ago (permalink)

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shutterguy is a group moderator shutterguy says:

thank you state of mind i took these early ive always kinda like the long early morn shadows any sugestain for keeping some without being distrative
ages ago (permalink)

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shutterguy is a group moderator shutterguy says:

shading is what gives more depth as i learned in drawing and airbrushing
ages ago (permalink)

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revonthego is a group moderator revonthego says:

Yes, I agree ... subject matter is quite interesting.

I think that a detail shot on the first pic would have been a better composition ... the lichens or moss growing on it would have been interesting highlights against the texture of the stone. Maybe not so centered next time, no?

As "ACSoM" points out ... the myriad of shadows can be distracting. When I encounter situations like that, I move in close. That would have worked with #2, I think.

The chapel shot is very nice.

The tombstone I think probably could use a much tighter crop to eliminate the sunlight on each side of the tree. The tree bark would give a nice textured background to the tombstone, and the leaves a nice foreground.

I would crop it into a vertical format, make it a bit more contrasty, and sharpen it a bit so some of the writing can be read on the stone. While in the wider shot the tombstone looks "odd" dead center with a tighter crop, the tilt of the stone and the vertical format will work well. A "trick" I have used w/ old headstones is to incorporate some of the writing into the title ... this helps the viewer not to go nuts trying to figure out what is on it ... i.e. "Edw. Snitzer 1822-1902"

I think you did well overall .....
ages ago (permalink)

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bdomeika says:

These are beautifully rendered B&W photos. My simple question for each is, "what were you trying to communicate?"...

For instance, in the first photo...were you trying to convey a sense of the timelessness of death? Life growing upon a gravestone (the lichens) Or merely interesting contrasting shadows? A decision on any of those visions, would move you in a very specific direction composition-wise.

My two cents...
ages ago (permalink)

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tereyaoni says:

I think they are very nice. I need to learn more about black & white.
ages ago (permalink)

gigantic rock [deleted] says:

From mostly an artistic point of view:

#1. The shadows are slightly distracting, and so is locating the tombstone in the center. If you had framed it more towards the right side (ie. you moved the camera position) it would have had beautiful lines reaching back into the frame with that pile of something or other behind the tombstone. Lines are the key to viewer and aesthetic insterest for the most part.

I also would have tried fill in flash on low power to isolate the tombstone and cause the tombstone to be rendered in detail, while maintaining the shadows in the background.

#2. Here the shadows are great. They separate the barn from the brightly lit trees. To emphasis this I would have moved back from the barn, showing a bit more locational information and making sure the barn roof was not cropped in the frame. I'd leave it at the left as it weights the composition nicely where it is in the frame at the moment.

#3. Difficult shot to do unless you own a nice wide lens like a 24mm or below. I'm guessing this was on a 50mm? If so, good attempt!

For next time I'd try moving back (if possible) with a lower camera position. Try a longer exposure to gain detail in the timber, which would have the added benefit of blowing the highlights in the windows, thereby eliminating distractions and adding to the religious experience/location. I'd also try for a really long exposure with a low ISO (100 or below) and try 'painting' with a manually fired flash.

Perhaps also a person for some added interest? While a person in formal dress would be stereotypical, I've always been a fan of juxtaposition so you could try someone not normally found in a church. Or you could go with a blue collar worker to emphasis the beautifully crafted timber.

#4. Not quite sure what your intention is here? I'm not really keen on centralised compositions as I said before, though if you used a wider aperture (f2-1.4) and set the point of focus on the tombstone edge closest to the tree you could isolate the tombstone but also 'morph' it into the tree with some beautiful texture. (Try Digital Photography School [DPS] for some great tips on aperture and how it relates to everything else.)

Or, you could focus in on the details, empahsising certain words by only showing a portion of the tombstone in the frame.

Keep in mind I'm just a fellow enthusiast, and these are purely my opinions rather than strict 'compositional rules'.

The best advice I can offer is to try stuff that feels odd. Does it feel odd to only include half an object in the frame? Probably, but sometimes it's those shots we think are going to be silly that end up being our best.

One last thing: They do seem a bit 'grey', but nothing a touch of increased contrast in an editing program wouldn't fix. I use Paint.net because it's free, but anything would do.

Additionally, purely based on these shots, I would say you have a good eye for interesting light vs dark situations. Don't stop seeking out these sorts of things as light and dark are often the deal makers in a good photo.
ages ago (permalink)

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shutterguy is a group moderator shutterguy says:

thank you all for the great tips
and wolf thank you for the great tips i will surely give them a try
i love to learn new things hope you all have a great night
ages ago (permalink)

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