OK so can’t wait till after Xmas

OK so only a few days ago I told myself and this blog that I would wait, till after Christmas before I started a new module. But I already seem to have bought myself a copy of Photoshop, downloaded  ‘The Digital Photography Workflow Handbook’ to my Kindle and ordered the Digital Photographic Practice module… Happy Christmas! 🙂

Reading..

Been reading a lot again lately, BJP as usual but magazines are very expensive down here, so read the iPad version. I also use an an app called “Readr” (not a typo) for a little over $10 a month I get access the some 10,000 magazines and can download new ones no matter where I am and of course the bulk that I read are on photography. It’s fantastic! There is no other way to be able to read so much up to date content of reasonable quality and gives some great ideas and insight into others work. The publications available cover just about all the notable UK, USA and Asia magazines. The app is free and more than worth a look…

Assignment 2 Feedback – Elements of Design

What follows are my tutors feedback on my Assignment 2. All my comments are in blue italics. Though I have not agreed with all of the feedback, it is great to get critical assessment of your work, thats is what this is all about after all…

Overall Comments

At first look your submission seems to have a good range of images with plenty of supporting text.

Feedback on assignment Demonstration of technical and Visual Skills, Quality of Outcome, Demonstration of Creativity

Single point.

You have shown an image with a large area of blank space, and in the lower left of the shot you have your point of interest. The blank space is fine, in fact it is essential to this kind of shot, but the figures are the thing that the eye goes to first. Bearing in mind that the title is ‘Single point’ I think that two figures are not quite what is required. I would also suggest that making the important part of the shot even smaller would emphasise the operative word ‘point’ better, so zooming out more (if the location allows) would be the recommended approach.

I disagree with these comments and have looked at others work and comments to validate my view. The size of the point in the image is appropriate and there are many examples of others work where there multiple smaller elements making up the single point in the image.

Two points.

I think that your two points work well here, and I notice that there is a balance with the two white tower things in the top right of the shot. I have included a crop here to show how that balance could be presented in a way that minimizes distractions and improves proportion.

<image removed>

I have cropped the image so that the space above, and to the right of the white things is roughly the same as that to the left and below the buoys in the lower left of the shot.

I agree with this comment this works much better. I have without realising it constrained myself to more conventional image ratios for a long time, being so used to producing work for ‘standard’ print sizes. See re-cropped image below.

DSC_4652_DxOcrop2

Several points in a deliberate shape.

Your written section explaining this shot draws attention away from the shapes of the figures and points to the positioning of the sunflowers as the main interest.

Would you say though, that these sunflowers were ‘several points in a deliberate shape’, or several points in an accidental shape? I think probably the latter.

I’m also a bit bothered by the fact that you have cut them all off at the ankles.

I agree this is the weakest image by far in the set and below is a re-submitted image, replacing the original.

DSC_4666_DxO

The above image was taken during the same trip for the original assignment images. In hindsight I have no idea why I did not use this image in the first place, it was marked-up and sent to the blog.

Combination of vertical and horizontal lines.

This is a good shot for the title. I like the idea that your composition should be symmetrical, with the horizon going across the centre. Unfortunately your slightly wonky building takes the edge off what could be a strong shot. You mention using correction in DXO afterwards, and I can only assume that you have uploaded the uncorrected version by mistake, because this is not vertical. Shooting a tall building at this distance should not cause any distortions in the verticals, so the only thing you had to do was get the camera level here. One other point: you may want to re read your text and to a little bit of tidying up, it seems a little disjointed.

The original image has a slight divergence on the left side of the building only visible due to the proximity of the image border. But it wasn’t perfect, so I have re-submitted the corrected image below. Interestingly I had to place the correction lines in slightly wrong places in DXO to achieve the perfect result. Also the text has been tidied up.

IMG_1734_DxO

Diagonals.

You have used a unique subject matter to illustrate diagonals, showing the side-on view of a hoop shape. This shows good observation and a way of looking at things beyond the obvious.

Curves.

This is an excellent shot. You have combined a great location with perfect lens choice and taken an ideal viewpoint to emphasise the curves. I can’t suggest any improvements to this image.

Distinct, even if irregular shapes.

Another strong shot. The irregular shapes in the sculpture are a perfect choice for the title. The inclusion of the building in the background works as a counterpoint, and offers scale and pattern. I think I would have taken a slight step to my left if I was shooting this, then the building would show a bit more behind the left hand side of the sculpture.

Implied triangles.

This shot doesn’t really work for me, there are five cars within the frame and no obvious triangle shape amongst them. The three lightest colours attract the eye first, and they are arranged in a vague curve. There is more of an implied triangle in the handrail and grill in the bottom left of the shot.

On reflection I agree that the image needed to be cropped differently for it to work. I have re-cropped the original, deliberately keeping the edges tight to the cars, which I think now works far better than the original submission.

DSC_4617_DxO

The shot of the metal stones has a better arrangement, the largest, foreground stone is a little too close to the right hand side of the frame though, and this is slightly uncomfortable.

I thought the close to the edge composition brought a little tension to the image but now I have also freed myself from my 3:2 ratio only images here’s my updated version.

DSC_4587_1_DxO

Rhythm.

The shot of the huge chevrons is an excellent one for rhythm. They attract the eye due to the brightness and the scale.

Pattern.

I really like this shot of the structure in the ceiling. You have got it very symmetrical, even though you could not get directly underneath it, and each side of the shot balances well with the other. The uneven colours and brightnesses of each window add interest and variety within the regular structure.

Learnings.

Your comments about how you noticed things to photograph and how you made yourself work harder at it, show your commitment to the work. I can see from your images that you are looking and thinking about your shots and this has paid off. I have been critical of your shots here, but that is my job. You are a competent photographer and you are well on your way to having a strong body of work.

Overall, a good submission with some strong images and good observations. I would like to see more evidence that you are looking at other photographers work, and perhaps even some critical assessment by you of general photography which might see everyday in magazines and on advertising billboards. This would show that you are thinking beyond just the competent use of your camera.

These are appearing in my ‘photographers work’ and ‘extra curricular’ categories

.

Dear Diary…

 

Been too long since I last posted, work and home has taken priority over the last few weeks, but I have a clear period coming and hope to clear at least assignment three and make some progress on section four..

Been reading a lot quite a lot, various magazines including the BJP and have gotten interested in Atget (more info to come later), I managed to get hold of a re-print on the book entitled Atget, which was published a few years after his death.

Waiting for my second assignment to be assessed..

Post capture ethics

As always there is an on going debate about changes to photographs that change or manipulate the original ‘in camera’ image in some way. Whether it is to remove an un-wanted branch or lamp post, improve features or body shape in a portrait or manipulate a very large portion of the entire image. Recent news and media coverage seems to have fuelled the debate once again and the words like unethical are being bandied around by many individuals and the media.

It leads me to ask at what point did we decide that photography can be nothing more than exact record of the original scene? How in any way is that art? Artists have changed and manipulated the subject before them and transferred there impression or version of this onto the canvas/paper/ceiling/wall since the medium first saw the light of day. Unless the image has to be an exact representation for medical examination or legal record (as reasonably possible) I see no reason for an image to remain un-edited.

Every image that comes out of a digital camera is manipulated – compressed, contrast adjusted, dust removed, shake reduced, colours changed, filters applied, cropped, sharpened…and the list goes on. Unless we only ever shoot in uncompressed RAW and never post process, it will always have been manipulated by some degree and even then the lens itself will have distorted the image in some way.. 

And no matter what degree of change, why would the original photographer/artist not have the right to manipulate as she/he sees fit for their desired vision?

Feedback..

So I have have been reading through my feedback from my tutor for assignment one. I was really pleased with the detail and the great constructive review that I got back for this first assignment. Part one of the changes I am making is to repost everything to date as a blog and stop using the drop down menus as much and I have made a couple of minor updates to some of the posts.