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Author Topic: So..what sucks about this shot?  (Read 24290 times)

sandymandy

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So..what sucks about this shot?
« on: April 06, 2012, 04:39:52 AM »
Hi,

id like to get some critique whats crappy and whats maybe not so crappy about my photo.
Id also especially like to know if its over exposed or sth, since i dont got a good PC screen for digital image processing.
Im in week 4 now of doing photography ever in my life :3

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So..what sucks about this shot?
« on: April 06, 2012, 04:39:52 AM »

rwmson

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Re: So..what sucks about this shot?
« Reply #1 on: April 06, 2012, 07:42:12 AM »
I like it!
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AnselA

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Re: So..what sucks about this shot?
« Reply #2 on: April 06, 2012, 02:41:55 PM »
very nice - you might consider putting a vignette on all sides (especially the top left) to focus the eye on the affect of the two principals.

sandymandy

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Re: So..what sucks about this shot?
« Reply #3 on: April 07, 2012, 05:36:39 AM »
I submitted it for the 1xdotcom gallery but it wasnt selected. Since i cant post in the critique forum on that site (u gotta write some serious posts first to be able to post ur own photos for critique) i tohught i just post it here and ask for some advice =)
I think this is my best shot so far and its not even staged.

KeithR

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Re: So..what sucks about this shot?
« Reply #4 on: April 07, 2012, 06:38:26 AM »
Assuming you want an honest critique, and speaking as someone who doesn't take pictures like this (so I'm an objective sounding board, rather than someone who's easy to please "because it looks like my pictures") to my eyes it's just an unflattering, unoriginal, uninspired, rather charmless snapshot - I really can't see much at all to recommend it.

The b&w conversion really adds nothing, either: it, and other gimmicks like vignetting, won't make up for the complete lack of an emotional connection I feel to the picture. This is the problem with a lot of stuff out there these days: a mediocre image, so throw random PP effects at it in the hope that somehow it'll turn into something "good".

Sorry, but you asked.

Perhaps you can say what it is you like about it?
 

smirkypants

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Re: So..what sucks about this shot?
« Reply #5 on: April 07, 2012, 06:51:52 AM »
I think it's a very nice shot. I don't think it's a great shot. If you draw an imaginary line between the two subjects, it is precisely centered, dividing our attention equally between them and not giving our eyes any natural place to focus upon. The Rule of Thirds, though not hard and fast, would suggest that you move this line to between 1/3 and 2/3 and allow for a slightly less dissonant look.

But what the hell do I know. Others will disagree.

candyman

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Re: So..what sucks about this shot?
« Reply #6 on: April 07, 2012, 07:32:44 AM »
I don't look at it in a technical way.  I can't say if this picture is worth for publishing. BUT.....


I think it is a great shot expressing the moment of love between the woman and child. And THAT is an important capture for those in the picture when they will look back at it. So I like it


Can it be improved? Always but you are already on the right way. Continue to experiment with positions and lighting


 
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Re: So..what sucks about this shot?
« Reply #6 on: April 07, 2012, 07:32:44 AM »

JR

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Re: So..what sucks about this shot?
« Reply #7 on: April 07, 2012, 08:01:41 AM »
Hi,

id like to get some critique whats crappy and whats maybe not so crappy about my photo.
Id also especially like to know if its over exposed or sth, since i dont got a good PC screen for digital image processing.
Im in week 4 now of doing photography ever in my life :3

Sandy, what I like about your picture is that you actually captured a special moment there and this is ahwt photography is all about.  Can it be improved, am sure it can, but the whole point for me is to capture the moment which you did.  I will let other more competent comments on lighting, shot composition and all that stuff.

Well done mate...
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Re: So..what sucks about this shot?
« Reply #8 on: April 07, 2012, 08:27:27 AM »
The Rule of Thirds, though not hard and fast, would suggest that you move this line to between 1/3 and 2/3 and allow for a slightly less dissonant look.

+1 ... I'm attending a photo group of amateurs and pros where pictures are discussed (and, most of the time, stomped into the ground). Thus, I know that "no emotional content" is really very personal and only matters if you want to sell something - then only the paying customers matter.

There are great shots with symmetrical framing, and it's not like golden cut and rule of thirds is carved in stone. But a symmetrical framing always seems *static* to me, while you picture has spatial movement (the heads will part the next second) and emotional movement as well. Thus, a little more movement in the framing might underline this. And, as written above, center-weighted pictures always have something "snapshot" about them.

And remember: photogs are just like lawyers - "two lawyers, three opinions" :-)

gmrza

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Re: So..what sucks about this shot?
« Reply #9 on: April 07, 2012, 08:44:40 AM »
The Rule of Thirds, though not hard and fast, would suggest that you move this line to between 1/3 and 2/3 and allow for a slightly less dissonant look.

+1 ... I'm attending a photo group of amateurs and pros where pictures are discussed (and, most of the time, stomped into the ground). Thus, I know that "no emotional content" is really very personal and only matters if you want to sell something - then only the paying customers matter.

There are great shots with symmetrical framing, and it's not like golden cut and rule of thirds is carved in stone. But a symmetrical framing always seems *static* to me, while you picture has spatial movement (the heads will part the next second) and emotional movement as well. Thus, a little more movement in the framing might underline this. And, as written above, center-weighted pictures always have something "snapshot" about them.

And remember: photogs are just like lawyers - "two lawyers, three opinions" :-)

I think what I find is that the mother's ear is positioned in a way where it is too strong a visual anchor - the top right and bottom right especially tend to be places where a person's gaze comes to rest when viewing an image.  The ear does not convey emotion, whereas eyes do.  (That's my opinion, though.)

It sometimes helps to play around with the crop a little.  I felt that this crop worked a little better for me.  But, to bring in another opinion, I am sure it is possible to argue that the hand is now too dominant in this crop...

Again, this is my opinion, and it may not work for you.
« Last Edit: April 07, 2012, 08:49:13 AM by gmrza »
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sandymandy

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Re: So..what sucks about this shot?
« Reply #10 on: April 07, 2012, 08:49:00 AM »
Thanks for ur comments. Im somewhat confused at the moment what i should think of my photo now. I think i need some days to sort my feelings and thoughts. I also wonder now WHY i even want it to be published on a website.

gmrza

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Re: So..what sucks about this shot?
« Reply #11 on: April 07, 2012, 08:56:52 AM »
Thanks for ur comments. Im somewhat confused at the moment what i should think of my photo now. I think i need some days to sort my feelings and thoughts. I also wonder now WHY i even want it to be published on a website.

Maybe I should add that at least in my view, I would not expect this kind of photo of someone who has been taking photos for 4 weeks.  I certainly could not have taken anything like that four weeks after first holding a camera.

Please don't get disheartened.  I think what you did is brave.  The critiques you receive may well point you to investigate areas of composition (for instance) much sooner than you might have, had you not posted your photo on this forum.

Well done!
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smirkypants

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Re: So..what sucks about this shot?
« Reply #12 on: April 07, 2012, 08:57:39 AM »
It sometimes helps to play around with the crop a little.  I felt that this crop worked a little better for me.  But, to bring in another opinion, I am sure it is possible to argue that the hand is now too dominant in this crop...

Again, this is my opinion, and it may not work for you.
The framing is definitely too tight with the crop now and starts to highlight certain unflattering aspects of the subjects. It doesn't look like it's shot at range, so if you have the megapixels to play with, and unless you're sure about the framing, I'd suggest shooting the photo with a bit of extra space around the subjects so that you can work with framing in post.

You definitely need to do something about that hand. The shadows in it make it look manly. You can soften it a little with an adjustment brush set to negative clarity.
« Last Edit: April 07, 2012, 09:00:24 AM by smirkypants »

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Re: So..what sucks about this shot?
« Reply #12 on: April 07, 2012, 08:57:39 AM »

seekn

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Re: So..what sucks about this shot?
« Reply #13 on: April 07, 2012, 09:07:58 AM »
Assuming you want an honest critique, and speaking as someone who doesn't take pictures like this (so I'm an objective sounding board, rather than someone who's easy to please "because it looks like my pictures") to my eyes it's just an unflattering, unoriginal, uninspired, rather charmless snapshot - I really can't see much at all to recommend it.

The b&w conversion really adds nothing, either: it, and other gimmicks like vignetting, won't make up for the complete lack of an emotional connection I feel to the picture. This is the problem with a lot of stuff out there these days: a mediocre image, so throw random PP effects at it in the hope that somehow it'll turn into something "good".

Sorry, but you asked.

Perhaps you can say what it is you like about it?
Sorry but this "critique" pisses me off.  How in any way is this constructive criticism?  When the OP is asking for what he may have done wrong or could do better the best you can come up with is to say the picture sucks in 5 different ways without explaining why? Not only that but your personal lack of connection to this picture may be a reflection on you rather than the photograph.  Granted it is not a professional piece that should be published but to call it "uninspired" and "charmless" is ridiculous.  I would bet that this mother? and daughter would beg to differ.  Black and white is also not "gimmicky" as you call it.  Obviously the OP was trying to remove any distractions so that the viewers could focus on the emotion of the kiss.  The loving kiss of the mom and the adoring look of the daughter.  There are millions of wedding photos that are posed, taken and processed in the same way - unoriginal does not make a bad picture.  It is the message in the photograph that is important not having to find an original angle or light source every time.  Honestly at this stage what hasn't been done? 
I personally think that after 4 weeks this is a very admirable result.  The OP achieved fairly good focus and sharpness on the focal point.  I too do not care for the symmetry of the picture but which of us when we started did not use the center focal point and just shoot?  I also agree with another poster who said the girl is a bit too heavily shadowed.  My critique to the OP would be to try to think what message your photo is trying to communicate and any PP that is done should be to complement this message.  This is a touching moment - having too much contrast and shadows can sometimes be a bit too harsh.  Just my two cents - but overall, very nice result.  I think you should be VERY proud of it and filter out the critiques intelligently.  Having said that, I also think that 1 year from now you will look back at this photo and see what you could have done better and also see that maybe it wasnt as spectacular as you once thought it was! It happens to all of us and it shows how much you have grown as a photographer.  Best of luck.
edit: sandy you may also want to check this forum
http://photography-on-the.net/forum/
I find that CR forums can be unnecessarily harsh.  This forum has an area where you can upload your photos to the proper gallery for feedback and I find the members are a little more easy going.  Also, I think its great that you are uploading pictures for critiques.  This is a great way for you to improve your skills.  Dont get discouraged!  Photography is so rewarding and the more you learn the more it pays off.
« Last Edit: April 07, 2012, 09:17:00 AM by seekn »

gmrza

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Re: So..what sucks about this shot?
« Reply #14 on: April 07, 2012, 09:26:23 AM »

You definitely need to do something about that hand. The shadows in it make it look manly. You can soften it a little with an adjustment brush set to negative clarity.

You made me think with your comment about the hand.  One thing that took me back to is a comment by a photographer how on his first job his supervisor often told him to make sure people's hands were in the shot. - That was because hands tell us a lot about people, and how they live their lives.  In this instance, the hand tells us that the mother is someone who is not accustomed to life's luxuries.  If anything, it possibly tells a tale of hardship.  This leads to the juxtaposition of tenderness and joy against the hardships of life.  The hand is certainly not flattering.  I don't feel that is a problem however, because that unflattering aspect adds to the story the image tells.
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Re: So..what sucks about this shot?
« Reply #14 on: April 07, 2012, 09:26:23 AM »