Not your normal beach photos

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I made a visit to the beach and lots of photo opportunities were there, even on a cold and miserable day. I would like some C + C on these please :)

1.
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2.
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3.
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Soldato
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#1: Overall the image is very flat, rather dull and feels like it's on the slant. There's not enough sky for mood, not enough beach for interest (having that patch of sand to the right is distracting) and the van and green hut feel rather obstructed and the composition feels rushed.

#2: Massive amounts of CA at the top of the frame which really drags my eye away from the focal point towards a rather rough looking area of the picture. Cut the top half of the frame off and you've got a much better composition, although having the mark at the bottom touching the frame is a bit strange. I'd prefer to see a little more space between the bottom of the frame and the first mark.

#3: Why? It's flat, dull, rather dark and not very interesting. I'm not being harsh, I just want to know why you thought this was a good shot. I'd be interested to hear your thoughts on this and what made you choose this composition.

#4: Mmm. Maybe a little too dark on the left to be a contender, but it makes a reasonably nice composition. I think my biggest problem with this shot is that the blown highlight at the end of the 'tunnel' doesn't look right.

#5: I do like the fact that the red post at the far right makes me draw my eye across the frame. I'm instantly looking at the far left, then I spot the red out of the corner of my eye and look across the frame. Nice.

#6: I like graffiti as much as the next man, but was this really the most interesting and colourful stuff you could find? I see what you've done with the symmetry with the seating, but it's a massive expanse of grey concrete and some rather weedy graffiti.

#7: I don't like selective colouring unless it's done really well. And this isn't done well. There is so much potential in this image to have a really punchy, contrasty scene with the addition of the red and white gate shining out, but it's so flat and lifeless. I don't like the black railing on the right of the frame (distracts me) and I'm not madly keen on the dramatic angle of the shot.

#8: A seagull. Nice detail and colour on the railing but the image feels a tad lifeless and the gull doesn't look sharp. Highly distracting background too - cutting through the head of the bird doesn't work for me.

I'm sorry if that all sound a little harsh on you, Arsey, but you asked for critique and I'm being honest with you about my feelings on these shots. Maybe I'm not looking at these in the right way or maybe I'm missing the point?
 
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Very quickly.

Some quite nice bits but…

1. For me the ice cream van, lamppost and green thing spoil his image. Good front to back sharpness
2. The DoF doesn’t stretch far enough into the frame, the sky is clipped . The first footprint could do with moving further into frame. nice try though.
3. The area of black shadow on the right unbalances this compostion, and the sky looks over exposed
4. Nice greens, but the tunnel effect of the arches leads to nothing. It need a focus point. my 2nd fave.
5. Sky looks clipped, and the end of the pier might not be sharp. The shuttering and fencing spoil the top of the image.
6. Not sure about this one. Not really sure if there is an image there as the light is really flat. Being (too) critical, you’ve cropped left tight than right.
7. Quite nice, but I would like to see at least some element of the image on the horizontal, classically the horizon, though the gate might work. Fantastic sky. Personally I would try a more contrasty take on this. Best of the bunch to me
8. It’s a seagull. The railing looks like it could be a good macro shot with the peeling coloured paints.

All these shots look they could be retaken with better lighting conditions.

Sorry if that came across too harsh..
 
Associate
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Thanks Glitch, thats exactly what I wanted (this isn't meant to sound sarcastic). I just thought number 3 was something different, the yellow stands out and I thought it was nice being able to look at the yellow pillars that stand out, then across the beach and look into Liverpool. The grafitti was the best available, I mean this is the Wirral, not Barcalona or something :p

And about the selective colouring, the post was more red but because of the action I used the history undo brush only undid the last bit of the action, so lots of red was lost. I'm still learning photoshop and need to work out how to make proper black and white images with some coloured bits. If you want to play with it then please do. Thanks for your time and comments.

http://i155.photobucket.com/albums/s311/groove3001/DSCF3145.jpg
 
Soldato
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Hi there, Arsey.

With regard to your comments about #3, they make sense when you tell me that's Liverpool in the distance. I still don't think it's a particularly fantastic photo, mainly because the yellow is really dominant, but I now see what you were trying to do and I think you'll be able to pull it off with a little re-think of your composition. Same goes with the graffiti - there's never some real top-notch vandalism when you need it, eh?

If you do a search through these forums for a B&W action for Photoshop, I'm sure you'll get some excellent results from it - plenty seem to have already. I'd happily have a play with your photo, but I'm not really into B&W and I doubt I'd do it justice. I'm sure some of the other viewers of this thread will be able to give you a demo and maybe help you out a little with Photoshop.

I'll say this though; it doesn't look half bad in colour, just needs a bit of oomph!
 
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ElRazur said:
Looks good. How fae away were you from the bird? did you use a tripod and what was the shot mode?
I was probably about 6-8 meters away and that was almost on full zoom I think. It was shot free hand and just on auto. Hope this helps.
 
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That looks good spuds, mind me asking what action you used (if any) for that?

Also, with an action with many parts, when using the history undo brush tool, how do you make it so the brush brings back the original colour, not just what was lost by the last part of the action (if you get me :confused: )
 
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Arsey said:
That looks good spuds, mind me asking what action you used (if any) for that?

Also, with an action with many parts, when using the history undo brush tool, how do you make it so the brush brings back the original colour, not just what was lost by the last part of the action (if you get me :confused: )

Its the high contrast B&W technique from Scott Kelbys book "The photoshop CS2 book for digital photographers" which I would highly recommend.

1: Press D to set your forground colour to black
2: Create a new gradient map adjustment layer
3: Click ok
4: Create a new channel mixer adjustment layer
5: Make sure the monochrome box is clicked
6: Lower the contrast about -8
7: Set the red channel to about 75%
8: Ajust the green and blue channels until you like the effect
(I used green 26% and blue 34% but only because that the values used in the example in the book and it was rather late)
9: Flatten the image then use unsharpen mask - Amount: 85%, Radius: 1, Threshold: 4

I've never used the history brush.
 
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