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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre General Photography Talk 
Thread started 04 Apr 2012 (Wednesday) 08:26
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Composition and all that Arty stuff - discussion thread.

 
vasher
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Feb 19, 2014 13:06 |  #3121

This is the best thread! I've been going over composition books, but it's great to see examples and have people offer suggestions on alternative compositions. Trying to get from 'this looks pretty let's take a picture' to 'this looks pretty because of X/Y/Z and maybe would be better from this angle'.

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navydoc, your living room is alarmingly neat. :shock:

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slookx24
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Feb 19, 2014 13:23 |  #3122


Awesome shot. Love the paper crane.




  
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OhLook
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Feb 19, 2014 15:48 |  #3123

vasher, my opinions on your three--

Grass (grain?) stalks--the rows of bokeh circles at the top ruin this for me.

Landscape--it looks appealing, and one compositional feature I notice that may be helping is the curve that runs through it almost from top to bottom. Clouds constitute the upper part, and the meadow between the darker tree areas continues this curve once it reaches land.

Crane--this is nice, and I think the main reason is rhythm. It reminds me of a pair of ballet dancers.


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armis
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Feb 20, 2014 04:23 |  #3124

Of the 3, this one appeals to me the most:
- the subject is clear and interesting
- lighting is spot-on, so is focus (maybe a tiny bit more DoF would have been good, I had trouble recognizing the second crane)
- framing is ok; I think I'd have liked to see a bit more of the scene on the right (breathing room) and bottom (more shadow) but this is already pretty close. The eye finds the focus point easily and follows through into the frame.
- post-treatment is nice, I like the colors theme you picked; it complements the mood well.


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vasher
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Feb 20, 2014 10:58 |  #3125

Great critiques, thank you! :) I recently picked up the 50mm 1.8 and have been experimenting with its ability to 'pop' the subject from the background more than the kit lens, though sometimes the background blurs into something a bit odd. Figure if I practice with little and easily moved subjects for composition, it will start showing up in in walk-around photos.


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Feb 20, 2014 22:11 |  #3126

Lately I'm not going for "pretty" so much as for "interesting." This shot has the subject off center with nothing on the opposite side to balance it. I like it anyway and don't know why.


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Feb 21, 2014 23:11 |  #3127

OhLook wrote in post #16705488 (external link)
Lately I'm not going for "pretty" so much as for "interesting." . . . .

A whole day and no opinions? Was it that bad? Okay, for comparison, here's another shot from last week. This one is conventional; it follows more rules. Yuh got yer leading lines, yuh got yer repeating shapes, yuh got yer live subject in focus--and everybody likes a fluffy dog.


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Nevertheless, I find the dog image unsatisfyingly static and the chicken image more interesting.

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Feb 21, 2014 23:42 |  #3128

Heh! I figure it's because I quickly got pretty burned out from food pics in FaceBook:)!


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Feb 22, 2014 19:17 |  #3129

OhLook wrote in post #16708092 (external link)
A whole day and no opinions? Was it that bad? Okay, for comparison, here's another shot from last week. This one is conventional; it follows more rules. Yuh got yer leading lines, yuh got yer repeating shapes, yuh got yer live subject in focus--and everybody likes a fluffy dog.
Nevertheless, I find the dog image unsatisfyingly static and the chicken image more interesting.

I'd rather see only chicken, with no tray. You gotta simplify and cut stuff out.

The way it's shot now, the picture looks like real life. I get enough real life in real life.

I'd rather see a chickenscape. Full on chicken taking all of the frame. Just full size photo of chicken of same color, similar texture and just the lines making the picture. Don't show the metal. Dont' show the glass.

Maybe show motion, if they're rotating.


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Feb 22, 2014 19:52 |  #3130

DocFrankenstein wrote in post #16709670 (external link)
I'd rather see only chicken, with no tray. . . . Full on chicken taking all of the frame.

A chicken-skin macro, then? I'll have to buy a chicken.

Meanwhile, all I've got for you is this bone. Sorry about the background. I couldn't find a rectangular frame-filling chicken bone.


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Owain ­ Shaw
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Feb 23, 2014 04:51 |  #3131

I find the chicken image interesting, although I'd like more context ... I certainly find it more interesting than the dog image though. The condensation/smears on the glass take away from the image of the food, in that sense it's atypical of food imagery, it's not about the food or making the food look good - it's presenting a less appealing side to the food and its means of production. The mass production element (assumed from the four roasting chickens of smaller stature) becomes interesting in this regard. The composition itself does help create some of these ideas of imbalance, 'tension' if you like or at least something uneasy and not-quite-right within the image. I've seen the others in a different thread and I think this one is the best compositionally, as well. There's certainly something Stephen Shore (whom I like a lot) about it.


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OhLook
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Feb 23, 2014 11:38 |  #3132

Owain Shaw wrote in post #16710279 (external link)
The condensation/smears on the glass take away from the image of the food, in that sense it's atypical of food imagery, it's not about the food or making the food look good

Right, I wasn't thinking "food photography" at the time. The first attraction, my initial reason to shoot, was the texture created by the condensation on the glass (simply a visual sensory feature), along with the fact that those droplets partly hid what was behind the glass.

I'm slowly gathering elements that I find add interest to a picture. Main subject partly hidden; areas of detail set against smoother areas; oblique lines; subtle palette (sometimes); presence of both straight lines and curves; something looking to be in the "wrong" place, an unstable position, as if it should move.

I've seen the others in a different thread and I think this one is the best compositionally, as well. There's certainly something Stephen Shore (whom I like a lot) about it.

Thanks, Owain. I know someone who was Shore's roommate years ago and made the mistake of saying "You must have a good camera." So Shore bought a disposable camera and took it out for a day . . . well, you can fill in the rest of the story. This man said Shore is famous for a photo of an intersection where no lines touch. I looked up Shore's website and found intersections, but the lines touch.


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Owain ­ Shaw
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Feb 23, 2014 12:46 |  #3133

No, of course, though a photograph of food it remains - it's certainly not of the Food Photography genre. The elements you describe are all visible in the chicken image.

One of my favourite lecturers at University packed up and left mid-course after getting an offer to study with Stephen Shore ... nobody held this against him, certainly compared to the lecturer who routinely cancelled classes to go skiing, he was a knob.


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Feb 25, 2014 12:58 as a reply to  @ Owain Shaw's post |  #3134

Is this how it ends...

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Feb 25, 2014 18:41 |  #3135

Chauncey sump'm funky going on where the sky meets the peaks. A gray outline around everything?




  
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Composition and all that Arty stuff - discussion thread.
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