View Full Version : Swamp Shots

11-21-2011, 12:50 PM
I went back to my famous alligator spot, but decided to shot the area, not just an alligator.

Tell me what you think (each shot is followed by it's original unprocessed shot)









11-21-2011, 04:07 PM
Looks like a nice but dangerous place.

I'd say shot 1 whilst a nice composition, is lacking detail sue to the mushroom being a little blown.

Shot 2, I might be tempted to crop into it so the spider is not centre stage, also the focus is slightly off, a slightly smaller aperture might have helped here.

Shot 3, nice scene, but has a slightly cool colour cast on my un-calibrated laptop.

Shot 4, Like shot 2 it's lacking sharpness, and might benefit compositionally from a crop.

Hope that helps with out sounding to critical.

11-21-2011, 04:34 PM
It's the critique forum so critiques are okay Richard
Here goes a quick one then...On My monitor...
1- white mushroom head is seriously clipped which compromises the whole image.
2 - I like this comp, imo spider could still be sharper.
3 - very heavy green cast here. shot looks underexposed, but I dig the comp here. It is my fave of the set.
4 - Focal point is out of focus.
Hope that helps - Marko

11-21-2011, 06:34 PM
I've added the originals under the post process so you can see my processing

11-22-2011, 11:04 AM
There's so many variables when learning new things....that we can get lost in all the new possibilities.

I would recommend trying to improve the images by making them look as normal as possible....proper exposure/composition/focus. 1/2 of these images are too processed imo and have additional issues w/focus/exposure.

Post-processing is a whole other beast that offers an infinite variety in how the final image looks....but it's yet one more humongous variable to learn and it will rarely "save" an image.

Hope that may help. - Marko

11-22-2011, 01:54 PM
So, I'm guessing you are shooting in Av mode (aperture priority) ? I think some of your issues you are running into are based on your relying on the camera to get the exposure right in difficult conditions.

Shot 1: The mushroom is totally blown because the camera is exposing for the tree and leaves which 95% of the image and you are losing the detail in your subject. No amount of processing will save that image. Your choice of crop is better than the original shot but the composition is still a bit awkward to me. You definitely found a great subject though.

Shot 2: Again, you should work to compose the shot correctly in camera and not rely on a crop later. I use the focal point markers on my viewfinder to give me an idea of where the thirds are in the frame and use that to compose the shot. Once you get used to composing using the rule of thirds then you will find subjects that it doesn't give you what you want you can move away from that "rule". Until then, I'd stick with it a little more.

Shot 3: I'm guessing the colour cast is creeping in as the auto white balance was totally confused by all the green in the shot. Either shoot in RAW to allow you to set the white balance later or learn how to use something like a grey card to get it right in-camera.

Shot 4: Another nice find for a subject but again, dead centre is dead wrong. Start playing more with the rule of thirds for a while and try to accomplish it in camera rather than cropping in later. Your composition skills will improve as you avoid putting the subject in the middle of the frame. Also, I'm guessing because it was dark you were down around 1/20th of a second or slower as there seems to be some motion blur from camera movement in this shot. A tripod would have helped here.

I hope you find these notes helpful. Also, in the future, basic camera settings can be helpful when giving critiques. ISO, f-stop, and shutter speed if nothing else.

11-23-2011, 05:55 AM
1 is nicely composed, but ruined by the blown out mushroom. If anything your PP has made it worse - do you see how there is more detail in the mushroom cap in your original image?

3 is my favourite, also nicely composed. It's a bit too blue/green but nothing dramatic IMO.

2 and 4 just aren't sharp enough to start with, sorry. Not worth 'rescuing' with PP in my opinion (which isn't worth much :D). 2 is just slightly out of focus, whereas 4 looks like motion blur.