Photography forum image of the month July 2011

Every month on our pho­tog­ra­phy forum mem­bers nom­i­nate images that they like. Then at the end of the month I choose an excel­lent image and talk about why it rocks. The photo I choose is not nec­es­sar­ily the best one of the month. I’ve come to real­ize it’s not really log­i­cal to pit images from totally dif­fer­ent gen­res against each other. That’s why there are cat­e­gories in photo con­tests. I just choose a photo that has extremely strong ele­ments that we can learn from.

Today’s Calla Lil­lies by Ernst Ulrich-Schafer

This month’s choice is Today’s Calla Lil­lies by Ernst Ulrich-Schafer.

I chose this image for sev­eral reasons:

Com­po­si­tion — Com­po­si­tion here is very pleas­ing to the eye! Diag­o­nal stems from bot­tom left guide the eye to the focal point of the image which are the flow­ers’ inte­ri­ors. The shapes of the flow­ers them­selves are won­der­ful and won­der­fully placed in the image. The flow­ers even cre­ate quite an inter­est­ing neg­a­tive space due the con­trast against a black background.

Light­ing and Post-processing — Lovely light­ing here shows off the flow­ers very well. The light­ing is soft­ish but doesn’t look over­soft. Shad­ows are well con­trolled here with the deep­est blacks being the back­ground itself. This helps the flow­ers “pop” big-time against that back­ground. Post-processing is also well done here with lovely details in the whites. If I have one nit, I’d nix the black frame as this changes the over­all per­spec­tive of the flow­ers mak­ing them look smaller. That said, I know Ernst put it there 100% on pur­pose and it works for him.

Tonal qual­ity — I really like the mono­chrome (light sepia to my eye) qual­ity of this image. Mono­chrome really helps show off the strong shapes of these flow­ers, as well as give them a nos­tal­gic feel.

For all these rea­sons, this is my choice for image of the month. Since we all have opin­ions, some mem­bers may dis­agree with my choice. That’s cool but THIS thread is not the place for debate over my pick, NOR is it the place to fur­ther cri­tique the image. The pur­pose here is to sug­gest strong ele­ments in the photo that we may learn from.

Con­grats again Ernst Ulrich-Schafer for cre­at­ing this won­der­ful image!

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