Photos for critique

Started Apr 25, 2012 | Discussions
ChrisBurch
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Photos for critique
Apr 25, 2012

I'm mostly an event shooter but have started doing more portraits at the requests of friends. Wanted some feedback on a couple of more dramatic shots...

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Simon Stanmore
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Re: Photos for critique
In reply to ChrisBurch, Apr 25, 2012

In what context do you what critique?
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ChrisBurch
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Re: Photos for critique
In reply to Simon Stanmore, Apr 26, 2012

Just feedback about the composition and editing syle.

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lnguyenh
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Re: Photos for critique
In reply to ChrisBurch, Apr 26, 2012

I like them.
Maybe on the second one I would like to see more of the "chair legs". Maybe...

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sbeecher
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Re: Photos for critique
In reply to ChrisBurch, Apr 26, 2012

Not to be an a$$h0le, but this post seems a bit ostentatious. You want critique on photographs you know are technically correct and pleasing. Your lighting is perfect and is obviously a product of some serious lighting tools. It just seems a bit... attention whorey if you will...

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ChrisBurch
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Re: Photos for critique
In reply to sbeecher, Apr 26, 2012

It's called feedback...if you don't feel like providing any, then by all means don't. As it stands now you're just being a @$$ about it. Is this forum only for amateurs and photographers with problem photos? On the other hand I guess I should be flattered by the fact that you think the mere posting of these is ostentatious.

I'm interested in feedback about the style and composition more so than the lighting. I actaully did both of these in my livingroom and I really like them, just curious to see what other people think about it. Does the cropping of part of the face bother people? Is the off-center orientation appealing or distrating?

To lnguyenh...now that you mention the legs, it seems rather obviously missing. I am fairly sure I have the full chair in the original and if so I'll def recrop. thanks for the value-added comment.

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Kweide
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Re: Photos for critique
In reply to ChrisBurch, Apr 26, 2012

I dont like the second.... way to soft in expression too feminine ....
The first is way stronger !

see more of my work on http://www.klaweide.de ( some NSFW )

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Simon Stanmore
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Re: Photos for critique
In reply to ChrisBurch, Apr 26, 2012

Composition...

White background - Seems odd to put the head on the edge of the frame unless there's a design-led reason too (ie. to create copy space).
Chair - Seems a little tight. A little wider might feel more balanced.

Editing (guessing you mean processing/retouching)...

It's a 'look' that's been used in some commercial and editorial sectors for several years now. In that that respect it's a little 'tired'. The white background could do with some more density (on face, not background). The chair shot is about right.
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Desifinado
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Re: Photos for critique
In reply to ChrisBurch, Apr 29, 2012

I like the desaturation in both of these. The composition of the first is striking, but it’s so extreme that it does suggest that there is copy or some other design consideration in the works.

Can’t really fault the second shot. Nicely balanced, lighted, and you left a touch of space on the right for the model to “look into.” The wainscoting is a nice touch - I might have placed the vertical edge of the panel on the left behind the chair... but maybe not. The shot is so well done that it comes down to second-guessing trivialities. Good work.

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Desifinado
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Re: Photos for critique
In reply to sbeecher, Apr 29, 2012

Totally uncalled-for comment.

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AdrianGray
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Re: Photos for critique
In reply to ChrisBurch, Apr 29, 2012

Beautiful chiseled lighting.

1. I like the composition. Not much more to say.

2. Reads as elegant, rather than feminine to me.

The only criticism I would make is that I find the paneling in the background a bit distracting/boring. You could go for a solid gray background, though that will look more studio like. I kind of like how the background makes the photo feel more real, but I want the background to either have more stuff in it (e.g. a window, or something), or more blurred with shallow DOF.

Right now, it's sharp enough to pull my eyes there, but it isn't actually interesting enough to be worth drawing attention away from the subject.

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sbeecher
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Re: Photos for critique
In reply to ChrisBurch, May 3, 2012

Well then, very well done. I'm just curious about your lighting situation. it's fantastic. Would you share your post processing technique which gets this look? I would love to know. Sorry for the contempt!

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ChrisBurch
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Re: Photos for critique
In reply to sbeecher, May 4, 2012

The first photo is front lit with a 24x36 softbox that is very close to his face. I pulled it far enough forward to I got a little spill of light on his eye are the shadow side. I had a reflector on the shadow side, but it only provided a little fill -- most is a reflection from the background, which was lit with two stripboxes hitting a pop-up white fabric background. Einsteins were used for all lights. In post, I cranked up clarity, contrast, and sharpening, and pulled down the saturation -- don't remember how I got the color cast...it's either color temp adjustments or I used a sepia preset. I shot the photo with his face centered and created the extra white space in photoshop.

For the second, I used a lot more lighting. I have 2 gridded strip boxes at the back corners just out of the frame to provide the side lighting. Main light is a 22" beauty dish overhead on a boom -- feathered somewhat. I had been using a canon 580exII as a front fill light, too, but I don't remember if I was still using it in this shot. Everything but the main beauty dish was set to very low output. This is the first time I've used that many light sources or boomed a light, so I just adjusted things until I arrived at this look. In post, I bumped up clarity some, reduced vibrance and added a vignette.

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Shockeyy
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Re: Photos for critique
In reply to ChrisBurch, May 4, 2012

I like the first one, complete with the unique comp.

The second for me is kind of blah, lighting is good.
Don't like the pose or the prop.
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