Please tell me what you think

Discussion in 'Seeking Critique' started by kevinhoogers, Apr 14, 2021.

  1. Took this shot of my wife and niece walking in the byward market area of Ottawa. It’s one of my favourite, wonder how others see it

  2. Right up front I have to tell you I'm not a professional artist, photographer, or art critic (a photograph is a piece of art work), and a critique basically, is somebodies opinion. At the end of the day, the most important critique, opinion, etc, whatever you want to call it, regarding your work, is yours. If you're happy with it. That's what counts. That said, I think basically that this is a good image. You've got the buildings on the left and the parked cars on the right acting as a kind of natural frame, combining with the sidewalk to lead the eye into the scene. The lights from the building on the left and the street lamp on the right sort of spotlights the main subjects (wife and niece). The lights and buildings to the right on the other side of the street sort of add to the three dimensional affect of the image. The overall impression is one of actually being there and viewing the scene in real time. I do believe that cropping the image the way I've done below makes for a better composition, but that's me. I also took the liberty of removing that sort of halo around those top two lights on the street lamp to the right. Not sure it makes much of a difference though.

    kevinhoogers likes this.
  3. I like the original image but am not in favor of the crop presented by MrAndMesIzzy. Obviosuly, the camera (iphone) was tilted when the image was taken - that's why the buildings on the left look like they are leaning which I find distracting. Here's a corrected version - unfortunately, the correction forces a crop that looses some of the foreground (not necessarily a bad thing though).
  4. I like this photo too. Lots of clean lines and interesting tonal contrasts. The yellowish light on the building left, street lights and sidewalk contrasts wonderfully with the deep blue sky. The two figures are nicely highlighted from the store window/door. I also like the diagonal lines of the sidewalk, autos, street lights and the top of the building left which lead the eye naturally into the frame towards the subjects. The green and blue windows on the 1st floor add interest.

    It's a matter of taste whether you want to preserve the historical accuracy of the photo or 'tidy it up' a bit. 'White' always attracts attention, even if the white is only a small speck. If it was my photo, I think I'd clean up some of the litter and white spots in the foreground. And probably remove (or dim) the light of the far streetlight halfway down the foremost streetlight. I think I might make the ATARI sign a bit less bright too. It kind of competes for attention. Finally, I think I might "move" the star diagonally (with + or minus 45 degrees) to give it a bit more distance from the street lights.

    Up to you but I think the photo is well worth a bit of time in PP just to give it some cleaner surfaces and lines.
    kevinhoogers likes this.
  5. When I saw this image, my first thought was, "Crop." At first, I thought kind of like Izzy's crop, but I think that Dieter's crop on vertical correction draws you eye in the best. If it weren't for that manhole cover, I might have chosen less sidewalk in the foreground, but that's a nice balancing element.

    I often take iPhone shots to document things, in the moment, just like this. I "adjust" almost every one in the phone before sending. I always check the horizon. Color, contrast and shadow details already look great in this image, but those are things I would consider before "Sharing." After the first time or two, it only takes seconds to touch up a shot before sending. It's amazing how much more polished your shots can look with just a little TLC.

    BTW, well done.
    kevinhoogers likes this.
  6. I see it but don’t feel it. In the critiques, what’s been mentioned most are the things, the buildings and their straightness or lack thereof, the overexposed lights, the litter, the manhole cover (which is probably my favorite part of the photo as it nicely grounds and introduces the scene -it’s welcoming and adds a bit of narrative potential). I’m not surprised at your personal stake in it because it’s your wife and niece, but that doesn’t translate to me as a viewer. There is little that expresses something to me about them, no expressions per se, no significant gesture or visual sense of connection. I see not much more than two people walking down a fairly typical nighttime street, though there is warmth in the color palette. To engage this viewer more, it would help if there were some emotional hook in the photo as to what it is about these two people I am meant to care about or what it is about the scene as a whole that’s special, personal, or relevant. In short, I’d be less concerned with individual details like horizon lines, right angles, and crops and more concerned with the bigger picture and the why.
    kevinhoogers likes this.
  7. I actually like the ornate manhole cover in the foreground with some space around it. On the topic of cropping, I'm usually a fan but I personally wouldn't crop this photo. IHMO, every crop loses something that adds something to the photo. The only (marginal) crop I'd consider would be top-right. But it would so slight as to make no real difference to the photo.

    Bear in mind that since most screens (including mine) are physically in 'Landscape' format, photos in 'Portrait' format don't display as naturally as those in 'Landscape' format. Although there are no 'scroll bars' specific to this photo, I need to scroll on PN to see the top part and bottom parts of the photo. So it 'feels' longer than it actually is (a standard 4x3 portrait photo).

    Just to check whether this assertion had any basis in fact, I downloaded a copy of the photo and viewed it in Photoshop (fitted to my screen). It looked great and I didn't have to scroll.

    I want to add that I also found a great sense of 'balance 'in this photo. Some people might find the subjects too 'far away' (=too small) but as a photo, I like the environment just as much as the 2 subjects. Especially the fact that the viewers' eyes are eventually led there by other things in the photo. Everything just fits.

    TBH, the more I look at the photo, the more I like it. Sure, I've commented on perhaps 'cleaning up' the photo and dimming some of the bright spots but the original photo is wonderful. One to be proud of!

    Last edited: Apr 15, 2021
    kevinhoogers likes this.
  8. Thank you folks very much for taking your time to critique the photo. I’m still a “newb”, learning more all the time. I really like the honest opinions.
    mikemorrell and dcstep like this.
  9. When you look at a picture of someone you love, you fall in love all over again.

    A keepsake.
    dcstep and kevinhoogers like this.
  10. I Like the lines converging on the women walking, the sky is a nice deep blue, and the nighttime aura adds to it.
    bernie moore, dcstep and kevinhoogers like this.
  11. I want to crop it, but I can't, takes too much out of it, Wish I could see the whole thing at once. Keep the manhole, Do the over brightening. Really nice shot.

Share This Page