Wedding Critique of the Week 5/17/10

Discussion in 'Wedding and Event' started by picturesque, May 19, 2010.

  1. This week's image was taken by Freya Jensen.

    This is Part 2 of Wedding Photo of the Week. You can see all submissions in the thread with that title.In your critiques - include what you would do to improve the shot or why the shot is perfect as it is.

    Remember that this is not a contest. Sometimes an image will be a winning image and sometimes an image that needs some help. Try not to just say "great shot" but explain why it works. Or - "Doesn't do it for me" without explaining why.

    The photographer up for critique for this week should remember that the comments expressed each week are simply "opinions" and the effort and focus of these threads are to learn and to take images to another level. There will be times where the critique is simply members pointing out why the shot works which is also a way for others to learn about what aspects contribute to a good wedding photo. In reading all critiques -- you may agree or disagree with some points of view - but remember that there are varying approaches and often no right or wrong answer.
    Freya's notes: I am not sure if this is the right kind of photo for this crit but I wanted to enter it for responses! The Groom surprised his bride after the church wedding with her 'new' car! she had always dreamed of owning it and she was over the moon as she got in and he sped her off down the country lanes. she had no idea. Taken with D700 24-70 ISO 800 f2.8. It was a dark gloomy british day and I wanted to make it stand out. I loved it as I knew that this was a big surprise for the bride by the Groom and she adores this car but never thought they could buy it. He did and her face was a picture! ISO800 f2.8 D700 24-70. A normal cloudy british day
    00WUnw-245361584.jpg
     
  2. As a moment a wonderful surprise for her. As an image, a snapshot, certainly if you don't know the story behind it. The angle makes the car even smaller than it probably is. Will do in her wedding memories no doubt.
     
  3. Interesting image, I rather like the distortion from the lens and the energy of the bride's expression. However, the entire image is soft and the bride's dress and hair-piece is blown out. I don't understand the logic of the high ISO and the wide open aperture. I've added some tweaks and sharpening to the bride in the image below.
    00WUzt-245477584.jpg
     
  4. Looks good to me (the dress doesn't look blown to me). I am not sure I like the f/2.8 however it might have been needed to get a decent shutter speed? Other than that, I think it's a fine capture of the moment.
     
  5. "Looks good to me (the dress doesn't look blown to me)....."
    John, simply open the image in PS and take a look...........it's blown around the knee area and the upper chest as well as the hair-piece and the chrome around the car.
     
  6. Yes, I did shudder when i saw the dress was blown, and I should have known better to not shoot with such a high ISO - I had just come from shooting inside a dark entrance porch, whisked around and didn't change the setting. I shoot manual but I am still not as fast with it as I want. Practice practice practice!
    thank you so much for taking the time to comment. It was my favourite shot but that is because I knew the story. Which also makes me think about the next time I submit a shot, I want you to see it without a story behind it and seeing the story in it!
    I have another wedding next weekend so hopefully I can add a better storytelling shot.
     
  7. William Michael

    William Michael Moderator Staff Member

    “Freya's notes: I am not sure if this is the right kind of photo for this crit but I wanted to enter it for responses! The Groom surprised his bride after the church wedding with her 'new' car! she had always dreamed of owning it and she was over the moon as she got in and he sped her off down the country lanes. she had no idea. Taken with D700 24-70 ISO 800 f2.8. It was a dark gloomy british day and I wanted to make it stand out. I loved it as I knew that this was a big surprise for the bride by the Groom and she adores this car but never thought they could buy it. He did and her face was a picture! ISO800 f2.8 D700 24-70. A normal cloudy british day”

    It’s a good capture.
    It is . . . what it is . . . a good moment – and one the Bride and Groom will treasure.
    The Pic will not win a competition, but it will win her heart as a memory of the moment.
    And anyway it is nice to see the steering wheel on the correct side (RH side) of the car . . .
    ***
    My mate David is a bit tough on this one, I think . . . he is correct, but . . .
    Yeah her bust is blown out and so is her lap, and the Groom is OoF slightly I think, but the main attraction is the joy on the Bride’s face and the intent on the Groom's face – it is like he is a “Learner Driver” . . . it is all very “cute”.
    I think this is one of those shots which is a keeper just because it is cute – and the technical errors pale into insignificance because it is “cute”.
    I would not beat yourself all that much about the technical errors on this one – just be happy to have got it – and next time use F/5.6 or get a bit further back . . .
    What was the Tv ? ? ? (Shutter Speed) . . . did you have a bit of room to move there and close the Aperture down? ? ?
    WW
     
  8. I really like it, I like how the colors seem to just pop in this photo. I also like how you can tell everyone was crowded around them as they left. very nice. :)
     
  9. Excellent expression, and "of the moment" capture.
    Would liked to have seen a bit more DOF, more car, and less exposure.
    You can always crop most lower ISO outdoor shots, but you can't add image when it's something like a car.
    What kind of car was it?
     
  10. Great shot! No normal person would ever notice the dress. And the groom is not the subject so IMO the depth of field is good as is.
     
  11. I agree with those who say that the emotion surpasses the technical aspects of this shot! But I, too would like to see a little more of the car itself...perhaps a horizontal orientation?? Great capture!
     
  12. I'm not going to comment on anything technical, because it is obviously a take it-or miss it shot. Well done!
     
  13. OK, so very few people are concerned about technical issues like exposure, lighting, and focus. Truth is, setting the camera on "P" mode and slapping the shutter would have likely improved this image............ it really doesn't take any longer to take a correct exposure than it does an incorrect exposure.
    Although it appears that most everyone wants to talk about the specs and tech components of cameras, sensors, and lenses.
     
  14. I think this picture is beautiful and also important since its an example of an authentic picture vs. an artificial picture. The catch-22 is that it wasn't set up to look perfect so that makes it more perfect. Blown highlights, indifferent depth of field, haphazard angle of view; who cares, the picture just works. The bride and groom naturally look great and are likely happy with this 'imperfect snapshot' along with hopefully fifty or so more similar 'imperfect snapshots' if they also capture the joy of their wedding day so well. Very nice picture, thanks for posting it.
     
  15. William Michael

    William Michael Moderator Staff Member

    You are dependable and consistent David.
    I still think you are a bit tough on this one, but geez I love your dependability.
    I know - that same dependability and consistency gets you about a 90% keeper rate.
    From my point of view, we could shoot a Wedding tag-team, irrespective of any aspect of taste, genre, style and all that stuff . . . I would just drool over your consistency and dependability . . .

    ***

    “P” mode doing a better technical job ? ? ?

    Maybe you were less serious than I, but I also had the same thought but did not disclose it before getting more information.

    I am not sure about "P" Mode making a better technical image, but, I still want an answer to my question - I asked it because I was thinking along the same logic.

    I do use P mode on occasions like this, moving on the fly and especially when I am shooting without the viewfinder to the eye, but only if the situation is suitable to concur with P Mode parameters, because shooting away from the eyepiece I cannot use Program Shift, (not at a wedding but you get the idea as to why my eye was not in the viewfinder): http://www.photo.net/photo/10738731&size=lg

    Asking again:

    “What was the Tv ? ? ? (Shutter Speed) . . . did you have a bit of room to move there and close the Aperture down? ? ?”

    Thanks,

    WW
     
  16. Sorry WW - It was a very cramped area to shoot, all the guests were surrounding the car and I had no room to shoot really. I wanted a different kind of shot certainly, it may not be textbook, But I like the strange and daft shots you can take. The more sensible and family-friendly shots were taken properly later, but this was my chance for a bit of fun, a change of perspective. I kept shooting in portrait perspective and now I wish I can a few more in landscape, but I wanted it be about the B&G and fade the guests in the background.
    I have never used Programme mode as I want to learn and be able to see any situation and know that that bride in the doorway should be shot at f5.6 and 1/60th etc, but sometimes the situation gets the better of us and we keep shooting knowing its a great shot but technically not-so-good.
    I think I shall always think about each shot being critiqued afterwards and that will force me to take more time in my shots and be aware of any light situation. Not just by the B&G but of my peers and heros!
    Thanks for the kind comments too - its not perfect but it works. I felt that too! ;-) thanks everyone
     
  17. William Michael

    William Michael Moderator Staff Member

    Hey Wow!

    Thanks for the apology which was not necessary.

    And your commentary really gave me an insight, as it showed a truck load of enthusiasm –

    I liked that - it really made me smile . . . I am cooking a really nice dinner tonight, as we have lots of diverse things to celebrate and a nice bottle of Champagne is cooling. . . so your over the top response really enhanced the mood here, in my kitchen.

    And I love that you spell "Programme" correctly, . . .

    but all I really wanted to know is:

    What was the shutter speed you used to take that image?

    If you could have a look at the EXIF details and tell me I would appreciate your effort

    Thanks,
    WW
     
  18. Since the image was shot at f/2.8 at 800 ISO, I'd guess the shutter speed was somewhere near a nano-second :)
    Seriously, I like the energy of the image but it's completely soft and the camera settings are more conducive to a dark church rather than outdoor daylight. Overlooking or minimizing the technical capture merits of an image seems, IMO, counter-productive to the purpose of a critique and the nature of the forum.
    WW, Thanks for the consistency mention, I suspect I'd enjoy shooting side-by-side with you any day. On a personal note, I'm off on vacation today and will be taking a break from cell phones, work, and the internet.....you all take care.
     
  19. William Michael

    William Michael Moderator Staff Member

    безопасное путешествие
    WW
     
  20. IMO, a critique isn't to just laud a nicely captured moment, and dismiss any comments to the contrary. Everyone comes here to learn something so they can improve ... be that good elements or bad ... or both ... that we learn from.
    Nothing is perfect ... in almost any wedding photo there will be a "but" ... a coulda, woulda, shoulda. If we discuss those openly, it doesn't mean the image is NG, it means we have something to learn and be aware of for future improvements. When that process stops, it's time to quit IMHO.
    Nothing emblazons itself on your memory as a great moment slightly lessened due to some technical over-sight. I have done the same thing as Freya rushing from a dark church to the outside without changing my settings ... once you do that, you tend to not do it again : -)
    Freya, here's a suggestion to explore if you are so inclined ... if your camera has this feature (see your manual) ... you can often program user settings for a one button switch over to a different scenarios. For example: indoor settings with a Shutter priority, tungsten white balance and a higher ISO ... that switches to Aperture preferred, daylight white balance at a lower ISO. Take a look and see if that might help for on the fly hectic weddings.
     
  21. Marc, completely agree.
    WW, "спасибо"
     
  22. Great shot. This photo works for me! It's one of those shots that people will try to imitate, but won't be able to duplicate.
    I love the composition:
    The people surrounding the car form a circle around the bride. The brides arm, car body and windshield are at perfect angles to frame the bride. The DOF is precisely focused on the bride. The bride's expression is priceless. It' all about the bride!
    If the bride ain't happy, ain't nobody happy!
     
  23. I like the shot but have to ask myself: doesn't it have a point-n-shoot quality about it? A D700 with a 24-70 - we're talking some serious money: and then you ask yourself: is this the best it can do? The light is nicely diffused, you're shooting down not up against the sky: so why does it look like a snapshot? Yes, it is endearing, yes, it is cute and the bride will love it for years to come, but as a photograph it is not outstanding by any means. Not trying to be mean: just giving my honest opinion.
     
  24. On second thought: this image is heavily cropped. It was most likely shot from a good distance. I should have taken that into consideration.
     
  25. marc - i m very interested in your idea about setting a few programmes as back up in case I get a bit nervous. All of which I can set up on the rehersal day to make sure everything is nearly right! THATS WHY I JOINED PHOTO.NET- for these snippets of help. And as you say, I will NOT be making that mistake again - running about without taking 2 secs to change settings properly. I have a few more weddings coming up and hope to make a better difference.
    william & David - If you are ever going to shoot side by side, can I carry for coffees? (although I also need a flight from London)
    William - I hope you had a lovely champagne supper. My kind of supper. shutter speed was a joke. I am too embarressed to note it down now ;-)))
    Thanks Paul. The Bride has already ordered this photo on a large canvas for her husband. As long as she is happy!
     
  26. andrew - no cropping I promise. And yes, this is part of 600 photos delivered to the bride and some are like papped shots and the more sophisticated elegant shots are also in the portfolio for the B&G. This shot just made me smile and I wanted a crit on its merits (or not!) I use my kit to the fullest. But I also carry a polaroid with me and use that sometimes for the extra something. My kit and I do wonderous things together, just not in this instance. :)
     
  27. I don't see anything wrong with the photo. It captures the joy of the moment perfectly. The DOF is great as well because it is focused on the bride and her reaction. The angle is interesting looking down into the car but it works since it shows a lot of the bride and you can see the crowd standing in the background as well. ISO 800 for a Nikon d700 is considered slow. It looks well exposed, it's hard to tell from the resolution of the posted image if the dress is blown out, but for an outside, action shot I would expect that to some degree. It is a really nice shot, I'm sure the bride will cherish the photo.
     
  28. The bride ordered this on canvas?! That is PROOF that it is a GREAT and FUN shot. Brides don't want photos, they want fun memories! I don't care if you used an i-phone or hasselblad, iso 50 or 6400, or even what lens you used. Brides don't care about the technical. (someone walking through a museum doesn't ask "I wonder what brush Picasso used")
    Congrats and keep shooting with a smile! If I were you, I'd advertise the heck out of this photo. You'll get more business (from brides) when they see this fun photo!
     
  29. I'm thinking about the word 'technical' as it applies to wedding photography and realize that it is central to this picture critique conversation.

    Should wedding photography lean more to artistic or technical merit? I know that both aspects are needed but which most successfully prevails and is the first so dependant on the second?

    A search of this thread finds 'technical errors' 'technical aspects' 'technical issues' 'technical job' 'technical image' 'technically not so good' 'technical capture merits' 'technical oversight' and finally 'Brides don't care about the technical'.

    And not one mention of art. I think that Brides care about art, however it is achieved, in their wedding pictures.
     
  30. Agree with Paul - the bride loves it and that's all that matters! If I was the bride, I would have LOVED this shot too. It's fun, you really captured the moment. I don't think the technicalities really matter with a shot like this. Well done!
     
  31. "What kind of car is it"
    Not sure, but it looks like it might be an Austin Healy Sprite or MG Midget (basically the same car with different nameplates).
     
  32. yes, a gorgeous Austin Healy frog-eyed sprite..
     
  33. Here is an idea that I was thinking about for this image. I have selective soften parts of the image including the groom to allow attention to be focused on the bride.
    00WWgB-246539584.jpg
     
  34. "Should wedding photography lean more to artistic or technical merit? I know that both aspects are needed but which most successfully prevails and is the first so dependent on the second?
    And not one mention of art. I think that Brides care about art, however it is achieved, in their wedding pictures."
    Greg, perhaps the word "technical" is getting in the way ... maybe "craftsmanship" would be a better term?
    There isn't a single artists in the world, past, present or future that didn't/doesn't utilize "craftsmanship" as part and parcel of their "Art".
    Contrary to popular opinion, artist DO talk about brushes, paint and technique. There is a huge amount of "craftsmanship" involved with something a seemingly simple as oil painting. Do it wrong and it doesn't matter how great the "Art" part is if it flakes off the canvas in a year or so.
    I think this specific forum is weighted toward the craftsmanship aspect of photography because it shows up a lot ... or the lack of it, shows up ... (not specifically this image which is a nice capture, and 20 people have said so already).
    To promote the idea that "Artistic Merits" mitigate the need for "Craftsmanship" ... and that art is all that clients look for or want is a very slippery slope ... especially for those who have yet to get the "craft" part under control.
    Art is not just a happy accident ... although it can be accidental from time-to-time ... however, isn't it preferable to be in control and aware of your tools, and to bend those tools to your creative will? IMO, that is what leads to consistently artistic work that the client can count on rather be at the whim of the accidental nice shot ... or not.
     
  35. Good shot, hard to duplicate again !
     
  36. I'll add just one more comment on this post while I'm on vacation and taking just a moment to check in with my P-net community. Images that are to be enlarged and printed on canvas typically need to be technically well-executed or crafted. An enlargement will likely empasize the softness of this image.....and may actually draw more attention to the weaknesses in craftmanship.
     
  37. I see nothing wrong with the aperture: it isolated the point of interest, which is the bride. I see good things about the wide angle and the perspective: the people in the background tend to form a converging pattern that leads toward (but does not intersect) the bride. Her expression is evident and genuine, which is great. Such insignificant blowing out of the dress is not going to make a difference to the bride and does not detract from the photo IMO.
    The weakest point may be that the perspective and wide angle gives the car a very "small" feel. However, if not for that perspective, other things might not have worked so well.
     
  38. First of all - I love this image. It captured a moment. It is not technically sound in all aspects, and yes we all wish to take as near-perfect images as we can. However, it can be improved upon with the help of modern technology!
    I basically sharpened, recovered the blown highlights with some tools and the exposure tool, adjusted the levels to make it more vibrant, less blue-toned and to appear sunnier. I selectively lightened certain areas to remove the muddy reds from the groom and guests appearance. I used the clone tool on the brides face in areas that were shadowed slightly and voila. I think the adjusted image looks splendid and that the bride would have been most happy with this capture, despite it's technical flaws.
    00WXFv-246831684.jpg
     
  39. I honestly don't like the yellow/green cast or oversaturation many people seem to be adding to the bride's skin tone (and the rest of the image). I prefer David's edit.
     
  40. dawn, thank you for spending time working on the shot - it really shows what can be done and I shall work on my PS skills when I do a not-so-great-techincal shot next time!
     
  41. I just wanted to add that that MG Sports Car is a very special green called British Racing Green, you really can't change the colour it just looks wrong.
     
  42. William Michael

    William Michael Moderator Staff Member

    I agree, Simon.

    It is like "Post Box Red" (the colour of "Royal Mail" Post Boxes).

    In fact the original looks a little lightened to me anyway, the green should be darker a more solid, green . . . most likely given a bit of pump because: "It was a dark gloomy british day and I wanted to make it stand out."

    WW
     

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