PHOTOGRAPHY CRITIQUE & ADVICE

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[FORMAL CRITIQUE] DOOLAN IRELAND

Damien O'Halloran Damien O'Halloran 81 posts

This was taken in December 06. I like using slower shutter speed and the way it shows the swirl of the water.

Steve Small Steve Small 16 posts

thats a great shot , nice dof

Mary Campbell Mary Campbell 942 posts

Lovey shot and lighting. Beautiful sky, and sea. Looks great to me.

BYRON BYRON 12561 posts

Hiya Damien,

My initial reaction was “oooh, nice!”

In-depth critique to follow in a couple of days…

panALsonic panALsonic 44 posts

Not bad at all but I dopn’t think the white border is the best for this. How would it look in black?

Damien O'Halloran Damien O'Halloran 81 posts

Good point. I would never mount it with a white border either. I generally dont like borders but the black certainly makes it more striking!

Damien O'Halloran Damien O'Halloran 81 posts

Hey Byron, if you get a chance, I’d really appreciate your in depth critique on this picture! Thanks

BYRON BYRON 12561 posts

Sorry Damien, been a little busy, but I’ll book you in for a critique later this week. gimme about 4 days…

Damien O'Halloran Damien O'Halloran 81 posts

Thanks Byron. I look forward too it.

BYRON BYRON 12561 posts

F I R S T – I M P R E S S I O N S:

  1. Interesting textures.
  2. I like the diagonal line.
  3. Very dark.

E Q U I P M E N T

Brand / Manufacturer: not specified.

Model: not specified.

Lens: not specified.

S E T T I N G S

Aperture / F-Stop: not specified.

Shutter Speed: not specified.

ISO/ASA: not specified.

Focal Length: not specified.


T E C H N I C A L

Exposure: The exposure seems generally quite good considering the large variations in bright and dark areas.

Lighting: Lighting in the foreground is good allowing for plenty of detail, but in the mid-ground the lighting suddenly goes very dark and with it there is a loss of detail which makes it hard to maintain interest.

Colour Saturations: Colours are mostly dark – blacks, browns, reds, but saturations are good, nothing is particularly washed-out here.

Focus / Depth of Field: Everything seems to be in focus, but it is hard to tell beyond the mid-ground region due to the darkness in that area.

Sharpness: as above.

Score (out of 10 points): 5


I N T E R E S T

Aesthetics / General appearance: I liked this initially. I was quite drawn to the strong white diagonal going from bottom LHS corner to the upper RHS corner.

Emotional Content: The overall darkness and the flat cloudy sky make this a rather depressing image. There is very little “action” within this image, and the darkness and dark colours are very sombre.

Storytelling ability / Creative communication of a concept or idea: I am not sure what you are trying to say with this image. I think that the rough surface of the rocks would have been better suited to a more “active” image. Perhaps catching waves breaking over them, or some very textured clouds…

Originality: Not very. It seems more like a record-shot. While it is certainly a great looking location for some great photography, nothing here really grabs me and makes me take more than a cursory interest.

Score (out of 10 points): 4


Look at this image “BERMUDA’S ROCKY SHORE” by LUCY HOLLIS

Lucy has used strong foreground, mid-gound and background elements to create a flow through her image. The converging diagonal lines in the rocks also help to draw our eyes through the image on towards the sun and the dramatic clouds. Lucy has managed to capture some slight flaring from the sun coming through the clouds which compliments the diagonals from the lines in the rocks and the headland.

The low angle of the sun has also created excellent lighting and dramatic shadows on the rocks and the water.

Lucy has created a strong sense of drama by keeping excellent detail in the water and the waves, and thus made an image with long term interest for the viewer.


C O M P O S I T I O N

Framing / Cropping: The crop and the frame suit your image. I think you could have got closer down to the ground and tilted your lens down a bit more to really feature the texture of the ground.

Simplicity of Design: Clean simple concept – rocks, water, sky. But the slightly longer exposure making the water smooth-out doesn’t quite work for this image.

Points of Interest: The great white diagonal, and the rocks. But I feel this image needs much more. When I follow the diagonal made by the water it leads me to … nothing. The waves in the background are too soft and formless to really work as a POI. A faster shutter speed here would have been better. Long shutter speeds are good for waterfalls and slow moving water. I would like to have seen those waves in the background featured better.

Another P.O.I. here would really help give us a sense of scale and distance… even something as simple as a person in the mid to back-ground region would be a good idea.

I think this image would benefit greatly from a really strong foreground POI.

Rule of Thirds: Horizon is pretty close to the top 1/3rd line, but ever so slightly off horizontal, – but not enough to really worry about.

Lines & Diagonals: I have already mentioned the great white diagonal made by the water over the rocks. It is a strong compositional element in this image but it doesn’t take our eyes to anything, and thus it fails slightly.

Balance / Use of Negative Space: n/a

Score (out of 10 points): 5


G E N E R A L

I think this is a good start, but issues with lighting, colour and composition are working against you here.

I would like some other colour in the image. A bit of blue sky to counter-balance the darkness would really help.

Some dramatic clouds and a bit of sunlight would also really add to this image.

You have some good elements here, especially texture and the strong diagonal but it doesn’t lead us to another Point of Interest (and thus lead us thru the image) so it has a hard time of creating long term interest for the viewer.

I think the long exposure actually works against this image by blurring it just too much.

When looking at your subject, ask yourself “what is it I like about this?” and then ask yourself “how can I best communicate what I feel to my viewer?”

Total Score (out of 30 points): 14

Damien O'Halloran Damien O'Halloran 81 posts

Thanks Byron. Appreciate your time. It was a dark december evening and this was one of the last shots I took. The darker rock in the mid-ground region is actually covered in small mussels so its is exceptionally black.
Your critique has definitely helped me to understand some of these negative aspects better, so cheers again.