Monday, October 09, 2006

2nd Projected Image Competition Entries


After much deliberation, my selections for the next Projected Image competition (deadline this evening) are posted below. I have used small, lower res versions for the web.

The first, "Forest Light" I really like, because I think I got the exposure spot on, and captured detail in shadows and highlights. A bit of PS post-processing, but only on curves, levels, a bit of shadow/highlight and some minor cropping. I really conveys to me the peace and beauty of that moment.

The next "Cornfield" is one you'll either love or hate, but I love the textures and detail of the decaying corn husks and the dark brooding stormy sky. I used a 0.6 Grad filter to get the sky detail, and only did some minor PS tweaking (saturation, levels and curves).

Thoughts, as always, welcome...

Gareth - depending on how trying the baby has been during the day, I'll hopefully see you this evening.



Gareth Marlow said...

I'll see you there, if you're there - if not, hopefully next week!

Forest light is outstanding. Was this morning or evening? It's nice to get such warm light - I've some low light, misty forest photographs, but it was all very cold at the time, and I prefer the feel from this image.

Cornfield's reminiscent of the Dolomites image which got your first in the last competition, inasumuch as it's a superwide, high DOF shot. I'm not so keen on it though - because it looks like an HDR shot. Particularly harsh really, seeing as you did it "properly" with a grad, but there are quite a lot of these "boiling skies" shots around at the moment.

They're both technically excellent, though, and I'd be surprised if they don't get position-placing.

Incidentally, it seems that if you upload a large photo in "large" mode, blogger gives you a clickable thumbnail - see mine in the previous post. Ivan, can you upload in this mode because I'd really like to see these larger.

Ivan said...


Many thanks - good critique. It was evening light in the Forest, and I took a load of images, all on a tripod, and this was the best.

I agree Cornfield is like the Dolomites - I think I was going through a phase of "large interest object(s) in the foreground with brooding sky in the background." I don't know what you mean by "HDR", but from the context it sounds like an acronym for some sort of digital jiggery pokery. Maybe I upped the saturation a bit much to create something a little unreal looking, in the quest for drama, so that's good to know.

Your Drummer pic was well received last night, as was the keyboard hands, so pleasing that you predicted the two best. I think the other, less strong images must have let the complete set down, and she was a much more selective judge, awarding only one recipient of each category of prize. Maybe this is now they do the portfolio compared to the single image, but this is doubly harsh as it's already tough to create an impact and consistent quality in a collection of images versus a single one.

Good to see you last night.


Gareth Marlow said...

Hi Ivan,

Good to see you too, and not looking even remotely knackered!

HDR is "High Dynamic Range", i.e. photography which compresses more "stops" into the image than is possible in a normal shot. It's done by merging a light image for shadow detail with a dark image for highlight detail. You can either take two shots in quick succession, or if you're shooting RAW, import two versions into Photoshop and then merge them. You can take it further and merge 4, 5, 6 images together. There's also specialist software which will do it.

Done subtly, it's a good way of getting the best of both worlds - avoiding blowing highlights and swamping shadows. But there seems to have been a recent fashion for ultra-hypereal images where the most ordinary skies are turned into something from Lord of the Rings.


Thanks for your comments about last night. I guess we'd already analysed which were stronger and which were weaker. I'm still a little surprised by what she placed (from vine to wine) against what she didn't (mont blanc) but at least we can all agree that the 1st place winner was outstanding.