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Old Mar 15, 2011, 10:25 PM   #1
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I've been playing around with Silver Efex 2 and having a great time with it. I've always loved black and white photography but never played with it when I was shooting film. The time or two I tried it seemed like I had no idea what would work. I'm still a beginner with the plug-in and still discovering what might (or might not) look good in black and white, but I'm starting to get some results that I like enough to get some feedback on.

#1:

Taken from my upstairs window in February. I know it has it's faults (the reflection from the window, for one) but I like it and thought that particular fault gave the picture more of a feeling of place. It's not one I would enter in a contest, but as a memory snap, I thought it was effective. Does it work or not?



#2:

Taken the same day. While I think the conversion worked well and there's some things I like about this picture, is it too much a cliche? Or perhaps it's just boring in general?



#3:

High Rise Architecture. Its always fascinating to see how architects try to get their high-rise buildings to have a unique look to them, so they don't look like a tall rectangle. In this case, the architect added some interesting shapes to the top couple of floors. The pictures I took showing these floors with many of the lower floors didn't work at all, but I liked how this shot taken with the DA*200 came out (5 shot auto bracketed series, HDR with HDR Efex and converted to b&w with Silver Efex 2).



As always, critiques and comments are welcome.
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Old Mar 15, 2011, 11:04 PM   #2
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The black and white conversions are marvelous.

#1 is a great shot, too bad about the reflections because the detail and contrast in the lower left is really eyecatching.
#2 You are too hard on yourself, this is a great study in contrast and form.
#3 The HDR worked very well, I never would have known (which is the sign of a good HDR). sharp and contrasty with a good angle on the repetition.
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Old Mar 18, 2011, 6:37 AM   #3
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Even with the window reflection, #1 is an amazing image - as you said, a real sense of place, and quite some depth of details as well!

#2 very interesting image, the complex small branches are a bit distracting (to me), but still very interesting.

#3 another of your great abstracts of "ordinary" things!
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Old Mar 18, 2011, 2:39 PM   #4
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i really like #3 here. the black and white accentuates the repeating form.

also, #1 has a very unique feel to it, it has a large sense of depth, but almost in a tilt/shift miniturizing way, not sure why i get that feeling.
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Old Mar 18, 2011, 11:08 PM   #5
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Thanks for the feedback, it's nice to know that the 1st one strikes a chord with others - I thought it would just me that liked it.

It was taken with the DA*50-135 at f11, not an aperture I normally use with that lens, but I was trying to get as much dof as I could - the foreground trees are my back yard while the far ridge is about a mile away (and on the other side of the San Andreas Fault), and that's a stretch for 50mm. Maybe the feeling of miniaturization is due to the fact you can't see the valley that's between the mid-distance trees and the ridge, so there's not a visual cue to indicate how much further away the ridge is.

Mole - I think you've put your finger on what's wrong with the second one - the branches are TOO complex, and the small branches in the lower part of the picture make it too busy and are distracting. I'll try to find a better tree next time I'm home when it snows.
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Old Mar 18, 2011, 11:46 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hards80 View Post
i really like #3 here. the black and white accentuates the repeating form.
Ditto Hards comment. There is something hypnotic in that form.
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Old Mar 19, 2011, 10:57 AM   #7
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Nice!...I like the abstract nature of all of them..the first one especially...well..all of them actually..B/w gives such a different perspective.Very nice!
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Old Mar 19, 2011, 2:37 PM   #8
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Number one captures the feeling of a foggy morning very well.

Number 3 really pushes my buttons - very "Escherish" Excellent choice of a subject for that treatment.
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Old Mar 19, 2011, 10:17 PM   #9
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Thanks for the compliments, glad I'm not the only one who likes #3.

Penolta - I admit I had to google your reference, only to find out that it was to someone who's work I've always liked, but never knew who did them. Thanks for the reference, I'm glad to "rediscover" Escher and look at some of his other works.
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