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Old Apr 30, 2011, 10:33 PM   #1
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Default More Silver Efex

Been playing some more with Silver Efex. I wonder if I'm on the right track with these or not. I like them, but I have little experience with black and white, which I think depends more on composition than many color photos, another weak area for me. So let me know what you think of them.

#1 - Another sand dune picture:



#2 - Old wood



#3 - Sand Texture



#4 - Snow scene, my back yard



#5 - Blowing snow - not sure that this one is as successful as the one above, but for some reason, I just like it. Don't know why.



#6 - Abandoned mine and town (back to the desert). The frame is one that's a preset in Silver Efex, and I thought it fit this picture, it's not one that I'd use normally.



#7 - Mountain



#8 - Valve (taken with the K100 and Hoya R72 filter)



#9 - Lots of valves (also taken with the Hoya R72 filter)



I'd really appreciate some feedback. I'm experimenting with different things and have know idea if I'm way off-track or getting a better feel for how to make use of the plug-in.
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Old May 1, 2011, 1:38 AM   #2
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The last one of the multiple valves is a little flat. Not enough contrast, me thinks. Just my opinion, though. So I added some contrast to it.
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Old May 1, 2011, 8:33 AM   #3
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That is an interesting B/W application. Enjoyed the number 4 mystical snow scene. I would like to see a close crop of the leaves and pipe to show the contrast between the foliage and the metal. Nature overcoming technology.
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Old May 1, 2011, 11:27 AM   #4
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Lisa - I agree that the last one could use some more contrast, but I thought your version looked a little dark on my monitor - I'll try to lighten the lights, while keeping the darks about where they are, maybe a bit darker. I wanted to keep as much detail in the darks as I could - thought that was interesting. Of course, things look different on different monitors, perhaps I have mine set a little darker than it should be, making me over-lighten a picture. What do others think?

I'll need to take another shot showing the leaves and metal without using the R72 filter (and probably with the K5 instead of the K100). I found that the reflected IR from the leaves meant there wasn't much contrast against the light colored pipes. Or maybe I'll try with both cameras, one with the R72 and one without. That might be interesting, for comparison.

I liked the white vignette in #4 - it's probably my favorite of this group, though barely. I also like the old wood (#2) though perhaps I need to lighten the lights.
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Old May 1, 2011, 5:31 PM   #5
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Number 4 looks like a Greeting card - I like it. I also like the starkness of Number 2 - I wouldn't lighten the lights - they would blow out and lose detail.
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Old May 2, 2011, 12:52 AM   #6
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No.'s 1, 3 and 4 are fabulous.
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Old May 2, 2011, 6:48 AM   #7
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Some very fine results of your photography and your "tinkering" as well.
Wonderful lines & balance in #1.
Fascinating sky in #2.
Favorite is #7 - just right balance...
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Old May 3, 2011, 10:39 AM   #8
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Thanks for the compliments, it's been fun to play with Silver Efex 2.

I had begun to wonder about #1 - I thought #1 was one of my better pictures because of the lines. Since no one had commented on it, I had begun to wonder if it just wasn't as good as I had thought. Glad to know that someone else sees something in it.

The background in #2 is actually a mountainside that was in shadow. The sun falling on part of the old wood made for a good contrast, though I admit to having darkened the mountainside more than it was in the original, to bring out the contrast. Silver Efex allows you to selectively change parts of the picture and does so in a very smooth manner - you don't get harsh lines where the processing changes like you can with other methods of doing things.

Thanks for the compliment on #7 - I wasn't sure whether I had left too much of the foreground hill/mountain, thought perhaps the bottom should have been cropped a bit. What you can't tell in this picture is between the foreground hills and the more distant mountain with the cloud around it is a valley/canyon holding a major 8 lane freeway (I-5). You wouldn't know that you were so close to civilization, would you?

Paul - yesterday I went back to my collection of pipes and valves and took some more pictures, getting closer to show the nature over man aspect. They are in color so I'll post them in a new thread.
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