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Old Feb 19, 2010, 9:12 PM   #1
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Hello everybody! I am new to these forums and new to photography. I am hoping to learn a lot from fellow photo enthusiasts. I would really appreciate any feedback on my photos. Constructive criticism is always welcome!

All images taken with a FZ35

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Old Feb 19, 2010, 9:14 PM   #2
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do you do any post production editing of your shots?
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Old Feb 19, 2010, 9:17 PM   #3
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do you do any post production editing of your shots?
I believe for this one, I just hit the "Auto-Level" in Paint.net cuz the original image was a little dark.
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Old Feb 19, 2010, 9:38 PM   #4
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the shot seems a little soft, or a bit out of focus.
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Old Feb 20, 2010, 12:51 AM   #5
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It doesn't look like it's out of focus (the cherry picker and the ladder on the truck are pretty well defined) as much as it's lost detail somewhere along the line, perhaps in post processing. That could be caused by a number of different things - too much compression when it was resized, the auto levels could have "evened" things out too much which took out fine detail, or blurred things a bit, etc. I'm not familiar with the program so don't know what might have caused the problem. That's probably what I notice the most about the picture.

Another thing about the picture is something you can't control - the weather. It looks like it was rather over-cast/grey and the lighting was very flat, always a difficult situation (I gave up on the pictures I took at Zion National Park under those conditions).

Some other thoughts - what is it you want to "say" with your picture? I find your foreground very busy with the traffic lights, cars, cherry picker, truck, etc. and that draws my eye. Is that what you wanted to show - all the congestion and traffic crowding in around a famous monument? Your picture is quite effective telling that story. If your subject is just the monument, I'm not sure how to make this particular picture work better - you could try perhaps cropping the lower bit? That might or might not help. If you could re-shoot the picture, try to find another spot where your view of the monument has a more interesting, less cluttered foreground (or at least across the street so you don't have the traffic lights and cars), or try a different time of day where there's not so much going on. On the other hand, if your subject is the urban encroachment, then leave it alone.
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Old Feb 20, 2010, 1:05 AM   #6
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Some other thoughts - what is it you want to "say" with your picture? .

That's a question wonder about sometimes..what DO I want to say? Usually, its a shot of 'something neat'....perhaps that's the indication of a beginner. I can 'see' things in someone else's photo and say 'wow..interesting'..but I can't see those things when the opportunity presents its self.

I know that will change with time...but for now it's a 'that looks neat' kinda of shooting...
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Old Feb 20, 2010, 5:06 AM   #7
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@mtngal, @littlejohn

Thank you very much for that information. I can agree and see what you guys are talking about. You both have been very helpful and hopefully my next shots will improve.
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Old Feb 20, 2010, 6:55 AM   #8
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can you post the un-edited shot so we x=can see the difference?
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Old Feb 20, 2010, 10:35 AM   #9
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littlejohn - I'm horrible at composition. I'm also definitely in the category of taking something that catches my eye type of photographer. I'm no pro, just a hobbyist and find that for any of my pictures to be decent, I have to first feel a real connection/emotional tie to my subject. I'm working on the "what do I want to say" part of composition now - too often I look at a scene and see multiple things I think are cool. I take a big scene that has all items in it that caught my eye and end up with a lousy, boring picture. If it's a street scene it'll remind me of those pictures they use in foreign language class where you can spend several lessons trying to describe each part of it there's so much going on in it. They say in photo books that "less is better" - and that's SO true. I just have a very hard time doing it.

DoctorFaust - a much better photographer than I am once told me to always look at the edges of your viewfinder before pushing the shutter. Look at what's in the corners, along the bottom and top. Is there a telephone pole "growing" out of your wife's head? Do you have too much "dead" space around a flower? Is that traffic light going to be distracting? It's so easy to get fixated on your main subject and miss those distracting elements - I once took a picture of the most awesome sunrise, the colors were magnificent. However, there was this telephone pole almost right in the middle of the frame - if I had just moved a few feet to either side, the picture would have been wonderful. As it is, it's a picture that I count as one of my spectacular failures.
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Old Feb 20, 2010, 4:58 PM   #10
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there are some good elements here. the fence leading in, the road leading into the frame. the balance of the monument against the trees. so the composition in general is pretty good. but the traffic light/cones/car make it a little too busy.

but as others have mentioned it is lacking detail/sharpness, and it looks like the auto-color fix or whatever stretched your histogram too far, leaving you with washed out colors and a severe lack of contrast.

work on the post-processing, and be a little bit more aware of distractions in your scene and i think you are off to a good start. keep shooting and have fun.
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