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Old Nov 19, 2010, 10:50 PM   #1
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Default Mountain Texture

I was wondering what others thought of this picture. I was trying to capture mountain tree texture (and the barren lowlands beyond) and while this is the best one I've taken so far at this spot with this in mind, I'm not entirely sure the picture works right.

I'd love to get other people's opinions of it.

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Old Nov 19, 2010, 11:02 PM   #2
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I think there is too much foreground with nothing to look at. In the background it just gets fuzzy and dark. Looking at it with the dark theme here there is no definitive edge. I thought it was too weird until I changed to the New light theme. But the sky is still pretty weird.
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Old Nov 20, 2010, 9:14 AM   #3
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I should crop out some of the foreground. The sky is weird because the picture was shot using a Hoya R72 filter (should I have mentioned that this was an IR picture?). Perhaps it would look better if I cropped it to a panorama, getting rid of the both the foreground and sky - I like that idea.

The far hills are probably about 50 miles away from where I'm standing, and maybe 7,000 feet lower. It was hazy enough that I couldn't see them myself, guess I was so impressed that they were visible on the shot while someone without knowing that wouldn't be impressed.

I've taken pictures up here before and they've always looked pretty bad - the dark green of the pines with the bright sky at over 8,000 feet and the light ground are all beyond the dynamic range of my camera. I've tried HDR sets but have never been happy with what Photomatix came up with - there was no feeling of texture from the trees.
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Old Nov 20, 2010, 1:43 PM   #4
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I tried the crop, think it looks better.

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Old Nov 20, 2010, 2:05 PM   #5
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Im used to seeing IR shots that create a winter wonderland. I would still crop off another 1/8 or 3/16 from the top. There is just a hint of some small buildings in top right area that really dont add to the scene at all. Also you would be getting rid of the vignetted area at top. Other than that I like your final.
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Old Nov 20, 2010, 3:19 PM   #6
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The crop helps a lot, but IMO, the foliage in the tree behind the dead one is a problem. The brightness distracts from the main subject. Could you get an angle that lets the dead tree stand alone in the foreground? Of course, a chainsaw would fix the scenery right up, too. I do like the shot, just think it might be a little better.

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Old Nov 20, 2010, 5:04 PM   #7
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when i first looked at the original. i thought the same, too much foreground and the tree gets lost in what is behind it. the crop helped with the deadspace, but the tree is still getting lost. i step or 2 to the left or right would have helped i think. but i do like what you were trying to do here. with a textured dead tree to anchor the shot with the rest of it to show off the textures. i think you can easily make this shot work with a different angle.
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Old Nov 20, 2010, 7:09 PM   #8
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Angles are a bit difficult at this location. I did try a couple of different angles and placing the dead tree in a couple of different spots in the frame, but didn't come up with anything that I thought captured the texture of the distant trees as well. To give a slightly different view, this is a 3 shot panorama from a slightly different location:



I was using CS4 to stitch and it didn't work well. At small size it looks OK, but the program didn't align the middle frame correctly. I didn't have the camera completely level, so there's a bit of difference in perspective.
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Old Nov 20, 2010, 9:11 PM   #9
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i like the composition of your last panorama the best. the only problem i saw with it was the lack of contrast specifically on the middle -> right side of the picture.

IR-esk photos are very cool. I use a $9k IR camera for work, and if i could get definition like these photos, that would be amazing!
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Old Nov 20, 2010, 9:54 PM   #10
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LOL! These were taken with an older 6 mp camera and I don't think camera and lens come to $1000, even when bought new. The Hoya filter was about $50 or so. So not much of an investment. But then, I'm sure that your $9k camera does all sorts of things my little camera can't.
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