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Old Dec 19, 2010, 4:46 AM   #1
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Default b&w portrait shot

Was goofing around in manual focus mode with my 50mm lens in a park one day, and took this shot. What do you guys think?
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Old Dec 19, 2010, 11:23 PM   #2
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beautiful.
The left eye (the eye on the left side of the photo) is in perfect focus. The other is not unfortunately. You may be able to get away with that due to the positioning of it in the frame as well as the shadow. Although I think it would be an improved photo if both eyes were somehow in focus.
Her head is at just a slit tilt to the right side of the frame, (and i am really nit-picking here now) I would rather see either a more extreme angle, or at a perfect 90 angle.

Again, a great photo.
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Old Dec 20, 2010, 12:29 PM   #3
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An image with great potential. Here's what i like about your pick: the perfectly centered focused eye. Other than that, i'm not sure. I will agree with ewheeler20 and add that the crop -cutting her lips- is rather unusual.
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Old Dec 20, 2010, 3:30 PM   #4
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Istvan,
I don't have any negitave comments at all about this photo. I feel it is really the type of portrait I like! I am not a fan of crystal clear portraits. This looks more like an artistic rendention which fits well with my taste. I like it that the center eye is perfectly in focus and the other is slightly out of focus. This in my opinion, lends a softness to the over all effect. No lips is OK with me also since I like pics that let you into the soul through the eyes, and makes it look like she is peaking around the corner into the frame. . The DOF used also lends a mysterious effect and is well done. Really a great job if I may say so! Thanks for sharing it Frank
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Old Dec 22, 2010, 1:19 AM   #5
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Thanks for the comments guys! The focus on her right eye is out of focus on purpose. Just the way I felt taking the pic that day. Just wanted all the focus on 1 eye.

About the straightning, first of all, I just took the pic on free hand, and as I said, I was just goofing around in manual focus mode, so I didn't really think about if it was 100% straight or not, imo the shot just looks more natural and spontaneous like this. Thats why I didn't straighten it out in PS either.

The lips, hmm, didn't even think about that when I took the shot, just wanted to focus on her eye. And maybe by doing that, it also made you guys focus more on here eye aswell =)

Sometimes it feel like everybody is more concerned about the "rules" in photography then seeing the feeling, the "art" of the pic, or its own beauty. Like 1/3 rule etc. etc. I mean, I love doing landscape pics, and I understand and agree with the horizon straight and stuff like that. But sometimes when I put up a pic, everybody starts talking about the 1/3 rule and etc. I mean, if everyone were shooting in the same techniques, then the photos would looke all the same almost. What if, I as the photographer think that the pic looks much better if the horizon is almost in the middle? Cause the pic has a beautifull sky, and a nice foreground.

I'm not complaining about the qritiques, cause thats why I put my pics up here. But sometimes it just feels like people are just looking for the "typical rules" rather then the photo itself, and the artistic in the photo.

One of my favourite photographers is Ken Duncan. He is selling his images for A LOT of money. And guess what, in much of his work, he has the horizon in almost the middle of the pic. But not 100 % in the middle, it varies. And sometime he has 1/3, sometimes maybe 1/5.

Some of the pictures I was really proud about and liked, I just got comments about croping it to apply the 1/3 rule and stuff like that. Instead of giving me any comments about the colours, the place i choose to take a pic, the lightning and etc. And it made me think that I'm not a good photographer cause I'm not applying all of those rules all the time. But in my eyes, many pictures would look very much the same if people dont have their own style, everything doesnt have to be shot by the book to look good.

Hope that no one takes this personal, cause it isn't about this topic, or any one in it. Just maybe everyone should look at the pics in a more artistic way, instead of all the technical bits. Cause in my eyes, photo is art! And the technical bits is just a guidline, NOT a must do. Though I myself think that there is some technical things that is in my eyes a must. Like a straight horizon in landscape photography and simple stuff like that =)

As I said, hope that no one takes this personal, cause it isn't my purpose. And think about that english is my 3rd language, so I might make myself abit misunderstood because of that.

And Frank, thanks for the nice words. You understood exactly the purpose of my shot =)

Best regards, Istvan
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Old Dec 22, 2010, 10:17 AM   #6
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the reason some of those photography "rules" (tips/guidelines/hints), is because they have been proven to appeal to the masses more often than not. So when somebody gives a comment like "i would like to see it using the rules of 3rds applied", it is because they actually think it will look better using the rule of 3rds. They don't just say it because it's a "rule". if you know what i mean.

When you dont get comments about colors, the place you choose to take a pic, the lightning and etc, it's probably because those things are well done and dont need to be changed.

This is the critique section. The comments here will usually be more negative than positive. Your color, locations, and lighting are usually pretty well done. So when you dont get any comments about them, take that as a compliment. We will usually comment on only the things that we think will improve your photo.

And, why can't a photo use some of the "rules" of photography and be art? Your previous comment makes it sound like you can't have an artistic photo while using the rule of 3rds, etc...

BTW, as english being your 3rd language, your writing is exceptional. I only know english.
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Old Dec 22, 2010, 10:27 AM   #7
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I like the composition and lighting. The issue to me is the acne on the forehead - it's not flattering. The freckles on the cheek - yes, but with that kind of sharpness/detail in the focus plane I'm not crazy about those types of blemishes having so much detail - especially for a female subject. Otherwise, I think it's an effective portrait and compelling.
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Old Dec 22, 2010, 10:41 AM   #8
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May be you shouldn't ask for critiques cause you feel so self confident and knowledgeable about art.
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Old Dec 22, 2010, 3:04 PM   #9
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I like the impact of the shot and care less about the technical aspects...

But, it's all subjective and JMHO...
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Old Dec 22, 2010, 6:58 PM   #10
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Dang Ordo, thats a pretty strong statement LOL Frank
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