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Thread: Images FOR CRITIQUE

  1. #1
    C. D. Keth's Avatar
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    Images FOR CRITIQUE

    Since it was such a wild idea in the nudes thread that a group of photographers provide free, open, public critique of each others' work, I decided to start a new picture thread with that specifically in mind.

    This should be a place where we can be 100% open and honest in picking each others' work apart in order to improve in all respects. If you hate a piece, that's fine, but think about why you hate it. What about it doesn't work for you? The same goes for loving a piece. "Great work!" is not a critique and neither is "that sucks!"

    This should be a given, but let us please keep everything here respectful and constructive. Remember that critique is not personal.

  2. #2
    C. D. Keth's Avatar
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    Re: Images FOR CRITIQUE

    To start things off, I worked at a depression era iron bridge this afternoon an came away with three negatives that I like:


    Iron Bridge 2; 2013 by CKeth, on Flickr



    Iron Bridge 4; 2013 by CKeth, on Flickr



    Iron Bridge 3; 2013 by CKeth, on Flickr

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    Re: Images FOR CRITIQUE

    Christopher,

    I like your style! It's nice to see someone with a willingness to be challenged. I hope you will take my comments in the spirit in which they are intended.

    I don't get it. Well, maybe I get it, if you made these for the same reasons I might have made them -- to demonstrate the effectiveness of my equipment/materials/technique, etc., or because I liked the way these details look, but I hope there's more to it than that.

    If you're commenting on the power of the medium to depict detail...why? If you're commenting on the medium as used for the last 100 years....why?

    What am I missing?

    Your execution is excellent, as always.

  4. #4
    C. D. Keth's Avatar
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    Re: Images FOR CRITIQUE

    Quote Originally Posted by Jay DeFehr View Post
    I don't get it. Well, maybe I get it, if you made these for the same reasons I might have made them -- to demonstrate the effectiveness of my equipment/materials/technique, etc., or because I liked the way these details look, but I hope there's more to it than that.

    If you're commenting on the power of the medium to depict detail...why? If you're commenting on the medium as used for the last 100 years....why?

    What am I missing?
    You don't pull punches, Jay! "Why?" is always the most difficult question for me to answer but it's often the most helpful if I manage to do it. To figure it out gives one direction.

    In the case of this work, I think a lot of it is challenging myself to create a pleasing composition where there is none intended. I've been doing that a lot with bridges lately. I think the exercise of seeing something pleasing in everyday things and places is one of the loveliest side effects of art. You start to see differently. I want to present the pleasure in looking at a mundane thing. Sometimes that is pulling the thing out of context and showing it as detached shapes. In this case, it is composing with the details. I hate to quote somebody in explaining my own view but Weston stated it so perfectly, "to photograph a rock, have it look like a rock, but be more than a rock. Significant presentation – not interpretation."

    Now that I've mulled it over a little bit, I am confident that the second and third photos above succeed but the first may fail. I don't feel that it reveals anything special about that structure. It's simply a picture of it.

    By the way, Jay, thanks for the tips on stand development. That developer sounds interesting. I hate to jump around a lot with developers but I may have to give it a try.

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    Re: Images FOR CRITIQUE

    will take a different perspective than Jay's

    I regard them to be abstracts which are interesting in their own right
    but feel each could be stronger with slightly different framing/cropping

    for the first I would crop just above where the girder (metal support?) ends
    so the horizontal element at the bottom is removed

    for the second I would crop the bottom third of the image

    for the last it needs either more space to the left (which would require a reshoot)
    or cropping of the partially shown rivets

    plus the bottom rivet is too tight in the frame
    it wants more space also

    but I personally think they are "well seen" images

    my 2 cents...

    nice idea for a thread
    you can find my images on flickr at:

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/feberdt/sets/

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    C. D. Keth's Avatar
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    Re: Images FOR CRITIQUE

    Quote Originally Posted by Frank_E View Post
    I regard them to be abstracts which are interesting in their own right
    That's more or less the spirit in which they were made.

    I think I agree with you about cropping the second image. It would make a very balanced square composition. I'll probably try that. I may find I still prefer the negative space.

    I disagree with you regarding the crop of the last image but I'm having trouble putting into words why.

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    Re: Images FOR CRITIQUE

    My eye was drawn to that bottom rivet too - without knowing what's below it I would be inclined to crop a third of it away. I like the simplicity of IB4 but IB3 is my favorite here.

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    Re: Images FOR CRITIQUE

    The first one is pleasing, and an interesting contrast between organic gracefulness and massive strength in heavy duty ironwork. If its bottom must be cropped, don't lose the shadow of the curved plate; it is needed to frame the picture. The well lit subject contrasts well with the dark surroundings.

    The second one feels like a metaphor for human endeavor or loneliness. It would mean more when displayed in an environment that complements any such intent.

    The last one is a chaotic jumble.

    All three are sharp and have a decent range of tones. Perhaps brightening the highlights in the first one would be even better, although I didn't try it.

  9. #9
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    Re: Images FOR CRITIQUE

    I like this thread idea too!
    The second image is the one that appeals to me. The strong diagonal line providing contrast to the light color of the bridge with the single simple nut and it' shadow.
    Generalizations are made because they are Generally true...

  10. #10
    Jac@stafford.net's Avatar
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    Re: Images FOR CRITIQUE

    I have never seen an iron bridge structure of that tone, so it fascinates me as a subject. The images are not so much an abstraction as a straight-forward consideration of the subject itself. The single nut image has texture I would not expect. I am lost concerning scale, and that is good by me. It must exist as a series. I cannot imagine any single image conveying the whole subject better than the series.

    Thank you for sharing your work.

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