Reply To: Lesson 10 – Landscape Photo

Duncan Rawlinson

Hi Christopher,

A while ago the site was migrated to new forum software to make the website more future proof. In the process many of the images on the very old posts we’re lost. I think I still have the images themselves but I would have to go through and manually rebuild the posts one at a time for 1000s of posts. I’d much rather be out taking photos… I may try to fix this in the future but most likely it will not happen. Also it’s worth noting that most users haven’t been around on this site anywhere near as long as you have.

Thanks for looking at my photos. Feel free to score points with me like that anytime!!! 😉

With regards to Burning Man no matter how much video or photos you see of the event nothing can compare to going and being a part of it for yourself.

Lets take a look at your image.

Date Time Original: 2014:06:14 16:35:02
Exposure Time: 1/320
F Number: f / 11
Exposure Program: Normal program
ISO Speed Ratings: 100
Metering Mode: Pattern
Flash: Flash did not fire, compulsory flash mode
Focal Length: 105mm
White Balance: Auto white balance
Make: SONY
Model: SLT-A77V
LensInfo: 1050/10 1050/10 28/10 28/10
LensModel: 105mm F2.8
Lens: 105mm F2.8
Exif Version:
Color Space: 65535
Pixel X Dimension: 2400
Pixel Y Dimension: 1600
Date Time Digitized: 2014:06:14 16:35:02
Shutter Speed Value: 8.32
Aperture Value: 6.92
Brightness Value: 10.63
Max Aperture Value: 2.97
Light Source: Unknown
Focal Plane X Resolution: 255.32
Focal Plane Y Resolution: 255.32
Focal Plane Resolution Unit: 4
File Source: DSC
Scene Type: Directly photographed
Custom Rendered: Normal process
Focal Length In 35mm Film: 157mm
Scene Capture Type: Standard
Contrast: Normal
Saturation: Normal
Sharpness: Normal
ExifIFDPointer: 204
Orientation: 1
X Resolution: 240
Y Resolution: 240
Resolution Unit: 2
Date Time: 2014:06:19 08:56:23
Software: Adobe Photoshop CC (Macintosh)
DateCreated: 2014-06-14T16:35:02

First off you’ve gotten one of the most important things right for an interesting landscape photo, an interesting landscape! This is a wonderfully bleak landscape and certainly worth capturing.

Now in order to to take this to the next level I want you to think about some of the items in lesson 10. For example, think foregrounds and focal points.

In this image there is no clear focal point. The interesting rock formation is somewhat of a focal point but the overlap with the hill in the background confuses things.

In terms of foreground, in this case this photo would be much improved with some kind of foreground element whether it’s a dying shrub or an interesting rock formation. In fact I can see some interesting elements in the frame that could be used. You just need to re-compose get closer to the foreground element or bring the foreground element to you.

I have cropped an example of how you could have re-composed or changed the image. (Note cropping in post is not the way to go, always get as close to perfect in-camera as you can) This is just for the sake of showing what’s possible. Also note I made a few minor adjustments to show a change in white balance, contrast and simulate it for you.

On days like this where it’s bluebird and the sky is boring there is no need to feature so much sky. I would advise showing little or even consider no sky when it’s this time of day, with this weather, and in such hard light.

Also on composition here do you see how the image feels slanted to the right? Your tripod/camera may have been perfectly level but if an image’s horizon line “feels” slanted to one side or another it’s often a sign that you need to rethink your composition…

For the most part this is a technically strong image and you’re set your camera up properly, just pay closer attention to your composition here. One thing that’s always helpful to remember is to think in layers of foreground, mid ground, and background. Try to make at least 2 of 3 interesting.

Also the auto white balance setting makes the image quite blueish here. Always remember to control your white balance. Otherwise you camera has no idea what color is what.

One final thing to remember is filters, a CPL filter here or even an ND filter would help you in this situation.

Nice job here see you on the next assignment.

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