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Both of these photographs are very strong. Both photographs also embody technical and artist strengths beyond what was asked from you. Overall, a very good job.
Let’s start by looking at your first photograph. The photograph is simple in nature and uses the limited earth tone color palette of green and brown. The image is covered by soft lighting but the lighting is sufficient enough to pull out the details and textures of your objects. Your image abides by the rule of thirds and you’ve established the illusion of three dimensions by using a shallow depth of field. My only concern with this image is a small detail, but it’s important to consider for future work. Your focus is a little soft in this image. You can’t really tell until you enlarge the photograph, but it appears that your main subject is the pinecone. Therefore this object should be in sharp focus. This would further help draw out the texture in the object and give the image a nice sharp look. It’s hard to tell with precision if your image is in perfect focus or not which is why many cameras have an “expand focus” option which allows you to temporarily enlarge the photograph to find your focus then the camera will go back to regular shooting mode and allow you to take the picture. The expand focus feature exists because it’s too hard to gauge your focus on your cameras small lcd screen.
Your motion photograph is great because you’ve blurred your background while following your main object. Not an easy task as I’m sure you’re aware. Again, this image uses a limited color palette of gradient of brown, making it an almost monochromatic photograph (there are a few hints of green and black). Not only that, but you’ve also simplified the photograph by using the background to provide context and texture but this helped you isolate your main area of interest.
Overall, these are both wonderful photographs. Keep up the great work.