Cityscapes – Istanbul, Beirut

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    erja kaikkonen

    Hi Duncan,

    Now you have all reason to get really upset with me, I have become the Master Cheater! Not only I skipped one assignment but I am submitting two assignments on the same day. However, in my defense, I took these photos a couple of weeks ago with the assignments in mind (sort of) as I was in the beautiful town of Istanbul (and of course Beirut), and I just don’t want to keep them anymore in my drawer, I want to get feedback. 😉

    I will, now, I promise, work on lesson number 8.. I am just waiting for the inspiration..


    Duncan Rawlinson

    Hi Erja,

    Let’s be honest here. I am really not worried about how you do the work! It’s up to you 😉

    You have shown that you are a very keen student and your work is outstanding, you just need more practice.

    In terms of these images specifically:

    The image: Beirut Corniche at Polluted Sunset is nice and I like that you’ve shot it at a time of day where the color is interesting.

    Was this shot on a tripod? It doesn’t appear to be as razor sharp as it could be. Also, to ensure maximum depth of field in an image like this you’ll want to ensure a you should at a higher f-stop if possible.

    I’m not sure I like the composition with the boardwalk in the lower right hand corner. I feel like it should either be included more or not at all.

    That said it’s a nice image. Just make sure you use a tripod when shooting stuff like this and that it’s stable.

    Your Sunset, Istanbul is not a very strong image. This is beyond sunset and it’s underexposed. Had you been shooting a little earlier you’d probably have been there for the right moment.

    It looks like you are using a pattern / multi-segment metering mode on your camera. Next time try to set the exposure yourself and see how you go.

    Finally your last image Fish Market, Istanbul is the strongest of the bunch. The light is wonderful and you’ve got a really dynamic scene here. Top notch image Erja!!

    I would have liked to be a little tighter in terms of composition but it’s the strongest image of the three. I’d also have liked that seagul in flight to be in the white space in the top left but it’s a nice image that’s for sure.

    Don’t forget to feature people’s faces. More people! Photograph people. Did I mention that you should shoot people? 😉

    Don’t worry about feeling like your assignments are homework. If you don’t get inspired to do lesson 8 you don’t even have to do it! We’re all adults here. This is about learning not homework!

    I don’t want to course to be limiting you creatively. I want the course to inspire you and to make you enjoy shooting more photos.

    Thank you.

    erja kaikkonen

    Thanks Duncan, you are so right about many things, and here I was thinking I could get away with it. 😉

    I don’t actually like the Beirut corniche picture, the position from which I was shooting was very difficult, there was this wall in front of me and I had to tilt the camera to get a shot, and the weather was not great either. I did however like the sunset in Istanbul, although it is mostly out of focus. The fish market is also my absolute favourite. I love the atmosphere.

    My weakest point is shooting people, I don’t know how to do it without troubling anyone or taking their time for my silly hobby. I can do it with time and in a new place where I don’t know anyone but I find it difficult to shoot people I know, and when I am not relaxed or am short of time. Usually people don’t like to have their pictures taken, right?

    I have been super busy lately too so that doesn’t make photography easier. So I need practice. Bear with me, I have a feeling this course will take me a bit longer to complete.

    Thanks again for the encouragement!

    Duncan Rawlinson

    The best way to photograph people is to be friends with them first.

    Introduce yourself. Talk to them. Ask them how they are.

    Then ask them to take their photograph.

    People will usually be ok with it if you’re friends with them first.

    Or you can just go to a public place with a long zoom lens and shoot photos! 😉 Just be careful obviously as some places this is ok and some places this is NOT ok…

    my photos like this.

    I’m happy you’re learning from the course.


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