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Archive 2011 · No Moonrise Over Hernandez...
  
 
cameron12x
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p.1 #1 · No Moonrise Over Hernandez...


There was no "Ansel Adams" Moonrise Over Hernandez tonight...

But I often drive past this old schoolhouse and a dangerous intersection where lots of fatalities occur.

So, this is my "before and after" neighborhood rendition of "Moonrise Over Hernandez, Sans Moon..."





I'm a PhotoShop neophyte, so any feedback with regards to image manipulation is welcomed as well as a general aesthetic critique...

Thanks!



Nov 13, 2011 at 04:57 AM
Jonathan Knight
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p.1 #2 · No Moonrise Over Hernandez...


How is it that many people have died at this intersection and they haven't done something about it? I have never seen anything like that. Wow...

Photo: As far as I can tell, you took an underexposed photo and messed with the levels. Looks more like a really bad phone camera photo than anything else. Plus some pretty obvious clone stamping (obvious in that it is easy to tell looking at the second photo something was there).



Nov 13, 2011 at 05:02 AM
cameron12x
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p.1 #3 · No Moonrise Over Hernandez...


Jonathan Knight wrote:
How is it that many people have died at this intersection and they haven't done something about it? I have never seen anything like that. Wow...

Photo: As far as I can tell, you took an underexposed photo and messed with the levels. Looks more like a really bad phone camera photo than anything else. Plus some pretty obvious clone stamping (obvious in that it is easy to tell looking at the second photo something was there).


They have since put a light at the intersection...

There used to be just a single stop sign and people turning right had difficulty judging the speed of the traffic coming from the left.

This was shot at dusk through my car window with a Canon 5D2 at ISO 3200 with a 70-200mm f/4L IS lens. It was definitely underexposed.

Thanks very much for the feedback. This is the first time that I've ever used the Photoshop clone tool. Which areas of the image were "cloned" least effectively?



Nov 13, 2011 at 05:09 AM
cameron12x
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p.1 #4 · No Moonrise Over Hernandez...


Here's a desaturated image:




Nov 13, 2011 at 05:35 AM
RustyBug
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p.1 #5 · No Moonrise Over Hernandez...


No work to remove distractions, but tried to work on the exposure a bit and a slight crop.







Nov 13, 2011 at 05:55 AM
cameron12x
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p.1 #6 · No Moonrise Over Hernandez...


Thanks RustyBug...

Exposure looks about right, but it appears that some artifacts were introduced?



Nov 13, 2011 at 05:06 PM
sbeme
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p.1 #7 · No Moonrise Over Hernandez...


Cameron,
Do you want to share the RAW?
Scott



Nov 13, 2011 at 06:26 PM
cameron12x
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p.1 #8 · No Moonrise Over Hernandez...


sbeme wrote:
Cameron,
Do you want to share the RAW?
Scott


Sure, how can we do that? PM? E-mail? URL? FTP?



Nov 13, 2011 at 06:48 PM
sbeme
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p.1 #9 · No Moonrise Over Hernandez...


email is best.
You might need to use YouSendIt.com or Transferbigfiles.com, both free, in order to send a roughly 25 MB file.
I'll PM you with my email.

Scott



Nov 14, 2011 at 12:23 AM
cameron12x
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p.1 #10 · No Moonrise Over Hernandez...


sbeme wrote:
email is best.
You might need to use YouSendIt.com or Transferbigfiles.com, both free, in order to send a roughly 25 MB file.
I'll PM you with my email.

Scott


Thanks Scott... I'll send you the file.



Nov 14, 2011 at 02:08 AM
 

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sbeme
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p.1 #11 · No Moonrise Over Hernandez...


Pretty noisy image. Despite a dedicated noise reduction plug-in and LR, I wasnt happy with the preserved detail with noise down. But Kent did a great job in the sky.
At any rate, adjusted exposure in LR. Converted to BW in SEP. Added grain to hide the noise left over, add to the mood. Bumped mid-tone contrast ("structure", "clarity"). Bit of a vignette, some subtle gradients to darken sky and road, cropping to bring eye more to the crosses. Sharpened edges.
Adding bluish toning for mood.

Scott







Nov 14, 2011 at 09:58 PM
cgardner
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p.1 #12 · No Moonrise Over Hernandez...


I think you are missing the real story potential here, which is compelling. The message here is dangerous road, but apart from the crosses there's no context to explain why there are so many accidents there. The old school house, while interesting, isn't part of the story.

I realize the reference to the Adams shot was joke but the reason that shot is so compelling was its lighting. You might want to revisit the spot in better light and look for a wider POV where you could show the road and crosses, the intersection, or the a shot of the crosses with a speeding car going by blurred via slow shutter speed. Since the crosses are the most compelling content and carry the message I'd look for ways to frame the shot so they are in the foreground with the road and speeding blurred car in the background.

Also when I see a huge distraction like the auction sign when taking a photo I'll remove it for the shot then replace it afterwards that's simpler than retouching.

Details about the Adams shot can be found here: http://www.hcc.commnet.edu/artmuseum/anseladams/details/moonrise.html

Note the irony (given the circumstance of the crosses in your shot) in the quote of Adams: "I almost ditched the car and rushed to set up my 8 X 10" camera. "




Nov 15, 2011 at 01:48 AM
sbeme
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p.1 #13 · No Moonrise Over Hernandez...


Great points, as is so often the case, by Chuck.
I agree about the sign. Too lazy to clone it out, but it adds nothing and detracts.
Scott



Nov 15, 2011 at 02:44 AM
cameron12x
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p.1 #14 · No Moonrise Over Hernandez...


cgardner wrote:
I think you are missing the real story potential here, which is compelling. The message here is dangerous road, but apart from the crosses there's no context to explain why there are so many accidents there. The old school house, while interesting, isn't part of the story.

I realize the reference to the Adams shot was joke but the reason that shot is so compelling was its lighting. You might want to revisit the spot in better light and look for a wider POV where you could show the road and crosses, the intersection, or the a shot of the crosses
...Show more
First, thanks to Scott and EVERYONE else who has helped to make this image better than the original exposure.

I agree about cloning the sign out. To me, it detracts too much to leave in. What about the electrical lines? Should they be left in?

Ironically, I too only had a few minutes of light to work with. In addition to the lighting, this feeling of being "rushed" did remind me a lot of Ansel's experience.

To your thought Chuck, I did take about 20-30 images with cars passing through the interesection at various points. I just haven't had time yet to pick one which fits this scene the best, as to me the crosses and the lighting actually trumped the story (although the story is very compelling in its own right).

Here is a link to some additional (downsized) images:

http://share.shutterfly.com/action/welcome?sid=8BZMWbJu2ZqLDA

If anyone can help me determine the best images to work from, that would be great! I will likely try to get some better images in the future.

Thanks to everyone who has taken an interest in this "mini-project" of mine!

Jeff



Nov 15, 2011 at 05:39 PM
cameron12x
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p.1 #15 · No Moonrise Over Hernandez...


Bump. Still looking for more feedback/advice here... particularly in regards to the " Dangerous Intersection" storyline.

Thanks!

Edited on Nov 16, 2011 at 04:28 PM · View previous versions



Nov 16, 2011 at 12:51 PM
RustyBug
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p.1 #16 · No Moonrise Over Hernandez...


Maybe if you change your vantage point.

Could you shoot from the other side of the crosses, use a low and foreshortening perspective of the crosses with a portrait orientation that then leads upward to the traffic light with the intersection / blurred car in the background.

It would of course change the shot relative to the church and whatever might be in view that we currently don't see, but I might try to increase the dominance of the crosses by changing my perspsective.

One thing I like to do with a scene is to do a 360 degree walk around it clockwise, then reverse and do a 360 counter-clockwise. Once I find a vantage point that frames the scene the way I like, then I get as low as I can (lay down if appropriate) and work my way up to as high as I can get (sometimes a ladder helps). Somewhere in that spectrum of surveying the scene, I'll find the vantage point that helps me tell the story. If not, then I'll reconsider what Focal Length I'm shooting with and move farther back or closer in.

Often times, I'll see a scene and stop to scout it without a camera ... knowing that I'll come back to it when lighting matches the mood that I'm trying to impart (stormy/ominous weather, foggy morning, new fallen snow, etc.) . It doesn't have the romance of the "hurried, inspiration" that we sometimes attribute to worthiness, but it still is inspiration driven.

Ours is a 3D world, that we try to capture in a 2D medium. By moving your feet and bending your knees, etc. you can impart a bit more of that spatial reference that helps us get a sense of volume to an image. Reversing your vantage point can change whether you seem to be converging or diverging on your subject/background relationships. To borrow from Pirates of the Carribean ... "Gents. Take a walk."

To my way of thinking, the "Dangerous Intersection" storyline warrants the "Danger" as the subject (i.e. crosses) and the "Intersections" as the amplifying environmental background information. The fact that the space from the intersection to the traffic light is so much larger than the crosses ... you current perspective serves to reduce the dominance of the crosses even more as they are more distant. Changing your perspective can give you an opportunity to 're-balance' the scene relative to your primary subject.

Your shot, as is, tells me a very different story (with the auction sign IN or OUT the scene). It draws a parallel (a bit more photjournalistic vibe with the sign IN) between the death of the individuals as signified by the crosses and the death of the church/building as signified by it's condition and the auction sign ... as darkeness falls upon both.

Of the other ones with the cars in the scene, this is the composition that I get the most "dangerous" vibe from.







Nov 16, 2011 at 02:05 PM
cameron12x
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p.1 #17 · No Moonrise Over Hernandez...


Here is "one" juxtaposition that I was thinking about in my mind as I quickly fired off some of the frames:



And "RustyBug," great minds think alike!

I went through my batch of images, and every time I do I keep coming back to the image that you showed above (and thank you very much for improving it) to encompass the "Dangerous Intersection" theme. We independently came to the same conclusion. I wish the light had turned red for that particular image, but we can change that, can't we?

As you indicate, it also provides a second juxtaposition between the age of the abandoned schoolhouse and the grave sites.

Lots of future possibilities with imaging this site!

Edited on Nov 16, 2011 at 04:47 PM · View previous versions



Nov 16, 2011 at 04:03 PM
dmacmillan
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p.1 #18 · No Moonrise Over Hernandez...


cameron12x wrote:
Bump. Still looking for more feedback/advice here... particularly in regards to the " Dangerous Intersection" storyline.

Thanks!

Think about what you're trying to say, then reshoot.

I understand the building being in the original photo, I think since then your intent has evolved. Now that you have refined your idea, I think you can convey it more strongly with a photo from a different angle. I agree with walking around your subject. I continue to do that even now.

From what I'm seeing, I'd explore shooting from behind the crosses towards the intersection. I would try two approaches. I'd shoot low with a wide angle lens with traffic in the background. I'd also shoot with a long lens and adjust the aperture so that the cars passing by in the background would be just sharp enough to read as cars. The telephoto would compress the crosses and the cars, making the cars seem a lot closer and threatening.



Nov 16, 2011 at 04:46 PM
Bob Jarman
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p.1 #19 · No Moonrise Over Hernandez...


Good suggestions Doug,

Bob



Nov 16, 2011 at 05:49 PM
RustyBug
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p.1 #20 · No Moonrise Over Hernandez...


How about a yellow "caution" light with everyone speeding along to 'beat the light' ?




Some Make It ... Some Don't




Nov 16, 2011 at 06:21 PM
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