Swing Portrait
/forum/topic/1068766/0

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Ryan R
Registered: Jan 24, 2011
Total Posts: 90
Country: United States

Hey all, haven't posted on here in quite a long time. I'd love to get some feedback on this shot and the processing done to it.


This is my processed shot.

Here is a resized version of the original if any of you would like to try something different
http://i.imgur.com/Qr2Vm.jpg

Feedback much appreciated.
On another note, I was contacted and this image is to be on the cover of a Hallmark book. First book cover for me Woo!



sbeme
Registered: Dec 23, 2003
Total Posts: 18081
Country: United States

First, CONGRATULATIONS!!! That's fantastic.
Second, a nice sharp capture with a great expression, good choice of DOF, appealing lighting.
Third, before and after: The crop improves the image. The warming or selective bump of the reds seems fine, to a point. Her skin appears a bit to red to my eye. I'd do some selective adjustment across her skin.
Fourth, did I say Congratulations?

Scott



RustyBug
Registered: Feb 02, 2009
Total Posts: 13590
Country: United States

+1 @ Scott ... good stuff all the way around.

I don't mind the warming of the tones, but I would like to see it pulled back somewhere in between the two.



cgardner
Registered: Nov 18, 2002
Total Posts: 9376
Country: United States

It's a cute shot of her face and the lighting on the face is very flattering. Congratulations on the cover.

But quite honestly my first reaction was that the face had been cut and pasted from another shot because her head seems larger and out of proportion with the size of her body and length of her arm and the head is twisted at such a severe unnatural angle to the shoulder line. On closer inspection I realized it was the result of the near/far size distortion which occurs when shooting close with a wide angle lens.

Given the tight crop on the left and bottom the first crop closer in on the right works better for me than the second with the space behind her. I would have liked to see the entire bottom foot and more space to the left for her to swing into.

In terms of processing, with shots taken under tress the light gets a green bias from the bouncing off the foliage which does odd things to skin and other colors. Skin in captured in RGB is more red that and + green makes it darker and duller. The remedy at capture is to set custom WB off a gray card. The camera will do a -green / + magenta compensation to capture neutrally. In PP you can normalize the color / contrast by using a magenta photo filter...

http://super.nova.org/EDITS/PlusMagenta.jpg

If you apply the correction then toggle before / after you will notice the difference. In that type of situation a gray card reference shot, even one taken afterwards, is very helpful allowing you to click correct on the card test shot then copy / paste the resulting correction to the other RAW files.



dmacmillan
Registered: Nov 03, 2007
Total Posts: 4877
Country: United States

It's a wonderful photo. Compared to Hallmark's endorsement, our opinion hardly matters.

I guess you could back off the red just a smidge. I'm not saying it would be better, but I'd try a rendition with the corners burned in ever so slightly. A little vignetting might help emphasize the subject.

This is a great example of a photo where all the great elements trump small nits. I'm sure you would have preferred to get all of her feet in the frame, but that's really unimportant compared to having taken the photo at the absolute perfect moment.

It's amazing to see children's photos where the subject is so engaged with the photographer. Children are usually wonderful judges of character and you can see instantly when they are uncomfortable around someone. I see a lot of photos of children where you can tell that something isn't quite right. It's in their eyes.



cgardner
Registered: Nov 18, 2002
Total Posts: 9376
Country: United States

In the 70's I met Bill Beale, photojournalist for one of the DC papers who had won a 1957 Pulitzer for this photo of policeman bent over to talk to a little boy at a parade....

http://mpdc.dc.gov/mpdc/Lib/mpdc/about/img3/Cullinane.jpg

Asked how to win a Pulitzer he replied, "Start by finding a cute kid.... "



Ryan R
Registered: Jan 24, 2011
Total Posts: 90
Country: United States

Thank you guys for the responses.

@sbeme - Yes, good point, i'll try something like that. I liked the gold-ish tone the red bump gave but I do see now that it's a bit much for her skin, especially in the shadows.

@RustyBug - Thanks for the input.

@cgardener - Thanks for such a detailed post! That was one thing I was worried about - her body is in kind of a contorted position.

Here is another shot taken a few seconds before:


This shot was probably the second best but in this one I feel her arm is very prominent and takes the focus away from her face.
Also, this shot was not shot with a wide angle lens - but a long one. 180mm f2.8 on a crop sensor.
I've been planning to invest in a grey card, guess I probably should soon! Thanks for the color adjustment - I'm trying it now and it seems very natural.

@dmacmillan- Not totally true! I really value your opinions. The graphic designer actually sepia'd it, so my color edit didn't even mater, I'm just trying to perfect it for my portfolio.
Vignetting is also a good idea. I will try that.
I would have loved to get her all in the frame, I was burst firing shots of her as she was on a moving swing. The fact that I managed to get a few keepers was great. Not sure how this worked, but I told her "Kathryn! Model for me!" and she pulled all these poses on the swing. It was hilarious.



dmacmillan
Registered: Nov 03, 2007
Total Posts: 4877
Country: United States

Be sure to post the cover once it is published.

It's such a thrill to get published! Congrats!



Ryan R
Registered: Jan 24, 2011
Total Posts: 90
Country: United States

Will do! Might be a while, though



sbeme
Registered: Dec 23, 2003
Total Posts: 18081
Country: United States

I think its a great point about the cut off of the foot.
The expression and just about everything else trumps this minor issue.
Scott



AuntiPode
Registered: Aug 05, 2008
Total Posts: 7139
Country: New Zealand

I love the second image! In addition to some slight color balance adjustment, consider a crop, selecting the background and bumping the gamma to darken it. Also, you could select her right arm and bump the gamma and slightly desaturate to make it a bit less bold. Perhaps a little vignette, too.



Ryan R
Registered: Jan 24, 2011
Total Posts: 90
Country: United States

Thanks AuntiPode, great edit. I really like what you did with the greens. Looks much more lush and vibrant. I think I might play around with some selective darkening/vibrance.



AuntiPode
Registered: Aug 05, 2008
Total Posts: 7139
Country: New Zealand

I used the gamma slider on the exposure adjustment layer. No saturation or vibrance changes, as such. (I did slightly lower the saturation on her right arm after I increased the gamma. Increasing the gamma often seems to increase the effective saturation.)



RustyBug
Registered: Feb 02, 2009
Total Posts: 13590
Country: United States

Winning shots make for a variety of creative options.



AuntiPode
Registered: Aug 05, 2008
Total Posts: 7139
Country: New Zealand

Or perhaps with Silver Efex Pro with some mods, mid-tone bump, Topaz DeNoise 5, and some additional vignette?



newhaven
Registered: Mar 16, 2008
Total Posts: 410
Country: United States

Nice photo, maybe darken the edges a little.
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v732/glenngaryglenross/swing_web1.jpg



Born2Create
Registered: Jun 03, 2011
Total Posts: 18
Country: United States

AuntiPode wrote:
Or perhaps with Silver Efex Pro with some mods, mid-tone bump, Topaz DeNoise 5, and some additional vignette?


This is such a beautiful photo. Excellent edit. It truly took my breath away!



Ryan R
Registered: Jan 24, 2011
Total Posts: 90
Country: United States

Loving all these!
Here's two edits based on some of the suggestions here:





Here's a preview of possible covers that I received form the designer. Still waiting for approval by the publisher!
http://i.imgur.com/0Hzcx.png



jnoll1951
Registered: Nov 05, 2009
Total Posts: 74
Country: United States

Great shot.A+



Kaden K.
Registered: Mar 14, 2008
Total Posts: 3367
Country: United States

Cute is the right descriptor.



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