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Smoking
Posted By: mischivo, 07-03-2010, 10:14 PM

This is a photo of my friend Serge. He roams about here every so often...



Last edited by mischivo; 07-06-2010 at 06:51 PM.
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07-05-2010, 12:09 PM   #2
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I like the composition/mood, but I'd just crop it so that he's not centered.

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07-06-2010, 03:08 AM   #3
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I really like this picture, well done.
07-06-2010, 03:23 AM   #4
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I wouldn't classify him quite centred. I think the crop is too tight vertically & the image is noisy. More environment would be nice.

07-06-2010, 03:39 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
I like the composition/mood, but I'd just crop it so that he's not centered.
Centered? Okay. Great mood in this shot. I like how you are just able to make out the subjects face but not enough to reveal who he is. Very dark and mysterious. If it were up to me I would have given just a little more negitive space toward the top of his head. Great photo under tough lighting conditions.
07-06-2010, 05:19 PM   #6
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This is not centred at all. In fact, his eyes (which is what counts) fall at exactly the 1/3 line from the top and slightly less than 1/3 from the right. I've intentionally framed and cropped this frame to look cinematic, for that's the aesthetic I was aiming for. Generally speaking, in film, headspace is kept at a minimum, especially for medium shots (such as this) and tighter. Since eyes are the most expressive parts of the face, they are kept on the third lines and excessive space above the head, and subsequently, the top of the head itself, is framed out as you push closer. Although I'm not certain about the actual historical or aesthetic reasons, my hypothesis is that it relates two facets of film, sets and sound. Sets don't usually have ceilings, so it's advisable to not frame much higher than actors' heads, or you'll see the studio. Sound usually involves a boom microphone positioned as close to the actor as possible, and usually from the top.

Regarding the noise: half of it is noise, as I shot this at 1600; the other half is the grain I added to the image, as I like the grittiness and texture. Perhaps I'm biased, but at the posted resolution, I find it quite subtle and nothing upsetting.

EDIT: I've adjusted the image by adding a hair of space above his head. I was wrong, apparently this was my original saved Snapshot in Lightroom, but I had adjusted it mistakenly. Thank you for pointing it out.

Last edited by mischivo; 07-06-2010 at 06:53 PM.
07-06-2010, 11:38 PM   #7
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Very moody... love it.
07-07-2010, 01:44 AM   #8
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on composition

QuoteOriginally posted by mischivo Quote
This is not centred at all. In fact, his eyes (which is what counts) fall at exactly the 1/3 line from the top and slightly less than 1/3 from the right. I've intentionally framed and cropped this frame to look cinematic, for that's the aesthetic I was aiming for. Generally speaking, in film, headspace is kept at a minimum, especially for medium shots (such as this) and tighter. Since eyes are the most expressive parts of the face, they are kept on the third lines and excessive space above the head, and subsequently, the top of the head itself, is framed out as you push closer. Although I'm not certain about the actual historical or aesthetic reasons, my hypothesis is that it relates two facets of film, sets and sound. Sets don't usually have ceilings, so it's advisable to not frame much higher than actors' heads, or you'll see the studio. Sound usually involves a boom microphone positioned as close to the actor as possible, and usually from the top.

Regarding the noise: half of it is noise, as I shot this at 1600; the other half is the grain I added to the image, as I like the grittiness and texture. Perhaps I'm biased, but at the posted resolution, I find it quite subtle and nothing upsetting.

EDIT: I've adjusted the image by adding a hair of space above his head. I was wrong, apparently this was my original saved Snapshot in Lightroom, but I had adjusted it mistakenly. Thank you for pointing it out.
The rule of 1/3rd doesn't make it all. When looking at the picture, my look is driven by his eyes, and your correct in saying that's what count. The thing is the look of your subject is turned to the right, so when looking at the picture, the eyes will follow that movement, leaving the space to the left...

If you had framed / cropped your subject on the other 1/3rd line your image would have had much more impact.

Try to crop it on the left (just at the hair of your friend) and see what it does. The rule of 1/3rd, which is an approximation of the golden number rule, is just an indication for composition, what is truly important is to make sure that the eye of the viewer will follow the course you have chosen. Eyes, will get first to "eyes", will follow line, will be attracted by bright part etc...

You can play with that, for example in you picture, your strong elements are :
- The cigarette : bright, red (vs the blueish rest of the picture) and the smoke
- The face (especially the silhouette lit by contra light)
- The perspective of the fence.

The perpective (from close to far), the smoke, and the face/looks all go from left to right. So a person looking at the picture will start looking at it on the left (which is the natural way for western people) Thus the "empty" space on the left will not be looked at, leaving a feeling of "unbalanced" picture.

I hope this comment is useful.
Guillaume

07-07-2010, 12:59 PM   #9
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You are very correct, in that typically there needs to be room for the gaze. I sacrificed that for the interesting vertical patterns on the left. I prefer them versus the opposite framing.
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