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Let's get better at our photography together!!!
Posted By: paulsoucy, 08-11-2008, 12:45 AM

I'm sitting here and it's 3:30am in the morning and I got to thinking...

I really love the useful and insight I get from these forums, and I've learned quite a bit reading around....

So I have an idea...

I've created this thread to act as a springboard for us to get better at what we do and love which is taking photographs. Not sure anyone has actually done this here yet. I know there are the monthly photo contests and the weekly challenges so this will be a little similar but with a twist.... I'd like this thread to be an open discussion following a theme related to photographic composition and then we can all discuss and add critique for the entries provided...

I'm thinking it would be a real cool idea to work through for example: Michael Freemans "The Photographers Eye" and then over the weeks and months we could all study and learn different aspects of photographic composition and build each other up....

Whats everyone think?

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08-11-2008, 01:11 AM   #2
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this sounds interesting.. roll on
08-11-2008, 03:26 AM   #3
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Good idea -- They actually have this rolling at the "other" forums and it works out for the most part -- You just have to avoid the "great shot!" replies unless it's really a great shot....otherwise, state (constructively) what you think is wrong with a given picture so that the photographer may hopefully improve on technique!

Here's one:

A heavy crop of an otherwise extraordinarily bland photo, intentionally blown out to hide boring detail at the end.
I actually plan to revisit this place when I have a better lens and retake the picture so that I can print it on paper without having to crop/alter it too much.

Here's the first target - Fire away! I guess a theme would be "subject level composition" along with perhaps "high contrast". I hope I'm understanding the thread goals correctly?

Last edited by cputeq; 08-11-2008 at 03:32 AM.
08-11-2008, 04:14 AM   #4
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Position your camera higher up, to get a bit more of the fence.
If you can, after you have taken some shots, sveap the leaves away to get a feeling like its an unhindered path going into the unknown.

Otherwise nice shot, great position of the camera.

You can also try and get the focus point and DoF where the light beginns to take over (the last bush). As to show that here, where its oof is not the goal, rather the light and the unknown is the goal.

08-11-2008, 04:24 AM   #5
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Great thread idea Paul!

cputeq...I agree with melander. I really like this photo for it's contrast, it's look, and for the sensation it gives me. As for CC, I would prefer to see the top of the railings right into the foreground of the photo though - or crop it right into the spindles at the foreground. I don't find the leaves distracting, but would probably enjoy the photo more if they weren't there.

08-11-2008, 04:33 AM   #6
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I'm not sure if I am reading this right - do you mean like a study group, we all buy a copy of the book and then work through it showing our completed assignments to the group fo CC?
08-11-2008, 04:39 AM   #7
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Great idea! But won't the thread be easily cluttered if everyone posted pictures? Sooner or later, a handful of shots would be neglected if the thread has too many posted... but I like where this is going!

As for the shot, cputeq, I agree with the others about the railing. Better if the foreground, at least, has a full view of the railing. I love the high contrast treatment (I am currently experimenting on this as well). I like the cluttered leaves, gives a "road less traveled" kind of vibe, especially punctuated by the bright end (signifying the "light at the end" perhaps?). I especially love the broken rail, gives tension to the overall image.

08-11-2008, 07:50 AM   #8
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Well the intent is not to just throw up any pictures you want critiqued, the intent is for me to moderate the discussion but I have to come back to this after work......

basically there are hundred of things that can make up a good composition and my idea in my head was to explore those in a community style fashion in sequence ( the book I mentioned is a good start ) and then grow our eyes together, and bounce critiques off of each other because perspective broadens how we see things...

I have to come back to this after work, but I'm happy to see the great response so far...
08-11-2008, 08:16 AM   #9
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Cool idea, how about we use the Photo Critique forum and just add a "Photographer's Eye" or "Group Exercise" to the end of each thread title?

The book (if that's what people want to use as a guide) is available pretty cheap on Amazon for $20 here: The Photographer's Eye: Composition and Design for Better Digital Photos: Michael Freeman: Books

$20 at Chapters for Canadian folks: The Photographer's Eye: Composition And Design For Better Digital Photos: Michael Freeman: Books

~$20 at Abebooks as well: AbeBooks: Search Results - freeman and photographer's eye

I'm in!
08-11-2008, 08:52 AM   #10
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I guess I should clarify my idea...

I think I envisioned more of a group pool based on the hundreds of ideas in the book ( maybe I should use flickr ) where we select a compositional theme and then everyone contributes and by seeing everyone's take on the theme our vision is expanded and improved...

The goal is to develop better "The Photographers Eye" the critiques would be aimed at how well the photo uses the said compositional tool...

Anyone want to add to this or we gonna just free for all it?

: )
08-11-2008, 09:25 AM   #11
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That sounds like a great idea! I bought this book and have had it for several weeks, but hadn't done anything with it. I wouldn't mind getting some objective critique on my pics

08-11-2008, 09:28 AM   #12
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Im in, Pic a target, make it happen, compare and get ideas - did I get that right.

Need to find a sutable media to make it happen tho. Make a group on flickr could work.
08-11-2008, 10:06 AM   #13
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I believe what you are talking about is very similar to what Travis Cooper tried...
08-11-2008, 10:18 AM   #14
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Does sound like a good idea but does it exclude people that dont have the book?
08-11-2008, 10:42 AM   #15
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No it absolutely does not exclude people who don't have a book because when we start I will be posting the idea explaining it a little and posting my own photos as an example of the concept...

The book is definitely excellent though....

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