Old 03-03-2009, 03:08 PM   #1
Rharbison
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Default Backlit / Composition

This photo struck out twice, first for being backlit and secondly for composition.

Both are actually part of the same problem. I wanted the bridge to be part of the photo, and this was the best angle I could find. The engine is backlit, and probably will be most of the time. It was a bright sunny day, which is as good as it gets. Then again, maybe clouds would reduce the backlight?

What about the composition? What could I do to make this shot better?

http://www.railpictures.net/viewreje...key=1061152365
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Old 03-03-2009, 03:20 PM   #2
a231pacific
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Ray,

Fix the composition and increase the saturation and contrast some and the back lit issue may go away. It's a nice scene and the back light actually works well on the bridge and foreground rocks. I would crop out the crane, although that will also cause you to lose some of the foreground.

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Old 03-03-2009, 03:40 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rharbison View Post
What about the composition? What could I do to make this shot better?

http://www.railpictures.net/viewreje...key=1061152365
Bob, I'm with Michael that the saturation and contrast are too low -- that's an immediate fix for this image.

The only time I photographed the West Duwamish draw I found that a horizontal composition worked better with all of the scene's elements; my unprocessed shot is attached as an example (I'll never actually submit it for the database). Just need to be careful about where you put the nose of an eastbound with respect to the no trespassing sign at right.
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Old 03-03-2009, 04:57 PM   #4
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Fix the composition and increase the saturation and contrast some and the back lit issue may go away. It's a nice scene and the back light actually works well on the bridge and foreground rocks. I would crop out the crane, although that will also cause you to lose some of the foreground.
When I see a composition like this, with lots of things in shadow, I think of BW conversion. BW is just different that way, the tonal variation is what makes things interesting and darker areas are good. This one looks like a candidate for that treatment.

I was going to give it a go with a channel mixer but my computer is acting up at the moment, sorry ...
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Old 03-04-2009, 02:05 AM   #5
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I was at work when I posted my comment and didn't have access to an image editor. Here's a quick shot at what might work. The B&W idea could be good too.

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Old 03-04-2009, 02:54 AM   #6
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Not a huge fan of the BW, at least on a few quick efforts, seems too bright on the right. Maybe you will like one of them.
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Old 03-04-2009, 03:19 AM   #7
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Hi Janusz,

I think you are right, color works better.

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Old 03-04-2009, 02:58 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Rharbison View Post
This photo struck out twice, first for being backlit and secondly for composition.

Both are actually part of the same problem. I wanted the bridge to be part of the photo, and this was the best angle I could find....

What about the composition? What could I do to make this shot better?

http://www.railpictures.net/viewreje...key=1061152365
They are two entirely seperate issues. The bad composition here is because the picture does not follow the Rules of Thirds. Most of the focus of the shot is directly in the center of the frame, both vertically and horizontally. It needs major cropping. I'd start by trying to get rid of as much sky as possible, but then crop that crane out to the right.

After that, it will take som work because I'm not a big fan of all the water or the room to the right. After the cropping, I think your biggest problem will be sharpness. The photo looks either unsharpened or slightly out of focus. Given all the issues with this shot, I'd consider it a Personal Collection shot.

Or maybe Railroad Pictures Archives.


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Old 03-04-2009, 03:00 PM   #9
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Now I took a look at J.'s crop, it works pretty wel as he did it. Still may need a bit off the left and the top for my tastes though. The B&W doesn't work and I personally love B&W shots. I actually tend to shoot that way with my Rebel XTi because I like the back of the camera look better that way.

And, of course, it's very easy to un-B&W it at home.


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