Old 09-03-2007, 07:33 PM   #1
bbrant
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Default Picture Needs Your Help

First off, happy Labor Day to everyone.

Can someone offer some guidence to me?

I have this picture which was rejected initially for poor composition/balance. I took it into PS, cropped it, resubed it only to have it rejected for poor cropping. (See link below.)
http://www.railpictures.net/viewreje...d=414411&key=0

I took it into PS again to try to improve the cropping. I resubmitted and now I'm back to the poor composition/balance rejection.
http://www.railpictures.net/viewreje...&key=743484031

Is there anything that can be done that would make it acceptable?

Thanks!
Brian
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Old 09-03-2007, 09:12 PM   #2
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I don't think the image quality is there to get this one in regardless of the cropping.

But, for the cropping question, I think the first of the two is the better. I'd add a little more foreground and crop off some of the top. As it stands, there's just a little too much sky for my tastes...
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Old 09-03-2007, 10:51 PM   #3
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Ween's right about the cropping, but that's the least of your problems. The image isn't sharp and there is a lot of noise. I'm surprised the screener didn't point those out first.

What kind of camera did you use and what was the image size? What jpeg setting did you use? If you aren't shooting at the highest resolution and highest jpeg settings, you need to change your settings. Otherwise, I thought the composition was OK and it's a nice location. Good luck.

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Old 09-04-2007, 12:37 AM   #4
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Thanks for the replies and the advice.

I realized after I uploaded the image that I overkilled it with the sharpening.

I did try to re-crop the original image (which is the one that was initially rejected for poor balance) and recropped it. The image was soft so I sharpened it but not to the extent of the other images. Long story short, I'm still getting it rejected based on the cropping.

http://www.railpictures.net/viewreje...key=1059516035

I agree with what Ween said...too much sky. The problem that concerns me that if I crop too much more of the sky, I lose the blades on the windmills. Then they look like 2 white poles just sticking up and leaving the viewer to question why they're their or what their purpose is.

I'm using a Canon 400XTi and the standard 18-55mm lens that comes with the kit. I was actually on my way to pick up my cat from the vet and wasn't anticipating this shot. It was just a quick pull off the road & shoot the helper units as they went by. I think I had the ISO set to either 200 or 400.

Again, just a very spur of the moment shot that didn't turn out too, too bad. I thought it had a decent chance of being accepted which is why I submitted it. I'm trying to be a better judge of what I send in order to try and avoid wasting time of the screeners. My thinking is, unless I get a rejection with - although I can't recall the exact wording - "this is material we're not wishing to publish" any photo still has a shot. And by all means, correct me if I'm wrong in that thinking. And as I've said in the past, if that's the case then it's just another reason to get out and try again!

Thanks again for the replies and advice. It's greatly appreciated!

Brian
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Old 09-04-2007, 12:59 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bbrant
I agree with what Ween said...too much sky. The problem that concerns me that if I crop too much more of the sky, I lose the blades on the windmills. Then they look like 2 white poles just sticking up and leaving the viewer to question why they're their or what their purpose is.
I disagree with Chris/Ween, the problem is not the sky. Well, that sounds a bit cocky. How about I think the problem is elsewhere. You don't want to cut the sky, as it is part of the story. At the same time, you have the power mid-level vertically. You want to go to rule of thirds. The solution is to crop the bottom, which is boring ballast track. This moves the train down, which emphasizes the sky because, in the frame, the train is more "below" the sky, so it pops more. (Too bad you didn't step a bit left so as to clear both windmills out from behind the tree branches.) I would crop to fairly close to the pilot, at the bottom, and just enough at the left to get rid of the utility post.


Quote:
My thinking is, unless I get a rejection with - although I can't recall the exact wording - "this is material we're not wishing to publish" any photo still has a shot. And by all means, correct me if I'm wrong in that thinking.
OK, I think that is wrong! There are any number of reasons that eliminates a photo from having a shot, if you can't do anything about them. Bad image quality and not sharp being two big ones. Any reason given is a statement that says - hey, are you sure this is a good photo?
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Old 09-04-2007, 02:17 AM   #6
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Quote:
I disagree with Chris/Ween, the problem is not the sky.
Tastes differ, but on that first one, the sky can be cropped down to just above the tree top directly behind the engine. You don't lose anything...the windmills are still completely intact and a big chunck of gray sky is gone. Plus, you'd move the train off the bottom of the image.

Quote:
I'm using a Canon 400XTi
The image quality on these rejects aren't doing justice to what that camera is capable of. Can you attach the original, uncropped image for us to see (the only change would be to resize it to 1024 pixels to make fir easier viewing here?
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Old 09-04-2007, 02:30 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ween
Tastes differ, but on that first one, the sky can be cropped down to just above the tree top directly behind the engine. You don't lose anything...the windmills are still completely intact and a big chunck of gray sky is gone. Plus, you'd move the train off the bottom of the image.
Actually, Chris, you are right. I lost track that there were actually two different versions and was just commenting on the second. The first does much of what I would want, although I agree with you that you could take the sky down and it would be better. I would not move the train off the bottom (BTW, why is that necessarily going to occur when cropping the sky? Well, maybe if your aspect ratio is locked in, somehow, I suppose.) but that is a matter of taste, as you said.

But putting aside the cropping, the main issue is what you raised before and again, the image quality just isn't good enough.
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Old 09-04-2007, 04:21 AM   #8
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I would not move the train off the bottom (BTW, why is that necessarily going to occur when cropping the sky? Well, maybe if your aspect ratio is locked in, somehow, I suppose.)
Tsk tsk tsk, J. You're skipping the details in my first post! It would move the train off the bottom because:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ween in his first post
But, for the cropping question, I think the first of the two is the better. I'd add a little more foreground and crop off some of the top.
I know, it's been a long weekend and the details tend slip by, but c'mon!
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Old 09-04-2007, 04:30 AM   #9
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On a beautiful holiday where I'm at home working on a report instead of trackside (such as to the SOON TO CLOSE HANCOCK TOWER) I am most certainly NOT RESPONSIBLE for remembering details of a 4:12pm post when reading a 9:17pm post. HAVE I MADE MYSELF CLEAR?

I NEED SLEEEP!!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 09-04-2007, 04:37 AM   #10
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Go to bed then!
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Old 09-04-2007, 04:57 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Ween
Go to bed then!
Gosh, Chris, how could I have missed that option? I must have gotten all confused just now. Thanks for showing me the light.
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Old 09-04-2007, 05:09 AM   #12
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Lightbulb <-there's the light

Quote:
Thanks for showing me the light.
Ironically enough, studies have shown that it's better to sleep with the lights off. So it's your choice since I've shown you the light whether you flick it on or turn it off, but with sleep, just like rail photography, tastes differ!
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Old 09-04-2007, 07:49 AM   #13
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What the hell...?
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Old 09-04-2007, 12:22 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ween
The image quality on these rejects aren't doing justice to what that camera is capable of. Can you attach the original, uncropped image for us to see (the only change would be to resize it to 1024 pixels to make fir easier viewing here?
Sorry to make this short but I'm getting ready to head to work. I've never attached an image before so I'm not certain it will work out.




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Old 09-04-2007, 12:46 PM   #15
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I think you're trying to crop too much. I'm not sure this one is salvagable.


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Old 09-04-2007, 03:43 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe the Photog
I think you're trying to crop too much. I'm not sure this one is salvagable.


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Yep. I was expecting to see the train be very small in the original image; the rejections had that too-heavily-cropped look to them...
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Old 09-05-2007, 02:01 AM   #17
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By the way you cropped it, you are losing at least 75% or more of the image area. That means you are down to an image with only 2.5 mega pixels or less to start with. Too much to leave you with any kind of image quality. Next time, zoom in with the lens and just crop a little bit to adjust the composition.

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