Old 05-15-2010, 09:24 AM   #1
fanie
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Default Bad cropping and a PEQ

Hi guys, any ideas to crop this one better? Im thinking some of the right side should go, perhaps turning it into a vertical as there is nothing interesting that side?

http://www.railpictures.net/viewreje...&key=256728786

Also what do you think of this one, perhaps having a train pass by next time?

http://www.railpictures.net/viewreje...4&key=15420137

thanks
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Old 05-15-2010, 12:13 PM   #2
Arne H. B.
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On the first one I would try a little more sky and a little less track, maybe a vertical would work but then you'll probably get hit with a cloudy day rejection...since it wasn't mentioned the first time you could do another crop and see how it goes. The second one is very subjective, I've seen similar make it in the DB but I have no idea what makes them pass or fail. At 885 seconds I doubt it will get any brighter, maybe if a train came through but it might become a little busy with the star trails and the streak of the train. If it's something you really want in maybe an appeal and then try another angle, possibly looking down the tracks with the signal on the left as though you were shooting a wedgie but with no train...sorry I can't help that much never really took a serious stab at that style.
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Old 05-15-2010, 01:39 PM   #3
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The first one, you need to let go, it has more wrong than just cropping. The second one I really like, I would appeal it.

You got a bad screener. Something like this should make it.

Unlike most night shots, this has something of interest in it and it's well executed.

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Old 05-15-2010, 02:29 PM   #4
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The second one is also very grainy and looks to be unlevel. Unlike what Troy said, this one should have been rejected.
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Old 05-15-2010, 04:20 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe the Photog View Post
The second one is also very grainy and looks to be unlevel. Unlike what Troy said, this one should have been rejected.
That may be true, Joe, but do you think it can be improved with work or is it a lost cause like the first one?

I say it can be improved and has a chance of acceptance. I'd prefer something more interesting on the right but I like the contrast between the straight track and the curved star trails, connected with the vertical signal.
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Old 05-15-2010, 05:14 PM   #6
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For the second shot, I think that the concept is strong, but the execution needs some improvement. Due to the 885 second exposure, there is an awful lot of noise in the image. I have found that the best way to shoot a star trail image with a digital camera is to take multiple shorter exposures using an intervalometer like the Nikon MC-36 and then stack them either in Photoshop or with a separate program like Startrails. Moose Peterson describes this method in detail here. By taking shorter exposures and stacking them, you create one long exposure without all of the noise. Also, if the shot is started just after sunset you get a nice blue sky that would contrast nicely with the black mountains and the red signal.
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Old 05-15-2010, 08:09 PM   #7
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I think getting rid of the green cast in the sky would help, thats one color ive never seen in the night sky. Agreed with shooting in the blue hour, i really like the effect though RP will usually tell you its bad color for the first few attempts.
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Old 05-16-2010, 01:39 PM   #8
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Thanks for the ideas guys, I lighten it up a bit and reduce the green a little but unfortunately got PEQ again so I think its time to let go this one.

http://www.railpictures.net/viewreje...&key=638055512
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Old 05-17-2010, 02:35 AM   #9
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It came out grainy on the hillside after you lightened it, probably time to try another exposure, maybe as was suggested about after sundown when the sky still has some light in it...but hopefully dark enough so the stars can make trails.
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Old 05-17-2010, 08:03 AM   #10
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What is the ISO that you are shooting at?

And are there city lights on the other side of those hills?

Something is amiss with this because the lines on the signal are blurred and if your tripod is good, you should be able to get really crisp lines on that signal.

Also, where was the point of focus? On the signal?

I really like the concept and the fact that you are so much closer to the pole makes the stars rotate in a much tighter arc than is possible in the USA (except Alaska).
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Old 05-17-2010, 02:43 PM   #11
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Considering the length of time it took to get those star trails like that, it is a pretty good picture. I dont know how many of you have tried to do long exposures, but it is pretty difficult. A quick glance at the exif shows it was a 15 minute exposure on a 10d, which is a fairly old camera at this point at f6.3 at ISO100.

I dont see the noise that you all see (on the original), and I am pretty critical about noise. I have seen (and can call out) MANY night shots which are much more grainy, have awful light bleed from sodium vapor lights, etc that may have even gotten top 1 or 2 of the day.

Considering he is using a 10d, I think it came out great. It's about the limit of that camera. Only suggestion I could make is to use a smaller aperture, try F11-F16, you don't get into diffraction issues with small apertures with night shots like you can with them during daytime. You may have to have a longer exposure to compensate for this. Keep it at ISO 100.

Another possibility is to do several shorter exposures and stack them in photoshop to get the same result. Sometimes long exposures cause the sensor to heat up causing issues (hot pixel noise) on real long exposures. I think 15 minutes is likely pushing the limits of this camera.
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Old 05-17-2010, 11:14 PM   #12
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Holloran this place is in the middle of nowhere, no city lights around but I think it would have made the pic better having lights behind that hill. I focused on the signal and the little bit of light that you can see is from the flash and houses a bit to my left.

Troy question about the hot pixel noise, on this pic and other long exposures that I took there, all of them had red and blue spots on that I cloned out, is that what hot pixel noise looks like? Since the camera is quite old already I have been thinking its time to get a new one, although its still doing the job.
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Old 05-17-2010, 11:36 PM   #13
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Maybe things will light up better when you get a full moon?

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Old 05-18-2010, 05:56 AM   #14
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Chris as far as I understand when you have a full moon you dont get quite the trails effect from the stars as when its completely dark outside. I havent tried it myself so I might be wrong on this one but the extra light from the moon will definitely help illuminating the country side.
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