D140: Salvage

In Black & White on May 19, 2010 by Eric Kunimura Tagged: , , , , ,

Just when I thought I had a handle on “seeing” in black and white, I shot this flop today. The tree had lots of yellow flowers in it which caused it to blend into the background when I converted it to B&W. I should have recognized that but instead got caught up in the unusual color rather than thinking about it in B&W. I think this shot would have benefited from a larger aperture to help separate the background a little more. A heavy dose of dodge and burn helped isolate the tree and recover from the poor quality of the original image. I strive to get everything correct in the camera so that the image requires little post processing. Unfortunately that wasn’t the case today.  I admit to salvaging this image for today’s 365 post.

I went for something completely off-the-wall and not my usual style of processing. Let me know what you think and don’t sugar coat it. Bad crop, ugly purple hue, washed out background…I can handle it.

Only honest opinions can help me improve my photography. Don’t tell me what you like about it; tell me what you don’t like.

Read: Guest Blog Wednesday featuring Jeremy Cowart! over at Scott Kelby’s Photoshop Insider. I’m a huge fan of Jeremy and the way he’s making a difference in this world. If you’ve got a few minutes to spare, watch the video about Help-Portrait.

Viewed: More images from Tamara Lackey

9 Responses to “D140: Salvage”

  1. The color tone doesn’t seem right in the b/w conversion and may be you could have cropped such that the tree is placed towards the edges(?).

    Another thought, may be you could have used IR filter in PP.

    • I converted to B&W and then pulled some green out of it such that it gave the image a purple hue. Crop, composition, and color are all unconventional (and intentional).

      Thanks for the honesty!

  2. Well–the composition is really spot on in my opinion. Kinda a rule breaker with the centered subject; things are always sketchy with the centered subject, but it seems to me that you pulled it off well.

    Yeah…the tone did kinda fail, haha. It happens.

    I think I would, before converting from color, hit it with a filter to lighten the yellow flowers (that would just be a yellow filter…maybe…I think. I’m still trying to get my mind around the filters/BW-effect stuff). If you could pull those flowers out so they showed really clearly in the BW version, I think that’d be really neat. It would probably take a finely tuned pre-bw color filter to draw out the flowers but not lighten the backdrop too much as well.

    Thanks for posting it though–it is definitely an interesting shot.

  3. I think you need more space at the top (just a touch) and the background directly above the tree needs to be brighter. That part of the image definitely needs more contrast.

  4. I think the fact that you’re trying new things is great… even if they aren’t your favorite. It’s good to know what doesn’t work as much as it helps to know what does.

    I wouldn’t recognize this as your style or one of your images… it’s missing the depth and strong texture I’m used to seeing. Why not just leave it in color or do something entirely different with the crop… focus on the trunk of the tree… something different. My 2cents.

    • Thanks for the ideas Tasra!

      …and thanks for saying my work usually has depth and texture. This 365 has been a huge learning experience so far. Can’t wait to compare D:1 to D:365 when it’s all said and done.

  5. To me, it seems to have no depth. Light colors and tones always advance and darker ones recede. That explains a little as to why it looks flat. The tree, for me, isn’t prominent at all. Most of what I see is the background and the tree just dies into it.

    Hope that doesn’t sound too harsh. Didn’t mean for it to be. Nice try for something different though. We can only learn from trying new things.

    • Sheesh…now that you pointed it out, it does look flat. That’s probably why I don’t like it so much. I just couldn’t figure out why. Thanks for the feedback.

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