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Seeking feedback on photos for project
Old 05-15-2006   #1
kaiyen
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Seeking feedback on photos for project

Hi all,

I am seeking some input on photos for my class. These aren't RF photos, thus my post here in this forum.

The goal is to capture the "sense" of a place in a small set of photos, perhaps 4-5. This "sense" is very ambiguous - is it a mood? A feeling? Maybe a lot of different things?

My subject is the church on campus. I have the first set of photos, all B&W, up at http://photos.kaiyen.com/coppermine/...s.php?album=21

I would appreciate your votes or feedback on which photos you feel best capture or convey a sense of this church. Again, the criteria you use to vote will be very specific to you, and likely very different than many others. That's okay, and that's part of the goal.

One question I have in addition is whether I need a "big" shot of the entire church, either inside or out. I'm intrigued by the idea of using only these tighter shots for the projects. Thoughts?

thanks in advance,
allan
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Old 05-15-2006   #2
Simon Larbalestier
 
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Allan,
Having had a look at your link and bearing in mind that it's hard to make specific judgements re printing as:

A. Deciding on the final tonal values of prints is very subjective and personal
B. My Mac laptop moniter may be too contrasty

FWIW i picked this edit (although i've not yet had chance to work out a viewing order for them)

9, 12 , 7, 6, 2 and 1

I picked these because like you i'm drawn to images with a short depth of field. Some of these shots are strong but fight with the images which retain more focused detail - so you could split the set into 2 and tell two different stories?

Tonality wise and i'm being careful here accepting the points i made above -

I would burn in the top 1/3rd of no. 9

Burn the left side of no. 12 to match the right side, to balance it more.

Look at the highlight (maybe there is more detail in the neg/scan?) of image no 1 as it's a large space and draws the eye in and out of the image. Burning in the foreground might compensate this.

Anyway that's my initial thoughts. And i like the idea of the tight shots and not shwing the whole church - i don't think you need too. The story is in the shots already.

Simon
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Old 05-15-2006   #3
kaiyen
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Simon,
Oops - I forgot to say that these aren't really finished images. There is some burning that needs to be done, yes.

On image #1 - that's Delta 3200 overdeveloped by 300% in Microphen by accident. Ain't getting much more detail out of those highlights :-(.

Thanks for the feedback. Exactly what I'm looking for. I appreciate you taking the time to look at them.

allan

Last edited by kaiyen : 05-15-2006 at 15:39.
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Old 05-15-2006   #4
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You're welcome.

Not easy to find this thread in the "and now for something completely different" section of this forum.

Good Luck with your project.

Last edited by Simon Larbalestier : 05-15-2006 at 15:55.
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Old 05-15-2006   #5
kaiyen
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Well, I feel bad posting stuff to the RF General Discussion forum since these are SLR images. But I"m hoping folks use the "new posts" feature...

allan
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Old 05-16-2006   #6
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I think you do need at least one "big" shot to put these close-ups in context. I don't get the sense of a whole in this grouping but maybe the proper title would do that, e.g. "confessions" with closeups of confessionals, or "choir at St. whatever" with closeups of the organ, etc. The right title might eliminate the need for the big shot. . Otherwise, I like the shots you've chosen.
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Old 05-16-2006   #7
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All good shots, but as said previously, mostly close ups which only give glimpses of the overall. You need something to give a feeling of the space within the church and to tie the series together.(IMO)
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Old 05-16-2006   #8
kaiyen
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Thanks for the input. Do you think the larger, contextual shot should be inside or out? I'll try both, obviously, but have limited time since I have to leave work to go there during "open hours."

allan
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Old 05-16-2006   #9
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Michiel,
Your input from both of your posts is great and much appreciated. As I mentioned, defining how one gets a "sense" of a place is basically impossible, and dfiferent people will get that sense more or less from picture to picture as compared to someone else. Your perspectives - looking at my pictures as if you were the person taking them - is actually very different than what I had intended. I wasn't trying to take someone on a first-person journey through the church, but it's an interesting interpretation, certainly.

I think that your proposal in the 2nd post is a good one, but is not my style. I don't like posing people for shots, or constructing them that way. But it would make a great series, and perhaps you should pursue it yourself? I'd love to see the results (not my style doesn't mean I wouldn't appreciate it).

allan
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Old 05-16-2006   #10
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The symmetry idea is a good one. I need to visit again.

I can't bring in a ladder or get access to the upper areas (like shots 4 & 5) or the organ area. That was a one-time thing that required a royalty-free license from the university and talks with the office of general counsel. Don't want to go through that again :-)

allan
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Old 05-16-2006   #11
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Kaiyen,
Thematically, the iconography of the interior and exterior of churches can be quite different and something you might want to consider when mixing interior and exterior shots for your project. For example, some churches might have a last judgement theme on the entry portal and a heavenly theme over the altar. Whether it is okay mixing inside and outside shots of such a church would depend on the overall theme of your photo essay.
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Old 05-16-2006   #12
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Keep in mind that I need to do this project in only 4-5 images. I'll take some exterior shots, but I worry that the collection would become looser if it's got both types of images.

allan
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Old 05-16-2006   #13
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How about something liek an opening shot looking thru open church doors into the church to set it up. Maybe doors out of focus to sort of match your other images. Then add 3 more of your detail shots. i like 3,8,9
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Old 05-16-2006   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michiel
For this you need a model, preferably a girl because for my suggestions you need hair. She needs to be suitably dressed for church, black I suppose, and her hair too needs to be suitable for church. I think blond hair would work well because of contrast and shine when the light hits it.

[edit]After finishing this I changed my mind and made the girl a black haired girl. Possibly Asian, as they are less common and therefore more interesting (Not necessarily more beautiful)
We all have our fantasies and preferences... don't we

Personally, I'd prefer you consider the tall, blond Nordic type, Allan. Asian and Hispanic girls are all to common where I live.
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Old 05-16-2006   #15
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Allan,

I LOVE the look of this chapel. Here are my prefered images and a few comments.

In general, I think you can put together a really nice pipe organ theme that will give a sense of "church" out of those images that you posted. The pipe organ is commonly associated with church and worship and I believe that association is common enough to work with most of the Western world's religious traditions. Besides that, I'm also a bit of an organ afficianado (however that's really spelled) and I know a lot of people find the workings of the organ is quite mysterious and interesting.

My most prefered images: B-02, C-13, A-13, B-05. It doesn't bother me that the music isn't readily identifiable if the image is associated with keyboard and stopknobs images. The ghost hands in C-35 scare me. It's one of those weird things remaining from an otherwise perfectly normal childhood. Do you have an image where the hands are on the keys but not ghosted?

I also really like A-11. But I'd like to see you draw some more detail out of the side of the pew. In sillouette it is just a tad dark of an image with too little to keep me looking for long. As I looked, I yearned for a bit more detail. Not much more is needed.

Regarding the rest of the church structure... I found the ceilings interesting but without context. An establishing shot might help if you go with an interior theme, especially one focused on architectural details. It would also be interesting to focus additional images on the religious symbols as mentioned earlier by Nick. The church is probably full of them!

All in all, nice work, Allan... and what a fun project!

Oh, did you get a photo of the organ's nameplate and facade (display pipe or decorative screen)?
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Old 05-23-2006   #16
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Are you okay Allan... you disappeared quite suddenly.
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Old 05-23-2006   #17
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Brian,
I'm still here :-). I decided to just ingest the feedback rather than respond to everything. One of the cool things about this is that everyone has a different perspective and/or interpretation of the project and my shots. So...that's cool, but it also means that I have to really pick and choose what to do in response.

I've actually added the color shots to the gallery, and I hope to reshoot some stuff later this week.

thanks for your extended feedback, and to everyone for their input.

allan
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Old 05-23-2006   #18
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Okay, I can stop worrying

I know what you mean about "ingesting". I often set up a project at work late in the day knowing that I can't possibly finish it before quitting time. Then, without even trying, I often figure out the "perfect answer" while driving home or sleeping.

Today I tried sleeping in the office since I had a 3 PM deadline to meet, but it didn't work so well.

So... eat well, sleep well, and spend as much time as possible on the freeway... and the perfect solution will "pop" into your mind!
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Old 05-23-2006   #19
kmack
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You mentioned that you have to winnow this down to 5?

DSC0103 B-05 A-11 C-13 DSC0057

I think a story can be told with those five.
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Old 05-24-2006   #20
kaiyen
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Kevin,
Yes, possibly only 4, in fact. That's the hardest part, and perhaps one of the instigators for the varied opinions here.

thanks,
allan
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Old 05-24-2006   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kaiyen
Kevin,
Yes, possibly only 4, in fact. That's the hardest part, and perhaps one of the instigators for the varied opinions here.

thanks,
allan
Yikes, four? There a a few there that would be hard to not include. Good luck, it's going to be tough, be true to your own vision.
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Old 01-12-2007   #22
mattmills
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You've got an ok sense of "church" but what I would suggest doing is going back and looking for the details which set this particular church apart. Every church has organs, and pews and such, but what makes this one different? It's through those details, and not through the general impression of "churchness" that you'll get more impact. Shots 3, 5, 6, and 12 (if you put back the color to go with the others) are good. If it were my pictures, I'd only use 3, 6, and 12 though, because 3 and 5 are so similar and because the lights have a little more space in 3. Also, the blurred organist really doesn't work for me. Work on lining things up in the frame so that they don't bump into each other. Frame 6 has that with the light fixture being interrrupted with something coming off the column; what if you moved a foot or 6 inches to the right and gave both elements their own space? Frame 12 is nice in that respect, though; everything is lined up, and the space works. There are a couple that would be much better for a few inches to the right or left, that's all. Don't get me wrong, you're doing well. Just keep shooting.

edit: didn't see how old this was untill after I posted, I'm sure your assignment is over by now. oops.

Last edited by mattmills : 01-12-2007 at 07:57.
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