Sunday, January 17, 2010

Elbow Canyon - Self Critique

Don't forget to click on it to see it in a decent size.

The subject matter is good, the areas of snow contrasting with the colourful rocks. There isn't any overall pattern however and particularly the far left is a bit weak, kept from cropping it only to preserve the arc of the water's edge across the bottom of the image.

Arguably, cropping it tighter on both left and right would help, though I still have a sense that it isn't quite right. The most obvious flaw is that there is nothing in the composition to balance the huge rock on the right.

It isn't necessary for objects to literally balance - size for size. For example,

in which the small object works with the large. The issues are that the background is plain so the relationship is easy to see, and there are not dozens of other shapes to confuse the relationship, as is happening in my image.

It might be possible to help, there is a blue almost horizontal slab on the left which is already a little lighter than the rocks around it - lightening it further would make it more prominent and reinforce its relationship to the right hand rock - but one is almost round, so perhaps I'm kidding myself.

That's one of the problems in editing - you think you can fix things, but the fixes are iffy at best and sometimes you have to recognize when to quit and find another image.

I like the image, I like the crop better, it just isn't a great image. I'd be willing to display it, sell it, but I probably wouldn't submit it to an editor - just not quite strong enough.


Anonymous said...

I find the cropped version much stronger. In the other one, I feel the composition is petering out on the left.

Stachu said...

Cropped image looks better for me. Not because of relationship between stones, but because of that I just don't like the tree on the left side.

scribbler said...

If the colour is the focus of interest, then it should be severely cropped. The alternative is an ordinary image of rocks with a common colour theme, with the effect that nothing stands out.

Sandy Wilson said...

For a small point of reference to balance out with a large point of reference, such as the large rock on the right. It would need to have a heavier asthetic balance. There is nothing on the left of the picture to do this. So the large rock will always draw the eye to the right, as it dominates everything else in the image frame.

Also the large rock has been placed to far to the right in the image frame, to create a good compositional balance to the image.

Edd Fuller said...

I am not sure I like the cropped version better. While I agree that the left side of the photo could perhaps be cropped in a bit, I think that the complete shape of the large rock on the right is very interesting, and I would not sacrifice that. Also, there is a visual rhythm to the uncropped version that I like. Balance isn't everything.

Luis Sanchez said...

Even after the crop, that rock is still very strong. I would cut in half and also the water segment. So the patterns would become more important.

Bob Crowley said...

I don't think it is about balance, but about mass. Cropped, you present a much denser, more massive visual experience. I feel its weight difference in a physical way. Nice