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Author Topic: Reproducing what you saw  (Read 4640 times)
Ray
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« on: July 27, 2009, 12:06:06 AM »
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A few years ago, whilst trekking in Nepal, I arrived at a horse watering station called Gorepani. This village is close to a hill called Poon, which is another 500 metres trek above Gorepani which is alreasdy about 3,000 metres above sea level. It was the tradition for tourists to get up really early, and trek in the dark to see the sun rise at Poon Hill.

I was one of them, clutching my 5D with Sigma 15-30 zoom and other lenses. I walked in the dark, up the mountain with torch in hand. When I arrived at the summit, dawn was already breaking. I feared I was too late to catch that red glow of the sun rising.

I hastily set up my camera and flimsy tripod, and took a few shots for stitching, of that first sunrise glow. It was all over in a few seconds. I got only one one attempt.

Because of the cold air, the front element of my lens was covered in condensation. I had to keep wiping it, hoping that it would not interfere with the shots.

Following is a small jpeg of the result, 3 stitched images.

I think it's quite good. But any criticisms would be welcome. Help me improve my style or technique. I know it's not perfect. Crop it, change the contrast, whatever. Any suggestions are welcome.

[attachment=15707:Best_179...ntent_EM.jpg]
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wolfnowl
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« Reply #1 on: July 27, 2009, 12:28:22 AM »
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Other than that it's a low resolution JPEG and I'm sure the original is much better, I wouldn't change a thing.

Mike.
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« Reply #2 on: July 27, 2009, 12:40:30 AM »
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Spectacular!

I was trying to do something similar last weekend, at Mt Rainier, but was thwarted about half an hour from my destination by a fallen log across the roadway. A notable frustration at 4:30 AM

After seeing your marvelous post Ill schedule another 3:00 wake up so I can try to get in position again.
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Ray
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« Reply #3 on: July 27, 2009, 02:28:12 AM »
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Quote from: wolfnowl
Other than that it's a low resolution JPEG and I'm sure the original is much better, I wouldn't change a thing.

Mike.


Yes. There's definitely more resolution in the opriginal, but a 12mp sensor and a Sigma lens has its limitations.

Here's a 40% crop, followed by a 100% crop.

[attachment=15708:40__crop.jpg]  [attachment=15709:100__crop.jpg]

With 6,000 posts on LL would I ever not bracket such a scene?? Sure I wouldn't. And I didn't. Alas! Merge to HDR in CS3 is not up to the job. The shots I've shown are the lowest exposure. The shadows are compromised.
« Last Edit: July 27, 2009, 02:33:50 AM by Ray » Logged
Ray
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« Reply #4 on: July 27, 2009, 02:53:47 AM »
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Oops! Did you notice that? The 40% crop has not been converted to sRGB (my fault). It lacks the color saturation of the 100% crop.

Here is the 40% crop in its full glory.

[attachment=15710:40__crop.jpg]
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byork
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« Reply #5 on: July 27, 2009, 03:31:43 AM »
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Ray, it's an awesome image, and judging by those crops, the original must be stunning!!

Cheers
Brian
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Ray
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« Reply #6 on: July 27, 2009, 03:46:04 AM »
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Quote from: byork
Ray, it's an awesome image, and judging by those crops, the original must be stunning!!

Cheers
Brian

Thanks Brian. My printer is the Epson 7600. I'm hesitating on the 7900 because of clogging problems. But on the 7600 I can make a 24"x72" print of this image to hang on the wall of my new house.

My new house will be an art gallery for my photos. Of course, I'll have a kitchen and dishwasher etc.  
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cmi
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« Reply #7 on: July 27, 2009, 03:57:22 AM »
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Ray,

I think too its good, a incredible sight.  Is there something you would critique for yourself?

I think the mountains starting at the left give it away partly, so i cropped them away. Regarding the tonality, I think the foreground is ok as is is, but the background lacks some contrast and is a bit too bright. I copied the image, and used a USM with 33% and 49px radius. I added a layer mask, set it to black, and painted with a soft white brush some sharpness into the mountains and the clouds. Finally I lowered the overall effect by setting the layer to 45% opacity. In the next step, I made the highlights and midtones of the image darker by adding a curves adjustment layer. I moved the middle point ca. 10% down and added another point for the darks wich preserves them, wich stayed on the original line. With a layer mask, I constrained this change to the clouds, leaving the foreground as it is. Finally I played too with the opacity here. And I cloned out a mountain part, I think it less cluttered that way.

Comparing my new version with your old, I think its only a minor difference. I dont consider my version the holy grail, its not perfect, its only a suggestion for a direction.

Overall I think for the speed you had to work, you did capture it very good. Only the relation of the foreground to the background is the one thing im not so happy with, but then, thats not a big issue. The whole scene is gorgeous and can also stand without changes.

Christian


Quote from: Ray
I think it's quite good. But any criticisms would be welcome.
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Ray
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« Reply #8 on: July 27, 2009, 05:00:20 AM »
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Christian (are you a Christian?),

Yes. You have perhaps improved my shot with a bit of contrast enhancement here and there. For me, the foreground is a bit of a problem because I can't remember what it looked like. My attention was directed to those magnificent peaks. The peak on the left, Daulagiri, was considered to be the highest mountain in the world, until Mt Everest was surveyed.

I really wish, insteasd of a 5D and Sigma 15-30 zoom, I was carrying a Nikon D700 and Nikkor 14-24. Should I return to the same location with my new camera and lens? I'd like to, but is that being fanatical? It probably is, but who cares in the interest of errrr...'art!'

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francois
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« Reply #9 on: July 27, 2009, 05:08:02 AM »
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A fantastic panorama! It's always difficult to do justice to such vistas.
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Francois
cmi
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« Reply #10 on: July 27, 2009, 05:24:11 AM »
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Quote from: Ray
Christian (are you a Christian?),

Yes. You have perhaps improved my shot with a bit of contrast enhancement here and there. For me, the foreground is a bit of a problem because I can't remember what it looked like. My attention was directed to those magnificent peaks. The peak on the left, Daulagiri, was considered to be the highest mountain in the world, until Mt Everest was surveyed.

I really wish, insteasd of a 5D and Sigma 15-30 zoom, I was carrying a Nikon D700 and Nikkor 14-24. Should I return to the same location with my new camera and lens? I'd like to, but is that being fanatical? It probably is, but who cares in the interest of errrr...'art!'

Ray,

no Im not  Im aware my name exactly stands for the religion. Its quite a popular name here in eastern germany.

If you have the possibility, by all means, try to reshoot it. Honestly, I dont think wanting to re-shoot it makes you fanatically. Its about what one wants to achieve, not about what might already look good. At least thats it for me. The quest for the best image is what drives us, after all.

And by the way, what you say about the foreground, I know this problem too, that I cant remember what something looked like, and therefore struggle a bit to come up with a good way. In this cases I think its just about making it look good, and not what it was.

Christian
« Last Edit: July 27, 2009, 05:34:26 AM by Christian Miersch » Logged
RSL
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« Reply #11 on: July 27, 2009, 09:23:12 AM »
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Quote from: wolfnowl
Other than that it's a low resolution JPEG and I'm sure the original is much better, I wouldn't change a thing.

Mike.

I agree with Mike. What is this urge to get back from a shoot as quickly as possible so we can take what we shot, put it into Photoshop, and try to make a "real" photograph out of it by cropping here and there? The original composite is very good. Don't change it.
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Eric Myrvaagnes
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« Reply #12 on: July 27, 2009, 09:44:31 AM »
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Ray,

You asked for suggestions, so here's mine. When you make your print for your new house, make two prints so you can send one to me.  

Gorgeous!

-Eric

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-Eric Myrvaagnes

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Lisa Nikodym
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« Reply #13 on: July 27, 2009, 09:41:23 PM »
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Quote
You asked for suggestions, so here's mine. When you make your print for your new house, make two prints so you can send one to me.

Ray, my two suggestions:
(1)  I like Christian's crop a little better than your original.
(2) While you're making a extra print for Eric, send one my way too.  

It's absolutely gorgeous - other than the slight crop, I wouldn't change a thing.

Lisa
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Ray
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« Reply #14 on: July 28, 2009, 01:42:14 AM »
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Quote from: nniko
Ray, my two suggestions:
(1)  I like Christian's crop a little better than your original.
(2) While you're making a extra print for Eric, send one my way too.  

It's absolutely gorgeous - other than the slight crop, I wouldn't change a thing.

Lisa

Thanks to all of you for your positive approach. Lisa and Eric, I have no problem in sending you a copy, provided you return the favour with one of your own best prints.

My 7600 is in matte mode. This is the huge flaw in the 7600 model. One can't easily switch from matte to glossy without wasting a lot of ink.

I'm not entirely happy with the matte printer profile. It dulls the image considerably. I like Premium Lustre's 'proof colors' better for this shot, but the current roll is Epson Enhanced Matte.

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cmi
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« Reply #15 on: July 28, 2009, 03:46:18 AM »
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Ray,

I must add that a day later, comparing your old and my new version, I like your original better except for the crop. First I didnt like this slightly "flat" looking background, but now its more and more the part to me wich makes the image unique.

Cheers,

Christian

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Eric Myrvaagnes
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« Reply #16 on: July 28, 2009, 08:11:06 AM »
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Quote from: Christian Miersch
Ray,

I must add that a day later, comparing your old and my new version, I like your original better except for the crop. First I didnt like this slightly "flat" looking background, but now its more and more the part to me wich makes the image unique.

Cheers,

Christian

I agree. The crop is an improvement, but the "flat" look of the background mountains gives a nice, unearthly feel to the scene. The foreground is down-to-earth reality, and the background is a "magic kingdom."


Eric

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-Eric Myrvaagnes

http://myrvaagnes.com  Visit my website. New images each season.
RSL
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« Reply #17 on: July 29, 2009, 02:42:29 PM »
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Quote from: Christian Miersch
I think the mountains starting at the left give it away partly, so i cropped them away.

Christian, I've been meaning to come back here and ask you this, but I keep getting sidetracked by work: What improvement do you feel this crop made? I can't really tell from your comment.
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cmi
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« Reply #18 on: July 29, 2009, 03:02:23 PM »
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Quote from: RSL
Christian, I've been meaning to come back here and ask you this, but I keep getting sidetracked by work: What improvement do you feel this crop made? I can't really tell from your comment.

It just removes the hint of "the mountains are starting there", focusing more on the whole front. One element less. I just happen to like it more that way, and I would no way want to claim it to be a general improvement, just a matter of taste. I see it as a subtle change, it definitely works both ways.

Also for me it was interesting to compare these two, looking longer at them.
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ckimmerle
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« Reply #19 on: July 29, 2009, 03:53:35 PM »
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The original photo is overall very nice, but I am bothered by the part of the foreground that just barely slips beneath the image frame. It's my own aesthetic, but major shapes that just "miss" the image area trouble me. My brain wants to see what's hidden. I think that's where the second crop (Christian?) makes an improvement. By moving the bottom crop higher in the frame, much of the foreground is well beneath the image area so eliminates that issue (at least as I see it)

Chuck
« Last Edit: July 29, 2009, 03:54:23 PM by ckimmerle » Logged

"The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeing new landscapes, but in having new eyes." Marcel Proust

Chuck Kimmerle
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