Another attempt

Following on from, and picking up tips from my last post, see what your thoughts are on this shot…

I have changed my image conversion software so you should now be able to see my exif data.

Happy new year!


I like it. Very well done.

My first impression on your processing: correct your chromatic aberration! It’s very obvious on the white building.

You’ve oversharpened and over-noise-reduced for my tastes; I like a bit more natural noise and I dislike the crunchiness from sharpening.

Aside from those, it’s nicely edited.

Interesting subject and composition, but:

  • this is a bit too purple
  • the eye jumps to the church, which is just an overblown white spot in the picture.
  • when pixel-peeping the picture appear rather blurry, grainy and has halos (over-sharpening?)

In this case, since the sea was quite calm anyway, I think a short exposure would have worked just as well, while avoiding the problem of tripod stability, sensor noise, and the weird reflections of the rocks in the foreground.

Thanks for the comments guys, much appreciated.

I think it’s worth pointing out that there was no noise reduction used, and sharpening was limited.

The point about the church being overblown is valid, though I’m not sure what more could have been done since this was what the focus was centred on, bearing in mind it was a sunrise shot.

There was a slight purple enhancement, which on my freshly calibrated screen looked fine. The sea was calm, but I felt not calm enough to achieve the same effect. I’m not sure what was meant by “weird reflections of the rocks in the foreground”? Possibly the way the sunrise reflected?


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I like it! (I like long-exposure water images personally).

I see the chromatic aberration at larger sizes as well and the bright church does draw the eye directly.

With that said I like the subject and composition. I wish the church was slightly less overexposed, but it’s not too bad at smaller sizes (when not pixel-peeping). The color tones are pretty - especially the golden sunlight on the rocks.

I think the weird rock reflections may be that they are not reflecting as you might expect the to if the seas were calm. They are reflecting something smaller in width than we’d expect to see (a neat side-effect of the long exposure I think - neat!).

I also like very much the composition and the warm colors in the image, that’s really well done!

However, I would have personally tried to be more “subtle” with the contrast, which I feel to be too “harsh” not only in the blown-out church but also in the texture of the foreground rocks.

The scene that you have captured inspires quietness, relief, it’s lying on an empty beach with a cold beer in your hands after a long and hard day of work… so I would forget about the rule that “you need to fill all tones from black to white”, and go for smoother tones. Eventually you could try adding a bit of “clarity” (local contrast enhancement in the mid-tones, like @patdavid is teaching us:

My 2cts :wink:

Overall it’s a nice shot. The main thing I would change is to simplify the composition by leaving away the church and tree in the background (unless that’s the focus but then it should be more prominent).

Shooting from lower and zooming in on just the rocks in the foreground so they line up with the horizon (mostly).
With the tighter crop it would then probably also make sense to include less of the sky.

But even just cropping it a bit improves the image in my opinion:
<img src="/uploads/default/original/1X/a78e983946eb2a4a05501272f79ec51707dedcff.jpg" width=“690” height=“459”

[quote=“fotonut, post:5, topic:594”]
I think it’s worth pointing out that there was no noise reduction used, and sharpening was limited.
[/quote]It looks like noise reduction was applied to the luma to me to. You are shooting RAW right?
It could also be that the image was just a bit out of focus and you sharpened it a lot that can lead to similar artifacts.

Applying some noise reduction to the chroma would help with some of the color noise.

I hope some of that helps :slight_smile:

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Maybe that’s the issue here? There are clear signs of noise reduction.

I too like this image. The long exposure works for smoothing out the water. I like the warmth and overall colour tones of the image.

As others have mentioned the church is blown out and distracts the eye, there is something you can do here, you can take a second exposure and using spot metering, meter the exposure on the church itself. Given how much light it reflects the rest of the image will be quite dark. Then in your photo manipulation software of choice you can merge the two images.

Alternately, if your camera supports it, try bracketting. If your camera supports it, you should be able to set it up to capture 3-5 images at different exposure values, something like -1ev 0 and +1ev. Using gimp to merge the images (rather than HDR) you might find you’ll get a better exposed image.

In terms of the composition, I do have some reservation around the way the three rocks work as a bit of a ‘wall’ to the eye in your original image. @Jonas_Wagner’s crop works well here in that the rocks become the subject.

If you were to include the church, which I think is a worthy subject itself, then move much further to the right and shoot an angle that brings in the last rock with the church, or move much further to the left and only have the church across the water.

Keep in mind that it’s not always about fitting everything into the image, but making choices about what to leave out.

The white church will present you some serious challenges given ho much light it will reflect.

I’m enjoying the critiques overall here, I’m picking up tips and tricks myself along the way. :slight_smile:

For the most part, I really don’t focus too much on the technicalities of the post processing (ie sharpening, etc) I just play with the sliders and settings to get an appealing outcome to my eye.

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I like the shot a lot, too. About noise reduction, you did use the equalizer in darktable which can be used for noise reduction, too. I didn’t look into the details of your processing, but that might be a reason for the blotches.