View Full Version : Print for competition
12-22-2006, 04:31 PM
http://i136.photobucket.com/albums/q185/JudsonRickPhoto/findingstrays.jpgThis is my first time posting. I was hoping for some feedback on this image. The title I am considering is Finding Strays. For higher resolution image please use above link.
12-22-2006, 04:33 PM
Good to have you posting! I'm not seeing the image? Do you need some help managing the attachments or is it posted in the gallery? Look forward to seeing it. - David
12-22-2006, 04:49 PM
I reduced the size of the image. It should be there now. It shows up for me but very pixalated.
12-22-2006, 05:02 PM
I see it but barely, It looks like it's a nice one. Let me make a suggestion. There is a site called Photobucket. If you google photobucket you can quickly get a free account that will allow you to upload images any size you like. then you can copy the image tag and paste it in a post here. Your image will then appear as large as you like. This site has a maximum resolution of 400. Not so great for critics and depending on the original source file even a 400 res file will sometimes get kicked back for being over the maximum size. Also there is the gallery. There is no size limits for images posted to the gallery. You could post there and then notify us here when the image appears in the gallery. So try up sizing the image to a resolution of 400 wide or make a photobucket account, or post in the gallery. The shot looks like a good one, I just can't see it.
12-23-2006, 04:00 AM
Thank you David I uploaded the image to photobucket.
12-23-2006, 04:19 AM
Very nice image. I'm not qualified to critique but am very interested to hear those who are. I'd like to hear what they have to say about the subject being so subdued and having the white hat be the brightest spot in the image.
Hope they haven't all turned off internet access until after Christmas!
12-23-2006, 05:21 AM
I believe the image can merit..IF.. it is printed as well as it looked in the link, and IF it is not soft.
12-23-2006, 03:47 PM
but does anyone feel that the intensity of the tree coloring distracts from the subjects?
12-23-2006, 04:52 PM
I was waiting for Keith to get back to comment so I could see if he agreed with me. First off - this is a low res file so some things are hard to see for sure and we could be wrong on what we think we are seeing. It is a beautiful print to hang on your wall but we have some hesitation on if it will merit. The main challenge is composition. There are two equal and competing centers of interest. When we view the print our eyes jump back and forth from the rider to the cow never coming to rest anywhere in particular.
Next we suspect both the rider and the cow were put into the image. Something about them looks out of scale with the trees. Because they look so large in comparison to the trees it makes us suspect insertion - so we look closer to see if there are any give aways. (Inserting one image into another is certainly fine to do. But it needs to be done so well the viewer can't tell)
Upon enlarging the image it appears there is a green outline around the cow - different from the green sagebrush the cow is standing in and the fall color behind it. The rider is done pretty well - if it was inserted. There is a lighter outline around him - especially around the horses flanks but that could be something to do with whatever filter or effect is used on this print. This is all just supposition because we are looking at such a low res file.
Were there some hot spots in the trees top center? Again low res file makes it very difficult to tell put it appears there is a bunch of artwork in that area. maybe that also is just the filter and wouldn't have that filled in look in an actual print. Artwork should never be obvious in a print such as this - where you are trying to represent reality.
If you want to go ahead with this print here are some suggestions.
Tone down the bright yellow roll on the back of the saddle. It is the second brightest thing in this image yet it contributes nothing to the story.
Crop off a little bit from the right hand side to get rid of that bright white tree trunk running along the edge. That white tree just pulls your eye out of the image.
Find a different title. The guy is rounding up strays but he is not even looking at the stray he has come across - he is looking off into the woods. If it were my print I would crop right down along the cows rear or and get rid of it completely. If the cow was inserted just delete it. The cowboy is not looking at it and it just creates confusion on where I am supposed to look. In my mind there is plenty of story with out that cow. If you want to have a cow in the image - insert one mostly hidden in the trees somewhere - so that it looks like the cowboy is actually looking at the cow.
When you use a filter such as this brush stroke??? it needs to be believably similar throughout the image. The foilage area around the cowboy has a lot of "artistic" distortion from the filter yet there is none of that effect on the cowboy and horse. Which leads to a cut and paste effect. You can solve this in one of several ways. If you did this in layers, duplicate the layer with the cowboy & horse - run this effect on the top layer and then reduce the opacity of that top layer. Effect is still there but subtle so there is a consistancy to the image but it doesn't destroy the integrity of your main subject. If you did this by erasing out a layer that had the effect, use your eraser at a lower opacity. There are other ways to accomplish this also.
Flip the image. Doing so will improve the read into the image from left to right. The tree line then creates a strong diagonal line from upper left down to the cowboy. I have drawn a line to show what we are talking about. I did a super quick job of removing cow and burning down yellow saddle roll & white tree along the now left hand edge.
You also need to lighten the horse to see more details in it.
With these changes done well and an appropiate title we both feel this has a shot at meriting.
Holly & Keith
12-23-2006, 04:55 PM
Richard--where was it taken??? I would love to know.
I think the storytelling part here is the rounding up of the grazing cattle in the fall. The trees are the beauty (and the all important "impact") of the image. I really like it myself. The presentation is good. There are some white trunks on the right side of the image just bordering the keyline. I think those could be cropped out. If the print quality is as good as it looks on screen, then I think it might do well. The subject placement is good and I don't think the hat is a distraction--it does draw you right into the main subject. There are two subjects, but since the second is more subdued it might not hurt it too much. I'm not a "qualified" judge, but I've entered and watched print comp for years (never watched on the national level though). I think we all should participate in these commentaries, it's a great way to learn. Even when you watch judges evaluate a print, you will sometimes find there is disagreement among judges on one point or another.
There are some folks on this forum who really are well qualified to critique, and others who would just like to share their comments. Maybe if someone only wants a serious National-level evaluation they should state that. Or invite everyone to share.
12-23-2006, 04:56 PM
P.S. We would still recommend cropping a bit off the left (in the flipped version) side to get rid of that white trunk and also those 4 white trunks in a clump about an inch or so in from the edge. That would also eliminate the brighter spot in the foilage in the upper corner.
12-23-2006, 05:05 PM
Wow--you Howe people are awesome! That is really beautiful! For some bizarre reason--my mind sees it the other way--riding left to right. Keith--is one part of the "thirds" more preferential than another in the eyes of judges?
12-23-2006, 05:51 PM
The reason we liked this flipped is that you enter a print from the upper left and your eye travels to the lower right. That is because our eyes are trained that way because that's how we read a page in a book. Flipping this print makes that leading line of the tree tops show up. Niether of us really noticed it until we flipped the print. Also this way your eye travels into the face of the cowboy & horse which acts as the stopper to keep you in the image. If you eye read into the rear end of the horse. Flipping an image to get the center of interest in the lower right hand third is not always a hard and fast "rule" but sometimes it just really improves an image and we think this is one of those times.
You ask which third is preferably. Generally that lower right is the "sure thing". But like we said above - that's not a definate must. Any of the 4 intersections can be dynamic - just depends upon what you are trying to convey - leading lines - mood etc.
Judging is all subjective - that's why there is more than one judge on a panel. So whatever opinions Keith and I have about this print will probably not be what everyone else would think.
12-23-2006, 06:14 PM
Thanks for the info--I definitely see the logic.
12-23-2006, 06:22 PM
So whatever opinions Keith and I have about this print will probably not be what everyone else would think.
I just thought the trees were pretty....lol!
12-23-2006, 06:45 PM
Thanks for all the suggestions. I appreciate the comments from eveyone. Auralee the image was taken in northwest Wyoming between Pinedale and Jackson Wyoming aprox. 35 miles north of Pinedale in Oct. of this year. I am thinking about removing the calf as Hollys suggestion. I did flip the image to have the horse riding into the photo (Hollys point of the cowboy looking up is right on, if you look close there is a bull elk grazing on the upper third.) To me the horse is looking at the calf. If I remove the calf do you wonder what the horse is looking at? Beacuse I am going for the painting effect I am printing the image on glossy canvas. I am going to tone down the white aspen trees Auralee mentioned. Thanks I look forward to more comments.
01-03-2007, 07:01 PM
The first thing I see is that your image is not proportional with competition size of 20" X 16". Always make your test images 8"X10" Or 10"X8" so they are proportional with the wall size.
I agree with Holly and Keith as to flipping the image and other points.