An Abstract Mystery C&C (BESP)

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by gpardo64, Mar 13, 2010.

  1. gpardo64

    gpardo64 TPF Noob!

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    An Abstract Mystery

    This week Bitter's school assignment is into abstracts. His idea was to use lines, curves and patterns to create an abstract composition. His advice was to pay attention to your surroundings and perhaps find something in those lines.

    For the previous assignment we had a really good idea of the composition that we wanted to produce, this time our mind was really .... abstract. We started taking pictures around the house and during the process we were understanding and finding the lines and patterns that Bitter was asking for (we hope..).

    We were asked to post 2 photos, this is the first one:

    Earth

    Raw Data: D5000, f/16, 1/60, 55-200 (110mm) + Close up Lens, external flash, tripod.

    We used an external cord to trigger the flash just in front of the object and looking to our camera. We liked the patterns in the object and the halo created around it.

    It is a bit overexposed on purpose to show the halos around the object and to give it an earth kind of look.

    What is the object?

    [​IMG]

    Zebra and Earth

    Raw Data: D5000, f/11, 1/60, 18-55 (55mm), Flash, Handheld.

    The challenge in this photo was to get in focus most of the stripes and give volume to the rounded object. We wish we could have used a lower aperture but the light wasn't enough. Our flash was pointing to the ceiling.

    We like the way how the earth pops up in the composition!.

    [​IMG]

    This time the assignment was really a challenge, still we don't know if we are under the guidelines, please give us your comments which will be really welcome.

    Remember that there a lot of stuff around you which could be subject for a very good picture!
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2010
  2. Bitter Jeweler

    Bitter Jeweler Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Ding!

    ...and it's a basketball (or football).

    I'll CC later. I am supposed to be working. :meh:
     
  3. Natural_Disaster

    Natural_Disaster TPF Noob!

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    The first one hurts my eyes and has some spots on the lower left that are bothering me..and honestly, to me, it doesnt really represent lines....Of course i know nothing about art or abstract..so wait for other critique on it!
    The second one is pretty neat. I noticed 4 differnet lines right off! I like the color tones and even though the subjects are complete opposites, they work here.
    I would like to see it with the ball closer to the lines on the left...but that may just be a personal prefrence.
     
  4. Bitter Jeweler

    Bitter Jeweler Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    I have to say, here, that being the "teacher" is quite a challenge. Art is so subjective, and I have to try to put preconcieved notions aside. I don't know if it's wrong to show "what I see" in an image, or "what I would do with this." Is it helpful? After all, I am not the be all, end all, authority. Having said that, I DO think it's important to see how others view things. You will take from it what you will.

    The first image disturbs me. It's the "it's hard to look at" feeling. There are so many suggested lines in there, it's scary! At first, my thoughts were, meh, this image is more about pattern than line. But it's not, really.

    [​IMG]

    I do think it is a bit over exposed on that edge. But that aside, you have the subtle suggested lines in the upper right that lead to the focus of the image, the center diagonal of "pattern". The leading edge of that pattern acts as a cradle, and it's intensity (light advances/attracts the eye) helps keep the viewer (well, me anyways) in that central zone. I think it's visually disturbing because of the optical illusion of implied arcs. And they change! Auuuuggghh!

    Honestly, did you see all that when taking this?

    #2 is interesting, but seems to fall a little flat for me.
    The bold, contrasty lines on the left create a rhythmic vibration which takes up half of the image. The right is more subtle. I love that the lines are "reflected/repeated" in the "ball" on the right. But I wish the blacks were a little bolder, but not as bold as those on the left. The left really dominates.

    With what I said begining this critique, my first thought was to show you a crop that I feel works better. I think it might be better to ask you if you can find a better crop, that provides more visual balance while maintaining the idea here. Can you? Being that abstract art is pretty open to interpretation, I see several interesting (to me) crops of #2.

    Again, I never said I was the art expert. Does anyone feel this image works well as is, and that I am off my rocker? Derrel?
     
  5. gpardo64

    gpardo64 TPF Noob!

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    Bitter, challenging task this week. Thanks for your input.
    These other pics didn't make the cut.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Looking forward for next week.
     
  6. bazooka

    bazooka No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Wierd, one of mine was a 'planet' theme as well.

    #1: The pattern and colors are striking and do make an interesting image. I also like the color and pattern of the background which matches the deep space feeling. I know you said you purposely overexposed, but the blue glare around the outside of the ball (basketball I'm assuming, haven't read the other reviews yet) resembles chromatic abbertation to me, which I find distracting. Also, was the reflected blue in the upper right intentional? I expect this area to be completely blacked out.

    #2: The white balance bothers me on this. Also, my mind isn't finding a connection between the zebra and the ball... almost like this could be two different shots pasted together. But then again, I'm the guy in the art museum looking at abstract art and saying "I coulda done that!". :) So it's difficult for me to understand abstract, let alone critique it.

    EDIT: Just saw your shots that didn't make the cut and I like them!
     
  7. pharmakon

    pharmakon TPF Noob!

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    #1: Really like it. The lighting makes the picture. It looks as if you are looking down on a sunrise over some planet from space. Very creative. And to answer your question it must be some sort of ball, but that's all I've got.

    #2 I like this one as well but not as much as the first. The "earth" stands out from the background, but doesn't show any shape due to the flat lighting. The composition is still very abstract and interesting, but I think the lighting could have been improved to show more depth.
     
  8. gpardo64

    gpardo64 TPF Noob!

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    Thanks!.

    pharmakon, could you provide more details about it. For example where to put the light(s), which kind of lights, etc. It will be really helpful for me.
     
  9. pharmakon

    pharmakon TPF Noob!

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    I thought I had read somewhere that you bounced the light off the ceiling? I don't see it now. While I'm not an expert in lighting, I have seen/read that with rounded objects or anything that you want to show depth, you have to use shadows. To do that here you would have to have used a light source off center to the right, but that light source would have to have been large to avoid casting too hard of shadow.

    To simplify what I would have tried to show the depth, I probably would first have tried to use a reflector to add a hint of light from camera right, if I couldn't bounce enough onto it I would have had to add another light source.

    Your question caused me to take another look at the image and, for the scope of the assignment, I don't know now if showing the depth of the ball would have worked better anyways. The flatness actually emphasizes the curved line of the edge of the "earth" and probably adds to the unknown/abstract feeling of the image. I didn't consider that before.
     
  10. Natural_Disaster

    Natural_Disaster TPF Noob!

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    Now see...I would have chosen that one! Id be interested to see what Bitters comments on that one would be.....because i think it fits. :confused:
     

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