Critique and Suggestions Please

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by jmtonkin, May 7, 2011.

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  1. jmtonkin
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    jmtonkin Active Member

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    Hey all,

    I have been in love with photography since I picked up my first camera at age 12. (I'm now 20.) I was wondering if you guys could look over a few of my shots and let me know what you think of them. I'm open to as harsh of criticism as you wish, but please, let it be constructive. I'm really into shooting portraits and landscape. I do not at this point have a DSLR (hopefully I will in the next few month) but I try to make do with what I've got. I've been shooting on a Kodak EasyShare 812IS for three years now. Before I take that leap of faith that I may actually be able to do something with my pictures, I want to see what other, non-related people have to offer.

    1.
    [​IMG]

    2.
    [​IMG]

    3.
    [​IMG]

    4.
    [​IMG]

    5.
    [​IMG]

    Thanks for looking!
    Last edited: May 7, 2011
  2. Shadowbox
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    Shadowbox New Member

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    I like your photos, I am a 'newbie' as well. Don't let the more experienced people intimidate you. I think we should all go for what we want, and the best way to become the best at something is with practice and hands on experience. You simply need to take the plunge, keep studying and keep taking pictures. It's obvious you already have some talent and skills, from what I can see. So take it from the eyes of someone who isn't critical, the rest of the world will most likely see beauty in your photos. The experts will find flaws, but all that can do is motivate you to keep trying. Good luck!
  3. The_Traveler
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    The_Traveler Completely Counter-dependent

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    So the issue here is do you want to get opinions from the people who aren't critical or from those who are?

    What do you think is right and wrong about pictures #1 and #3?

    IMO, #4 because there is rarely anything about selective color that is either good or successful, #5 is just a snapshot of a girl holding an unidentifiable animal and #2 is a silhouette that every beginner takes and there's really nothing more to say about it.

    #1 and #3 actually seem like attempts to create a picture, to find a way to take a picture that is well composed and exposed but you need to be able to look at your own work and see the strong and the weak points.

    So......
  4. Shadowbox
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    Shadowbox New Member

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    I'm confused, are you asking me what I think is right and wrong, or the original poster? There is no 'issue' here for me. I simply was being encouraging, since I don't have a trained eye, I have no reason to rip her photos apart. They look fine to me. Sometimes that's okay, to you know, not always have a critical opinion of others photo's. As for what I think is 'wrong'.. I didn't know there could be a right and wrong in photography. If you weren't speaking to me, sorry! I have no problem with critiques, like I said.. it's important to learn and grow as a photographer. What I have a problem with is that we're all expected to be critical all the time, it's not my personality but also I do not have the technical knowledge. I can only give CC based on my personal reactions, which I didn't think would be very helpful. I will take constructive criticism, and I'll even give it if I feel the need to, but with her photos I liked them and that was my initial reaction.
  5. jmtonkin
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    jmtonkin Active Member

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    I'm not sure who that post was directed at, but for me, I am open to input from anyone. I think its important to get an outsider opinion on these things. Your close friends/family are most likely to tell you that your work is great, even if it really isn't.

    For #5, what can I do to "spice" up the picture? Don't get me wrong, I don't think its an overly amazing picture, but I'm not seeing what classifies it as a "snapshot" compared to a "portrait." (The animal is a baby goat, by the way.) What can I do differently next time to move it from the "snapshot" category to the "portrait" category? Any advice when it comes to photographing people with small-ish animals?

    I'll admit, #1 and #3 are my favorite of these five pictures. Can you offer some more critique of these two? Given the opportunity, what should I try differently? Also, with a DSLR, is there something else I could try doing?

    Thanks for taking time to look!
  6. AUG19
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    AUG19 New Member

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    1,2,3 are quite nice. Just need to straighten the horizen in the palm tree shot. :thumbup:
  7. The_Traveler
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    The_Traveler Completely Counter-dependent

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    I find this kind of thread both infuriating and frustrating. And my guess is that many experienced photographers feel the same way because they are strikingly absent from the responses.

    Photography, like any art, requires work and experience to build skill, study to build knowledge and a modicum of talent. Most of all it requires some introspection, the ability to look at one's own work and compare it to what one has seen.

    Whether the viewers like it or not is totally unimportant to start. Why does the photographer like it?
    What does he or she see in it as a picture? What did she contribute that would make other people want to remember it? Why is it any more important than just a random picture taken by the camera left on a table?

    Has the OP been reading the posts here?
    Does she look at the threads with pictures like these and try and improve her own pictures?

    I suggest that the OP pick one of her pictures and analyze it. Tell us why it is good - or bad. What are its weak points? What are its strong points? What f stop was used and why? What shutter speed and why?
    Why that framing?
    Is the placement of the main object of interest good or bad? Is there enough room or too much?

    And the answer 'I like these pictures.'
    What good is that to the poster unless the commenter knows why and says so.
    A casual 'attaboy' is like candy, good taste but of no lasting benefit.

    I have inserted a short piece I wrote for a class on giving critiques

    If you want to be a casual photographer, go ahead, no one will stop you and, tbh, no one cares. If you want to be an artist who uses photography as his/her medium, work at it.

    And if my opinion about your pictures is so discouraging to your idea to be an artist that you quit, then you probably didn't care enough to persevere in any case. Photography and art is hard, not just the learning and the skills, but the eventual realization that creation is difficult even for skillful, talented people. I know that I will never be a great artist, or probably even a good one, but I work really hard to achieve what I can.

    You are 20 years old, not 5. The way you start is working and studying and taking the hard knocks - and no amount of candy in the form of meaningless 'likes' is worth anything to you in the long run.
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  8. AUG19
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    AUG19 New Member

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    Get over yourself.
  9. The_Traveler
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    The_Traveler Completely Counter-dependent

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    oh, yah.
    Sorry about words with more than one syllable.
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  10. FranDaMan
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    FranDaMan New Member

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    Must you always be so condescending to everybody ?
  11. The_Traveler
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    The_Traveler Completely Counter-dependent

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    I am unpleasant or rude to those that take snide shots at me and, if it bothers you, I encourage you to put me on ignore so you will be spared that sight.
    Just let me know and I will do the same to you so I won't be tempted to look at pictures you post.

    Comfy?
  12. FranDaMan
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    FranDaMan New Member

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    I am just wondering where that condescending rudeness comes from.
    But you can put me on ignore if you like. I never put people on ignore.
  13. The_Traveler
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    The_Traveler Completely Counter-dependent

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    I put a good amount of effort into responses - and they are straightforward, honest responses to the questions posed -

    I try to make the response appropriate to the knowledge and experience level of the person asking. What really bugs me is exactly what I said above - people who ask questions without doing any of the work of reading and understanding first.

    I generally, as most of the more experienced people do, just don;t respond to these kinds of questions but this was a specific case when a question was asked and then there was a response that said to, in effect, ignore all the more experienced answers.

    There is a thread here where people talk about raw conversions - and there are 5, 6 or more really knowledgeable contributors on that thread who don't generally get involved with C/C of beginners; there seems to be an entire stratum of people, beginners, here expecting to be fed the answers and not do any work.
  14. Bitter Jeweler
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    Bitter Jeweler Well-Known Member

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    Ima gonna us that in my sig, K?
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  15. FranDaMan
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    FranDaMan New Member

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    Well, if I ask a question, I expect to be fed answers. Then I would go out and try to put the advice into practice and see what happens.
    If I dont wanne be fed the answers, I wouldn't ask the questions, right ?
  16. KmH
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    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish

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    I like the composition in #2 and #3.

    The causeway in #2 is an effective leading line and the use of the ROT for both the horizon and the light house makes the photo dynamic.

    #3 is also nicely composed, if a bit tilted and having some other technical issues.
  17. Trever1t
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    Trever1t New Member

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    I see no wrong but rather agree with the ideal the Traveler took the time to type out. Where is therudeness in his honesty?
  18. The_Traveler
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    The_Traveler Completely Counter-dependent

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    And what if the answers are simply available, have already been given many times?
    Perhaps asking the same questions over and over is tolerable from grade school children, because they don't know how to find answers, don't have to be responsible.
    I expect more from adults.
  19. kundalini
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    kundalini Well-Known Member

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    Do you accept Friend requests?
  20. The_Traveler
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    The_Traveler Completely Counter-dependent

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    Sure but I don't know what that means.

    I am officially unpleasant and rude and you might be tainted by that.:lol:
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