Long exposure from a hill beside the highway.

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by reznap, Apr 17, 2010.

  1. reznap

    reznap No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Was trying to get a decent one last night... unfortunately the wind was blowing like the apocalypse or something so even with the tripod I had some blur. This is the sharpest one, with one of the LEAST interesting skies.

    Would actually like some feedback on this one. I don't like the composition on this particular one but I'm not sure how I could have made it much better. I thought about photoshopping a more dramatic sky into it, but wanted to know if it's worth the trouble before I spend all the time doing it.

    Thanks!

    [​IMG]

    ---EDIT

    Maybe I can crop it some, to show some more detail in the light trails and then play with the sky? Or just leave it, move on, and chalk it up to learning the hard way?
     
  2. lightning_jack

    lightning_jack TPF Noob!

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    Hi reznap,

    some c&c from a beginning photographer.

    To me, the foreground is to prominent (or present - my English is not the best but I think you get the idea - for me there is just too much foreground considering the fact that it's really only black). Maybe you could try adjusting exposure and aperture to get lighten that up (or let PS do it?). Anyways, the colours of the sky (and the car lights on the highway come out very nice.

    You mentioned changing the composition. Maybe you could get something eye-catching (and maybe not completely black or slightly lighted) in the foreground? Or maybe get to a point where the highway takes a more interesting curve (like almost a u-turn) and make that more prominent in the photo (although the line of the highway in this one is not so bad really, you might just try a little different positioning).

    I also just realized that the brightest spot of the highway sits right in the middle of the photo which leaves the picture almost "tensionless" if that's an English word. You might want to consider moving that to a golden cut kind of position.

    The exposure time might be too long. Was it necessary to have it that long to get the effects from the highway and the sky? - It shows in 2 parts - the clouds come out blurred and look like they were moving really fast which looks disturbing to me even though I know it's a long exposure shot. Maybe you could take a shot when clouds are not so close. Secondly, a little less car motion maybe would have been nicer. I love night car motion with long exposure, but maybe not so much but I might be wrong on this one and the car lighting eventually only might look "incomplete" with a shorter shutter time.

    That was it. Hope it helps. BTW: Really like what you did on that HDR shot of your car and the "daughter by the pond" pic in your Flickr profile.

    Greets
    Simon
     
  3. reznap

    reznap No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I agree with you on pretty much everything. Hopefully I'll be able to do this again soon by a bridge or in a more interesting spot. The tripod is actually level there, but the hills and treeline make the horizon look tilted - for the most part anyway, it's possible it's not exactly level.

    As far as the long shutter speeds go, I had taken some shorter ones and they didn't look right at the time, maybe a crop will fix it. I wanted to show the length and width of the freeway but I'm afraid it just didn't come across well. This wasn't well thought out though I'll admit.

    I'll play with what I have later on tonight and try and post back.
     
  4. D-B-J

    D-B-J Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    For car trails like this, i would try four to eight seconds. I feel like the movement in the clouds just doesnt look.. right.

    You could also try to do it a little earlier, so the foreground would be visible, instead of being black.

    Still, its an interesting capture.
     
  5. white

    white TPF Noob!

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    Not worth the PP effort. Find a better spot to take the picture.
     
  6. TheSolicitor

    TheSolicitor TPF Noob!

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    I feel like we're missing the bend in the highway which would be really neat to have captured. If you go to a slightly different location--higher altitude--you may be able to capture it.

    The clouds look weird, like they're whispy, but obviously they're moving. I deal with the same thing when I do long exposures on the beach, and there's nothing you can do, but try it again on a night that's not so windy.

    I really, really like the idea of this shot, but I feel like this execution may not be the best. Chalk it up, try it again, and always keep looking for THAT shot!
     
  7. reznap

    reznap No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I decided to play with photoshop on this one, mostly for practice. Here's my results.
    I don't particularly like or hate it. It's just kinda boring to me.

    Anyone think this is better? Worse maybe? I like it a LITTLE more..
    [​IMG]
     
  8. LaFoto

    LaFoto Just Corinna in real life Staff Member Supporting Member

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    To me it feels like exposure was too long on the lights of the passing cars. The headlights blend into one thick white blob at one stage where there should have been trails.

    So, if this had been mine, I'd have chalked this up as a first attempt, so far so good, and others would have to follow.

    And wouldn't you have access to a bridge spanning the highway? So it could be more clearly your intended subject?
     

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