Meet Jim (C&C)

Discussion in 'People Photography' started by maaatter, May 16, 2012.

  1. maaatter

    maaatter TPF Noob!

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    Jim is a retired worker from GM where he worked for 25 years and 1 month. Seen many people die in the foundry, even some of his close friends. But before he got to the point where he is today, he had a hard road.

    Standing at the old rail road waiting for his Dads box of food which included bread, milk, and not much else.

    You gotta go through the hard times to get to the good times.

    17 years later this is where he's at.

    Original RAW, no edit:

    $20120516.Jim.mp-6572-2.jpg

    Quick edit:

    $jim.0512.re.mp-.jpg


     
    Last edited: May 16, 2012
  2. Buckster

    Buckster In memoriam

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    Just my thoughts as I look at this:

    Cranking up brightness in post has it looking overexposed, possibly an attempted fix for it being too dark on his face in the original exposure settings, but the better fix would have been to put some reflected light on his face to shoot it. I'd bring it back down and, if needed, just selectively lighten the face a bit with a well controlled mask. Use contrast to give it the dark and gritty look that your words convey, and it will better tell that story you've given it in text - let the photo speak the story.

    Speaking of story, give me more story (via the photo) of the stick pointed at his chin, or lose it entirely. Level the bridge. RR tracks and RR bridges (especially here in Michigan) are level for the most part, so having it tilt like that throws me off and attracts undue attention to it.

    DOF at f/5 gives it a little too much background detail and information that he needs to be better separated from, IMHO. At 50mm on the 18-55mm, that left you at f/5, which was as wide as you can get at 50mm on that lens, if I recall. The answer then is to get closer to him, back off on the zoom, and open the aperture up wider to get more separation between him and the bridge background by throwing it more OOF.
     
  3. fokker

    fokker No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Cool story, but I'm not getting any of that through the photo.

    I also don't much care for the framing - landscape orientation with him centered doesn't really work. The tilted horizontal lines in the background are also a nuisance.
     
  4. maaatter

    maaatter TPF Noob!

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    This actually has no PP done to it, this is straight from the camera RAW. Only put it through Lightroom to change the file and whatnot. And as far as reflecting light onto him, I couldn't (didn't have anything) do any of that. I met him down by the river walk and just started snapping some pictures.

    And with the stick, I cut that out in another edit I did off this, not sure why I didn't just do it for all.

    I wanted to try to isolate him completely from the background, but by the time I snapped this picture (last picture I got) it was too late and he was packing up because he didn't catch anything. And as I said earlier, I just seen him there and started snapping some pictures. If I had more time, I would have stood there and went through multiple stops and angles. But I didn't wanna push it too far for asking a stranger to stand there for 30 minutes while I figure out the best settings. Maybe I'll see him fishing down there again in the next week or so.
     
  5. Buckster

    Buckster In memoriam

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    Your EXIF data says you changed it to brighten it up. Maybe that was in LR. Maybe you have LR set to do that automatically. Maybe you hit the "auto" button in LR. I can't say how it happened or if you were aware. But here it is in your EXIF:

    [​IMG]


    I keep folded up white paper in my back pocket, which works in a pinch, if nothing else is handy.

    Did you approach him and ask if you could take a couple shots, or just take a few from a distance without him really knowing? A friendly approach and permission would give you the opportunity to get close enough to open it up.

    I agree. You don't want to be fiddling around, trying to figure it out, while shooting someone. Instead, practice (a LOT) on things that don't move so that you can make quick decisions on which settings to use later on with things that do move.
     
  6. maaatter

    maaatter TPF Noob!

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    First off, I'm going to keep a piece of paper in my wallet now for situations like this. And at first, I was just shooting around the area and then I sat down probably 15 foot away and he asked if I was waiting for him to catch something. I asked if he minded, he said no, so I was able to get close. I just wasn't able to think on the draw to really look at my settings. I was on my "let me just see what's happening before I leave" so I didn't plan on staying for the 15-20 minutes I did when I got down there. I was too wrapped out into the conversation and snapping away that it didn't even cross my mind. Big mistake on my part? Absolutely. Lesson learned? Absolutely.
     
  7. LuckySe7en

    LuckySe7en TPF Noob!

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    I love these "meet so-and-so" portraits. And I was hoping for so much more after reading the story. But I was sadly disappointed. First off, you posted an unedited photo which clearly needs to be edited. I wouldn't show untouch photos unless I knew they looked good untouched, make sense? Your story is putting all the focus on Jim but your photo does not.
     
  8. The_Traveler

    The_Traveler Completely Counter-dependent Supporting Member

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    the +25 +50 is a LR default preset to make Raw files a little more like the LCD jpg would look like.
    Raw files look darker and flatter natively than one would like.

    IMO, this is badly underexposed and no amount of editing will cure it enough.
     

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