|Hello from the Critique Club.
This image definitely comes across like you took some time and planned for this shot, with the water drops and shallow depth of view. The comments you received during the challenge all give a hint on what are the basic issues with this image. First lets discuss the shallow depth of view. As the pea pod is arranged, there are parts of the cutting board under the pod that is more in focus and shows more detail than the front lip of the pea pod. This really distracts from the focal point of the image, the peas. If you crop off the cutting board entirely from the bottom, with maybe just a bit of the bottom portion of the pea pod, the out of focus front lip become a soft frame in front of the peas. Now lets take a look at the lighting.
I, like you, have used the challenges to learn how to use light. The hardest thing I have remembering to do when experimenting with light is to move the light around to see how the mood of the photograph changes. The light you used for this challenge caused a bright spot dead center of the main subject. This in turn causes the viewer to divert their eyes to other areas of the image that aren't as bright. If your light would have been from the side instead of the top, the bright spot would have taken on a catch light appearance similar to the reflected light on the water drop on the top of the pea. Another benefit to side lighting would be the shadows would have given your image the look of more depth, hence giving the peas more of a three dimensional look.
Even with these changes, this image still would have only scored in the 5 to 6 range, as the subject matter is presented in a straightforward manner. However, this was a perfect subject to work on the technical aspects of taking pictures and your efforts will pay off as you gain experience. You had a good idea on what you wanted to do and you did a pretty solid job of executing your idea. Keep working and I look forward to seeing your images in future challenges.
Feel free to PM me if you have any questions regarding this critique.
Message edited by author 2006-08-30 06:55:46.