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Bench With a View
Bench With a View

Photograph Information Photographer's Comments
Challenge: Free Study 2008-07 (Advanced Editing VII)
Collection: Challenges 2008
Camera: Canon EOS-30D
Lens: Canon EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM
Location: Brussels
Date: Jul 17, 2008
Aperture: f/7.1
ISO: 500
Shutter: 1/100
Date Uploaded: Jul 25, 2008

St Michaels in Brussels, Belgium. While walking across to get to the church, I noticed the guy on the bench, stopped in the middle of the road, and took a couple of shots. Had to move to avoid getting run over. Yet another shot with the 10-22, so I was almost right behind this guy. Good thing he didn't notice.

Lots of editing, including tonemapping the single original, then playing with that a bit more in Photoshop. I even cloned out a pole thingie.

Dream score - 6.3
Estimated score - 5.7

Post challenge:

Original and an alternate edit:
' . substr('//images.dpchallenge.com/images_portfolio/30000-34999/30982/120/707601.jpg', strrpos('//images.dpchallenge.com/images_portfolio/30000-34999/30982/120/707601.jpg', '/') + 1) . ' ' . substr('//images.dpchallenge.com/images_portfolio/30000-34999/30982/120/707602.jpg', strrpos('//images.dpchallenge.com/images_portfolio/30000-34999/30982/120/707602.jpg', '/') + 1) . '

Score is good, but I would like to know if there is anything I could do to improve the picture (not necessarily how it would score, but the picture itself.) I trust it simply has no "wow", needed a more dramatic sky (see alt edit, maybe?) and really is just kinda plain and dull. Ah well. So am I. :-)

Place: 108 out of 524
Avg (all users): 6.1307
Avg (commenters): 6.7500
Avg (participants): 6.1478
Avg (non-participants): 6.0789
Views since voting: 821
Views during voting: 237
Votes: 153
Comments: 20
Favorites: 2 (view)

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08/08/2008 08:00:16 PM
Deb, I think this is terrific. I much prefer this over both alternative edits. Your composition, esp, catching the guy, is just spot-on.

Where it falls a little short for me is the sky, but even more the darkened tops of the towers. Tone mapping can darken areas it shouldn't, so I'd try it with two layers: tone map one, but then mask it so only the sky portion is showing, leaving the church fully bright. That'll help it stand out against the stormy sky.

That'd also free you to darken the sky a bit. Not a lot, and not as much as your alt. edit, but a bit. And I'd try just darkening it and increasing the contrast, not higher levels of tone mapping, to avoid the "halo" that appears near the church in the alt. edit.

But all of that is to suggest minor edits to a great shot.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
08/08/2008 03:46:46 PM
Hey Deb - nice shot - see what I mean about commenters scores and non-commenters ? The ones who say it should do well generally mean it and score it accordingly . .

Anyway - the only thing I would have changed is the title, maybe to something like 'Contemplation' as he is sitting in front of a church with his head apparently bowed.

While you are right that this is a 'Bench with a view' the human element is not actually carrying out the suggestion in the title, which creates a slight distraction for me.

That aside - the both the technical composition, and included elements are very good - and as for the weather, or dramatic clouds - pfff - what can you do ?
  Photographer found comment helpful.
08/08/2008 01:33:24 PM
I'll bet this would really look cool in B&W. Very nice wide angle shot.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
08/08/2008 11:30:26 AM
Hi Deb -- For a DPC challenge, I think you may be right about the lack of "WOW", but then a lot of the time the weather in Brussels lacks "WOW" (cold and gray), and there's not much you can do about that! For me, the shot sort of tails off to dark at the top. I wonder if a more even light on the cathedral would help. Also, did you try this in b&w? Sometimes these shots on gray days (believe me, we have plenty of them where I live, as you well know) do a lot better in b&w than in color.

I really like it that you caught the guy on the bench. This becomes a very cerebral street photography shot.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
08/08/2008 11:18:25 AM
Deb, you are NOT dull, I would be proud to hang your photo's on my walls.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
08/08/2008 08:45:50 AM
Nice example of counterbalance. The symmetry of the church is offset by the guy on the bench making it a much more interesting photo.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
08/08/2008 07:46:16 AM
oy, how'd I miss this? Great shot! you're a victim of thumbnail voting...
  Photographer found comment helpful.
08/08/2008 01:54:57 AM
I thought this might have been yours! Btw, I don't think you cloned out that pole thingie, I think the wind must have blown it away.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
08/08/2008 12:30:08 AM
What a fortuitous moment! I love how the guy on the bench is kind of balanced out by the people on the other side of the photo going up the stairs. Oh I see the other photo... going to that one now...
  Photographer found comment helpful.
08/08/2008 12:26:50 AM
Really nice one. Love the balance.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
08/08/2008 12:24:38 AM
Deb! This photo is FABULOUS! I LOVE everything about it, from the stunning architecture and cobblestone street -- to the human element of the guy sitting on the bench. I love the lighting. I guess there were too many Icelandic skies to compete with to give it the score it truly deserved. Your commenters were much closer to what it should have been -- but even they fell short in my opinion!

  Photographer found comment helpful.
 Comments Made During the Challenge
08/06/2008 07:59:02 AM
good wide angle...that weed under the bench bothers me...sky could do with some work
  Photographer found comment helpful.
08/05/2008 07:27:09 PM
great composition
  Photographer found comment helpful.
08/05/2008 03:23:49 PM
Brussels ?
Good use of a very wide angle lens, I like the foreground globally (bench, lighting, slightwarm tone...) The sky could be a little more contrasted and/or dark IMO
  Photographer found comment helpful.
08/05/2008 09:24:52 AM
Nice composition.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
08/04/2008 07:47:31 PM
Nice shot. It feels like I'm getting pulled into this image. The distortion and the guy's jacket enhances that perception.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
08/04/2008 05:55:27 PM
Good use of a wide angle lens
  Photographer found comment helpful.
08/02/2008 12:16:54 AM
Awesome building. Would have been great if this guy were looking up at it. Beautiful!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
08/01/2008 10:09:41 AM
Powerful, excellent composition.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
08/01/2008 02:00:00 AM
Nice catch with the wide angle!
  Photographer found comment helpful.

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