Last modified on 22 May 2015, at 03:04

Commons:Photography critiques

Graphics community: Graphic Lab · Graphics Village Pump · Picture Requests · Photography Critiques

color palette logo Welcome to the Photography critiques!

Would you like a second opinion before nominating a photograph of yours as a Quality Image, Valued Image or Featured Picture candidate, can't decide which of your images to enter into one of the Photo Callenges? Or do you have specific questions about how to improve your photography or just would like some general feedback?

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Small church interiorEdit

I would like some oppinions about photographing the interior of small churches, like this one. Help wanted about what to crop, the height of the tripod, white balance adjustment and exposure. The door was about 2 meters behind the tripod and the light in the church was the two candles visible in the middle and two (halogen?) lambs behind the tripod. --C messier (talk) 19:18, 9 March 2015 (UTC)

I would suggest: 1) The camera should be at or around eye level, both because it feels most natural and because most architecture has few obstruction at that height. 2) The vanishing point should be above, say, the lower 20-25% of the image, otherwise the bottom looks cramped (exceptions maybe for high and narrow churches). 3) I would set the white balance to a "correct" value, i.e. a white or grey object as close to the center of the room as possible, and adjust from there towards what looks right. 4) If you don't want to bracket, set your exposure so that nothing is clipped except for actual light sources, check the image (histogram/clipping display if avaliable) and adjust if too much is clipped or the histogram isn't used in the upper area. If the dynamic range of the camera is limited, you might have to give up the windows - or bracket. 5) Shoot and edit raw if you can, in high dynamic range situations like churches, this makes a more significant difference than for most other situations. 6) Forget what I just said and ask Diliff/look at his photos. :) — Julian H. 22:26, 9 March 2015 (UTC)
Thanks for tagging me Julian. ;-) Well, I agree with everything you said. A low vantage point can work but I don't think it does in this image. I think there's something a bit wrong with the processing though. It seems like the image has been overexposed and then darkened too much, the tonality is strange and some the dynamic range seems lost. I think the WB is a bit too cool. There are some strange colours, but maybe that's just how it looks. Hard to know without being there, but the image of Jesus on the ceiling isn't very flattering. ;-) Diliff (talk) 23:08, 9 March 2015 (UTC)

Actually it is three exposures, 8, 2 and 1/1.3 seconds, merged with GIMP with brightness mapping as descripted here [1]. --C messier (talk) 07:33, 10 March 2015 (UTC)

  • Ah, that might be the source of the problem then. I've never tried using GIMP for HDR processing but I'm guessing it's not very good at it (judging by the result). It looks like the way Photoshop used to process HDR. I guess if you're using GIMP, you don't have access to Photomatix or Adobe Lightroom, but they are known to be the best for HDR tone mapping. Diliff (talk) 08:25, 10 March 2015 (UTC)

Deflating a balloonEdit


I would just like some general thoughts on my photo below, and/or suggestions to improve it. I didn't think much of it at the time, but it's now grown on me.

Neuroxic (talk) 12:48, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

Deflating a hot air balloon 1.JPG
  • I think it would have been better if you had shot it so that you can't see any gaps behind it, a but like Benh's stunning balloon image. I'm not sure it's possible to crop it like that now without making it feel too squashed now though, but I think that's what is needed to really 'make' this shot. Diliff (talk) 16:08, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
    I though so too, I've trimmed the edges now, but I don't think I can crop out the last piece of grass without, as you said, squashing the image. Neuroxic (talk) 05:09, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
That would have been my major point as well. I think it's much better now, that last patch of grass at the lower right corner doesn't really hurt that much. I'm not sure what would be needed to move this image to the next level (i.e. from very good to truly outstanding). It has some elements which in combination seem to give it a little bit of a "snapshot" feeling:
1) The person in the brown shirt is not yet in position, maybe waiting jut a few seconds would have been better. Also the woman in red seems to be more concerned about her camera than the balloon. (If I had to guess: the man in red and the woman to the right of him belong to the team, the rest are passengers?)
2) Moving a few steps to the right, centering the white line the woman in red is standing on might have given you more symmetry. But on the other hand it seems like the left part of the team has been doing its job a bit quicker then the right part, so by moving right you possibly wouldn't be looking at the "wall" at a right angle anymore …
3) Lighting is a bit uneven with shadowy parts on the left – but I guess telling the team to re-arrange the balloon for best lighting before deflating isn't really an option ;-)
There's of course a lot of speculation in these comments, so please take them with an appropriate grain of salt. --El Grafo (talk) 09:46, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
Excellent comments! Each of your points are so obvious.... there were a few things I thought were slightly off with the photo, but I couldn't pinpoint them... which you've exactly done. I now have a few more tips in the back of my head when taking photos. Thanks again. Neuroxic (talk) 10:17, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

Acantholimon acerosumEdit

Acantholimon acerosum (Botanical Gardens Berlin) (02).jpg

A shot of Acantholimon acerosum I took in the Botanical Gardens of Berlin (whole plant looks something like this). I know, focus point is not ideal and maybe F11 would've been better, but how bad do you think it is? Also, does it "work" for you as a picture in general? Please don't hold back … --El Grafo (talk) 14:27, 1 April 2015 (UTC)

  • I disagree, for this specific composition I think the DoF is too big and make the background too predominant. -- Christian Ferrer 20:12, 3 April 2015 (UTC)
    @Christian Ferrer: Interesting thought, thanks for that! I'm mainly bothered by the out-of-focus twigs (or how do you call that?) in the foreground, so maybe focusing a bit closer plus wider aperture could've done the trick. --El Grafo (talk) 07:47, 13 April 2015 (UTC)
  • This aperture can be acceptable, IMO even a lowest could be, however a focus point nearer from you (on the first plants) would maybe have been better, indeed. -- Christian Ferrer 11:00, 13 April 2015 (UTC)

Review photo, pleaseEdit


I did this photo with Hugin, I used 6 photos, and I like to another user review it and sign on it possibly perspective issues and other mess, Regards!!! --Ezarateesteban 22:51, 12 April 2015 (UTC)

@Ezarate: I've marked some stitching errors which broke some of the power lines. Also, there is a white border at the left side of the image. Not sure about the perspective yet – the wooden pole holding the power lines does actually lean to the left in reality, right? --El Grafo (talk) 07:58, 13 April 2015 (UTC)

Cropping around a paintingEdit

Γεώργιος Καστροφύλακας - Άγιος Μήνας 7720.jpg

I need some help of which is the best way to present a painting with unfavourable background. I decided to crop as closely as possible this one, but there are some spots that the background is apparent and others that is too tight. What do you propose? (I also have a problem with the yellow highlights in this one, but I tried to develop it with RawTherapee but the end result was not very pleasing as far as colours is concerned (and it also looked more blurred) --C messier (talk) 16:55, 16 April 2015 (UTC)

@C messier: It seems that your camera/lens has produced a bit of barrel distortion. Hence, the frame is not rectangular anymore and if you crop tight at the corners you lose parts of the frame at the centers. You could try to find a correction profile for your camera or correct the lens distortion manually (e.g. in RawTherapee). After that, cropping should be easier. (Maybe a bit of rotation and/or perspective correction is needed as well, but I'd start with the barrel distortion and see how far that brings you).
I wouldn't worry about the highlights too much, but if you want to tune them down it might be better to try local adjustments instead of working on the whole image. Afaik, that's not possible in RawTherapee, though. Personally, I'd use the good old Lightzone (a bit outdated, but Open Source since Version 4) for that, but something like Gimp should work as well. More importantly, due to the uneven lighting coming from the top, the bottom half seems a little dark. I'd suggest brightening the lower portion of the painting, using a long vertial gradient to achieve even lighting across the whole frame.
Hope that helps a bit, --El Grafo (talk) 10:05, 17 April 2015 (UTC)

Is this a good phone to take photos and upload it here?Edit

Is the Nokia Lumia Icon a good phone to take photos or videos in maximum resolution, and upload them here? Doorknob 747 (talk) 19:24, 1 May 2015 (UTC)

  • It depends on the light conditions. In full day light good photos are possible but not in the inside or with poor light. It also depends on the skills of the photographer, of course :)) Alvesgaspar (talk) 19:30, 1 May 2015 (UTC)
    • Thanks. Do you have some advice on how one can improve their photograph skills? Doorknob 747 (talk) 19:38, 1 May 2015 (UTC)
      • @Doorknob 747: Read Wikipedia! ;oD There are plenty of articles about photography technics. Regards, Yann (talk) 15:28, 14 May 2015 (UTC)

Is there a place for this?Edit

Is there a place for video critiques?Doorknob 747 (talk) 15:27, 2 May 2015 (UTC)

Framing of photosEdit

I wonder whether I possibly should crop these and similar photos. The visible sky provides some reference, but somehow I feel it is disturbing the image composition.--KlausFoehl (talk) 14:08, 8 May 2015 (UTC)

Perspective correction and image distortionEdit

Given that the camera was pointing downwards at time of photos, the power station does show some slanting lines. Applying an image transform that some people call "perspective correction", I find that the image proportions get changed, and that this unnatural distortion outweighs the advantage of having the image geometry conform to 'constructed perspective'. Second opinions? -- KlausFoehl (talk) 14:32, 14 May 2015 (UTC)

  • I don't really see a significant difference between them all, to be honest. The angle of view is not that wide and the angle looking down is not extreme so the perspective correction needed is also quite small. The largest difference is that there's more foreground space which I think is compositionally not so good. But the proportions look fairly normal in all images. Diliff (talk) 23:13, 14 May 2015 (UTC)

General feedback reuqestedEdit

I would love to hear general feedback and critiques about the two photographs above, so I know where I can improve. Thanks a lot! --Reinhard Müller (talk) 08:43, 18 May 2015 (UTC)

  • One thing I would say is that it not always a good idea to centre the horizon in the middle of the photo, it's usually better to choose whether you want the photo to focus more on the foreground (in this case, the lake) or the sky. A 'rule of thirds' is often suggested, where obvious dividing lines like a horizon should be placed at 1/3 or 2/3 of the way down the image. The same applies if you have strong vertical lines or objects, they should be placed at 1/3 or 2/3 of the way across the image. It isn't really a rule though, only a suggestion, but it usually improves composition. Specifically, regarding File:Kopfloch 2.jpg, I would say that the pontoon in the foreground could be more symmetrical. Your view is looking across it slightly to the left. Also, I would perhaps either try to get down lower to look along it, or go for a wider angle lens and look down towards the pontoon to get a feeling that it's leading you to the boat. There's nothing wrong with taking photos from eye level, but as a general rule, photos taken at eye level are not as interesting as photos taken from an uncommon angle IMO. As for File:Sandgrube Mäder 1.jpg, I think it's lacking focus. There isn't an obvious subject to the photo, and it doesn't give me the feeling that you considered why you were taking it and what you wanted to show (other than liking the scene and pressing the shutter). The fact that there's some shaded grass on the bottom right side doesn't help the composition for me, I think you would have been better to walk up to the edge of the lake to avoid the grass, then the reflection in the water would be more prominent in the photo. They're the most obvious things that come to my mind. Hope it helps. Diliff (talk) 08:58, 18 May 2015 (UTC)
Thank you for your quick, elaborate and helpful feedback! --Reinhard Müller (talk) 12:29, 18 May 2015 (UTC)
On the boat image, first I am unsure where do you want to guide your view to. There is the jetty, there is the gap in the trees, but the jetty does not lead up to the gap. The pole is also something one has to think about. Now regarding the Sandgrube image, one option is to do away with the foreground and go for image and mirror image with the seam in the middle. Alternatively the grass at the bottom could be used as a frame, but at bottom left it is just too thin a rim. The patch of grass bottom right could be useful, if fully in the sunlight.--KlausFoehl (talk) 11:21, 19 May 2015 (UTC)
Thanks also to you for your feedback! I did not really intend to get specific instructions how to do a better picture of these specific places, but rather wanted to generally improve on my photography skills. I think your advices can easily be transformed to other occasions and they will help me doing better photographs in future! --Reinhard Müller (talk) 12:14, 20 May 2015 (UTC)
Checkmark This section is resolved and can be archived. If you disagree, replace this template with your comment. Reinhard Müller (talk) 12:14, 20 May 2015 (UTC)