Commons:Photography critiques

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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 Challenges? Or do you have specific questions about how to improve your photography or just would like some general feedback?

This is the right page to gather other people's opinions!

If you want general suggestions to a good photo, you can ask here, and we already wrote guidelines.

See image guidelines >>

If you don't get some terminology used here, don't be shy you can ask about it, or read

See photography terms >>

Please insert new entries at the bottom, and comment on oldest entries first.

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Are my photos good enough?Edit

Hi, I have a lot of photos that I upload to Commons, I always upload my best. Are they good enough to be: Quality, Valued or Featured?

Should I propose them to those categories?

All my photos (some of them are uploaded from flicker by other users) are in Category:Jakub T. Jankiewicz.

Those are my recently uploaded images:

Jakub T. Jankiewicz (talk) 18:32, 21 June 2021 (UTC)

  • Jakub T. Jankiewicz Valued images aren't about absolute quality but only relative quality. So your images will be approved as valued if they are the best depiction of the subject currently available on Commons. I think some of these have potential as quality images as well, but I don't usually judge there. Buidhe (talk) 07:41, 23 June 2021 (UTC)

To add my photos in categories Category:Mass grave in Bór, Category:Mass grave in Brzask, Category:Korona Kielce (shopping mall), Category:Domek Tkaczki, Category:Reenactment in Malbork are better than the others or the only images in the category. Jakub T. Jankiewicz (talk) 09:20, 23 June 2021 (UTC)

@Jcubic: My point of view:

Regards, --Podzemnik (talk) 22:37, 23 June 2021 (UTC)

@Podzemnik: those were just my last uploads, there are better photos I've taken (and uploaded to Commons), like those in categories I've linked. Jakub T. Jankiewicz (talk) 07:50, 24 June 2021 (UTC)
@Jcubic: You can't expect other users to browse all your uploads. I'd recommend to chose a few photos that you think represent your work the best and ask others for a review here. Kind regards, --Podzemnik (talk) 23:19, 2 July 2021 (UTC)

I can pick those:

I have also a lot of photos from Reenactments in Wolin (I was 3 times there are 3 categories) and Malbork it's hard to pick the best. Jakub T. Jankiewicz (talk) 20:18, 3 July 2021 (UTC)

Please take my reviews easy, I was mostly reviewing the photos for FP :) Regards, --Podzemnik (talk) 08:10, 5 July 2021 (UTC)

Lincoln Center with rainbow fountainEdit

A couple days ago I spent about an hour at Lincoln Center in New York, where they set up rainbow lighting in their fountain for Pride (and painted their large steps). I got there just before the sun went down (behind the central building, roughly opposite the camera). While the sun was out, the colors of the fountain weren't visible enough, but I didn't want the light to be gone completely because I wanted to capture this public space and the buildings, not just the fountain. Setting up a tripod is not allowed here anyway (there are security guards which make this perhaps the most tripod-unfriendly outdoor space in the city), so night shoots aren't realistic anyway.

This is the result. It's ok, but I was hoping for something better. Maybe there's no way to get a sufficiently illuminated building + public space while also being dark enough to see the colors of the fountain, but I'm posting here for ideas from more experienced photographers. — Rhododendrites talk |  13:21, 2 July 2021 (UTC)

I think one major problem of this is the unattractive, blown-out sky. Maybe this is a stupid idea, but how about trying again in the morning when you've got the sun at your back? Even with it being below the horizon, that might still make a difference … --El Grafo (talk) 12:23, 4 July 2021 (UTC)
I agree, the blown sky was probably the first thing I noticed looking at this photo Buidhe (talk) 17:04, 4 July 2021 (UTC)
Pre-dawn Blue Hour might be lovely. For those who intend to be afoot then. Jim.henderson (talk) 14:56, 6 July 2021 (UTC)
@El Grafo, Buidhe, Jim.henderson: Thanks for the suggestions. At this point, with Pride over, a new shoot will have to wait until next year. We'll see if I feel like going to Manhattan before dawn... :)
But I did look back through the various shots I got, looking for one with decent color but also a better sky. Here's what I came up with. It's not the big scene, but the sky isn't blown out (would be better with clouds, but an improvement anyway)... — Rhododendrites talk |  22:27, 8 July 2021 (UTC)
Follow-up: There are some technical shortcomings, but I think it captures the special scene well enough that I nominated it at FPC: Commons:Featured picture candidates/File:Lincoln Center during pride at dusk (93381p).jpg. I guess the critique moves there now. :) — Rhododendrites talk |  04:30, 9 July 2021 (UTC)

Sufficient sharpness?Edit

I posted this image to Quality images candidates, and got an opposition saying that it's out of focus. As far as I can tell, the subject is in the peak focus region of the image; it was a handheld nighttime shot with long exposure, aperture as wide as this lens will go, and somewhat high ISO, so the overall image is slightly soft, but the detail resolution is considerable better than the minimal 2 MP recommendation for quality images; if you look at the half resolution image, you see the resolution become the limiting factor of image sharpness, and that's still well above the 2 MP minimum. You can only really see the softness if you enlarge the image considerably, and things like the lettering on the tank badge and air intake are readable. Am I missing something? What level of sharpness is considered acceptable? I can improve the apparent sharpness in post a bit, with some further contrast tweaking and sharpening, but that doesn't do anything to actually increase the amount of detail in the image. Or I could downscale it by a linear factor of 2. But I'd like some more detailed feedback on what's wrong so that I can correct it or avoid the problem in the future. Thanks! --Lambda (talk) 05:02, 22 July 2021 (UTC)

I've made those suggested changes, tweaked the tone curve a bit as I had a bit of leeway to brighten the highlights and thus enhance the contrast, and turned up the sharpening filter. There may not be any more detail present, but the image at least looks a bit better. --Lambda (talk) 05:10, 22 July 2021 (UTC)
There's a diffuse but quite evident halo around a lot of the top of the motorcycle. I'm not sure what's causing it, but it shouldn't be there. Ikan Kekek (talk) 10:12, 22 July 2021 (UTC)
Ah, I'm guessing that's a mask I used to darken the background but leave the motorcycle bright; there were some distracting things in the background, and darkening them helped reduce their prominence. Unfortunately, it looks like my monitor is missing a shade or two at the bottom end, according to the monitor test graphic, so it looks fine to me; it had also been prominent to me, so I tweaked it until it wasn't, but if my monitor is missing a shade or two on the bottom end then it may still be prominent on other monitors. Anyhow, thanks, now I have a direction to look into to improve it. --Lambda (talk) 15:31, 22 July 2021 (UTC)
OK, turns out that I could see it if I turned up my brightness all the way, and took off my glasses, because my glasses were actually causing a bit of bloom that masked it. I'm using an OLED display, which has very dark darks and very bright brights, so the bloom from the bright parts was enough to overpower the halo effect you mentioned; and unlike an LCD, changing the viewing angle didn't make it more apparent. I've addressed this by reducing the amount of darkening I was doing, tightening up the masks, and reducing their feathering. There's still a slight effect in a couple of places that I can only see if I zoom in and know where to look, but I'd appreciate if someone with a different display could take a look as what was apparently obvious on other screens is quite hard for me to see. --Lambda (talk) 18:57, 22 July 2021 (UTC)
@Ikan Kekek, Hillopo2018: Ikan, thanks for the note on the halo; that is fixed now. But you have still voted the image insufficiently sharp. Can either of you explain what is insufficiently sharp about this image? What level of sharpness you are expecting? As mentioned, to my eye, this is about as sharp as a 5 MP image could get; the fact that there's some softness if zoomed in further, because I didn't downscale it, doesn't seem like it should be a problem, if 5 MP is within the quality image guidelines. I'm really trying to get a better understanding of the guidelines, and how you're evaluating them; in photography, there are a number of tradeoffs, and how much sharpness is needed depends on what level of enlargement you need an image to be usable at. To my eye, this is sharp enough to be enlarged to about 8"x10" (or about A4 paper size) at 300 DPI without noticeable lack of sharpness. Is it necessary that images remain sharp when enlarged even further than that? If so, should the minimum image size for a quality image be increased to reflect that? --Lambda (talk) 02:24, 25 July 2021 (UTC)
Ah, just found this nice essay which explains the issue better than I did. I like the distinction it makes between "bold subjects" and "detailed subjects"; bold subjects are ones where once magnified to full screen or a full page in a magazine, there's no real impetus to zoom in further or look closer at tiny details, while detailed subjects are things like architectural photos of ornate architecture, where there may be good reason to zoom in as far as possible to try to see tiny details. The picture I took clearly falls into the "bold subject" category, so I think evaluating it at around full page print size is the right way to evaluate it. --Lambda (talk) 02:59, 25 July 2021 (UTC)
It's really unsharp at full size but also not that sharp at 300% of my 13-inch screen. I believe that the level of expected sharpness for these kinds of photos is greater at QIC. You are free to disagree. -- Ikan Kekek (talk) 06:34, 25 July 2021 (UTC)

Possible Featured Picture?Edit

I'm thinking about nominate this photo to FP. I like it very much, but I want to receive other opinions before nominating it. Does it have any chances for FP? What should I change? --LoMit (talk) 15:11, 19 August 2021 (UTC)

It's definitely a nice shot. The sky looks good, the windows of the buildings reflect the sky, and the colors are good. The main reason I don't think it would pass FP is composition. It's unclear what the main subject is. It seems like you framed it around the circular fountain in front and the BNP building in back, but that part of the fountain isn't especially attractive in the shade and the focus isn't as good on the buildings. If the whole public square is the subject (and I think that it is), the framing seems like it could be better (and the light -- which is very bright in the distance). There's also some imbalance to the composition because of the large building and large, partially cut off tree also on the left. I would be curious if you could reshoot it from a position further back, or off to the left/right, or when more of the square is evenly lit. This is all easier said than done, of course. :) In general, I think you should be happy with this shot. It may be a VI for that space. But the composition probably holds it back from FP. Curious also what others think. — Rhododendrites talk |  16:25, 19 August 2021 (UTC)
Thanks a lot for your opinion :). Now I can see more bad points of this picture. I agree that the main subject might be unclear. Maybe another time I will shoot a way better photo. Thanks --LoMit (talk) 15:55, 20 August 2021 (UTC)

I'm taking a few pictures with my Galaxy S20 FE and uploading them to be used on Commons and Wikipedia. What do you think about them?Edit

I hardly process them, but I did use GIMP and darktable a few times. Definitely not a professional though.

Tetizeraz. Send me a ✉️ ! 02:32, 13 September 2021 (UTC)

Right, @Tetizeraz: these are not among the prettiest pictures. This page is intended for pictures that might go into one of the quality categories, and these don't have much hope for that. However, they can still be useful to illustrate articles.
  • The first, I see, already illustrates a transit station article. Humble, but useful.
  • The second might illustrate an article about its political topic, but of course that's a question for those who edit those political articles. I notice that its categories do not include geographic ones.
  • The third illustrates a building for which there is no article, but it can serve when it is needed. It could be improved by trimming the majority of the sky and parking lot, making the picture less tall.
  • As for the last, I don't know where it could be used. Perhaps it's because I don't understand the place.
Don't worry; most of our pictures are not now used in any article, nor have any known purpose at this time, but we don't know the future. Do try to get pictures that are relevant, or might become relevant, to a Wikipedia article or other use. Jim.henderson (talk) 12:52, 14 September 2021 (UTC)
Photos are very useful and quality is good. May not succeed at QIC due to imperfections but these images are unique enough that they may well succeed at COM:VIC. And certainly there's encyclopedia value so I would encourage you to keep contributing. Buidhe (talk) 02:06, 17 September 2021 (UTC)