View of Leeds

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Phil_T
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View of Leeds

Post by Phil_T » Mon Aug 02, 2010 10:39 pm Etc/GMT-1+01:00

Here's one of the first images taken with the Arca Swiss 4x5 bought from Dave on here. Comments welcome.

Image

Arca Swiss F-Line. Caltar 90mm f6.8. Kodak Ektar. 9 Secs @ f22

Joanna Carter
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Re: View of Leeds

Post by Joanna Carter » Tue Aug 03, 2010 8:52 am Etc/GMT-1+01:00

Hi Phil, please take these comments as constructive…

I would have given the whole image about 1/2 stop less exposure and used a soft 0,3ND grad over the sky - the top of the tall building would have been darkened slightly but the sky may have retained more detail. Possibly, also, an 81A or so filter to warm it up a little.

When I first saw the image, I was convinced that the tall building was suffering from diverging verticals. But, upon checking, it is an optical illusion; the sides are, near as darn it, vertical. If you are shooting for an architect then you are correct in your handling of the verticals but, if you are shooting for a designer, then you would go for a more aesthetically pleasing perspective by tilting the camera up by a small amount, possibly dropping the front standard by a tad to compensate for losing the bottom of the shot.

Overall, I think you've done an excellent job with a difficult subject :D
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Re: View of Leeds

Post by dave_whatever » Tue Aug 03, 2010 9:07 am Etc/GMT-1+01:00

Joanna Carter wrote:When I first saw the image, I was convinced that the tall building was suffering from diverging verticals. But, upon checking, it is an optical illusion;
I had the same thing - glad its not just me!

Its a good shot, nice composition. Does look a bit cyan for me taste but I imagine that's because its on negative film maybe.

Phil_T
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Re: View of Leeds

Post by Phil_T » Tue Aug 03, 2010 9:38 am Etc/GMT-1+01:00

Thanks for the comments - I think you're spot on with what you've said.

I also see the 'illusion' with the verticals on the tower - it jumped out at me when I first opened the scan. But, like you say, when checked against the grid in photohop the verticals are actually bang on. I did intend to give little upward tilt but in the rush to get the shot I forgot. Maybe it's something I could fix in photohop.

The exposure is probably at least half a stop over but I managed to bring it back somewhat during the scan. I'm not too sure why this is but it's the first photo I've taken on film for 10 years so a little more practice won't go amiss. I was also using my DSLR as a meter and need to work out how it calibrates to the film I'm using.

In terms of the overall colour, this is a personal decision to retain the cool cast but maybe I'll see differently after a bit of time away from the image - I definately struggle with the problem of not objective 'seeing' the image after staring at it for so long.

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Re: View of Leeds

Post by dave_whatever » Tue Aug 03, 2010 9:45 am Etc/GMT-1+01:00

Phil_T wrote:I definately struggle with the problem of not objective 'seeing' the image after staring at it for so long.
I often rope in my better half for a second opinion - always guaranteed to pull no punches!

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Re: View of Leeds

Post by Joanna Carter » Tue Aug 03, 2010 10:47 am Etc/GMT-1+01:00

Phil_T wrote:… Maybe it's something I could fix in photohop.
Fortunately, I'm not an anti-digital purist :roll:
Phil_T wrote:… I was also using my DSLR as a meter and need to work out how it calibrates to the film I'm using.
That will be the problem :wink: Most DSLRs seem to be "off" by anything up to 1 stop over-exposed, for a "balanced" shot.

Can I recommend that you burn a few sheets of film (or a roll of MF, if you have it) to determine the correct range for your film? The usual procedure is to get a black textured towel and a white textured towel and take shots at 1 stop steps, from the "normal" exposure, until the detail from the towels disappears. this should help you determine, not only the range of the film but, also, how much of that range is above and below the "zone 5" exposure.
Phil_T wrote:In terms of the overall colour, this is a personal decision to retain the cool cast but maybe I'll see differently after a bit of time away from the image - I definately struggle with the problem of not objective 'seeing' the image after staring at it for so long.
My opinion of the colour is just that - my opinion. OTOH, I think, if you could apply a graduated adjustment layer to subtly bring down the sky, the blue tone is reflective of the time of day it was taken.

Here's an attempt at reducing the sky…
4854922708_a168de46ab_b.jpg
4854922708_a168de46ab_b.jpg (287.08 KiB) Viewed 4795 times
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Phil_T
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Re: View of Leeds

Post by Phil_T » Tue Aug 03, 2010 12:39 pm Etc/GMT-1+01:00

I did apply a graduated highlight recovery and colour correction (to bring back the blue) but I think my effort was obviously too subtle. On the original scan the sky is almost completely white. I think your version does have a little more impact so I'll give it go.

After looking the image slightly fresher this lunchtime, I'm starting to think that the blue cast is a bit strong. However, I'm not working in any kind of calibrated colour space so what I'm seeing might be very different from other people get - I've done a print using the office laser and the colours have come out a lot more neutral. Bit of a steep learning curve on all this colour space business but I'll get there eventually.

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Re: View of Leeds

Post by dave_whatever » Tue Aug 03, 2010 12:51 pm Etc/GMT-1+01:00

I wouldn't worry too much about the blue cast as such (the cyan cast might benefit from some magenta) as it is there naturally, and not every photo has to have greycard perfect white balance like a digital camera.

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Re: View of Leeds

Post by Joanna Carter » Tue Aug 03, 2010 12:57 pm Etc/GMT-1+01:00

Phil, would you be interested in gettting together sometime for a short course in using Photoshop for LF work? I ran a workshop last year and am thinking about running another in the near future. I also have the wherewithall to calibrate monitors and printers.
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Phil_T
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Re: View of Leeds

Post by Phil_T » Tue Aug 03, 2010 5:10 pm Etc/GMT-1+01:00

Joanna, that's certainly something I'd be interested in a little bit further down the line but I think it's probably a bit to soon to start getting in too deep with digital side of things. Apart from a brief stint with an old MPP about 10 years ago, I essentially started LF photography (actually, any kind of film photography) two weeks ago so there's an awful lot to get to grips with. I reckon I'll concentrate on taking photos and learning about exposure for the time being and make do with my ham-fisted photoshop skills until I've got some work that's worthy of more finesse. :lol:

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Re: View of Leeds

Post by Joanna Carter » Tue Aug 03, 2010 6:18 pm Etc/GMT-1+01:00

Well, I think it's about time that we organised a day out "up north". Would that interest you Phil? If so, I'll start a new thread in the workshops forum.
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Phil_T
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Re: View of Leeds

Post by Phil_T » Tue Aug 03, 2010 6:59 pm Etc/GMT-1+01:00

I'm struggling a bit with free time for the next month or so due to working away from home but I'm sure others will be interested and I'll come along if I can

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Re: View of Leeds

Post by AbsolutelyN » Tue Aug 03, 2010 10:21 pm Etc/GMT-1+01:00

If find this a very pleasing image to view. For me the exposure and colour on the original image are absolutely fine, very much as I imagine the scene would actually look. As you're on negative film I don't think you need a grad for this or to darken the sky other than maybe just a tiny amount for my taste which could be done with a tiny curves adjustment. After years of grad usage I'm now firmly of an anti-grad persuasion - you just don't really need them with colour negs (though I guess Ektar is slightly more likely to need them than say pro160).

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Re: View of Leeds

Post by Patrick Dixon » Wed Aug 04, 2010 9:27 am Etc/GMT-1+01:00

Here's my version tweaked with my uncalibrated eye on my uncalibrated monitor - just a bit less cyan and it brings out the sky naturally too.

Image

The shot has quite a nice balance to it, with the building in the upper left and the flag and lit pub to the lower right.

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Re: View of Leeds

Post by Patrick Dixon » Wed Aug 04, 2010 12:02 pm Etc/GMT-1+01:00

A bit less green and a slight curve to boost contrast at the darker end

Image

(That's the trouble with photoshop - you can keep fiddling for ever ...)

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