That was a beautiful evening at the nature. Light was glorious. Back-light greenery were shining in the deep shadows. And the photographs came out … dull and flat
Apply or don’t apply an art effects to a photograph?!
I think this question arise all the time. And as always the answer is – It is a matter of a personal choice!
I personally have a set of rules when I do apply it and when don’t
Here is an example of the art processing applied to a photograph. It is obvious that the photograph doesn’t have documentary value, so I bravely applied “finishing”.
On my taste the actual photograph, after the basic color corrections, cleaning and etc. ,still was a bit dull and flat. The light was not communicating the glory of that evening. Greenery wasn’t shining and the light on the actual subject and surrounding became even.
The goal of the art post-processing was to increase glow in the greenery, but in a way that it wouldn’t be destructive, focus viewer on the main subject and may be to add a bit of drama.
Please, be a judge!
I will be glad to here from you which version do you prefer what do your thoughts are on the topic. Please, comment bellow!
If you like the subject, but not really happy about the light on the subject – use light painting.
This chapel is on my usual stroll route. I have passed it so many times, but never could get a good light on it. Finally I decided to create my own picture of this place and put the mood which was almost from the first time when I saw it. I would like to create a mystical filling.
Сomparison of long exposure photograph with the final result of artificial lighting you can see here:
I think the long exposure photograph (before) looks flat. Everything is equally lit. Glass gives a reflection and hides the beautiful statue inside of the chapel. Using light painting technology we can create a picture which we visualized. Here you see the chapel how I saw it in my head.
There are 2 kind of light painting: single frame with long exposure and composite.
The goal of first type is to get final photograph directly in camera. Such pictures used by medias which doesn’t allow photo manipulations, like National Geographic. Usually exposure starts from couple of minutes and so on. There are 2 types of light source could be used: continues and flash lights. Bare flash is used rarely. Usually it is covered by some light modifiers: gobo or/and greed. Main challenge during exposure is to prevent having a light source in the frame. This technology is complex and requires strong skills, planning and time, but it pays off by its value and experience.
The simpler method is a composite. Composite requires many shots with different parts of subject lit, then all the frames a composed in editor. I have used this method to create this picture. I have spent around 1 hour to get the right lighting on all parts and then used Photoshop to combine them. Totally I shot around 50 frames.
Many times I’ve been asked – What to photograph in the middle of the day or how to use the harsh day light.
I think many of us were trapped by the harsh light in the middle of the day during a travel. Same happened to me in Rome, when I was enjoying a walk to an evening location, which I have selected couple days before. The sun was still above my head and light was quite harsh. Passing Fountana di Trevi I noticed how beautifully the light was falling on one of a figures.
The scene reminded me of baroque paintings tecnique with the main characters advancing from a dark background. Actually the figures of the fountain were created in the baroque period and the fountain is the largest baroque fountain in the city.
So, I had a baroque figure and a baroque light, I only had to find a composition which would work.
There are following elements which make the picture work for me:
Rhythm in shadows and highlights
Diagonal rising composition
I believe this is a good example on how even the harsh light can assist in bringing out a special character of a picture.