Reflection on tutor feedback for Assignment 3

Feedback from my tutor came through the morning that I was going on holiday so I was able to go away on a high and start to think about the next part of the course.  As usual Pete has been supportive and constructive in his comments and given some good tips for improving some of the pictures, can I go back and make adjustments before submitting for assessment? One to check out I think.  As a first step I am recording my thoughts on feedback but will come back and add pictures at a later stage.

For the melon and ham, he suggested that a good way of lighting something like this with one flash unit was to set a long aperture and fire the flash twice, left and right and at 45 degree angles.  So far I have set me flash unit to TTL, so for this to work I would need to fire it manually. Even though I now have a brand new lighting outfit, I will try that as I won’t be able to cart the flash kit around with me everywhere, so the technique may come in useful for the future.

In the main Pete’s comments reflected my own insecurities about some of my pictures, e.g the front flower in the clematis picture is a little distracting, maybe the other shot I took would have worked better.

Cropped to emphasise the mast and orange colour enhanced

I needed more emphasis on the orange on the mast. I also agree with him that being closer to the mast with a wide-angle lens would have resulted in a better shot.  With regard to the warm border shot, the suggestion for improving the creative input was to throw the whole thing out of focus so that I simply concentrated on the colours; another idea that would not have entered my brain.  I’ve tended to focus on getting things as sharp as possible or using depth of field to lead the eye to what I felt was important and although to late to take this one again, I can still play around with this in Photoshop Elements.

'Radial blur' in Elements used to blur the image and focus on the colours

I totally agree with the comments about the shot of Stac Pollaidh, I didn’t go out with the specific intention of shooting this and to have worked with minimum aperture I would have needed a tripod which I didn’t have with me at the time; another lesson learnt!  I have also read some stuff in my Digital Camera magazine about HDR, which will apparently allow me to shoot several images, each of which are focused on a different parts of the scene and are then blended together to give an ultra sharp image.  This is something that I want to try when time and opportunity presents itself but first I need to get the basics under my belt.   Pete suggested that the canoe picture might have been better taken from above.

Canoes from above

I wasn’t able to get onto the wall above these particular canoes although I did take some shots looking down on some others but felt that the colours worked better on the one I submitted.  I see what he means about the composition though.

Boats in Cromerty Harbour

Pete said that the Cromerty Harbour picture was a little ambiguous and that I needed to crop in more to focus on the contrasting colours.  I’m not sure I have done so enough with this one, (cropped in Elements) but if I went in any more you wouldn’t be able to see what the subject of the picture was.  If  I was able to take this again I would probably choose a different angle with just the bows and maybe more equal proportions of blue and red.

The one comment that I don’t entirely agree with is that for the beach scene with the life belt, Pete has suggested that I might have moved round to my left slightly so that I got the life belt full on. When I took this shot, not only was I attracted to the colour accent provided by the orange belt, I deliberately chose a position so that I had the diagonal lines because I felt that a head on shot would have appeared quite flat.

I need to go back and add a few lines under each of the photographers I have listed saying why I find their work interesting, which I will do, this page was just intended as a reference list though as I have now set up categories in my blog so that if the assessors wanted to look at one aspect of my work, such as photographers, then they could choose that category.  I do realise though that blogs come in many shapes and sizes and I can’t expect them to know the intricacies of all.

I am conscious that I need to look at more of the work of other photographers, not just through websites and books and hopefully I will now have more of an opportunity to do that. Also I need to do more reading on the history and theory; I’m still ploughing through ‘The ongoing moment’ but what I’ve found recently is that I’ve been dipping in and out of this depending on the theme I’ve been studying at the time, hence looking more into the work of Ernst Hass for this last unit.  For now, I will go back and look at some of the photos for this assignment again and them make a real start on part 4.

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About Anne Bryson

I live in Gloucestershire with my husband Iain and West Highland Terrier, Isla. I enjoy golf, photography and my grandchildren, not necessarily in that order! Having completed a 10 week digital photography course with the Open University in 2010, I decided I wanted to take my photography further and enrolled for the Open College of the Arts BA (Hons) starting with 'The Art of Photography' which I enjoyed so much that I went gone on to do Digital Photographic Practice and People and Place. In April 2016 I enrolled on my fourth OCA photography course, Documentary. This blog is my Learning Log for this course.
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