Madrone Branch

Image Description

I’ve spotted this branch on my daily walks and like the color, contours, and texture and thought it might make a good subject. It seems to have a snake-like appearance with scales and an open maw at one end.

Type of Critique Requested

  • Aesthetic: Feedback on the overall visual appeal of the image, including its color, lighting, cropping, and composition.

  • Technical: Feedback on the technical aspects of the image, such as exposure, color, focus and reproduction of colors and details, post-processing, and print quality.

Specific Feedback and Self-Critique

I removed some distracting elements around the branch, but left the background natural. I played around with replacing the background with sky, but it didn’t look good. Any ideas for improvement, or comments in general on how to best present this type of image, would be appreciated.

Technical Details

Canon R5; 24-105 at 67 mm; 1/25 at f4.0, +1 EV; ISO 100

I love Madrones and you have a wonderful one here! I love the detail in the right half and wonder about zooming in on it. Not sure what the distractions were but there is some strangeness along the bottom of the branch in that interesting area. I love the semi-cloudy sky and BG in general, and the soft greens in the grass. The shadows in the FG feel like the contrast has been lowered too far, though.

I think this one is definitely work some work, and the scene well worth revisiting. Maybe with a machete, depending on what needed to be cloned out.

Thanks, @Diane_Miller for your thoughts. I will play around with it as you suggested; the right side is more interesting. I don’t think I did much with the foreground, but it is in the shadows and perhaps some brightening would help.

Here’s the part I love. It feels a bit awkward to have the visually heavy branch high in the frame but I think the BG is too wonderful to sacrifice with any further crop. I didn’t hit the ideal crop on the left, with the dark triangle. Room to tweak that edge.

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Diane has made a start on what I think can help us find the best in this venerable branch. These trees don’t grow in the midwest so whenever I’m out your way I always marvel at them.

You said that you left the bg natural, but it has some oddities on my screen. This could just be jpeg compression, but there is a dark blue line just at the edge of the bottom of the branch under the shape Diane cropped to. the bg there looks as if it’s bleeding into the branch and the other OOF areas around it look a bit muddy. It could be lens weirdness, lord knows I’ve seen enough of it, but I noticed it immediately and I doubt that’s your goal.

If you have other shots that don’t include the trailing branch, those might be interesting to compare. I like the light and the colors very much, not to mention the texture and “looming eye” presence.

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Allen, the colors and texture in the branch are very attractive. Since I do a lot of macro/close-up, my thought would be to get closer, so the branch takes up more of the frame (like Diane’s crop). I know that lens will do that. The advantage is that even at closest focus, the branch will not fill the frame, so you’ll still get the environment, just softer.

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