View Full Version : Is this perfection..........?

25th September 2008, 06:57 PM
I very much doubt it, but as always welcome cc:)

http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/500/South_Downs_Sunset.jpg (http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/8439)


25th September 2008, 07:45 PM
Oooh that's very nice.

Regards. Barr1e

25th September 2008, 09:10 PM
I very much doubt it, but as always welcome cc:)

http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/500/South_Downs_Sunset.jpg (http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/8439)


Well, perfection can sometimes be hard to quantify. If we are asking, "is this possibly the best sunset that has ever occurred at this location?" the answer is probably no. Ideally, there should be a lot more broken cloud scattered across the whole sky and set ablaze with rich golds and crimson from the rays of the setting sun and it would certainly be worth re-shooting when conditions are more like that.

However, if we are measuring perfection by asking, "did the photographer make the very most of the prevailing conditions at the time?" the answer is yes!

I love the bold simplicity of this image. It is also perfectly exposed, throwing the hillside into deep black shadow to eliminate distractions and allow it to be used compositionally for its shape rather than its detail. A nice enhancement to the symmetry of the image is the way the line of cloud dovetails almost perfectly with the slope of the hill to continue a horizontal line across the image from where the land starts to fall away.

That little cluster of trees is so important to the success of the image. How fortuitous that it fits so neatly just below the line of the cloud. Had it broken the cloudline, it would have jarred and spoilt the whole image.

The sun, perfectly juxtaposed to the cluster of trees and shot at just the right moment. Landscape photography is not as relaxed and unhurried as some might imagine in this situation. Within as little time as a minute that sun may well have sunk below the cloudline, yet it was important to capture it half obscurred. Firstly, this helps to prevent lens flare - very successfully in this case. Secondly, it has charged the cloud with that all important golden outline.

The whole sky is uniformly infused with a rich orange glow, probably induced by an 85 series colour correction filter or digitally simulated either by in-camera manual white balance adjustment or in post processing. However achieved it has been done sympathetically, gently exagerating what was there but keeping it well within the realms of possibility.

The meticulous attention to detail in this shot has resulted in a tranquil yet evocative, almost iconic, image. Right at the start of this critique I made the point that there are other conditions that will result in a more colourful and spectacular sunset. But having studied this image now in some detail I must concede that this particular sunset, almost understated in it's simplicity, did indeed create the perfect conditions for this particular composition.

Bold, simple, graphic - yet deceptively dependant upon the convergience of key elements for its success - I do indeed consider this image worthy of its claim to perfection!

Fantastic photograph, Neil, you must be thrilled!


25th September 2008, 09:48 PM
That is one very very nice image.. Framed, on a wall I am certain it would look great.

Good choice of crop as well.


25th September 2008, 09:54 PM
Very nice indeed

Malcolm Cousins
25th September 2008, 10:19 PM
No it isn't but it's very good.:)

26th September 2008, 06:58 AM
Thanks for all your replies, as usual all cc taken on board although it would seem this time the image is more of a ‘hit’ than a ‘miss’ this just goes to show that the system works and improvements can be made via a learning process through listening to the critique of fellow forum members.



30th September 2008, 05:09 PM
It's nice, lovely warm colours that come with a good sunset. I like way the clouds almost appear like a range of hills too

1st October 2008, 03:08 PM
Neil I'm no expert and can't give you any guidance to what or whats not perfection, but if i'd taken it, it would be perfect to me and it would certainly be hanging on my wall!:D