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Constructive Fix-it Friday

iheartfaces post again, this time the experts over there are offering help to those who need it- Me being a complete newb at photography- I definitely need it!
Edit to add: No idea about the camera info, I have a simple digital coolpix point and shoot that is several years old.

I love this photo of Jake, it's light and sunny and the subject is gorgeous ;) But it seems to me to lack that extra Oomph that makes it a GREAT photo.

I edited it slightly here: 

just a quick zap of black and white and some evening out of his skin (poor boy constantly has a red face.) and a crop. But the crop now seems awkward and weird and I'm out of ideas! Help Iheartfaces! Help! :)


Dirt Queen says:
at: Apr 10, 2009, 12:11:00 PM said...

I think maybe it feels weird because it is off in ratio to a normal photo ( ie 4x6, 8x10 etc.)
But I like how you kept the top with steps it focuses in on there leading lines to the subject.

Kristi says:
at: Apr 10, 2009, 1:39:00 PM said...

oooh i like it a lot better in black and white. i asked him to look at me but boy did we struggle, teenagers. what do you use to edit your photos?

drewmark19 says:
at: Apr 10, 2009, 1:44:00 PM said...

This is a tough one. I love the B&W conversion you did. I'm just trying to think of a good crop. One method I did was to leave pretty much all the stairs. I cropped it on the left next to where the steps curved on top. (They were still in the pic, but not the space to the left.) I also used the healing tool to remove the tree in the upper right of the photo. I adjusted it so that he was in the first vertical third of the photo. I also tried one where it was a close crop on him. In that case, though, I felt like the steps were a bit distracting. My only suggestion on the cropping is to go for a less narrow crop so that it doesn't feel so closed in. I'm starting to think I might like the original composition with just the tree on the right removed. So much for being a help! :)

Julie Rivera Photography says:
at: Apr 10, 2009, 2:07:00 PM said...

B&W conversion really is a great choice here! Unrelated to processing, it would have been good to back up a hair more and include the other foot. Since the rest of his body is visible, it is more obvious that the one foot is not. The unusual crop looks too narrow to me. When cropping, you need to keep in mind whether or not you could ever print that image. Some crop ratios simply do not exist, unless you print it yourself and cut the white area off. The only other improvement I can suggest is to run the burn tool over the background, heavier in the corners in a vignette style, to really emphasize your subject.

Shae says:
at: Apr 10, 2009, 2:16:00 PM said...

I actually like the crop you did. I tend to do stuff that is a little unordinary. My only real critique would be the skin tone. It feels too bright to me.

Amanda says:
at: Apr 10, 2009, 3:15:00 PM said...

Ilike it! I would probably take some more of the steps out of the pic... but thats more along the lines of personal preferrence, not editing skills.

Keep up the good work!
God bless-

Carebear says:
at: Apr 10, 2009, 4:11:00 PM said...

Wow, love the setting - the steps make such an interesting background! And he looks relaxed and confident - great photo. I probably would have cropped just a bit off the top and off the left, and kept the original proportions of the photo. Other than that, great!

Oh, and thanks for the fun edit you did on my little Beauty! Love the closer crop. And cute to leave the flower colored but her in black and white! Thanks for playing with it for me!

Gram & Gramps says:
at: Apr 10, 2009, 10:03:00 PM said...

Mt untrained eyes like the color picture. Glad to see you having fun with your pictures...who know where this may take you. Keep it up Love ya

theArthurClan says:
at: Apr 10, 2009, 11:19:00 PM said...

What a great shot to work with!

My issues would be: the unusual crop - my eye tends to be drawn more to a 5x7, 4x6 or 8x10 crop. It just seems more natural to me.

The missing foot. I never noticed things like that until I got into photography more. One photography book I read when I was first starting out really emphasized that you should always be aware of all of the appendages...when one leg/foot is clearly in the photo, the other one will probably need to be there as well. If not, it just looks...odd I guess.

I really love the awesome staircase behind him!

co-founder of I ♥ Faces

Sarah says:
at: Apr 10, 2009, 11:43:00 PM said...

I agree with all the others on the choice of black and white being a good one. As for the cropping, I tend to lean toward printable ratios because I print most of mine. Thanks for the feedback on my photo, and I really like the edit you did. I haven't worked much with textures yet, but I'd like to. The vignette thing is a phase I am going through with portrait style photos....I love it on some, like it on others, and don't use it at all on most.

Sonya @ Balentine Bliss says:
at: Apr 13, 2009, 2:49:00 PM said...

Thanks so much for your comments and fixes on my photos last week. I enjoyed looking at your ideas!! Have a great day!

jennifer says:
at: Apr 13, 2009, 2:52:00 PM said...

i wanted to say thanks for your advice in fix-it friday re: our nosetackle. it was really helpful!