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  1. #1

    Small town in North Carolina

    I was on vacation two years ago and snapped this photo with my T3i. I used the kit lens. Please be honest when you look at it and give a your opinions. I am seriously thinking of quitting photography so be gentle.

  2. #2

    Small town in North Carolina

    To say the least, quitting photography would be premature, unless it has become truly drudgery to you or something. Every once in a while, most photographers, me included, get into a funk and flirt with the idea of quitting and some of them do. When I went to college, my own photographic avocation went on ice for more than twenty years, partly because I no longer had the time for the post-processing and partly because I was getting sick and tired of the limitations of my equipment and my budget, which at the time consisted of monochrome from a fixed focal length lens because that was what I could afford. By the time I could afford better, my interest had gone almost completely dormant. It didn't help that I found out about digital processing about that time and it took until 1999 before digital photography that was up to my standards became affordable. I do not recommend quitting.

    The image above looks pretty much okay and is generally better-composed than your average casual or beginning photographer would come up with. It has some leading lines that pull the viewer's eye into the image, though I would also have liked to see an image from a point several feet left of the photographer's current position but framed similarly to get a better view along the quay. Such an image would have given an even better set of leading lines to the buildings along the shore, but perhaps at the expense of what I take to be an old-fashioned side wheeler on the river. This version has its merits that my suggested viewpoint might not; nevertheless, I would have shot both. That's one of the nice things about digital: you don't have to choose; you can shoot both. I might have also devoted an image to the plaque toward the lower right and taken a walk down the pier, perhaps even considering standing on one of the benches for a higher viewpoint and to de-emphasize the construction fence and barriers in front of the blue building.

  3. #3

    Small town in North Carolina

    I think you have an eye for composition, and feel like.. if the need to express yourself artistically wasn't there you wouldn't be asking the question about whether quitting is a good idea. If it was you wouldn't have to ask IMHO anyway.

    As for the image, clean your sensor or do your PP cleanup! The image is well composed from my POV, as the scoundrel before me said, if it's not becoming a choir keep on keeping on brother.


  4. #4

    Small town in North Carolina

    Don't give up! We are our own worst critics and you are not going to be happy with everything you shoot.

    What small town in NC is it? I am curious since I live here. It looks like something on the coast

  5. #5

    Small town in North Carolina

    Mike is right: your sensor needs cleaning. I counted shadows from at least four dust specks and one piece of lint visible in the sky of your image. I circled the locations in a half-sized copy of your image before I noticed that you haven't given me permission to edit your image yet. (Oops!) If you aren't up to a wet clean of your sensor - I haven't done one of those in more than ten years of interchangeable lens usage with dSLR cameras - you can usually dislodge the larger dust motes with a rocket blower, which is a big air bulb with a plastic nozzle on the end. I am not familiar with your particular dSLR model, but Canon interchangeable lens cameras these days have an ultrasonic cleaner that shakes the image. It helps if you point the camera's lens toward the grounde when the cleaner activates so that gravity pulls the offending speck away from the imager. If I am not mistaken, you can activate them manually from the menu and they are set up by factory default to shake your sensor every time you turn off your camera with the switch. However, these aren't always enough, hence the need for an air blower.

    The f-number at which you take your picture affects both the diameter and the intensity of the spot, with wider (lower-numbered) f-numbers making fainter but bigger spots. After cleaning, you can check the clean's effectiveness by remounting your lens nd pointing your camera at a featureless field such a clear blue sky or a gray overcast one or a front-lit shadowless blank wall, with the lens set (manually) for the blurriest focus you can get. I have a macro lens that closes down to f/32 that I use for this purpose. Full telephoto works best because you can usually get a fuzzier focus and you can make do with a smaller featureless field. Then, in your image editor, crank up the contrast so any spots that show up will be easy-to-see black spots on a bright background.

    In this image, it will be easy enough to clone out the spots, but they will show up on every image you take, more or less, until the offending dust is removed. On the bright side, the darker and more offensive the spot, the bigger and easier to remove the offending particle will be. The bigger ones might even be visible to the naked eye if you look directly at the imager, which will require locking up the mirror as you would for a manual clean cycle.

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