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Ducks, which one?

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woodrim View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote woodrim Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Ducks, which one?
    Posted: 19 June 2017 at 17:03
I have on occasion attempted to make a high key image but it has always been a challenge. I gave it a go again with this image. I don't think it has the characteristics of a good high key image but I do like it... at least I think I do. Sometimes after looking at an image for too long, I lose any sense of objective ability to assess. I'm providing the original (processed) image and the B&W high key attempt. I suppose what I'm really asking here is if the B&W image works and if it works better than the original image. Any comments on where I've gone wrong with high key attempt is also welcome.

The image was taken with NEX-5N, ISO800 1/400 at f.6.3 using a Maksutov 3M-6A 6.3/500 Catadioptric.



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woodrim
 



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Hezu View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Hezu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 June 2017 at 17:39
I vote for the more colourful version, the first one would require more contrast to work.
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woodrim View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote woodrim Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 June 2017 at 18:03
Originally posted by Hezu Hezu wrote:

I vote for the more colourful version, the first one would require more contrast to work.


Which would be a straight B&W. To my understanding, a high key is typically absent contrast by nature, or am I mistaken?

Here is the straight B$W version.

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woodrim
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Miranda F View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Miranda F Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 June 2017 at 10:08
I admit I've never much liked high-key portraits (I prefer deep moody shadows!), but there were some excellent high-key portraits here a while ago. My understanding of the genre is that you use enough light to blow out all the shadows, and usually saturate the background too.

In the studio you can take the time and adjust the lights to get this to your satisfaction, but by the lake it is more tricky. The nearest I've come to that is with the sun behind the subject and reflecting on the water in a blaze. Then you have the choice of exposing for the bright bits (with the ducks in deep shadow), or exposing for the shadow and pushing the bright bits all white for high key.
Either way you'd have more contrast than in your picture.

To make your ducks high-key, I'd add an extreme S-shaped tone map to salvage some contrast in the ducks, but I think it might be better to try again with bright sunlight behind the ducks.
A900, A58, 5d, Dynax 4, 5, 60, 500si/600si/700si/800si, various Sony & Minolta lenses, several Tamrons, lots of MF primes and *far* too many old film cameras . . .
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woodrim View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote woodrim Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 June 2017 at 16:03
Originally posted by Miranda F Miranda F wrote:


To make your ducks high-key, I'd add an extreme S-shaped tone map to salvage some contrast in the ducks, but I think it might be better to try again with bright sunlight behind the ducks.


Thank you. The duck picture wasn't taken with that in mind, but I did take another of some egrets where I exposed for shadows. However, it was my understanding that contrast should be minimized in the final image. Is that not correct? Perhaps I should do more reading.
Regards,

woodrim
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Miranda F View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Miranda F Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 June 2017 at 16:14
The overall contrast between light and dark extremes is less because all the whites are burned out, but you still need a few stops of dynamic range there, otherwise weak contrast makes for a weak image ...
There are quite a few web sites about high-key but most are aimed at portraits. Reading rarely does any harm
A900, A58, 5d, Dynax 4, 5, 60, 500si/600si/700si/800si, various Sony & Minolta lenses, several Tamrons, lots of MF primes and *far* too many old film cameras . . .
 



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