Robert Schleif  


Untitled by Robert Schleif

January 2020 - Untitled

About the Image(s)

I am attracted to the few leaves on this curving set of wet stone steps beside the Japanese lantern. I'm not satisfied with the final product however as it feels too messy and complicated. I suppose I should just have looked for another subject.


This round’s discussion is now closed!
20 comments posted

Dorinda Wills   Dorinda Wills
I like the bw treatment for this. I do agree that it is too busy. To solve this, you might try cropping the top to just above the topmost step. It puts more attention to the steps and the lantern. (I actually didn't notice the lantern until you mentioned it). If you were to go back, or find a similar scene, you might try putting your camera closer to the ground for a different angle. That might put more emphasis on the leaves on the stones.   Posted: 01/02/2020 14:03:07

Robert Schleif   Robert Schleif
Those are very helpful suggestions. I'll give them a try and I hope to be able to post a new attempt at this shot before the end of the month. It's funny how my mind could blot out all that distracting business in the shot and be entranced by only the steps, leaves, and lantern.   Posted: 01/02/2020 19:36:58
Robert Schleif   Robert Schleif
It rained last night, so the steps were wet again this morning and I tried again. I was not able to find a camera position that significantly improved the image. Therefore, I diddled around with my submission, and while it is not really very good, I think it is better than my first submission.   Posted: 01/03/2020 12:58:42
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Dorinda Wills   Dorinda Wills
I do like this version much better.
  Posted: 01/03/2020 13:00:13

Tom Carnahan   Tom Carnahan
Robert, you have a good eyefor composition. The second photo is much cleaner and holds the viewers eye. Good work.   Posted: 01/11/2020 13:12:52

Judy Merson   Judy Merson
I like the leading line texture and sharpness of the stones Perhaps you could selectively slightly blur the sides to contrast with the sharp stones This might reduce the slight busyness I like the wet rocks, but I liked the light area at the top since it made me think of being drawn to a dreamy place   Posted: 01/11/2020 20:59:30
Robert Schleif   Robert Schleif
Here is what your idea looks like. I like both it and my revised version better than the original.   Posted: 01/12/2020 08:24:15
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Stephen Levitas   Stephen Levitas
(Group 32)
You folks are having a great and instructive discussion about this image. It's rare that the photographer can go right back and try again. I'm in Monochrome Group 32, so this is a very interesting shot for me.
You might consider that the top half of your original is a separate composition, like this:   Posted: 01/12/2020 15:21:18
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Robert Schleif   Robert Schleif
My gosh, this is yet another version that is better than my original submission. I like that the lantern is more prominent in this.   Posted: 01/12/2020 19:36:23

Jon Joyce   Jon Joyce
I really like this image, particularly the mystery aspect - where is this path lwadng? Another way of dealing with the problems noted by others would be to turn the image into a night scene: reducing the overall exposure and using local lighting from the lantern to both lighten the stones and some of the foliage. It would give you more control over what gets subdued overall.   Posted: 01/14/2020 10:12:49

Jessica Manelis   Jessica Manelis
I think it does have the potential as a black and white photo, but I agree that it is hard to determine what the focal point of the image is. I do like Stephen's cropping suggestion where the lantern becomes more prominent in the image. Jon's idea is interesting as well. I would love to see how that image would turn out.   Posted: 01/14/2020 10:20:54

Robert Schleif   Robert Schleif
In light of Jon's suggestion and Jessica's interest, I'm quite interested in putting a real light in the lantern and taking the picture while there is enough evening light that the steps away from the lantern can just be discerned. In my mind this will shift the focus from the wet steps to the lantern--another picture, interesting still, and perhaps better yet.   Posted: 01/14/2020 10:38:14

Robert Schleif   Robert Schleif
Not exactly easy.   Posted: 01/14/2020 18:48:29
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Robert Schleif   Robert Schleif
Here I've made it appear that almost all the light on the scene comes from the lantern.   Posted: 01/15/2020 08:53:29
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Dorinda Wills   Dorinda Wills
This has in fact been a great discussion. Thank you, Robert, for your willingness to experiment and show us the results. Of all the variations, I do like the final one the best.
  Posted: 01/15/2020 12:36:47
Robert Schleif   Robert Schleif
Now, I want some fog so the light beams can be seen.   Posted: 01/15/2020 12:55:49
Dorinda Wills   Dorinda Wills
An interesting project. Good that you can go back again.
  Posted: 01/15/2020 18:03:06
Jon Joyce   Jon Joyce
Oh, Robert, you have nailed it!! This is the image I first imagined when I first studied your image. It retains and greatly enhances the mystery that first caught my eye with your photograph, the breath of tone from dark to light, the emphasis on the path to ?. Outstanding photograph, Robert! Congrats.

  Posted: 01/25/2020 20:07:15

Leonid Shectman   Leonid Shectman
it is a good picture only the lantern on the right side should be remove, it taking attention from the mane steps.   Posted: 01/20/2020 17:43:08
Robert Schleif   Robert Schleif
I suspect that your comment refers to my original submission. I agree that it is nonessential in the original, but in the next three, I feel that it balances the image and, of course, the lantern is essential in the final two versions.   Posted: 01/22/2020 08:46:59