Valerie Pohio  

Autumn Closing by Valerie Pohio

June 2020 - Autumn Closing

June 2020 - Valerie Pohio


About the Image(s)

I have attached my submission, Autumn Closing, below.
The image was taken outside our front gate last week as the last colours of Autumn faded. This one tree is holding on to its leaves and the late afternoon light was quite lovely. I took a little time in Post Pro messing with this to get the effect I wanted. Firstly the original colour image was cleaned of a few dust spots and then put through curves. I extended the canvas at the bottom as I wanted a little more of a lead in to the tree. I wanted it to contrast against the orchard, grasses and poplar trees with their dead leaves. I then used the rectangular selection tool in PS to take a section of road and then put it on its own layer. I widened the selection using the transform tool, added a layer mask and used the brush to blend the bottom of the photo and the new section. Following this, I used a black and white adjustment layer and lowered the opacity a little to retain very slight colour. Off to Nik and Silver Efex where I found a filter which gave me the effect I wanted. I made some local adjustments and then back into PS where I used a warming filter to pull the whole lot together. The black and white was too cold for Autumn and I wanted to bring together the yellow leaves of the last tree and the rusty browns of the other trees and grasses.
My camera settings were all wrong as I leapt out of the car to grab the light and did not check. Consequently I shot at: ISO640 (not necessary), f8 (I like to use f9/13, but f8 worked) and at a speed of 1/1600 (again, not necessary). Never mind, PS is a big help in these situations.

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

Karl Leck   Karl Leck
Hi Val, What a great scene! I clearly understand why you suddenly stopped and started taking pictures. The scene is somewhat complex and takes a little viewing time to understand. There is a horizontal demarcation just below center that divides the image into two visual and perhaps meaning parts. The line of poles on the left ends there. The road surface tonality changes there. The fence on the right is split there for a short lane and gate. A very asymmetric zen version of the image might include area above this demarcation bounded on the left end by the far left pole and on the right end by the fence break. There's a lot going on so several post processing interpretations are possible. The tree is lovely. Karl   Posted: 06/07/2020 17:23:50
Valerie Pohio   Valerie Pohio
Thanks Karl. It is actually a better image cropped at the demarcation, although I liked the long lead in for some reason, but the shadows have split the image, haven't they.   Posted: 06/12/2020 00:22:32

Marie Miller   Marie Miller
Hi Valerie,
I love how you processed the sky, it fits better with the rest of your manipulations. It has a more "desolate" feel to it, an ending to a story. The trees, once full swaying with life, becoming dormant with glimmers of what once was.   Posted: 06/09/2020 22:11:57

Judith Lesnaw   Judith Lesnaw
Val, the tonal simplicity and warm colors are pleasing and calming. I can imagine driving along and pausing a while at this spot just to enjoy being there in the restful quiet. The leading lines converging on the muted golden tree, and the mountains that rise above the tree line into the clouds add to the appeal of the composition. The image has the feel of an Andrew Wyeth painting.   Posted: 06/12/2020 11:19:29

May Meng   May Meng
I love the way you deal with the colour and let it release the taste of closure season as well as opening a new season!   Posted: 06/12/2020 22:47:08

Lauren Heerschap   Lauren Heerschap
Hi Valerie,
This has a lovely texture - I like the almost etching feel of it. Wow you worked hard at post processing. Wonderful scene, great balance of leading lines. I agree with Karl about the two shades of road and demarcation - it splits the image. If you wanted that, leave it, but I might play with making the road one long consistent color too. I"m not sure if I am distracted by the white ?trailer? reflected in the pond - I would remove it I think the subject of the photo is the tree. Death and life is well done in the portrait of this tree.   Posted: 06/21/2020 13:33:50
Valerie Pohio   Valerie Pohio
Thank you Lauren. Appreciate your comments. Yes, you're all right on the shadows on the road splitting the image. It seems so obvious to me now. Funny isn't it! I'm unclear about the pond comment though. There's no pond in the image....or trailer???   Posted: 06/21/2020 18:55:12

Sandra Irwin   Sandra Irwin
This is gorgeous! I love the nearly monotone, but touched with brown of the main parts, and the fabulous gold of the trees. I do agree with Lauren and Karl about the road -- should be one consistent line, the lighter version, in my opinion.   Posted: 06/21/2020 15:20:14
Valerie Pohio   Valerie Pohio
Thanks Sandra. Yes, the lighter version provides more contrast.   Posted: 06/21/2020 18:55:54