Barbara Gore  

Storm Front by Barbara Gore

November 2021 - Storm Front

About the Image(s)

This image was taken this past summer at Folly Beach, SC. The sky had great movement, the ocean was powerful, and the waves hitting the sea wall had nice streaks.
Because I liked all three elements I basically ignored the rule of thirds and decided to photograph dead center with the horizon line right in the middle. While editing I still wasn’t sure if
I wanted to switch my emphasis to the sky or the sea for more emotional impact so I left it as is. Also, black and white isn’t my forte but I felt it added more punch. I’m on the fence about this image so I’m looking forward to your critique.

Canon 5D MarkIV
24-105mm @ 24mm
ISO 50
F/10 @ 1/6 sec
Gitzo tripod

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

Bill Peake   Bill Peake
Black and White is not my forte either, so take my comments with a grain of salt. Overall I like the image. The seawall in the middle of the image does not really bother me, it creates a nice leading line into the rock, sea and sky. I think if you added a little more contrast to the sky, it would increase the emotional impact of the image. The sea is a little flat, since you used a low shutter speed to blur the water, so adding contrast in the sky would offset that flatness. The other thing you might want to consider is slightly sharpening the first 3 pilings and the foreground portion of the seawall. Nice work!   Posted: 11/04/2021 17:14:12
Barbara Gore   Barbara Gore
Thanks Bill. Your suggestions are good! I tend to hold back on contrast but now realize that's what I'm missing. Appreciate your help!   Posted: 11/07/2021 14:39:06

Larry Treadwell   Larry Treadwell
Hi Barbara
Please note the following are just my opinions, if you feel differently, thatis perfectly all right.

Composition should be chosen to make the image feel as powerful as possible. Never EVER feel confined to following the so called rules. In this case the pier BELONGS in the middle. You put it in the perfect location.

I feel you have enough action in the water (lines and swirls) to make it exciting. However, the image does seem a bit "grey" and flat. working with the black and white points will help to resolve that issue.

It should be noted that this is a pretty good image as it is. However let me mention that many piers are photographed in the manner you have chosen. The way to get stronger images for competition is to be original. May I suggest that shooting from a lower angle may add some impact Remember that all 90 percent of all images are taken by a person standing up with the camera at eye level. Lowering the camera angle would make this feel more original and may add impact.   Posted: 11/04/2021 17:33:31
Barbara Gore   Barbara Gore
Thanks for your feedback Larry. When I looked at the image I didn't see flat until I played with the black/white points and contrast. Definitely makes a big difference especially in B/W. I agree with your point about camera position unfortunately because it was windy with both sand and water spraying everywhere I didn't want to risk saltwater in my camera. I know it's a poor excuse....   Posted: 11/07/2021 14:44:42
Larry Treadwell   Larry Treadwell
Just for situations such as this I purchased a "raincoat" from a company called Lenscoat. It allows for the camera to be completely covered and still mounts on a tripod. I used a lens hood for the lens and add a UV filter, or polarizer on the lens to protect the front element. The raincoat fits in my camera bag and is always available. Just a thought.   Posted: 11/07/2021 14:56:33
Barbara Gore   Barbara Gore
I actually have a Lenscoat and it was safely tucked away in my jeep lol.   Posted: 11/08/2021 08:39:39
Larry Treadwell   Larry Treadwell
:-) LOL   Posted: 11/08/2021 16:23:21

Michael Jack   Michael Jack
I agree your choice to place the image in the middle works in the image. It provides a sense of balance that would otherwise be awkward if you tried the rule of thirds for example. Some suggestions just for consideration: Add more contrast and ensure your histogram goes all the way to white and black points. Subtly dodge the pier (but not the bottom of the image) and add some texture/clarity. Crop the sky down from the top and add more drama to it (dehaze in LR). These should all be subtle. Again, some ideas.   Posted: 11/05/2021 08:33:11
Barbara Gore   Barbara Gore
Thanks Michael. Your points are well taken and I've already tried them out. When I look at the image above compared to the suggestions about black & white points and contrast, it is definitely a flat image! Thanks for your feedback!   Posted: 11/07/2021 14:49:46

Richard White   Richard White
Barbara, I really enjoyed this image. I might suggest darkening the clouds at the horizon, to give it just a little impact. Your decision to put the pier in the center was right on for this photo. I'm not sure I would have gotten lower, as Larry suggested, as I think you would have gotten all of piers looking like one group. Bill's idea of a little more contrast in the sky would give it a little more impact . Nicely done!   Posted: 11/06/2021 18:07:58
Barbara Gore   Barbara Gore
Thanks Richard! I have taken everyone's suggestions and can now see the difference and power the image has with just changing a few things. I appreciate your feedback!   Posted: 11/07/2021 14:51:55

Arne Skinlo   Arne Skinlo
I like pictures with drama and this one has a lot of it! 1/6s seems to give just the little hint of blur that creates movement. My suggestions for improvements:

I have nothing against breaking the rules when it is done intentionally, but to me, it would work better to crop to square form the top as you still have enough sky and give more emphasis to the pier and the sea.

In a very subtle way, darken the darks on the sea on the left side of the pier. Luminosity masks will do a good job if you are using that.   Posted: 11/07/2021 03:04:32

Barbara Gore   Barbara Gore
Thanks Arne. I like your suggestion about the luminosity mask and I will give it a try. I still struggle with losing the sky when cropping but I will definitely try it out. Thanks for your feedback!   Posted: 11/07/2021 15:02:43

Nan Jiang   Nan Jiang
A nice B&W photo. I like the straight line of tree stump which lead my eyes to the rock. 1/6 sec shutter is helpful to display the wave. Judged from ISO, it seems you didn't take ND filter. But if you do, maybe you can slow down the shutter to 30 seconds, I guess the tree stump should be perfectly integrated into the water fog. Another option, maybe it's interesting if a people standing at the lumber plank end.   Posted: 11/17/2021 06:38:53

Ian Chantler   Ian Chantler
(Groups 4 & 31)
Hi Barbara
Absolutely love this is as it is, mono so suits and adds to the impact of the image for me, normally I would suggest cropping down from the top but not in this case there is so much in that sky and compliments the lower half, powerful image beautifully presented.   Posted: 11/17/2021 12:38:01