Peter Elliston  

Full Steam ahead by Peter Elliston

October 2021 - Full Steam ahead

October 2021 - Peter Elliston


October 2021 - Peter Elliston

Original 2

About the Image(s)

Details: This is a composite of two images. The original colour version was taken at a re-enactment event where characters were in 1940’s style uniforms or clothes. This guy was in a Merchant Navy uniform and had a great face. He also had a pipe which emitted perhaps more than its right amount of fake smoke! Anyway, I quite like him and have titled the pic accordingly. But I also felt I had to give him a better context so I have moved him in from of a totally inappropriate ship as the one in the background is actually the HMS Britannia, which was the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh’s vessel of choice for seeing the world and which is now permanently moored up in Edinburgh and is a great tourist attraction. I also felt this worked better in mono, so that’s the final result. The original of the sailor was taken on my Fuji XT3 1/60 F10 ISO 400.

7 comments posted

Bev Caine   Bev Caine
(Groups 48 & 80)
What a great image. I don't think it needs anything in the way of improvement. The change of background is perfect and the monochrome is undoubtedly a winner.   Posted: 10/03/2021 08:33:34

Michael Hrankowski   Michael Hrankowski
Peter, I think you've got a very successful image here that works particularly well in mono. Both images are well exposed and exhibit a broad range of tones and the detail you captured in the man's uniform and face makes your composite pleasing and interesting for me to view. Two things you might consider: First, I would have liked see the focus on the ship more closely match the slightly soft background in the original image. With your chosen perspective, your image, had it not been a composite, looks like it could have been taken with a portrait lens - maybe 80mm - in which case one would expect the background to be soft. The other thing that caught my eye was that the smoke appears to be cut off abruptly. This is a tough edit and I wish I could lend some advice as to how you might make it look more natural, but unfortunately, my Photoshop skills are not that advanced. These are small things that do not negate a job well done.   Posted: 10/03/2021 16:13:54

Gerard Blair   Gerard Blair
Peter - I know this is a little off the topic of your photo but I wanted to point out a set of portraits of Daniel Craig (007) in the NY Times The first image actually showed the "set" for the photo shoot - and I was taken with its simplicity. Knowing that you have friends that are willing to dress up (e.g. the guy in the railway carriage) I wondered if this might interest you. For instance, the "smoke" would be easily retained against a black background when you added another image (by choosing the appropriate layer blend mode).   Posted: 10/03/2021 18:55:21
Comment Image

Barbara Asacker   Barbara Asacker
Hi Peter,
You certainly have shown a command of the editing tools. Your composite is perfect. Fake smoke didn't look fake to me. Sharp details throughout. You caught the twinkle in his eyes. Nice story of the old days.   Posted: 10/04/2021 13:06:44

Randy Andre   Randy Andre
Very nice composite. Great image of the "sailor", detailed, eyes captured, well done. Adding the ship to the background is also done well but I also think that it should have been blurred a bit. Great story.   Posted: 10/09/2021 04:01:33

Gerard Blair   Gerard Blair
Peter - I do think this a striking portrait - the act of smoking a pipe seems to me to be a great way of avoiding a too posed subject because I offers constrained action as well as the interest in the smoke itself.
There is a "but" though (although I am taught not to say "but" in these comments). I think the "exhaled" smoke becomes a problem found in the B&W image: over the subject's right chest and raised hand I think I see the lingering smoke of the last breath - and it seems for me to muddy the jacket and the hand itself. This does not seem to be a problem in color because I can more readily identify it as smoke - but in B&W I was wondering about the texture on that hand long before I understood the cause.
I think it is therefor a question of timing - or asking the subject not to breathe.   Posted: 10/11/2021 10:27:41

Linda M Medine   Linda M Medine
Peter, Great Job. I don't think I would change a thing.   Posted: 10/12/2021 13:54:09


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