Critique of Moss and Mushrooms by flowerpower83

Let me start by saying that I love your watermark and your choice of placement! Very clever and very appealing.

As this is a photograph, not a piece of another medium that can be easily changed, I will gear my critique towards future pieces of this nature, and keep my fingers crossed that you may perhaps be able to return to this site to recapture the piece, as it is a very nice shot with wonderful potential!

While I certainly do enjoy the image, there are several problems. First, let me start with something simple. The Perspective is wonderful, do not change a thing about that! You have a great eye for angles here, and it really draws the viewer in to appreciate the image. The sudden end on the left side of the image leaves me feeling as though there is a 'lost edge', as the last fungi has been partially chopped out of the scene. This works if one has a very, very many of a subject lined up, but with only a few it is better to include all of them completely. My suggestion for this issue would be to either re-shoot (if possible) to include it fully, or crop the image slightly so that the final fungi is no longer visible.

The exposure, perfect for the darker portions of the image such as the moss and details of the undersides of the fungi, is overly bright in the rest of the image. So yes, the retina burning white spot does detract. It would appear that this pale log has a lot of detail in its grain that is being missed because of this, much like the fuzzy texture of the fungi. This can be easily mended if you have any kind of editing program available by bring down the highlights somewhat. My second suggestion on the matter will follow shortly.

I am aware that you have said you like your chosen focus, as well as your perspective, though I think that there are several things you need to consider here. First, the manner in which the piece is focused works best with a tighter perspective, such as when one lines up a series of objects in a perspective shot and catches the focus on either the front or rear object with sharp detail, the focus then softening as it pulls away from that point; or when the focus is caught on an object that stands out from the rest, to make it distinct from the remainder of the line up and clearly the central point of the image (regardless of whether it is actually in the center).

However, the perspective IS exceptionally perfect in regards to the second suggestion I mentioned during the lighting. Which is as follows:
If you were to make a tight crop of the image, around the portion of fungi that is in the clearest focus, it would solve several issues at once here. First; it would neutralize the effect of glare coming from the log versus the shadow in the mosses, Second; it will allow other viewers to appreciate the intense amount of focus that is present in this image, rather than having their eyes distracted by the large amount of blurred region, Third; it will solve the 'lost edge' effect mentioned at the beginning of this critique, while still retaining the lovely perspective present here!

To accomplish this I would suggest a crop to the one in focus that leaves roughly half of each of the fungi to the forward and rear of it. You can crop images in Paint (the one that comes with every computer) if you do not have other software available. Do not be afraid to get close to your subject!

I would also suggest using a 'close up' mode rather than a macro mode, it may provide a better overall focus for a piece like this if you do not want to crop it. And if (again) you do have an editing program available, you may try raising the saturation a tad, it could also help with the washing out in the brighter areas, as well as providing even more life to the image.

Wwhhhooo! That was a lot to write! And read I am sure. So I will wrap up by saying that I really like the image as a whole, it definitely caught my eye, mostly for its lovely and detailed notice of things not often photographed, and I would love to see more pieces like it in the future! I hope my critique has been of some help, and keep on shooting!
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November 14, 2009
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