Image exposure - Poll  

29 members have voted

  1. 1. Which image do you think is more saleable?

    • Image on the left (darker)
      13
    • Image on the right (lighter)
      13
    • No preference
      3


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Posted (edited)

I was discussing the exposure adjustment of one of my high contrast images with a fellow Alamy contributor and we were trying to decide which of the two images below we prefer and which might be the more saleable . The image is very contrasty, so contains some clipped highlights and shadows, but what about the mid-tones? Realising that this is a very individual judgment, which depends not only on the observer but also on the settings of their monitor we thought it might be interesting to get a wider opinion. Hence this poll.

 

Screen_Shot_2018-06-02_at_11.49.38.png

 

Mark

Edited by M.Chapman

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I honestly think I would prefer somewhere in between.

 

Allan

 

 

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Posted (edited)

Personally I'd brighten the one on the left to the level of the right, and then reduce the whites and/or highlights so that the glare/excess exposure is gone on the front of the boat and buildings. As they are, I prefer the one on the left.

 

Bear in mind that not all viewers of this thread have their brightness set the same.

Edited by Katie

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Should you not be asking this of Alamy clients? 

 

 

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25 minutes ago, Matt Limb said:

Should you not be asking this of Alamy clients? 

 

Ideally yes. But so far as I'm aware there's not a forum for Alamy clients where I can easily ask.

I'm hoping that since many Alamy contributors sell more than I do that they might have built up valuable experience as to what sells.

 

Mark

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56 minutes ago, Allan Bell said:

 

I honestly think I would prefer somewhere in between.

 

Allan

 

 

Agreed. Just needs the mid tones lifting a little on the left side one.

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Prefer that on the right, but might have gone for a more punchy sky. Darker blue whiter white.

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6 minutes ago, Bryan said:

Prefer that on the right, but might have gone for a more punchy sky. Darker blue whiter white.

Maybe pull up the blue saturation in LR, unless the boat starts to look dayglo. I do that quite a bit. It's an argument for shooting RAW all by itself.

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5 hours ago, Allan Bell said:

 

I honestly think I would prefer somewhere in between.

 

Allan

 

 

 

+1

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I'm in the "in between" camp. Could just be my monitor, though.

 

 

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"In between" for me too.  Boats and sky from left image, sea and town from right image would be my preferred option.  

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Posted (edited)

Regarding "saleability" (not sure that's a word), I have quite a number of older images that are probably too dark, and they continue to license. I used to think that it was best to leave images a bit dark so that clients could brighten them to their liking. I also laboured far too long with a poorly calibrated monitor (my bad).

Edited by John Mitchell

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8 hours ago, ReeRay said:

Agreed. Just needs the mid tones lifting a little on the left side one.

 

Agreed again, and to get to that point I've found that when you lighten or darker an image, adding a touch of contrast makes it look normal. 

 

Edo

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Can't say on saleability, as if I knew that, I'd be selling more! But for me & on my screen, it's a mixture of the two, as the right hand one is too light and the left too dark, for me, bringing out the shadows on the one of the left would be easier, I think.

Chris

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Posted (edited)

It appears that it was a sunny day when the image was made. Between these two versions, I think the one on the left better conveys that, and the one on the right looks a little washed out (eg, starts to lose the diagonal shadow across the front of the wheelhouse). I'd start with raising the exposure level of the one on the left, and go from there.

Edited by Bill Kuta

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If it were up to me, I'd apply an S curve to the image on the left.
http://dondouglas.com/screen-shot-S-curve.jpg

  • Like 1

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Wow - thanks for all the comments and votes so far. 

 

Mark

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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, DDoug said:

If it were up to me, I'd apply an S curve to the image on the left.
http://dondouglas.com/screen-shot-S-curve.jpg

 

That's interesting. I wasn't expecting anyone to suggest increasing mid-tone contrast on what is already a very contrasty image. But I just tried it and quite like the result. Certainly at thumbnail size and on my calibrated monitor (White point 6500K Gamma 2.2) I think it looks more appealing. The blue sky looks better although the white cloud looks a little more burnt out.

 

Mark

Edited by M.Chapman

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22 minutes ago, M.Chapman said:

The blue sky looks better although the white cloud looks a little more burnt out.

That's true. I often treat skies differently, putting two different treatments on layers, selecting the sky and erasing.

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I prefer the one on the right but I would use viveza 2 to darken the sky.

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I voted for the brighter one - it just looks a bit more lively to me. I suspect that I am over-doing it myself but tend to go for a brighter look these days. 

 

That's Oban - to me it looks better on a nice sunny day with the stone and water lit up.

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9 hours ago, geogphotos said:

That's Oban - to me it looks better on a nice sunny day with the stone and water lit up.

 

Agreed, tide wasn't out either, which helps.

 

Mark

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Posted (edited)

I voted for the one on the right as I think the colour of the sea is much better. But agree that the sky could be darkened a little with a gradient filter in Lightroom and bring out any highlights. I’d also saturate the colours of the boats. I tend to brighten more than I used to now as well.

Edited by Sally

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On ‎03‎/‎06‎/‎2018 at 07:55, M.Chapman said:

 

That's interesting. I wasn't expecting anyone to suggest increasing mid-tone contrast on what is already a very contrasty image. But I just tried it and quite like the result. Certainly at thumbnail size and on my calibrated monitor (White point 6500K Gamma 2.2) I think it looks more appealing. The blue sky looks better although the white cloud looks a little more burnt out.

 

Mark

Somewhere between the two. I don't think there is enough cloud to worry about a bit of clipping. 

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Many thanks for all the excellent constructive comments and poll votes. As a result of which I've made some adjustments and uploaded a replacement image. In the end I used the S curve adjustment proposed by DDoug above.

 

Colourful fishing boats moored in Oban harbour, Argyll and Bute, Scotland, UK Stock Photo

 

Mark

 

 

  • Like 1

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