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Author Topic: Grey Shires in Full Dress  (Read 2209 times)

John R Smith

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Grey Shires in Full Dress
« on: January 25, 2011, 09:33:19 AM »

Good afternoon from a very wet, wintry Cornwall. So to escape the gloom we will return to last summer, and a snap from one of the local shows. I think you might have to really like horses to appreciate this picture, but of course these are no ordinary horses. Rather like some people cherish old wooden boats, or others lovingly restore classic cars, there are those who breed, raise and train the descendants of the heavy horses which once ploughed all our fields and harvested the crops, in the days before the tractor displaced them forever. These splendid animals are now cosseted, groomed, dressed up in all their finery and paraded for our delight in the ring. Your comments are welcomed, as always.

John
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tokengirl

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Re: Grey Shires in Full Dress
« Reply #1 on: January 25, 2011, 09:54:03 AM »

Lovely creatures.  :)

The tones are gorgeous, but the framing is maybe a little too tight for me?
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jasonrandolph

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Re: Grey Shires in Full Dress
« Reply #2 on: January 25, 2011, 10:31:22 AM »

They look like magnificent animals!  I agree with tokengirl.  The tones are excellent, but maybe a step back would capture their magnificence a little better.  Also (and this may not even have been possible while you were shooting), if you could capture one of the horses' eyes, I think it would be an improvement.  However, it is still quite nicely captured.  Think of it as icing on the cake.  Nice work.

RSL

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Re: Grey Shires in Full Dress
« Reply #3 on: January 25, 2011, 10:50:50 AM »

John, It's a grand shot of beautiful animals. I like the framing too.
« Last Edit: January 25, 2011, 12:11:43 PM by RSL »
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degrub

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Re: Grey Shires in Full Dress
« Reply #4 on: January 25, 2011, 11:22:27 AM »

a finer mug shot will not be found  ;)
The horses seem to have a bit of devil in their expression as well.

Frank
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popnfresh

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Re: Grey Shires in Full Dress
« Reply #5 on: January 25, 2011, 12:58:22 PM »

A very handsome horse portrait. The cropping doesn't bother me, but I probably would have opened it up just a tad on the right side, if possible.
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John R Smith

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Re: Grey Shires in Full Dress
« Reply #6 on: January 26, 2011, 03:31:54 AM »

Folks

Thank you for your input. I seem to be surrounded by horses and horsey people where I live, and I have kept horses (and a donkey!) myself in the past, so I think I have a certain fondness for them. As you have pointed out, the framing is very tight, and I have to confess this was forced on me and was not initially an artistic choice. The background was a real mess of parked cars and trucks, ice-cream stalls, loudspeaker stands, etc, as usual at these events. This was all on the immediate right of the picture, so I just had to frame the heads and hope for the best. I was determined to get at least one shot of these greys, because the harness just looks so good on a light background.

John
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Patricia Sheley

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Re: Grey Shires in Full Dress
« Reply #8 on: January 26, 2011, 10:47:55 AM »

here's a thought...if you wanted to spend a little time with scaling the bit you have to the right of their nostrils you might sneak in just enough room to breathe...   (please pardon the red, justwanted to give you a quick screen clip for thought ) If you felt like spending the time and worked it for transitions might do the trick...
« Last Edit: January 26, 2011, 10:52:59 AM by Patricia Sheley »
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wolfnowl

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Re: Grey Shires in Full Dress
« Reply #9 on: January 26, 2011, 02:10:31 PM »

It's a great image to start with; I like Patricia's addition to the right of the frame.  I'd also be tempted to raise the light a little bit along the bottom so it's not all one black area, but that's just me.

Mike.
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John R Smith

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Re: Grey Shires in Full Dress
« Reply #10 on: January 27, 2011, 03:35:50 AM »

Thanks, Patricia and Mike.

What you have roughed out there Patricia is how I would have liked to have shot it in the first place, for sure. But I'm just not good enough at that sort of retouch (and I don't have PS, just Lightroom), so I wouldn't be confident I could do a decent job on it. I'm certainly not against that sort of retouching on principle, though. If it was undetectable in the final print, then why not? Mike, I deliberately burned down the bottom of the frame because there were various car bumpers and other junk which were catching the light down there, and I wanted to lose them.

Well done, all of you. As ever you have spotted and shone the spotlight on the weaknesses and little snagettinos in my print, which were predictably caused by Smith having to work around the cock-ups that he made out there in the field. And it has made me re-think it, and plan to do better in future.

Still, one thing I am pleased about with this picture is the way it demonstrates the quality of the old Zeiss 80mm Planar (1972 example). The jpeg, as usual, is a poor cipher for the print I have at home, where you can read the maker's name on the harness and distinguish every individual hair and whisker.

John
« Last Edit: January 27, 2011, 04:42:15 AM by John R Smith »
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Josh-H

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Re: Grey Shires in Full Dress
« Reply #11 on: January 27, 2011, 05:53:23 AM »

John, It's a grand shot of beautiful animals. I like the framing too.

+1 - And it would be remiss of me not to add that the tones are simply sumptuous. Wonderful.

Patricia Sheley

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Re: Grey Shires in Full Dress
« Reply #12 on: January 27, 2011, 12:47:23 PM »

+1 - And it would be remiss of me not to add that the tones are simply sumptuous. Wonderful.

Still, one thing I am pleased about with this picture is the way it demonstrates the quality of the old Zeiss 80mm Planar (1972 example). The jpeg, as usual, is a poor cipher for the print I have at home, where you can read the maker's name on the harness and distinguish every individual hair and whisker.

John
Absolutely concur Josh, and John, having that great old Zeiss does nothing on its own...like a fine, refined and well bred equine it can only really shine in the hands of a skilled and sensitive and aware handler...
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Riaan van Wyk

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Re: Grey Shires in Full Dress
« Reply #13 on: January 28, 2011, 02:19:16 AM »

"Grand shot, gorgous/ sumptous tones, wonderfull.."

I can't think anything else to say John- it's all been said.
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