Faces in a crowd

Critique Style Requested: Standard

The photographer is looking for generalized feedback about the aesthetic and technical qualities of their image.


The hardest part of taking this one was deciding where it should begin and end.

Specific Feedback

Cactus spines are translucent and do well with back lighting. They’re not uniformly translucent, though, and I always wonder whether I should try to even out the highlights or just accept variations. Here I did a little of both but suggestions would be welcome.

Technical Details

I don’t think the technical details really matter here.


Great choice to go backlit and black and white on this one, Don. The thumbnail certainly evoked people. Very well seen and executed.

Wonderful rim lighting with some hints of canyon light!! Great title, too! My only useful suggestion would be some small bits of border patrol, but with the crowd scene vibe you could argue against tidying up.

Well seen and very imaginative!

Dennis, Diane, thanks for the comments.

Very striking image and great title to drive the concept home. I am wondering if lightening the center of the image for just a bit more texture on the central figures might be of benefit?

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Don, excellent great title and image! I love the rim lighting around the cacti and the way they lean in. So much character to the whole scene. The black and white edit was a great choice. I like the subtle side lighting on some of the cactus. Great work!

Tomas and Alfredo, thanks.

This is great… my only nit is to try to even out the exposure throughout the cactus areas - the ones at center seem a bit brighter than the rest.

I see what you mean, Matt. I’ll give that some thought.

I dunno – for me the lighter center area is important as the center of attention. Even in a crowd there is usually one person or group who stand out and grab your attention.

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Love the title! Oh, and yes the image too! :slight_smile: Great job with both the back-lighting and for going monochrome here. Most definitely see the reference of the “faces in the crowd”

I’m not sure I can offer any suggestions and I don’t have any nitpicks. I suppose there’s a crop in here; in fact I see a fairly easy crop line about 1/3 in from the left. Perhaps a square crop? But not necessarily to make it better, but as an alternate view. I’m good with the lighter cacti in the middle as well.

Great job with this! Great eye and vision.


Thanks for commenting, Lon.

I agree with you that other crops might make sense here. I try to stick with a 2X3 aspect ratio for purely practical reasons. It makes it easier and cheaper to buy mats and frames if I decide to enlarge the image, which I do fairly often. If it weren’t for that, I’d crop a lot of images somewhat differently.

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Very well spotted and executed. Needless to say I love the title. Some of them seem to wave at the viewer. Very clever. Thanks for sharing.

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