Ice Orchid With Leaf

Ice Orchid and Leaf Color

Critique Style Requested: Standard

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


I was inspired by @Diane Miller and @Mark Hopgood’s recent beautiful Black-and-White Flower post. Here is my attempt, which also includes the color version.

Specific Feedback

The tone of B&W
Preference of color or B&W

Technical Details

Black and White converted in DXO Silver Effects

Critique Template

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  • Vision and Purpose:
  • Conceptual:
  • Emotional Impact and Mood:
  • Composition:
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  • Depth and Dimension:
  • Color:
  • Lighting:
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An interesting idea, but for me the delicacy of the orchid’s shapes have too much competition from the heavy texture brought out in the petals. That breaks up the silvery mid-tones that can have such a visual impact in B/W.

I love the hint of detail in the BG in the color version and my taste is to have a subliminal hint of “something” in a very dark BG, and even more interestingly with a random distribution. That fills the super-negative space, which is an issue in a case like this where is no real relationship between the leaves and the flower – just two items floating in a void.

I don’t mean to be too negative – it’s a very interesting idea – but for me, something just isn’t optimal. There are probably other very different opinions out there.

I prefer the B&W as you have these presented, Steve. I do think the color version could be improved with a little less contrast, particularly in the flowers. They look fine with this level of contrast in B&W, but in color they start looking “gritty” to my eye, which isn’t how I feel about flowers.

I really love the Black and White edit of your image. There is a simplicity and tone that i really enjoy !!!

Thanks everyone for your comments.
What I like about the image is the harshness and disjointed crop.
Like my dying plants, I find it intriguing to do the opposite of what is expected with a subject.
That is my vision, but I understand everyone has theirs.

You presented an orchid that makes me see orchids differently. The gritty texture in the petals is eye-opening. While I have appreciated a stem of orchids flying up from the plant, seeing this stem no longer connected to the plant is sorta cool. (might see what the effect is of darkening highlights on the last segment of the stem).
Normally I appreciate at least a subliminal texture rather than a solid black BG, but this is OK for me, given the abstract nature of the monochrome treatment of a colorful flower.