Lace Lichen

And a RP, softening the top, which has been driving me nuts but I didn’t take the time to fix it. There isn’t a great fix so this will have to do.

Here is the second DMap stack, showing the crop used:

Critique Style Requested: Standard

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


I found this piece of lichen on the Dogwood trees and thought it was interesting enough to photograph, but there was a slight breeze and I couldn’t capture a stack without the bottom half moving too much. I hoped one or two of the shots that caught focus on that portion would be without movement but no. I needed 4 frames to get that section sharply focused and all had movement relative to one another, although the SS was adequate. So I tried something I had wondered about but never tried. I have noticed that Zerene will align for the sort of movement where the entire object moves slightly in the frame if there is no BG detail against which it would show movement. There was no significant detail here so I went back to LR and did a crop of the 4 frames where the bottom part of the lichen was in focus (shown here) and tried running a stack of just those. And it worked – they aligned well. In PS I layered that result over the original stacked image. The pixel dimensions were identical and I put it in Difference mode and moved it around till I found the point at which the two aligned, and masked out above that.

Specific Feedback

All comments welcome!

Technical Details

Screen Shot 2023-05-07 at 7.12.09 AM

Minor tonal adjustments in LR and into Zerene for a stack of about 15-20. I had to resort to some trickery to overcome movement of the bottom part – described above. A little BG work to simplify edges on the final result.

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These look great, Diane! :slight_smile:

So delicate and hearty looking at the same time! :slight_smile:

I think I like the top one best because the branch adds context and appeal, especially with the angle into and out of of the frame.
Nice lighting, too!

Diane, this is really nice. I agree with @Merv that the first one appeals to me best because the branch adds context and appeal. Perfectly captured. I can’t think of anything that would improve this.

Thanks, @Merv and @Shirley_Freeman! But the second is not a RP – it is to show the crop of the initial images (a subset of 4) that had the bottom part of the lichen in focus but that part was moving between each of the 4 exposures. With no other detail in the BG of those images, the software did manage to correct for the movement and align them and do a good stack. So I put that aligned TIFF as a layer over the TIFF where most of the stack was sharp but this bottom part was not sharp due to movement. The pixel sizes were identical, it was just a crop, so I could move it to align it to the main image and let it cover the poor alignment in that bottom part due to movement.

I did intend to do a RP to soften the top branches but haven’t had time. Maybe tomorrow.

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OK – I did a RP, softening the top, which has been bothering me.

That was a crafty solution to your problem, Diane. I must remember it next time we get wind (very soon!). Softening the top allows our eyes to flow down to the drop with its clear refraction. So - I Iike the final resutl very much, and could only suggest you remove the bright green spot, but I think you’ve shown enough patience on this one!!

Okay, I think the softening of the top helped.

Thanks, @Mike_Friel and @Shirley_Freeman! I should have put in a comparison of what Zerene was able to do aligning the whole image – it couldn’t deal with the differential movement in the lower portion (shown zoomed in here just for clarity) – until I tried it on a crop with no other things to align to.

This can’t be just translation – it has to be more of a pendulum swing movement.

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