Parting Shot

After finding the color was past on a recent trip to NH, I decided to pack up and head home. Up to that point I hadn’t taken a single photo. On the road out of town, maybe a mile from the hotel I spotted this little pond, which I must have passed at least twenty times on previous trips without knowing it was there right on the side of the road. Should I add some canvas to the right hand side?

What technical feedback would you like if any?

What artistic feedback would you like if any?

Pertinent technical details or techniques:

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This is a really lovely picture. I don’t think adding space to the right would change things much. You still have pines on opposite sides of the image. You could crop just to the left of the right pine tree.

I also like the real trees much more attractive than their reflections. By cropping out some of the reflections you also get rid of the 50/50 composition. This is a lot of cropping so it may not sit well with you but I believe it’s a stronger comp.

I’m glad to hear that I’m not the only one that this happens to. There were many days when I didn’t take a single image. I was getting down on myself for that.

Beautiful scene, great textures and color. Interesting haze/mist? at the distal shoreline.

I have to say that I really like @Igor_Doncov’s crop. I prefer the tension and balance of the conifer on the left and the more prominent orange tree among the partially obscured conifers to the right in his image.

I also find it somewhat distracting to see the bright sky in the reflection, for what that’s worth. I suppose you could do a modest crop from the bottom to address that if you felt it was helpful to image display.

This is quite nice. I like the uncropped version and I would add some canvas on the right to give the tree a little breathing room and balance with the left. Igor’s version works well, but I definitely prefer the original.

I much prefer the original as I like the light water at the bottom of the frame as image anchor…

I actually enjoy these kinds of autumn scenes that have a little leaf drop, as it allows you to capture a small glimpse into the surrounding forest. My preference is for the original even though it is close to a 50/50 composition as it has a nice balance IMO. I could see adding a little canvas to the right side, but it certainly is not a deal breaker.

The feeling of a cool damp fall day really comes across in this scene as it puts me right there. The mirror reflection is another superb element here. Beautifully done!

Mike, let me start by saying that this has a wonderful mood and atmosphere to it. I really like how you processed the color and luminosity here, you handled it very well. And you were blessed with no wind, and ended up with a gorgeous reflection

That is the hardest lesson that I have learned in landscape photography, sometimes you just gotta pack it in and try another day. But I am glad you chose not to do that for this image, you would have missed taking this gem. I agree with @Ed_Lowe, sometimes late season images can say as much about fall as during peak. I wish you had emailed me before your trip, I would have suggested some locations in southwest NH that were peak in early October. The weird thing about 2020 is that the north country peaked two weeks early, but further south it was warmer in late September, and color came at normal times.

Regarding your crop question, my general rule of thumb is to try to have equal space on both the left and right edges, relative to key elements such as the two tallest trees here. Cropped slightly from left, and CAF did some funky things on the right, but you could clone away the funk.

I also like what @Igor_Doncov did because it avoids excessive CAF, and it works very well from an image balance standpoint. My only variation on what Igor did would be to go to more of a squarish look, and retain all of the reflection.

I’ve heard photographers say that you should be able to find a great image in any conditions. If true, I am an abject failure as a photographer, because sometimes I just can’t find them. With that said, I think it is a great skill to always keep an open mind (open eye?) to try and see potential when it does show up, so kudos on snagging this “on the way home” shot.

This is a beautiful mix of vegetation, and the reflection adds both balance and contrast. It is subtle, but my favorite of the above is @Igor_Doncov’s crop. I think it focuses on the best part of the image.