Snow coatings

View from the front of my VT home in the hills. It was a very cold morning!

Specific Feedback Requested

What works/what needs tweaking

Technical Details

Is this a composite: No

This is potentially a nice scene but the predominance of horizontal lines of the hills and clouds suggests a wider landscape format.

The contrast is very harsh for what should be a gentle scene, with the clouds blown out and the darks blocked up. I downloaded it to look at the histogram and see you have a monitor profile embedded. You should convert to sRGB for any web posting, for the best chance of people seeing it accurately.

Kat, I just left a comment on you other Vermont winter scene post. and my thoughts on the image posted here are somewhat similar. Again I think you have nicely balanced composition. The contrast does look a bit harsh, the black point is set too deep, and the darker tones are too dark for my taste. I would like to see a bit more shadow detail. I think the luminosity of the distant mountain top looks good, but I would like to see some highlight recovery in the sky, especially in the upper right corner. The luminosity in this scene needs to brought into better balance, Because you have a good composition, the image has a lot of potential. But the processing needs some work.

Again if you could describe what software you use to process images, it would help. If you do use Lightroom, I can provide some very specific advice, but there is no point doing that if you use something else. Again the key is to make localized rather than global adjustments, independent of what software you use.

Thanks for your detailed suggestions and feedback., Ed. Very helpful. I have been using minimal editing software–usually just what is available on apple PHOTOS program. I have Affinity but haven’t done much with it yet. I need to start getting familiar with it, and joining NPN is motivating me to want to do just that. It just seems to have too many options for me. i do not want to do complex edits at this point. Any suggestions on the easiest ways to key basics of Affinity?

I am not familiar with Affinity, I’m a Lightroom / Photoshop guy myself. I took a quick look at the Affinity website to see if it offered local adjustment tools similar to Lightroom, but the feature overview did not go into enough detail to quickly check. You should do some research on whether Affinity offers that local adjustment functionality. The thing about NPN is that many here use the Adobe products, and can give you very specific suggestions on tools and how to’s in Lightroom. But I’m just not familiar with Affinity, sorry.

Kat, you will be very limited in what you can do with an iPhone capture vs. your Nikon D70. You are stuck with a JPEG image which will be very limited in your ability to control tonalities (shadows and highlights) and noise. There are some apps for artistic editing of iPhone shots that may be of interest. I don’t know Affinity either, but I’m sure it can’t do anything for a JPEG that PS can’t do, and OS can’t do much. So if you’re happy with the iPhone’s limitations, just stick to the JPEG you get. If you begin to wish for image improvements, use the Nikon and shoot in raw format. (You can always use raw + JPEG to start with and have the raw for when you are ready for more capabilities to edit.)

It would help the comments if you state for each image that it is an iPhone capture.

I’ll echo the comments from @Diane_Miller. Phone images have their limits. If you are happy with the results that’s all that really matters. But if your goal is to make the quality your images look more like many of the images you see at NPN, then that is a different matter. The ability to create raw files with a camera will open up many more creative possibilities for you. You will have a lot more flexibility and leeway in processing images. The vast majority of processing advice given at NPN assumes you have raw files to work with, where there is more latitude to make significant adjustments without reducing image quality.

But it depends upon what you are trying to get out of your photography.