Greetings from the Critique Club
OK, Ecce Signum
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guilted me into grabbing an image to critique. I should have guessed it would be a portrait shot, and they are not my strong point either. I'll do the best I can and you can take it with a grain of salt if you wish.
I like how you did a very non-standard portrait, with the close crop, straight on and the tilt of the head, making it more interesting than the normal portrait (that I did in the challenge BTW).
Your wife's eyes are very expressive with this close shot, much because you are taking the picture I'm sure. That combined with the excellent DOF really draw the viewer into her eyes and makes it look like she's peering into my soul. Well done.
The right side of her face (her left) looks very bright to me. This also makes one eyebrow not match the other. I would recommend reducing the illumination on that side. The rest of it looks just fine. The catch light dead center in the pupil worked well. The background was well chosen to blend in with her blouse and somewhat with her face rather than distract.
I like the hair behind the right ear on the one side, though the strands in front of the ear bugs me for some reason. I'm also not fond of the clipped off jaw and ear. Either leave them in all the way or drastically crop them.
It looks like you did some smoothing on most of her skin, based on the little bit that appears to be missed under the lower eye, and you did a good job on that. Looking back at the notes now I see you did Gaussian blur.
You did well on this shot for someone not strong on portraits. Keep it up. This would look good framed on your wall. If you have any questions don't hesitate to PM me.