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Standing Tall
3rd PlaceStanding Tall
Nuzzer


Photograph Information Photographer's Comments
Challenge: Free Study 2007-03 (Advanced Editing V)
Camera: Canon EOS-350D Rebel XT
Lens: Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 II
Location: Gordonton, Waikato, New Zealand
Date: Mar 11, 2007
Aperture: f/5.6
ISO: 800
Shutter: 1/4000 second
Galleries: Floral
Date Uploaded: Mar 29, 2007

This was a shot I took with a view to the Circle challenge but I didnt feel it was right for that. A lot of processing later and I have arrived at this image. I like the colours in this a lot.

We we heading down to Taupo for a wedding and I saw these sunflowers at the side of road. I knew then I wanted to take a shot for the circle challenge on the way back. When it come to heading back home we had stopped at my Mother-in-law's in Hamilton and Conor (10 months then) had just gone to sleep in the car. We didn't want to wake him so my wife quickly stopped the car and I snuck out trying not to wake Conor and got off half a dozen shots. Back in the car I noticed that I had forgotten to check some camera settings: ISO in particular! I always forget that one. The images were a little overexposed.

The day I took this was a bit windy hence the petals at the top right aren't in a nice circular formation like the rest but I think that just adds interest to the image.

Here's the original processed at -1 exposure:
490876.jpg

Editing Steps:
Convert from RAW at exposures: -2, -1, 0
Create HDR image
Tone Map
Neat Image
Clone out
* some leaves from another plant
* some leaves that poked out from behind the sunflower
On the centre of the sunflower
* Saturation +34
* Lightness +5
* Hue -14
Gradient fills from the left, right & top
Curves
Selective Colour: Blues: Black +50
Auto Levels
Channel Mixer: Blue: Blue +110
Contrast +19
With the flower masked out
* Levels 0, 0.84, 255
Flatten
Resize
Add Border
Neat Image
Save for web

Post Challenge:
Wow! A Yellow in a Free Study! I never thought I'd get even close to a Free Study ribbon given the calibre of the photographers who enter Free Studies. When I entered I had hopes of a top 50 (being the top 10%) and then when I started scoring in the high 6's I thought maybe top 20. A couple of hours before rollover it crept into the 7's and I thought maybe, just maybe, I could get a top 10. A ribbon is fantastic! Thanks for the high votes :)

It seems that by including my editing steps and the original I have triggered some debate in the forums: here

Statistics
Place: 3 out of 561
Avg (all users): 7.0994
Avg (commenters): 7.9000
Avg (participants): 7.0534
Avg (non-participants): 7.2500
Views since voting: 122464
Views during voting: 330
Votes: 171
Comments: 58
Favorites: 56 (view)


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AuthorThread
04/11/2007 10:13:46 PM
Yellow ribbon for the yellow flower! COOL! I'm diggin' this flower photo big time! Congrats!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/11/2007 09:13:16 AM
One of my faves !
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/11/2007 08:30:48 AM
congratz, great processing !
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/10/2007 08:22:49 PM
I just love this! I keep coming back to look at it and am adding it to my faves. You did an outstanding job with the post processing!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/10/2007 05:28:19 PM
Originally posted by hotpasta:

Knew this might ribbon gerry...it's stunning. Considering this was taken with a so-so lens, it makes it even more superb! Do you think Canon might have accidentally put some L glass in your lens??? Congrats on the deserved ribbon

ha, with decent light you can get fantastic results from the 18-55mm
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/10/2007 12:16:55 PM
This is slick. I'm diggin it. Nicely done and congrats on the Ribbon.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/10/2007 12:02:44 AM
Knew this might ribbon gerry...it's stunning. Considering this was taken with a so-so lens, it makes it even more superb! Do you think Canon might have accidentally put some L glass in your lens??? Congrats on the deserved ribbon
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/09/2007 08:59:07 AM
Incredible!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/09/2007 01:05:19 AM
Just beautiful!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/08/2007 08:53:24 PM
Goooooo Kiwi!! Congrats Gerry on your very well deserved ribbon. This is a very beautiful shot, superbly edited.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/08/2007 04:07:22 PM
A beautiful shot..congratulations
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/08/2007 03:29:33 PM
Amazing editting that brings lots of life and vibrancy to the image. Fantatic shot and well deserved ribbon.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/08/2007 02:50:29 PM
I love sunflowers and this is an amazing shot, congrats!!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/08/2007 02:43:08 PM
Great work outside the camera.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/08/2007 01:39:47 PM
Good show my friend. Flower shots are hard to get in the top around here. Awesome processing.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/08/2007 10:03:39 AM
Awesome shot!! The processing is wonderful! Congrats on the Yellow Ribbon!!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/08/2007 09:42:16 AM
this really is exceptional...well deserved!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/08/2007 09:11:00 AM
Wonderfully done, the PP work really caught my eye. Congrats!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/08/2007 09:09:56 AM
Greetings from the Critique Club.

Since it ribboned, this shouldn't be a hard one to critique :)

The first reaction I had looking at this image was: "Wow, that's some beautiful post-processing."

The original image looks pretty, but unexceptional. The new crop makes it a lot more interesting - the picture turns into a portrait, with the personified flower reaching out towards you at the centre of it.

The tonemapping makes the image a lot more dramatic, and I like the effect of the gradient fills. The border works well too -brings out the image without dominating it.

I don't think I really have any objections. It's difficult to take interesting pictures of flowers, but you've really succeeded - the flower looks alive, vibrant, and surprisingly person-like.

Well done!

Jelena
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/08/2007 06:08:22 AM
Beautiful, beautiful shot. Congrats on the yellow.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/08/2007 06:02:53 AM
Hi, Congrats for the ribbon. I'm really amazed at how you edited this picture. Would it be possible to write a detailed tutorial setting out the steps in detail? Thanks.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/08/2007 03:53:54 AM
This is a real stand out shot. I can't believe it was such a simple photo that was totally transformed by fantastic processing. Great work and congratulations.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/08/2007 03:27:47 AM
Congrats on the yellow, great colorful shot, would have made it in "Circle" too, I believe.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/08/2007 02:57:50 AM
well done on the ribbon, your certainly deserved it with this shot. Thanks for the detailed PP as well, it was very interested. great work!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/08/2007 02:37:58 AM
congrats on the yellow ribbon, for a flower shot to do well at dpc
it has to be GOOD.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/08/2007 02:32:57 AM
appreciate very much that you not only shared a very nice picture BUT ALSO detailed editing steps. To improve is a good goal... let others participate is even better. thank you
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/08/2007 02:15:07 AM
Whoa! Congrats, my man! That is awesome!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/08/2007 01:07:49 AM
Way to go Gerry, spectacular photograph. Editing is amazing, you've given it so much life. Congrats!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/08/2007 12:51:31 AM
Its Beautifullllll!!!!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/08/2007 12:31:47 AM
This is such a cool shot, I am really glad it ribboned, it was one of my favorites in this challenge.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/08/2007 12:22:03 AM
Very strong finish,congratulations on the ribbon.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/08/2007 12:18:11 AM
Congrats! Trying to be like Scalvert eh?
  Photographer found comment helpful.
 Comments Made During the Challenge
04/07/2007 07:26:04 PM
I like the bold colors and the sharpness. Seems like there is a cloning artifact in the sky.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/07/2007 07:01:37 PM
One of my favorite flowers and you caught the "majesty" and "heighth" great!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/07/2007 12:39:04 PM
Great tonal range here, and beautiful colors. Nicely done. 9
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/07/2007 12:03:44 AM
Great colours, lighting. A little over-saturated but that's what makes it pop! 8.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/06/2007 06:45:41 PM
great capture, I'm revisiting and bumping your score, love the textures in the center of the flower
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/06/2007 01:45:02 AM
This is a great capture!!!
The contrast in colors, the brightness, sharpness...Everything!
Looks like a painting to me...
well done!!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/05/2007 04:50:27 PM
One of the coolest sunflowers I've ever seen! Very nice.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/05/2007 04:21:17 PM
beautifully crisp
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/05/2007 03:36:30 PM
Beautiful colors and post-editing! I love it!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/05/2007 01:57:17 AM
I love the intense colour and crispness in this...it is smoothe as silk and stunning 9
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/05/2007 12:28:11 AM
Wow, it really feels like 3D. 10
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/04/2007 10:10:33 PM
Very crisp image and bright colors.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/04/2007 12:17:33 AM
sort of scary looking really
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/03/2007 07:05:07 PM
Nice colors
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/03/2007 03:17:07 PM
very nice :)
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/03/2007 03:25:28 AM
wow and wow ... stunning image .... such amazing detail .... just excellent ... =10
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/03/2007 03:01:28 AM
I really enjoy this photograph. I vote a 10.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/02/2007 10:38:08 PM
Vibrant...
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/02/2007 09:26:55 PM
there is something very funny about this...very well done!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/02/2007 03:25:43 PM
great subject and shot
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/02/2007 06:41:46 AM
Right then, joke's on me as I now have to plough through 564 images and bump them all (yes, all of them) up. There'll be a third run through for fine tuning. It's day two now and I'm running late, sorry.

Yet another flower, but this one stands out, pictorially. 6
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/02/2007 03:32:41 AM
very nice, good bokeh and great colors, 7
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/01/2007 03:17:15 PM
Oh one of my favorite photo subjects, and so very nicely done!! I love the colors, the sky, the clarity, the everything a 9. Beautiful!!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/01/2007 01:45:28 AM
i love sunflowers and i think you have done them justice with this photo..you have captured their beauty with the strong vibrant colours and sharp detail
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/01/2007 01:26:52 AM
That is so 3-dimensional looking. Amazing depth and focus!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
04/01/2007 01:05:10 AM
It almost doesnt look real, like it's a studio shot or something
Great clarity and interesting considering it's a sunflower!
6
  Photographer found comment helpful.


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