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Sherlock Holmes: The Case of the Blue Shadow
Sherlock Holmes: The Case of the Blue Shadow

Photograph Information Photographer's Comments
Challenge: Blue (Classic Editing)
Camera: Jenoptik JD1300F
Location: Indoors, home, London
Date: Dec 2, 2002
Aperture: 2.8
ISO: 160
Shutter: 1/45
Galleries: Still Life, Macro
Date Uploaded: Dec 1, 2002

Subject is just a blue bottle which decorates the window-shelf in my bathroom!! I know the bottle is slightly dirty - I did try hard to clean it!!!
Background is an A3 pad of white drawing paper that I recently bought as part of an Xmas present for a newphew. Its a little too textured for my preference but I was feeling too lazy to get dressed in order to leave the house in search of a cheap (and more suitable) fabric background.
The bottle is lit by a bedroom reading lamp (kindly held by hubby Pete). I used Shutter priority to get adequate speed for hand holding and give an open aperture.
I used the on-camera white balance feature. Then I just fiddled with colour balance in Photoshop before cropping and saving.
Title is because the shadow reminds me of the silhouette of a Victorian man of shady character - I wanted something to allude to Jack the Ripper or Sherlock Holmes - Gordon kindly helped out with final title idea.

Place: 69 out of 243
Avg (all users): 5.6206
Avg (commenters): 6.0833
Avg (participants): 5.5789
Avg (non-participants): 5.6832
Views since voting: 1685
Votes: 253
Comments: 17
Favorites: 0

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03/06/2004 06:52:18 PM
Interesting idea, and well executed.. Thnk I might have tried the whole bottle in shot, possible landscape? Seems to have been a bit oversharpened? (Halo on cork and down LHS of bottle?)
  Photographer found comment helpful.
10/30/2003 09:19:18 AM
Beautiful expression of blue. great shadow. I love it. well done. Thank you dear. Best shootings, BIliana
  Photographer found comment helpful.
12/10/2002 05:12:44 AM
Mucho gracias for your comments on my blue entry... I agree that shadow only wouldn't have worked - I'd have had too many comments about focus and fuzzy edges etc. I figured the crisper lines of the bottle would give a contrast to the fuzzy shadow.
I think the light is a little harsh - and will try and remember to diffuse the light source next time.
The corks are very very pale so even in the underexposed shots came out very pale. If I were really serious I could dye them with tea bags to make them more brown...
I tried a few alternatives, all located here: Kavey's Blue Images but was limited by the teeny size of the drawing pad I used as background. Of course if I hadn't been too lazy to get dressed I would have gone out and bought either larger size paper or some material.
I am surprised not to have had any comments on the kitsch title!
Thanks again for your time.
12/09/2002 03:46:12 PM
Greetings from the Critique Club :)

Hi Kavey :)

I think this shot has quite a bit of visual impact. The 'blue' here is definitely strong and significant in the shot. As I commented in my original comment on this photo, I really like the curved shadow. I think that's a nice touch for sure :) Did you try a straight shadow with some different light angles as well? I believe that the impact would have been equally high in that interpretation as well.

I read through your comments on this shot... I disagree with a lot of them... I don't believe that shooting only the shadow would have had much impact at all. The only impact i think that would have produced would have been comments asking to see where the shadow came from :) Your directional lighting is working very well in this shot. I don't see any issues with that at all. I would have experimented with several background scenarios on this shot as well. i would have tried some cloth with some smooth wrinkles and curves in it as well... white cloth :)

Great shot and keep up the good work :)

John Setzler
  Photographer found comment helpful.
 Comments Made During the Challenge
12/08/2002 11:19:21 PM
great composition. 9
  Photographer found comment helpful.
12/08/2002 09:16:05 PM
Good use of shadow. The composition is good. -arnit
  Photographer found comment helpful.
12/08/2002 12:39:19 AM
I bet you were taking a picture of that jug and you found the shadow more interesting.
12/07/2002 01:30:56 PM
excellent photo... I really think the 'bent' blue shadow adds a nice effect to his shot... great work :)
  Photographer found comment helpful.
12/06/2002 01:42:16 PM
The composition of this is very pleasing to the eye. The fact that the shadow is curving upward in such a nice "swoop" gives the photograph a feeling of movement even though everything is obviously stationery. The only one (small) flaw that I find is that the white of your background is a little on the grey side. I know you could have fixed this in post precessing, but you might have lost the blue shadow impact so I am guessing this is the best compromise you could do. Nice 8 BAMartin
  Photographer found comment helpful.
12/05/2002 06:09:16 PM
Nice Effect. I like it. jacko
  Photographer found comment helpful.
12/05/2002 04:14:09 PM
I love the balance this has. The blue shadow really adds a lot to this. Wonderful use of thirds ! Shiiizzzam
  Photographer found comment helpful.
12/02/2002 09:08:00 PM
Nice shot. Like the color, the focus and the light and shadow. Nice. Justine
  Photographer found comment helpful.
12/02/2002 08:16:00 PM
Excellent use of shadow...and colored blue to boot!...Good Luck!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
12/02/2002 04:41:00 PM
If it were me, this would be a photo of the shadow only. But I like it this way, too!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
12/02/2002 09:59:00 AM
What might have made a more interesting shot is to show only the shadow. I feel by having the half bottle in the shot, the eye isn't sure what to look at.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
12/02/2002 02:07:00 AM
nice use of the refracting light
  Photographer found comment helpful.
12/02/2002 12:44:00 AM
Hmmmm. The Flash hurts. Diffuse it with a piece of white clothing
  Photographer found comment helpful.

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