View Full Version : Maropeng day break

Tobie Schalkwyk
06-05-2014, 07:16 AM
I'm not sure if this shot has enough of interest to justify a post on BPN so I'm open to your opinion on this. I just like the peaceful feeling about it. Taken last Saturday morning at 6h16 am from the viewing deck of the Maropeng cultural centre (South Africa). Some space removed at the top to give it a panorama feel.

Nikkor 70-200mm f2.8 VRI + TCE14 II @ 280mm
f/11 | 1/500s | ISO 400

Don Railton
06-05-2014, 11:24 PM
Hi Tobie

I really like the balloon and the layers hills in the BG. I don't mind the vegetation in the FG. I would have cropped sky out too, I think that is good to do. Not keen on the buildings and road/lake, they are a bit of an eye magnet unfortunately.. The Pole/aerial on right centre is a bit disruptive on the eye also but easy to remove if you are happy to do so. Finally, just below the balloon and slightly to the right are two black dots that I presume are birds.. ? keep trying to clean them off the screen. I think you could push a colour and contrast a little more without overdoing it. I think in hindsight I might have walked down the hill a little more and put the buildings behind the trees and focused on a composition using the balloon and distant hills.. but that's easy to say now..


Tobie Schalkwyk
06-05-2014, 11:44 PM
Don, thanks for your comment. I could not make up my mind about removing the arial tower & birds but will do so. The photo was taken from a raised wooden deck so unfortunately there was nowhere to walk down to here. Also, the scene is a bit deceiving as the buildings & dam is a few kilometres away. I'll post another (wider) shot of the scene which will put the distance in perspective and draw the attention more to the rolling mountains. In that instance the balloon is so small that I'll have to remove it for no-one will know what the small dot in the sky is. Thanks for looking...

Rachel Hollander
06-18-2014, 07:13 AM
Hi Tobie - Looks like a nice early morning scene and Don has made some good suggestions. For me, it is the balloon that makes the image interesting. I might consider going even more pano, getting rid of some of the fg brush that for doesn't add a lot to the image. Only problem though is that it is difficult to find a natural break to make the crop. Perhaps if you have a chance to reshoot at this location, raise the camera a bit so that the lake is more in the fg and shoot over some of the closer brush.


Tobie Schalkwyk
06-18-2014, 11:19 AM
Rachel, thanks for your comment. You're quite right, the cropping as-is gets most out of this scene. Below is a RP with clutter removed as discussed by Don. I've posted a wider image of the scene in a different thread.


Andrew McLachlan
06-18-2014, 06:53 PM
Hi Tobie, good suggestions already given. I agree on removing the tower and for me the balloon is too close to the horizon...if it were mine I would move the balloon higher in the sky and a little to the right.

Arthur Morris
06-20-2014, 07:32 PM
Tobie. Posts need not be justified :).

You might want to consider the principle that I call the clean lower edge.... Try to avoid cutting foreground elements with the lower frame edge so that each image begins with at least a thin strop of earth or water....

Morkel Erasmus
06-22-2014, 03:26 PM
Tobie, good call on going pano with this. All has been said - I like it "cleaned up" as per your RP, but agree with Artie that a clean bottom edge would really help lift this image entirely.

Tobie Schalkwyk
06-23-2014, 06:10 AM
Thanks guys. As mentioned in my 2nd thread in this series a clean bottom edge unfortunately was not an option. Thanks for looking & commenting...