View Full Version : Congaree fungi. B&W

JB Ellis
06-18-2010, 06:44 AM
These fungi were very light colored in the very shaded Congaree National Park. Thought they might work better in B&W. Any thoughts? ISO 640, shutter 1/15, f11, flash off camera, Ambient light at -1.

Julie Kenward
06-18-2010, 07:38 AM
I get so excited when I see someone shooting b&w! I've been meaning to get back to that myself. I like your tonal range here - you've got a strong white, a strong black and good shades inbetween. I do think you could open up the darkest shadows a bit more so we see even more detail there. I also think the fungi might have come out more even with the use of a reflector as some areas are almost too bright.

I'm not sure I like that one fungi being cut off in the frame on the FG and right side. Maybe another step back to get it all included or else crop in tight and just feature the one in the BG.

JB, how did you process this? Did you use the b&w conversion layer in PS or use a plugin?

JB Ellis
06-18-2010, 12:06 PM
Julie, I did the conversion by removing color, then then bumping the contrast and selective levels adjustment. The brightness is from the off camera flash without a diffuser. If I has diffused the flash, I think that would have detailed the fungi better. About the crop, I cut the right side off intentionally. Maybe that was not a good idea.
Hey, I'm learning.:)

Julie Kenward
06-18-2010, 01:51 PM
JB I think it many cases a funky crop works - I just feel this is not quite in focus enough to keep my eye down there so I find the focal point to be that back fungi. When I make the back fungi the focal point in my mind then I wonder why the other one is diverting my attention.

Try this...try cropping right below the main leaf on the left FG and go straight across horizontally so only the area from the leaf up stays in the image - a "pano" crop if you will. See if that feels more "balanced" to you. Let me know what you think of that one.

If you want to learn more about b&w photography, go to "Craft & Vision" ebooks and buy the two they have on the subject. They are $5 a piece and worth every penny. They have me taking another look at b&w as well...

Kaushik Balakumar
06-18-2010, 02:41 PM
Liked the curving edges and texture of the Fungi. They look good against the dark tree trunk as you've shot.
Even the half eaten dry leaf in the left looks good. But am bit unsure of the ULC.

JB Ellis
06-18-2010, 04:26 PM
Julie, thanks, I think that crop you suggested works. I'll also take a look at the books.

Thanks Kaushik, I like the leaf too. Please clarify "ULC".:o

Cheryl Flory
06-19-2010, 09:00 AM
I like the image, too. But my eye keeps going to the sharp leaf and then the details in the trunk. If there were more details in the fungi, then I think my eye would not be drawn to the other areas as much.

Roman Kurywczak
06-19-2010, 03:10 PM
Hey JB,
Very good advice given above. I think Kaushik is referring to an OOF fungi or leaf that is in that corner......tone it down some and that will also help. Jules idea of an added reflector is also a great idea.....very effective in opening up the shadow side of the 1 flash.