Beginner Little bit of woodland

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Chris
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#1
I've long admired the woodland photographers from afar, it's fantastic when done properly but oh so easy to get wrong and get frustrated with. I've got a 1-2-1 workshop later this month with a local chap who does some amazing work and hope to learn a lot more with him, but for now these two are my favourite images from a few early wanders locally

Golden frost
by Chris Marr, on Flickr

Dark veins
by Chris Marr, on Flickr

Background noise
by Chris Marr, on Flickr

More than happy to hear any critique or advice for future attempts
 
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Craig
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#2
I like the 1st one a lot Chris. I too love woodland photography but find it challenging. I think this is why I find it hard to critique, I know when I like something but find it hard to say why. I think it's about trying to find simplicity in the chaos which is achieved in the 1st one with the gently leaning trunks and the frosty branches drawing your eye to them.

I'd be very interested to hear your experiences with the workshop that you're having, I've wondered about doing something similar myself.
 
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Steve
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#3
I'll be honest, woodland is a genre I really do not like but these pictures are the best I've ever seen of the genre posted. The first is a triumph of light, composition and the processing, unlike so many of these scenes, is uplifting and pleasant as opposed to dark, hard to see and depressing.

People should be paying you to show them how its done, not the other way around.
 
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George.
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#4
Three very nice woodland shots, I'd be happy to have taken any of these.(y)

George.
 
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Toni
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#6
Very much like the first for it's frosting, light and composition and third for the additional sense of mystery the fog brings. The second doesn't quite reach the same levels because the tree fails to stand out against the frost background.
 
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Tilly
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#8
Nice set Chris. I really like the first one, good colours and composition. The second one is a bit flat for me. It's a shame you didn't have the light of the first shot for the third as I think it would have lifted the shot.
 
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Neil
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#10
These are excellent, superb conditions and good compositions, I'd be chuffed with any of those.

I'm not sure where you are based but if your going for a 1-2-1 on woodland then look no further than Paul Mitchell!

Edit: I've just seen you are from Scotland, so Maybe go on a 1-2-1 with Mark Littlejohn or Scott, doubt you'll find better.
 
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#12
I don't think you need a workshop in all honesty, these are exceptional. I can't add anymore other than I think the final image has a bit too much softening effect for my tastes, but very nice all the same.
 
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Chris
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#13
Thank you all so much, much more positive than I expected when asking for critique.

I like the 1st one a lot Chris. I too love woodland photography but find it challenging. I think this is why I find it hard to critique, I know when I like something but find it hard to say why. I think it's about trying to find simplicity in the chaos which is achieved in the 1st one with the gently leaning trunks and the frosty branches drawing your eye to them.

I'd be very interested to hear your experiences with the workshop that you're having, I've wondered about doing something similar myself.
I'll no doubt post after said 1-2-1 and let you know :)

I'll be honest, woodland is a genre I really do not like but these pictures are the best I've ever seen of the genre posted. The first is a triumph of light, composition and the processing, unlike so many of these scenes, is uplifting and pleasant as opposed to dark, hard to see and depressing.

People should be paying you to show them how its done, not the other way around.
Thanks Steve, much appreciated. These are a tiny slice though of my work in woodland, I'm nowhere close to it.

Lovely shots Chris. As you're probably aware, conditions are key to woodland pictures, and you've had perfect conditions with this set of pictures.
Out of curiosity, who are you booked to go out with?
Many thanks Scott, I'm going with John Irvine https://www.johnirvine.org/ - I've followed him for a while on Twitter. I hope it to be one of many this year tbh.

These are excellent, superb conditions and good compositions, I'd be chuffed with any of those.

I'm not sure where you are based but if your going for a 1-2-1 on woodland then look no further than Paul Mitchell!

Edit: I've just seen you are from Scotland, so Maybe go on a 1-2-1 with Mark Littlejohn or Scott, doubt you'll find better.
Mark Littlejohn, Leigh Dorey, Scott, Damian Ward or yourself would be amazing - maybe one day.
 
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Nightmare
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#14
I'll be honest, woodland is a genre I really do not like but these pictures are the best I've ever seen of the genre posted. The first is a triumph of light, composition and the processing, unlike so many of these scenes, is uplifting and pleasant as opposed to dark, hard to see and depressing.

People should be paying you to show them how its done, not the other way around.
I will second that. It is by far better than many other "intimate" (what an odd choice of wording too!) stuff.

1 and 2 are light, crisp and airy. 3 I think should be processed in the same style.
 
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Scott
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#15
Many thanks Scott, I'm going with John Irvine https://www.johnirvine.org/ - I've followed him for a while on Twitter. I hope it to be one of many this year tbh.
Cheers Chris. Not familiar with John's work so had a look. Lovely woodland stuff, have a good time and hope you get the conditions.
 
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Rich
#16
3 superb images Chris. Think a huge part of woodland photography is getting the conditions, but you cant just rock up and be guaranteed a shot. I think you have made full use of the perfect conditions and shown your skill in a compositional sense here also. I certainly would have been proud of any one of them.
 
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Steve
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#17
I will second that. It is by far better than many other "intimate" (what an odd choice of wording too!) stuff.

1 and 2 are light, crisp and airy. 3 I think should be processed in the same style.
It’s like that word “moody” which is trotted out to describe all sorts of under exposed and/or over processed miserable rubbish. I just ignore it for the pompous BS that it is.

These are good though, genuinely.
 
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Neil
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#18
It’s like that word “moody” which is trotted out to describe all sorts of under exposed and/or over processed miserable rubbish. I just ignore it for the pompous BS that it is.

These are good though, genuinely.
Firstly why diverge from the subject, secondly surely describing a shot as "moody" is only the same as describing bright reflection shots as "uplifting" for example, so is that "Pompus BS" too?!

I'd love to enter something "moody" into one of your camera club comps that you judge. I can imagine the critique, "Too dark and underexposed, please try to incorporate some blue skies and reflections next time"! :rolleyes:
 
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Craig
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#19
It’s like that word “moody” which is trotted out to describe all sorts of under exposed and/or over processed miserable rubbish. I just ignore it for the pompous BS that it is.

These are good though, genuinely.
They're some pretty strong words to describe some peoples work there, Steve. Photography is not all about bright skies and recording exactly what the scene looked like. Many might say similarly thoughtless things about your style of work, but what would that achieve?
 
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Steve
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#20
Firstly why diverge from the subject, secondly surely describing a shot as "moody" is only the same as describing bright reflection shots as "uplifting" for example, so is that "Pompus BS" too?!

I'd love to enter something "moody" into one of your camera club comps that you judge. I can imagine the critique, "Too dark and underexposed, please try to incorporate some blue skies and reflections next time"! :rolleyes:
The comments were more focused around the word "moody" which is used to describe all sorts of things I would call "rubbish". I feel the word "mood" or "moody" is used to add legitimacy to all sorts of pictures that are lacking any sense of feel or quality. Am I not entitled to have a view on the matter?
 
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Stuart McGlennon
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#21
Some really lovely images Chris - particularly 1 & 2. Hoar frost really makes an image like no.1 sing, i've not been fortunate enough to shoot woodland in those conditions yet, looks like you had some great conditions. Only minor crit i'd have is the lump of bracken/ferns extreme bottom right in no.3 I might have composed to elimate it being on the frame edge although I can understand that might not have been possible as i'd imagine the first priority would be to make sure trees weren't overlapping each other.

The comments were more focused around the word "moody" which is used to describe all sorts of things I would call "rubbish". I feel the word "mood" or "moody" is used to add legitimacy to all sorts of pictures that are lacking any sense of feel or quality. Am I not entitled to have a view on the matter?
I think what grates Steve is just simply sticking to the subject matter at hand. Just critique the images posted - we've all got wide ranging views on any number photographic styles and subjects, but you constantly seem intent on shoehorning your opinion on any number of often unrelated things you don't like into almost any image that's posted for critique.
 
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Neil
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#22
Some really lovely images Chris - particularly 1 & 2. Hoar frost really makes an image like no.1 sing, i've not been fortunate enough to shoot woodland in those conditions yet, looks like you had some great conditions. Only minor crit i'd have is the lump of bracken/ferns extreme bottom right in no.3 I might have composed to elimate it being on the frame edge although I can understand that might not have been possible as i'd imagine the first priority would be to make sure trees weren't overlapping each other.


I think what grates Steve is just simply sticking to the subject matter at hand. Just critique the images posted - we've all got wide ranging views on any number photographic styles and subjects, but you constantly seem intent on shoehorning your opinion on any number of often unrelated things you don't like into almost any image that's posted for critique.
:agree:
 
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#23
The first one definately. Good light on the trees and an interesting balance between the frost on the ground and the frost on the branches
 
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Steve
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#24
I think what grates Steve is just simply sticking to the subject matter at hand. Just critique the images posted - we've all got wide ranging views on any number photographic styles and subjects, but you constantly seem intent on shoehorning your opinion on any number of often unrelated things you don't like into almost any image that's posted for critique.
It's a forum - it's a place for discussion and what you would describe as "shoehorning" is simply a wider discussion about photography styles in general with another member who's posted here also for a long time. I fail to see what your problem is and I am not going to take instruction on what I post and feel from others.
 
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Stuart McGlennon
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#25
It's a forum - it's a place for discussion and what you would describe as "shoehorning" is simply a wider discussion about photography styles in general with another member who's posted here also for a long time. I fail to see what your problem is and I am not going to take instruction on what I post and feel from others.
What on earth has 'posted here for a long time' got to do with anything? Is that meant to have some relevance i'm missing?

My 'problem' as you put it, is that a lot of the time posts such as 'I don't like moody etc etc' taken in the context of this thread has literally no relevance to the topic , no-one was discussing it. It's as relevant as me airing my views on ICM photography within this thread, or better still images of reflections. Comments like that don't come across as discussion at all to me, it might be dressed up as that but rather feels like just a veiled at attempt to denigrate other peoples styles or approaches which don't suit your own narrative.
 
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Steve
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#27
What on earth has 'posted here for a long time' got to do with anything? Is that meant to have some relevance i'm missing?
Yes - the tone of your post implied some sort of attempt to troll etc - but it was simply a discussion with a poster (and one of the best landscapers in the UK) who's contributed a lot to this forum.

My 'problem' as you put it, is that a lot of the time posts such as 'I don't like moody etc etc' taken in the context of this thread has literally no relevance to the topic , no-one was discussing it. It's as relevant as me airing my views on ICM photography within this thread, or better still images of reflections. Comments like that don't come across as discussion at all to me, it might be dressed up as that but rather feels like just a veiled at attempt to denigrate other peoples styles or approaches which don't suit your own narrative.
You take pictures of reflections FYI. That would have been fun.

My post, is actually relevant as it was given in context of the pictures posted (and the praise which I gave them) - which I am sure you will understand as you've already read my first post on this thread.
 
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Stuart McGlennon
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#28
You take pictures of reflections FYI. That would have been fun.
I take pictures of many things/subjects - reflections being one of them - not sure what your point is? 'Better still' was simply because it is the subject you shoot the most and it's you who i was addressing. My opinion on them is moot really which is the point i was making.
 
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Steve
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#29
I take pictures of many things/subjects - reflections being one of them - not sure what your point is? 'Better still' was simply because it is the subject you shoot the most and it's you who i was addressing. My opinion on them is moot really which is the point i was making.
The point I was making is my opinion on woodland is far from moot - hence the nature of my comments within this thread and the praise I heaped on these images. I've enjoyed them and given the subject that's very rare for me.

Rather than hurl accusations of making "veiled attempts to denigrate" you might take a step back and rather than take exception to the views of others maybe just heed your own advice and stick the topic at hand.
 
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Tyson
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#33
The 1st one for me as it appears the first rays of sun are just hitting he trucks.
The image has a hint of Thomas Heaton about it ! lol
 
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Paul
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#34
I'd also be personally pleased to have taken any from the three shown, although No1 would make me delighted!
Nos 2&3 have a brighter and (latterly), darker feel to them, whereas No1 has a very subtle balance and transition between the lighter top and darker baseline.
Well seen and beautifully rendered.
 
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