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Topic: Photo Editing Critique
Username: LUFTultra
Posted 2012-11-28 19:21:55 and read 936 times.

Hey everyone. I've always wanted to get into aviation photography from a young age and here I am. I really hope to learn a lot more about composition and editing photos here through constructive criticism. I recently brought a Nikon Coolpix P510. Coming from a point and shoot Samsung , it's a step up for me because now I can submit quality photos here !

A brief background about myself :
I've been visiting for years. I was a member of this website with the first class membership for a year when I was 15. I participated in the forums and learned a lot in that time. I since then became out of touch with aviation (totally missed the memo on the United/Continental merger and was confused seeing Continental 737s on final approach to JFK ) and spent 3 years out of the loop. Long story short, I'm now a student at Vaughn College in the Aircraft Operation pilot program. I should have my bachelor degree by the end of 2015 and my ATP certificate by then as well. So I'm fully submerged into my love for aviation.

I took my first few photos today at my school which is in close proximity of KLGA and has a tower about 4 stories tall right by runway 4 at KLGA.

I would like your feed back. I used some of my basic knowledge of photo editing in Photoshop CS3 for adjust the image for optimal quality.

(click the images for the full res 1600x1200)
I began editing one first. I used the exposure feature and saturation give the color that more ' fuller ' look

For these first photos I used the curve feature in attempts to do the same.

I submitted 1) and 3) to the website, I'm considering submitting 2) as well. That website i linked th photos to is my blog as well so if you're a member of tumblr feel free to follow me or bookmark me !

I'm looking forward to learning different ideas for editing photos in Photoshop ( CS3 ) or Aperture ( for OS X ) and also composition ideas when it comes to taking photos.

Thanks for your constructive feedback based on those photos and any tips !

Topic: RE: Photo Editing Critique
Username: DL747
Posted 2012-11-28 19:30:18 and read 931 times.

Definitely not a bad start. However, I see grain very prevalent on the first 2. That is probably due to the teeny sensor size on your camrea. Sadly, those probably won't work for the website. The third is also decent, but the clipped horiz. stab is a no-no. It also suffers slightly from quality issues. Keep trying, though, the photos look very nice, especially the third. You may want to look at the editing/rejection guide.

Topic: RE: Photo Editing Critique
Username: dlowwa
Posted 2012-11-28 20:13:14 and read 924 times.

Hi, and welcome.

Unfortunately, you are likely to have a difficult time producing images that will meet quality standards here with your current camera. Compact super-zooms make a lot of compromises when it comes to quality to be able to fit such versatility in a small size at a low price. This also means that any tips for editing in Photoshop will likely be moot, as if you're starting with poor quality, no amount of editing will help.

Just as an example, the third image above would be rejected for level, color, soft, quality, and centered. The other two are not any better, so you probably should remove them from the queue. In general, you'll want to get as close to your subject as possible, and not rely on the zoom in your camera, as you will notice the quality degrades rapidly the more you zoom in.

If you have any more specific questions, feel free to ask, and don't let the criticism dampen your enthusiasm for taking photos.


Topic: RE: Photo Editing Critique
Username: LUFTultra
Posted 2012-11-29 05:52:37 and read 898 times.

Thank you both for your valuable input !

I definitely didn't notice the clipped horizontal stabilizer in the 3rd photo DL747 and I'll also take a better look at the editing/rejection guide !

Also , thanks dlowwa ! I'll definitely take the fact that I have to get closer to the subject as possible into consideration for photos I would like to submit to the site. I suppose I'll use this camera to take photos for practice and personal use until I'm able to afford , a T2i ( for example ) with a better sensor. As I take more photos I'm sure I'll have specific questions to ask along the way. I'm really eager to learn as much as possible about taking great photos.

Thanks Again !

Topic: RE: Photo Editing Critique
Username: DL747
Posted 2012-11-29 06:27:13 and read 895 times.

Good, keep at it, you will get there. I have a Nikon D3100, and it is awesome, so it you don't need a $7000 camera, although that camrea would be better, a 3100 or something like that will do.

Topic: RE: Photo Editing Critique
Username: vikkyvik
Posted 2012-11-29 09:04:22 and read 883 times.

Quoting dlowwa (Reply 2):
don't let the criticism dampen your enthusiasm for taking photos.

That's probably the most important point that will ever get made in this forum. Too many people seem to let it get to them.

For example, while your third shot (the New Mexico 737) may not be quality, it suggests to me that you could get some great shots from that location. Put the airplane lower in the frame and make use of the background - the bridge and NYC - and you might have a recipe for a great shot.

There are times when you can do that, and times when you'll just want to focus on the airplane. But it's always good to start thinking about composition. Technical perfection is one thing, but great composition will almost always trump it, in my opinion.

Topic: RE: Photo Editing Critique
Username: luftultra
Posted 2012-11-30 00:26:22 and read 853 times.

Thank you both so much for your response. You've both been most helpful !

Quoting DL747 (Reply 4):

I took a quick look at the D3100 and I may consider exchanging it considering it cost only 100 dollars ( give or take ) more and I only had the P510 for a few days. Since I'm a student I also wanted to stay within a good budget so the P510 seemed to be a good alternative to a SLR camera and the P510 also had good reviews.

I noticed that the lens on the D3100 is detachable so I have to learn more about the lens that it comes with, other lens that are available and which might be best for my needs.

If you have ANY information you're willing to share about your personal experience with the D3100 and the best lens to get, please share.

Quoting vikkyvik (Reply 5):

Your tips on composition is most helpful as well. I have a 360 view of Queens and Manhattan from that location. I can get shots of aircrafts on final approach to runway 4 at LGA with a backdrop of the empire state building and other iconic buildings in NYC. I may be able to get some bridges as well.

Thanks again to you both !

Topic: RE: Photo Editing Critique
Username: DL747
Posted 2012-11-30 06:30:54 and read 831 times.

Quoting luftultra (Reply 6):

If you have ANY information you're willing to share about your personal experience with the D3100 and the best lens to get, please share.

Yes, I do. I highly suggest the D3100. It isn't great in low light but I am very close to having a couple images accepted here. Get the 70-300 rather than my 55-300, I am switching soon, as the 70 is much less soft above 200mm. My 16-85 is built like a tank and absoultely flawless, as I great a great copy for sure. The kit 18-55 is okay for static displays, but you really need a tele for aviation. I will probably get the 70-300, and hopefully a redisigned 80-400 soon. Also, if you are going to be doing a lot of cockpit shots or close ups, I recommend a speedlight.

Topic: RE: Photo Editing Critique
Username: luftultra
Posted 2012-11-30 16:25:52 and read 811 times.

Quoting DL747 (Reply 7):

Thanks again for your helpfulness !

I looked at the 70-300mm and the telephoto lens and both seem to be quality lens at a relatively reasonable price ( Nikon 70-300mm and other third party company for the tele ). I'll take exchanging my current model for a D3100 into some serious consideration in the next few days. I may even realize that I'm not yet ready for the big leagues ! I'll keep doing my research.

Thanks again !

Topic: RE: Photo Editing Critique
Username: DL747
Posted 2012-11-30 16:29:19 and read 808 times.

You bet, feel free to ask for more info at any time. I recommend the above 3 lenses, I have had experience with more, so let me know. One thing I'd advise against is asking Nikon, their support sucks. It is horrid. Make sure to get a hood for the kit lense, as it isn't included, and without it in any sun at all that lense ghosts and flares terribly.

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