(North Bay, Ontario, Canada)
I happened to notice the local photography club was having "silhouettes" as their theme this month & had the opportunity to take this shot of a couple on a park bench just after sunset.(for convenience links below open in new windows)
Red sky at night . . . photographers’ delight!
What a lovely image. Peter has clearly followed the first rule of photography here – wherever possible, carry a camera.
He also seems to have a photographers’ eye. Noticing that this shot would work best as a silhouette was a good spot.
But there are other things that are good about this photo – so let’s begin . . .
First there is the wonderful red sky.
It may seem like an easy thing to capture but some cameras, especially automatic compact cameras, struggle with this.
There is a reason. Cameras are programmed with a ‘white balance’ setting. Usually this is set to accommodate most sorts of light (sunlight, cloud, indoors, flash . . . ) and sometimes they get it wrong.
If your camera is getting it wrong in cases like this then have a look through the camera’s manual to see if there is a setting you can adjust.
The other thing cameras can sometimes get wrong is the level of light in a photo.
Clearly Peter’s shot was at dusk – not much light around. And some cameras try to over-compensate for this by boosting the exposure.
This results in grey rather than black silhouettes – not good.
Again, if your camera is getting it wrong have a look through the manual for any settings that will help (by the way, snow is renowned for fooling camera exposure meters – so if you’re heading off to the slopes this year, be warned!).
But you know, despite all the good in Peter’s photo, there is one thing that I feel lets it down – the crop.
It is generally considered good practice when you have people in a photo like this to give them room to ‘look into’.
Let’s use Peter’s shot as an example – the couple on the bench are looking to the left of the scene. They should therefore have more space on the left than on the right. But in the photo above they have more space ‘behind’ them, on the right.
I’m guessing that when Peter framed this photo he was aiming to include the bench in its entirety. But by doing so the couple sitting there un-balance the scene.
So here’s my solution – crop the photo into a square, and lose the empty bench on the right of the photo.
Try it now – cover the right side of the photo with your hand and straight away the composition is improved.
Overall though this is a really nice photo, and I am wondering Peter – did it win a prize?
Darrell. Turn your PC into a satellite TV!