tracing time / 6 November, 2011 [click for previous image: urban cowboy]
tracing time / 6 November, 2011 [click for next image: on the road again]
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Title • tracing time

This is another image from my recent trip to the UK, taken on Blackpool seafront. What most attracted me to this one was the way in which the ring had marked the wall, gradually smoothing the concrete to leave a trace of it's movement, but I also really liked the detail in the sky. Given that both elements had caught my attention I shot at f/22 to maximise the depth of field, ensuring that both were as sharp as possible.

Often, when I shoot at one aperture extreme or the other (f/22 to maximise DoF, or f/2.8 or thereabouts to minimise it) I'll also shoot a range of alternatives. In this case that might have been f/16 and f/8 and f/4, giving me a range of alternative images to work with. On this occasion though I only took one shot, but I wish I had shot a few with a shallower depth of field as I don't think my initial decision was a particularly good one. The problem, I think, is that while the ring looks great, and the detail in the clouds is good too, the detail in the sea causes a problem insofar as the boundary between the sea wall and the sea isn't especially obvious. You can see what I mean below:

So, given that I didn't take any alternative exposures I thought I'd blur the background a bit, creating a more distinct transition between the wall and the sea. I'm still not convinced I've got the absolute best out of this image, but I do think that this version is an improvement on the original.

Let me know if you think it was a good decision.

I've also added this image as this week's Mini-PSD.

In other news ...

I'm heading off to Istanbul in a few hours to run a Faces & Places Photo Tour of Istanbul with Bobbi Lane. We'll be there until the 12th, after which we'll be heading to Dubai for the Gulf Photo Plus Fotoweekend. It's going to be a hectic couple of weeks, but I'm really looking forward to both events.

focal length
shutter speed
shooting mode
exposure bias
metering mode
image quality
RAW converter
image editor
plugins (etc)
3.03pm on 17/9/11
Canon 5D Mark II
EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM
aperture priority
Camera Raw
Photoshop CS5
Topaz Detail and Bokeh
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