<<< o >>>out of reach 57 comments + add yours

First of all, thanks for all the comments on yesterday's shot, not least because it's unusual to end up with such a polarised discussion - from "I hate it", "it's the worst shot you've put up" to " I love it". Normally your response is a little more uniform; i.e. a greater or lesser number of you like it, but you don't normally split your opinion quite so dramatically. It was interesting to read your thoughts.

On a related matter: I'd just like to remind you all that chromasia isn't a gallery, it's a photoblog – a visual diary if you like – and as such the quality of the stuff I post, and the type of stuff I post, will vary. I know that most of you know this, and I'm not offering it as an excuse, but it does sometimes seem as though a small number of visitors miss this point. I guess that the bottom-line is that if I was only interested in putting up my best images for an audience I wouldn't do it this way, and there would probably be around 40 images on chromasia rather than almost 800. As I said though, I do realise that most of you know this already, and your input is much appreciated, even when you do tell me that my wife was right all along ;-)

Anyway, on with the show ...

Initially, I wasn't sure about this one, mostly because it ended up looking quite different to how I would normally approach this scene, but in the end I'm pleased with it – there's something about the flat dullness and pastel shades that quite appeals to me. I guess, that the difference between this shot and my usual style is that this one is post-processed sympathetically, rather than being shoe-horned into my expectations as to what the scene should have looked like.

Anyway, given that this is a bit of a departure from the norm, I'd definitely be interested to hear what you make of it (though suspect it's not likely to be overly popular).

Oh, and John put up a similar view of this scene yesterday.

shutter speed
shooting mode
exposure bias
metering mode
image quality
RAW converter
2.23pm on 5/2/06
Canon 20D
EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM
aperture priority
C1 Pro
2x1 + piers [Fleetwood] + fylde coast
comment by Sam at 08:16 PM (GMT) on 9 February, 2006

Certainly better than the last ones. Even though much is out of focus, the strong and simple patterns give it some form and structure.

comment by Benjamin Riley at 08:27 PM (GMT) on 9 February, 2006

This shot is definatley much different than your normal posts. This image seems a little flat (maybe because of the DOF). Your photographs usually have very high color saturation, and this only has the light pastels you mentioned. However, I do like this image, but I suppose since it is different than your "normal" posts it is a little hard to swallow.

P.S. It's always hard to break away from the norm...

comment by tristan at 08:37 PM (GMT) on 9 February, 2006

i would prefer it if overall it wasn't as soft/blurry as it is. something should be sharp at least in my opinion.

comment by Ellie at 08:42 PM (GMT) on 9 February, 2006

Eccelent, the foreground focus throwing the building out of focus, i love it. The vibrant coloured squares really make this. well done Dave :-)

comment by Geoff at 08:42 PM (GMT) on 9 February, 2006

Yeah, very interesting. I'm not quite sold on the foreground toning, but it's an interesting effect. Nice crop ratio as well.

comment by Robert at 09:03 PM (GMT) on 9 February, 2006

The color squares from the curtains are interesting, as is the overall greenish color cast. However, the small section of grass that is in focus distracts the eyes from the curtains and makes you wonder if they're the subject.

comment by Carter Rose at 09:05 PM (GMT) on 9 February, 2006

hmmm...im not sure. As I look through your archives i see images that are absolutely visually stunning. However these last few im just not sure what to do with them. I think that this is an acceptable shot, but certainly is no where near on par with your good work, not to mention the dozens of photos that I would classify as brilliant. I realise that Chromasia is not a gallery, and that you post shots that are not "your best". But i just dont find this shot very interesting. I know you like "why's" so i'll give it a go:

In short my eyes seem torn on which part to look at. They keep getting pulled from left to right, then to center, then back and forth. and the soft focus (with the exception of the grass in the far right) gives me a headache.

I do like how you continually seem to be looking photographically at a particular scene. You bring a unique point of view to every subject and shot, and that I admire and aspire to.

I would be interested in hearing what it is about this shot that you like? I will also say that your edit, as always, is great.

comment by Matt Greco at 09:14 PM (GMT) on 9 February, 2006

eh, too much is out of focus. When I look at it, my eyes keep drawing me to the grass, which is very boring. I just don't think that the subject works out of focus.

comment by darragh at 09:25 PM (GMT) on 9 February, 2006

i think you're right to be pleased with it. while the focus and desaturation might be out of reach with a majority of visitors i find it an interesting departure from you're trademark style.

comment by steph at 09:27 PM (GMT) on 9 February, 2006

i enjoy this shot. i like the graphic quality to it- the squares all in a horizontal row with the vertical grass framing the side. it sort of reminds me of man-made vs. nature... i like the subtle tones and the fact that it's not completely focused makes it more abstract.

comment by nuno f at 09:33 PM (GMT) on 9 February, 2006

This leads to the eternal discution "focused photo against blured image". Sometimes, I prefer an excellent blured photo to a "vulgar" sharp one because I try to see the intention of the photographer and not the technical aproach or karmas that are implemented as rules to follow. Why should every photos be in focus? I believe that photography as a creative art, shouldn't be criticized when the photographer try to brake the rules.

What I like more in this shot, is the fact that the color windows look like a watercolor palete ready to be used. The pastel tones are also very pleasing.

comment by Lee at 09:36 PM (GMT) on 9 February, 2006

Finally, this is the best photo you have done for a long while. Probably becuase I love unsaturated colours and slight colour casts.

comment by JD at 09:47 PM (GMT) on 9 February, 2006

I posted a comment on John's Site Yesterday.

I mentioned how I automatically associated his beach pier shot to your work and wanted it to be like your usual contrasty, saturated work full of sharpness and detail.

Now I see this and I'm wondering whether I should (automatically associate these types of shots with you)??

It works well, and its probably more representable of the day than your usual processing would be...
Anyway, I think this has something that johns was lacking! But I'm still yearning for more sharpness (sorry) but again thats just me

comment by JD at 09:51 PM (GMT) on 9 February, 2006

PS it has a very aged look about it: 60-70s sort of thing. Possibly because thats when the curtains and peer is from or something (I don't know :S )

comment by Rob at 09:52 PM (GMT) on 9 February, 2006

Other than the green color cast being a bit overdone for me personally, I like this capture, and would put it in the competent pile, kinda like yesterdays. Not one of your 40 best, as you say Dave, but excellent for a photoblog post "hey, this is the best image I was able to produce today with the time and subject matter available to me and wanted to share it with you" and certainly worthy of sharing. The composition is spot on to me and I like the DOF choice too, with just enough background detail for this to work, with the color on the curtains and the X raised details. I would also have been interested to see it at f/2.8 as well just for kicks. I assume you took that shot too Dave but liked this one better?
P.S. I agree this is a different shot for you, but only in terms of post-processing. The concept and compsition seems classic Chromasia to me :-)

comment by Jamey at 10:02 PM (GMT) on 9 February, 2006

It looks like there's a vignette that's been selectively applied to the bottom left, which I love. Looking deeper, it's probably the shadows in the scene itself that gives the effect but whatever it is I like the way it's turned out.

comment by John Washington at 10:10 PM (GMT) on 9 February, 2006

Well, of course I like most of Daves work but this one is a welcome departure for me. Obviously Djn has established a nice little trademark type image for himself which is admirable, and we all recognise it instantly.

However I think that this is one of the few occassions where he has truly tried to communicate the exact mood of the venue as oppossed to altering it's mood (nothing wrong with that either)

This photo appeals to me but I can understand why others won't like it. Perhaps I'm lucky and can really relate to that scene because I was there, but I can assure you that this place had a damp and grotty vibe going on.

A lot of people seem to be obsessed with sharpness and detail and I often wonder why. I know that I am a fine one to talk but it would be nice to debate this issue again and find out why this is.

I seem to have shifted emphasis from time to time and I suspect many others do as well. I like a bit of blur or out of focus areas. It lets me try and complete the picture.

Anyway, I like it


comment by Tanveer at 10:20 PM (GMT) on 9 February, 2006

There is something about this diversion that you have taken that I like. Most of your shots are stunning and stark in color, contrast and mood, but the muted tonality of this image is soothing and real. Like a February day with spring on the horizon. As always thanks for sharing your mood of the day.

comment by cj at 10:42 PM (GMT) on 9 February, 2006

Wow, two in a row for the 'maybe, maybe not' category.

Things I like: softness, two planes, nature/man contrast

Things I dislike: the green tinge, the lines going out of the picture top right

I guess it is the green tinge that kills it for me. Entirely subjective. Perhaps I've just seen too many monochrome inkjet prints that thought they were neutral but which were not.

comment by blake at 10:53 PM (GMT) on 9 February, 2006

I like the contrast with your usual high saturation. The muted colors of this are a nice change.

comment by Deb at 11:07 PM (GMT) on 9 February, 2006

As entries in a visual journal....a narrative of chance, salient and emotionally catalytic experience, captured and pixellated, I have to say that you never fail to nail it. It's honest. It's almost random in its sincerity. This one, I like for quite "odd" and disturbing reasons (to me anyway). Its poignancy. (I think it's quite "odd" to find satisfaction in poignancy...but that says a lot about me). I find the image desolate and melancholic....the tones are cold.....yet the almost naive vibrancy (and supremacy) of rampant nature in the foreground corrects expectations of the "manufactured, transient tastes" of the 70's-looking structure behind it.....being the constant. The palette of vivid colours nesting above the achromatic squares only adds to that message........"Fade away"

comment by drdubosc at 11:13 PM (GMT) on 9 February, 2006

Surely not a question of 'obsession with sharpness and detail '. Pictures can work by frustrating the viewer. But if they do, it has got to be towards a stronger end than the one that's being withheld. Obscurity has to *do* something. The compositional draw in this picture is the geometry and colour in the background - and the geometry's frustrated. But where's the compensation? I can imagine it working, for example, as a frame from a movie. As a static image, I don't feel there's enough. I'm pretty much forced to try and resolve the background, and that just makes my eyes hurt.

comment by Heath at 11:20 PM (GMT) on 9 February, 2006

Not too sure that I like this one. For me, the grass in the foreground is a little too featureless to be the focal point. I don't know, maybe it's just all a little too "fuzzy".

comment by Caryn at 11:22 PM (GMT) on 9 February, 2006

It's a very interesting shot, especially with the colored windows in the background and the greenish tone. I think I'd like to see the weeds in the foreground in much sharper detail, though, to accent the blurriness in the background. But then, I'm generally not a fan of most shots that are completely soft in focus; I prefer a focal point.

comment by Max at 11:25 PM (GMT) on 9 February, 2006

You seem to be using your 100mm macro lens a lot lately. Is this a new purchase? How do you like it? I own the 180mm macro and love the way it can blur the background and/or foreground (such as in this shot). Are there any other lenses that you're pining after? I'd like to know from one Canon enthusiast to another. I have thought about getting the 10mm EF-S or a super telephoto like the 300mm or the 400mm. I've also thought about a 2 x extender for my 180mm but not sure if that's the way to go. Good point today about your site being a visual diary...it was a point that I'd forgotten! Every shot can't be amazing.

comment by jbuhler at 11:25 PM (GMT) on 9 February, 2006

I think these last few images are going somewhere. Not much of a series yet, but it is promising, and I'd like to see where you take it.

comment by Danielle at 11:48 PM (GMT) on 9 February, 2006

Well I like this. I know people get all huffy about images being out of focus, but it is so beautifully abstract. Makes you think- I like that about the last few you've posted.

comment by nogger at 12:26 AM (GMT) on 10 February, 2006

My first thought was an out of focus child's water colour paintbox.

comment by Kris at 12:29 AM (GMT) on 10 February, 2006

like the overall tone on this one...to be really frank i like your sober kind of images much more. the color blocks in the background adds to the charm

comment by PARCPHOTOGRAPHY at 01:30 AM (GMT) on 10 February, 2006

Great perspective, and very creative. Thanks again David for sharing your photos.

You've Inspired some of us newbies in this field. Thanks again!

comment by Sharla at 02:58 AM (GMT) on 10 February, 2006

After seeing John's revealing shot of this building, the lack of focus in your shot improves the building's appearance considerably. I like the tighter emphasis of yours because it accentuates the pastel windows. The shallow DOF works fine because there is enough foreground to pull it off.

The green cast seems honest even if not literal. It's not awarm and comfortable shot, of course, but I don't believe you intended it to be.

Picky, picky, picky: I might have preferred just a tad more grass showing to better stabilize the eye and I definitely would have cropped the left side a small percentage to give the windows a touch more balance.

comment by Ben at 04:46 AM (GMT) on 10 February, 2006

Hmmmm... I wish the background were a little more out of focus. I feel like I'm looking at a half loaded interlaced image on the web, and I keep waiting for it to sharpen up. Perhaps it's because the in-focus grass is similar in color to the background, and so it's not obvious that there's something there that's sharp and focused until I take a closer look.

comment by flying cow at 05:16 AM (GMT) on 10 February, 2006

subtle. and pretty.

comment by Geoff at 05:41 AM (GMT) on 10 February, 2006

Wow, wouldn't it be nice to post an image every day and have thirty or more people debate its various merits or lack of them. I sometimes post photos on forums and watch them get 100 views without a single comment. Not that my pictures are so bad either, but granted, they're not in Dave's class. This site, with its large and regular clientelle, is an excellent venue for Dave to stretch his wings, so to speak. The more I look at this image the more I like it. This sort of shot speaks voulmes for the thought going into these shots. The composition, the choice of focus, the awesome qualty of the post production. Chromasia is off to a great start for its third year!

comment by derLITOGRAPH at 08:46 AM (GMT) on 10 February, 2006

This picture is definitly different. Though i like the interaction between the "black&white"-sky and the colors of the windows. Your site is awsome. It inspired me to even start a photoblog though i have a long way before me. Oh, by the way i have to say, that i'm from Germany Munich and that's the reason, why i speak such a bad english.

comment by Ahamed at 09:12 AM (GMT) on 10 February, 2006

I like the lack of general lack of color saturation and the specific squares of color in the background. Very different and unique perspective.

comment by thomas at 09:13 AM (GMT) on 10 February, 2006

i like the picture made by john w. more. its nice, but i miss something.

comment by Anneri at 09:56 AM (GMT) on 10 February, 2006

I like it. Very nostalgic. The coloured windows remind me of a lampshade my uncle used to have in the early 80's - it looked a little bit like a small skycraper with coloured windowglass, some panes were substituted with glass marbles. Good memories of happier times.

comment by prasoon at 11:39 AM (GMT) on 10 February, 2006

am sure you'd have mixed reviews for this one too..

to me, it looks good - the way the dof has made that building seem neglectable n thence, out of reach.. :)

comment by Ioannis at 11:47 AM (GMT) on 10 February, 2006

It was indeed an interesting discussion yesterday. This picture does not do it for me either, but as per yesterday's discussion, thanks for putting it up.

comment by Daniel G at 12:58 PM (GMT) on 10 February, 2006

I like the discussion...the shot is not good in my opinion...it is just out of focus and with some filters...i don´t like the out of focus effect because it doesn´t adds nothing to the picture...I look to the thumbnail in this comment page and i think it is better in focus. it doesn´t works for me...

comment by Paul Courtney at 01:29 PM (GMT) on 10 February, 2006

Hi Dave,
Here's yet another of your shots which I like. My mind has conjured up the setting for this building, sitting in what originally was probably a very pretty spot. Now the dereliction is evident from the overgrown grasses, and had the building been in sharper detail we would have seen that the X-blocks are no longer the original white colour but are all blackened and faded with years of exposure to the elements. The only hint of it's former glory are the colours of the curtains. The chosen DoF is excellent for not getting or losing too much detail in the pictures obvious focus, the building. The grass frames the shot nicely. I might have cropped the picture on the left to stop at the last coloured curtan, and the vignette down there is distracting and the green tinge is ever-so-slightly overdone, but I can see the focus bleeding away from right to left so can see a good reason to keep it in.
All in all, another provocative shot, none the worse for being out-of-focus.

comment by x-iii at 01:36 PM (GMT) on 10 February, 2006

hi dave.. one word to describe this shot: melancholy. exactly how i'm feeling right now.. out of reach from that special place.

comment by SteveO at 01:36 PM (GMT) on 10 February, 2006

The green toning isn't exactly to my taste, but it certainly contributes to the grubby abandoned feeling of the place. Goes well with Johns shot.

comment by tamONLINE at 01:53 PM (GMT) on 10 February, 2006

I love it. It feels very cinematic... as if the scene is building up approaching this strange building. There's a definite story here... maybe not a complete one but it gives certain anticipation of a scene.

Its got phenomenal feel. And the colors (albeit muted) draw you in immediately, and the sharpness of the grass make your eyes scan across revealing the rest of the photo.

If i had to give criticism as well as praise, it would be that the edges were darkened too much... just unnaturally so.

Overall, I like it a lot.

comment by Moe Darbandi at 02:39 PM (GMT) on 10 February, 2006

could work for the current photofriday challenge quite well, i believe!

comment by jxiong at 02:55 PM (GMT) on 10 February, 2006

i like the subdued colors but i dun see the meaning behind this shot.. nice pp though!

comment by alan at 04:01 PM (GMT) on 10 February, 2006

I like the shot. True, somewhat of a departure from a more typical DJN image, but the same characteristics are there, just applied a bit differently. I really like being able to compare it John's image of the same scene to see the different interpretations.

comment by Tad at 05:44 PM (GMT) on 10 February, 2006

honestly, this is my favorite shot of yours. I usually visit your blog to see what effects you're using and how you accomplish them. I'm always impressed (or a little in awe) of your technical mastery, but rarely do I feel this invited into a mood. It just seems very cinematic and reflective. I imagine re-visiting a childhood schoolyard, overgrown and and a little sad with the passing of time. each color could be a portal into a specific memory related to what happened in this now over-grown yard.

comment by Davd at 06:55 PM (GMT) on 10 February, 2006

I just reviewed several of your recent posts and the majority of them seem to be out of focus. It is quite possible that your auto focus mechanism is malfunctioning. If this is the case you can always switch to manual mode. Most of your work, I don't have a clue what I'm looking at.

comment by mat at 07:33 PM (GMT) on 10 February, 2006

like it a lot. the windows in the background remind me of a water color set.

comment by david at 08:43 PM (GMT) on 10 February, 2006

I do like the pastel colouring in the image and the focus is really effective! cheers

comment by vista at 09:35 PM (GMT) on 10 February, 2006

Why make the wheat so blurry?

comment by djn1 at 09:48 PM (GMT) on 10 February, 2006

Thanks everyone.

As for the blur/lack of clarity in this shot: I guess that I was after the mood of the scene, not the detail, and for some of you this worked, for others it didn't. I guess this is a general point, and it's something I wouldn't have said a year ago, but I'm not all that bothered about the clarity of some shots. Obviously, for some subjects it's vital to get it spot on (e.g. this portrait), but for shots such as this one I think that a definite focal point would detract from the overall feel of the image. That said I do realise that this is probably more to do with taste than anything else, so take my thoughts with a pinch of salt.

comment by vivia at 04:42 PM (GMT) on 11 February, 2006

I love, love, love this one! It is my favorite. I think it is finally a good picture again that I really like. I am not sure about all the other ones, but they are still awesome. I think my sister's Fotoblog is getting better and better and that's why I don't come here that often any more. I guess she would appreciate if you'd take a look at hers:
http://mareenfischinger.com Enjoy!
And thank you for sharing. I can't wait togo back home and use your awesome pictures as wallpapers for my Desktop again. I always did that and changed around. Woah. I love this.

comment by David Warren at 06:48 PM (GMT) on 18 February, 2006

I think this photo is fantastic just the way it is. The colours too. Great composition.

comment by Ana Toniolli at 06:05 PM (GMT) on 19 February, 2006

So Beautiful.