A Rush To Judgement….

Fire In The Sky. Sunrise Atop Mt. Washington, NH.

As the sun crests the horizon its light set the sky on fire. Sunrise atop Mt. Washington, NH is a sight to behold. Capturing this scenic image was worth leaving my house at midnight in order to arrive on time for the drive to the summit.

Or, why it takes me forever to share images from a shoot.

At least it should anyway. I love to share my images, plain and simple. Ever since the first person complemented me on my photography I can’t get enough. Who doesn’t like a great big boost to the ego every once in a while, right? Usually, because I would rather be behind the camera than behind the computer, the images have a chance to sit on my hard drive for a while, waiting for me to step back and look at them with a more critical and less emotional eye. Then I’ll choose what I feel are the best from that day. After a shoot, I will import them into Lightroom right away, and go through and delete the obvious garbage. My images live in fear of the delete key, and I am brutal. Not only do the out of focus, poor composition, and “what the hell was I thinking,” experiments get the boot, but if they don’t meet my personal “is it print worthy?” standard, they are gone. Not too many images getting a free ride on my hard drive, that’s for sure. Unfortunately, every once in a while I’m so excited about what I have captured that I just blast through the editing process, and in my rush to judgement  pick the wrong image to show. I’ll also often pick an over processed version to show, but that is a subject for another day.

The two images here are prime examples of this. After coming back from a sunrise shoot on Mt Washington this past July, I thought I struck personal gold with the above photograph. Then, as I was doing a little housekeeping in my Lightroom catalog I came across the image below. The first thing to cross my mind was, Wow! Followed very quickly by the realization that this image was considerably better than the above. Just the sheer drama in the sky made for a better image. I also find that different choices during post processing can make or break the final photograph, and here is no exception. Admittedly, while I think both of the images are good, I do feel the second one is much better, if for no other reason than the more dramatic sky.

Fire In The Sky. Sunrise Atop Mt. Washington, NH.

As the sun crests the horizon its light set the sky on fire. Sunrise atop Mt. Washington, NH is a sight to behold. Capturing this scenic image was worth leaving my house at midnight in order to arrive on time for the drive to the summit.

Take a look at the image below and let me know if you agree.

I’m always amazed at how fast some of the friends I shoot with get their photos out, be it on their blog, on facebook, flickr, etc. For me, for the time being at least, I’m going back to my foot-dragging when it comes to sharing images from a day’s shooting. I feel this will give me the emotional detachment from the photographs and avoid a rush to judgement.

To the people who may have been with me that day, sorry, you’ll just have to wait to see my version of what we shot that day.

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6 thoughts on “A Rush To Judgement….

  1. I, for one, agree with you. The bottom image is stronger. The bottom image provides more emphasis on the sky which is much more interesting than the dark hillside. The dark hillside in the second photo is slightly more exposed which brings out the details more. Also that soft patch of clouds along the top of the frame in the first image has broken up and provides some interesting contrast to the cloud textures in the second image. That sure is a nice, dramatic sky and such great colour.

  2. Thank you all for the feedback, and sorry for the long delay in responding to your comments, family stuff.

    Going back and looking at the first image, I knew it could be better. But even brightening the fore ground it didn’t quite compare to the second image.

    @Mike, you are so right about the cloud at the top of the frame. Less is definitely more here.

Comments and thoughtful critiques are always welcome.

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