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Series in 5

Discussion in 'Photo Critique' started by pniev, Nov 24, 2015.

  1. pniev

    pniev Student for life

    Jun 10, 2013
    Recently I've become infected by the Series virus. So I thought to start a thread named "series in 5" for posting of series of 5 photos that share a common theme (a color, an object, or whatever) where each photo and the combination tells a story. This makes it different from documentary work that tells a story that builds up. Besides, "documentary" is combined with "street" and series can cover a whole array of subjects, in color and BW.

    Feel free to use this thread to post your own series of 5. It may even get you out of a photographic slump. ;-)


    Here is my first attempt that was selected in the top-12 (but just outside the top-10) on a recent contest with appr. 60-80 applications. Not bad but I hardly got any feedback on how to improve the series. So I would to ask you how I could make such a series stronger and what to be aware of next time.

    This series is about people caught in reading, isolating themselves from what happens around them. Initially I wanted to take some photos of people using their phones in Manhattan without really thinking how to do it. In hindsight I should have prepared better. I had difficulty combining photos. In fact, most photos I liked did not particularly fit into the same series. So I ended up building some contradictions in the photos: you expect younger people using their phones and older people reading (a bit like the one in the middle) but this series shows otherwise.

    As said, C&C are welcome!

    p1774339129-6.

    p1623028090-6.

    p1612208754-6.

    p1709737014-6.

    p1758288976-6.
     
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  2. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    nice series, Peter. The next time I go out shooting, I will plan to shoot a series and look for related images while I am shooting, rather than just bouncing from one to another without thinking. I quite like viewing images when presented like this.
     
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  3. Lightmancer

    Lightmancer Super Moderator

    Aug 13, 2011
    Sunny Frimley
    Bill Palmer
    Take 5, eh...?
     
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  4. ReD

    ReD SC Hall of Famer

    Mar 27, 2013
    A nice series Peter - hangs together very well
     
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  5. pniev

    pniev Student for life

    Jun 10, 2013
    thanks, Roger. Anything that I can do differently next time? My impression was that the juror (who sees lots of photos every day) missed something special, which I agree with. It probably takes a lot of shooting nd preparation to get something special. Anyway, the first hurdle was to make these type of shots and to turn it into a series. I am definitely going to plan better next time.
     
  6. Lightmancer

    Lightmancer Super Moderator

    Aug 13, 2011
    Sunny Frimley
    Bill Palmer
    I've been thinking about this.

    In terms of feedback, Peter I'd say the following. Every one of your photos is strong enough to stand alone, but they don't "play well" together. To my eye, shots 1 and 2 go together well, as do 3, 4 and 5 but the change in texture and feel is jarring to me. I think for a series to be strong they should have a visual unity in both style and substance - all low light mono, all colour, all slow shutter speed/motion blur, etc - and I think you have mixed here.

    I think also that the viewer should be able to establish your theme without your explanation, even if it requires some thinking and some work. In this you succeed, but it is not until the third shot that it happens. There is a quiz show on TV in the UK called "Only Connect" - it concerns itself with establishing the connections between apparently isolated things - pictures, music, words, etc. It is HARD for someone hard of thinking like me, but there is a great sense of satisfaction when you do, and that moment of "aaaah" when you don't and the teams or the quizmaster explains what you have not seen. I think that with a project like this you need to have that same sense of build-up and release of - in this case - visual tension as your theme reveals itself and "rewards" the viewer.

    I'm beginning to sound a bit pretentious now, but can you see what I mean? I'm NOT saying I could do it myself - in fact I'm going to give it a crack over the next couple of weeks and you can pick holes in what I come up with ;)

    As a last note, the two girls in image 5 made me look twice to see if you had taken a double-exposure...
     
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  7. PJacobs

    PJacobs SC Veteran

    354
    Apr 7, 2012
    The Netherlands
    Paul
    Very good idea, I'll put this on my to-do/assignment list.
     
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  8. ReD

    ReD SC Hall of Famer

    Mar 27, 2013
    Another method would be to choose 1 photo and process it differently - I have quite a collection these days not all successful but it shows development sometimes radically different.
    Not all photos lend themselves well to do it & there is a lot of trial & error
    Your third shot is my favourite & would be my choice to reprocess
     
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  9. pniev

    pniev Student for life

    Jun 10, 2013
    Not pretentious at all! In fact, I highly appreciate your observations. I see what you mean and will keep it in mind next time. Initially I had processed #5 also in noir style. I should have sticked to that.

    With respect to the visual unity, it is said that one image could be totally different than others. How one should implement something like that, remains the question.

    Thank you!
     
  10. pniev

    pniev Student for life

    Jun 10, 2013
    Thanks, Roger! do you mean to process 1 photo differently and keep the others the same? Any suggestions how you would reprocess #3?
     
  11. ReD

    ReD SC Hall of Famer

    Mar 27, 2013
    No I mean One single Photo processed 5 different ways - not sure if it fits the given brief but its a real journey and learning experience in its own right.
    As far as No 3 goes - assuming you have the colour version - My usual route is using Picasa then overlay BW / colour / tint / focus / etc etc & generally play with it. Next stages would be process in something like Perfect Effects 9 / then redo one or two using Painter Essentials 5 or IColorama or some other program for a completely new image.
    My latest stuff has concentrated on reworks using P Ess 5 - its a tool like all the others for image processing.

    quick sample


    B x 5 r
    by Roger Evans, on Flickr
     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2015
  12. pniev

    pniev Student for life

    Jun 10, 2013
    Ah. That is clever! I had not thought about that! I am going to try it.
     
  13. Lightmancer

    Lightmancer Super Moderator

    Aug 13, 2011
    Sunny Frimley
    Bill Palmer
    I can't see that photo...?
     
  14. ReD

    ReD SC Hall of Famer

    Mar 27, 2013
    Sorry Bill I've deleted it