Home Forums Am I a Fauxtog? Thoughts on my work please? Compliments or Critique but truth please

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    I am preparing to relocate and will not be doing any photography except personal for the next 6 months to a year. 

    And it is here that you answer your own question. Yes, you are a fauxtog.  I don’t think you are as thick skinned as you claim to be.


    EMF –

    I’m ADD so I have a tendency to get stuck on the details and that frustrates me. Karen lacks attention to detail. And you get this from the very beginning.

    – Unintelligible logo. It’s like a weird butterfly thing. It makes no sense and has absolutely nothing to do with photography. pointless.
    – Bad web site design
    – Galleries with way too much information. No concise editing
    – Flat images, weird exposure things going on. I’m not even certain she knows how to use her camera
    – the watermark and caring about trivial things like ppl stealing her low rez images.
    – overall bad representation and presentation of imagery.

    Some of these concerns I brought up in my original comment. She disregarded it as mean.  It was clear from the beginning she wasn’t interested in getting clear and concise advice, which is what I offered. I wasn’t being mean, I was being matter-of-fact. She snapped at me, I snapped back harder. I have no patience for people who don’t want to learn.

    You’ll notice that my tone really wasn’t any different with the other people that I’ve responded to, with the exception that I like some of their work. The long and short of it is that I don’t care for Karen’s work.


    Thanks for replying ebi.


    Saying images are “too flat” without follow up is a cop out critique. It’s like saying “It’s not interesting” without follow up. It doesn’t help a damn thing to throw terminology out without adding a suggestion as to how something could be done better.
    You’re a bully, Ebi. You say you were giving “clear and conside advice” but you provided no advice. Only pointed out flaws and problems. You also have no patience with anyone. Even when you’re being “helpful” you’re being a jerk.


    Well… to be fair, “too flat” is a legitimate critique item.  It just means contrast is less than I would like. Whether you fix it, and how you fix it, depends on the artist and the image.  You might want it flat.  You could use a contrast slider, or Curves, or a sharpening scheme, or set white, black and mid points.  If there were just one “right” way and just one “right” result, I could write a program to do it, and put a lot of Photoshop experts out of a job!  Not happening in my life time.  That’s why it’s Art instead of Science, even though a lot of science is involved.

    It is useful to see the work of those giving critiques so you can determine if their look matches your desires.  It is also useful for a critique to involve a single piece rather than a body of work.  Not that some of ebi’s comments aren’t valid for the whole web site, but I didn’t think the photos were too flat.  It would be helpful to identify which photo or photos are too flat.  The field of sunflowers with a couple way in the distance might be too flat for some, but look at the sky.  That is serious cloud cover!  Perhaps it is supposed  to be flat?  I don’t think ebi and I see eye-to-eye.  That’s not a bad thing, but it does seem to be a fact.

    Part of a good critique, beyond clear and concise, is understandable advise.  And that can be a challenge sometimes when you write something that is crystal clear to you, yet no one else has a clue what you are talking about….


    the critique was: Flat images, weird exposure things going on. I’m not even certain she knows how to use her camera





    She put some images back up and I’m glad she did. By bringing down the number of images she looks like a better photographer.  I think overall, there is a better way to present these images but the subject of website functionality is a completely separate one.

    HDR sunflower shot – wacky wide and not very natural looking. why is it your first image and the first impression you want to make?
    leaves shot – bad image. not interesting. get rid of it.
    baby shot – overly lit in the front, not very lit in the back. fall off too much or not enough. i see lots of weird distracting shapes and colors.
    backlit baby tub shot. cute, don’t hate it. parents love that shit. leave it in.
    christmas baby double spread – cute shot. could have better facial expression but babies are hard so whatevs. remove your reflection from the bulb in the front.
    pumpkin baby – bad color balance, styling could be better.
    bokeh baby – bad contrast, cute kid
    truck shot – poorly crafted, bad subjects, would be better without the cube truck behind the other truck.
    cat shot  on white, not that great.
    Baby turtle shot – what are you anne geddes now? Her pictures are not that interesting and i really don’t like it when ppl try to emulate her work.Other than that, it’s fine.
    mom walking with child – flat, bad contrast, bad color kid looks ok, moms ass looks fat (my apologies if this is a self portrait). Not really a good photo.
    red head dancer – i think she looks beautiful. i love the angle, and the smile . this should be the first impression people have of you. A little brighter more contrast, work on the color temperature. Do you have it wider? Are you cropping? If you have more, maybe play with different cropping.
    dandelion baby – flat,weird technical thing going on here. not really a good image overall
    same with the next photo. And also this is a good time to talk about consistency. Look at this photo and the one before. Notice the color temperature is completely different? Fix that. All we see is moms nose. We need to see more of mom.
    cats – alright, whatever. i like cats. this is fine
    blue baby – fine
    boot baby – other ppl like this, i don’t really care for it, but whatever. i guess its fine.
    random flower shot. no.
    dandelion baby – flare doesnt’ make sense. not a great shot.
    cat composite? what happened? photoshop filter? please step away from the filters…
    violin girl – not a great model. delete.
    sunflower girl – not a great model. delete. The profile shot makes her look very busty. probably not a good thing.
    Candace Phelps – I actually like the light on this one. technically it looks like you know what you are doing.
    And this brings me to another point. This girl looks boring. When shooting real people, especially senior portraits, I like to think of them as environmental portraits. So the standard poses are just boring. You can really set yourself apart by thinking outside the box. Every few years I have a cousin graduate from high school and so every few years, one kid has entirely different and creative senior portraits b/c all the rest of them get them done at the same place with the same backgrounds and the same boring poses. You’ll snag a ton of business if you can do this. Do fun and stupid stuff, regardless if it works or not. The ones I did this year where with a girl who had no personality.  Her answer to everything was “I don’t know”. In every photo she looks exactly the same. I feel that Candace does as well. That may be something you can fix, it may not be. It all depends. With my cousin, who i’ve known all her life, i wasn’t able too. I don’t fail that often, but I did this time. I also shot my male cousin who had far more energy and was way less meek and apathetic. His shots turned out much better.
    boy with glasses and his girlfriend – were these engagement shots? ugh. too young to get married. weird angle, not a good shot.
    Batman boy – weird angle, not a good shot.

    Overall, you are still all over the place. You need to organize images better so that they flow well from one photo to the next. The nature stuff is the least important, unless it fits with a story. It’s not selling you on anything, so its best to just discard it if it doesn’t serve a purpose. You can also put it elsewhere, like on a blog or personal site somewhere. just not in the images that are to represent who you are as a professional photographer.

    So yeah, you edited immensely and it completely changed the perception of you as a photographer. It’s amazing what editing can do. We all make bad photographs. We just don’t let other people see the bad. only the good. Our ability to be objective is what makes the difference.


    @iliketag – it’s not interesting is simply that. if a photo is not interesting, then what is it? how can I tell someone how to take an interesting photo. It would be easier for me to explain how to make an image not flat. I don’t feel like doing either.


    That was SO much better. You had more than buzzwords going and I think it is honestly way more effective in helping the original poster to understand shortcomings in the work. Still seemed like it was in spite, but better nonetheless.
    Saying something is uninteresting is still pretty vague, even if it’s true. Presenting it as, “The sunflowers are uninteresting because that’s how all flowers as shot and it doesn’t stand out” is still an improvement over “It’s not interesting.”
    You can follow the former up with suggestions a lot earier too. Suggesting something like shooting from different angles, focusing on more intricate details, working with more captivating lighting, testing yourself with water droplets, etc. are ways to help spruce up a dull-er set of images.


    great, feel free to follow up my responses with that kind of critique. I only went in depth as a courtesy to her making the effort to edit and follow some advice rather than disregard it and pout. I felt compelled to do the same.

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