Current Desktop

© Chris Marshall
27th January 2005 – The day it snowed!

I didn’t get out to take any pictures this weekend – hangover put paid to Sundays plans to do that. I was looking through some old pictures for Almerimar Life and came across this one which I really like, not least because this is the only time it has snowed in Almerimar in 50+ years.

I took this with my old Sony DSC-F707, on auto with very little thought to the composition, so I thought I would ask Andie what she thought of the picture: “The light is beautiful in this shot…the colors it is casting on the buildings is so beautiful I wish i could see more. The sky on the other hand isn’t that intersting that day. The picture is nice, but I would have liked to see less sky and more buildings and snow!”

As the picture was taken from our balcony I had little scope, but I have to say that I actually like the colour of the sky in the top right.

I would really like to hear what you think of the picture.

Added to original Article

If you read Gary’s suggestions in the comments you will see some great suggestions as to how to improve the picture, if you look below you will see them in practice.

Thanks Gary!!!


3 thoughts on “Current Desktop

  1. Gary

    [quote post=”689″]I would really like to hear what you think of the picture.[/quote]
    Okay – you did ask! 🙂

    • As Andie says, you’ve captured the lighting very nicely.

    • The thing which stuck out like a sore thumb when I first saw this image was that your horizon is tilted. For what it’s worth, I too sometimes find it difficult, when hand-holding, to get the horizon spot on. But you can always use the Transform tool in Photoshop to rotate the image by +/- 0.1° at a time to correct this problem afterwards. You will have to apply a small crop afterwards, but the loss is minimal. In this case, you need to apply a rotation of somewhere about -1.4°.

    • On the subject of cropping, try slicing off the top 25% of the sky as a compromise…

    • The final suggestion I’d make is to add a little sharpening to your final image. Now this is where it gets a little complex. The generally accepted wisdom is to (re)size your image for whatever target you have in mind (print, web, etc) and then – as a final process – apply your sharpening. If you’re going to use an image for more than one purpose (eg a printed brochure and a web site) then you make two different versions (after you’ve done your straightening, cropping, colour correction, etc) and then apply appropriate sharpening to each version.

    The complexity I mentioned a minute ago is not from preparing different sizes, but from the fact that on this web page you’re using a single hi-res version of the image and you’re depending on the browser to resize it. It can’t be sharpened optimally for both the full size version and the 550 pixel wide resized version at the same time.

    What I’d suggest that you to consider is what I’m probably going to move to doing on my own site once it gets revamped. Produce two versions. One for the regular web page and a larger one for, well, elsewhere. Prepare a version sized specifically for the web page. In this case your width will be 550 pixels and the height will vary according to your composition and cropping. Then sharpen it and use it only for the web page. Then, when you want to make available a larger version, post it elsewhere. You could maybe host it on your own site or do as I’m planning to do – post it on Flickr. (Add a link back to your site and you might also benefit from increased traffic…)

    Producing two versions is a little more work, but you’re showing off your images as well as possible. To put it another way, you’re not compromising the quality of your image(s).

    • One last thing… (Quick – who else says that? 🙂 ) The seagulls on the hi-res version look more like the dust spots you sometimes get with a digital SLR. I’d zoom way in and use the Clone Stamp tool to copy a tiny adjacent “clean” area over each of the dots/birds. Set the tool to use as small a brush as you can get away with – just a little larger than the dots you’re concealing should do – and use a soft edge to the brush. Carefully applied, a viewer would be unable to tell afterwards if they didn’t already know.

    I hope these points give you some food for thought. They are meant as constructive criticism. 🙂

    Best wishes,

  2. Chris Marshall Post author

    They are excellent suggestions Gary – precisily what I was after. I really appreciate the time you have taken – they sure are constructive 🙂

    I have done the ‘before and after’ picture before (

    I also use SmugMug ( so maybe I could do the before and after stuff there – food for thought!!!!

    That is a cool panaramic you have done.

    Now I have something (else) to do today 🙂

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