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shadow from the crown. nyc

My goal in this project is to create a sense of scale by using the small brown geese to contrast the looming Statue of Liberty's shadow.

Step 1. ScoutingNative Cam - This pic starts w/me signing up to visit the Crown of the Statue of Liberty months in advance. You have to pick a specific day and time to visit, so i was extremely lucky to visit on a good day with the afternoon light creating a defined shadow that had the statue basically pointing her torch towards lower Manhattan.

** i picked this shot to submit because i've seen countless pictures of the Statue of Libery, but never her shadow. NYC's landmarks have been photographed millions of times by people much more talented than me, but i thought this is a different and unique twist on a classic...and that was worth exploring. 

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Each edit described below is meant to get closer to my goal above.

this is the original iphone 5 photo.. 

Step 2. Clone Tool - The gorgeous weather attracted lots of people to the island, so i needed to use the Clone tool on Filterstorm to simplify the elements of the shot. I chose to remove all the people, boats and the pier to really have the main focus be three elements: statue, geese and city.

  • I thought about cropping the city out, but keeping it in completed the sense of distance and added to the perception of size and scale of the other 2 elements
  • I was hesitant to use the clone tool with that heavy of a hand, but after just trying it.. and seeing how removing the distractions simplified the contrasting scale of the subjects.. the end result overrode my concern of over-edting. 
  • Removing the distractions also added to the desolate feel that black & white pics seem to convey naturally and is part of many Jason Peterson's shots (at least on IG).

 

again, my end goal is to create a sense of scale using the small brown geese to contrast the looming statue's shadow.

Step 3. Desaturate - everything except the geese to further simplfy the elements of the picture.

  • The geese's natural color is used to draw the eye down
  • their shadows to hold visual intrest
  • the city is kept in to show distance and context

In the end, i liked how everything followed the rule of three's, 3 elements, 3 geese and 3 colors (black, white, brown) ..happy accident :)

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shot and edited on an iphone 5 using Snapseed, Lightroom mobile (to balance the light/dark) and Filterstorm to desaturate and play with the curves ..all with the goal of trying to create the sense of scale and mimic the Jason Peterson style and feel. 

i really appreciate this class especially because it made me focus on thinking through and being more mindful and deliberate in what i want to convey, and have a concept in mind and shoot and edit to reach a result.. instead of just shooting what i think looks cool, and then getting back and seeing that i missed an important element that would've completed a good pic. It also gave me a better workflow once and i get my shots. I never used to do any of that.

I also wasn't aware of Filterstorm and gradients before this class and now they're such an invaluable tool for my editing process and i'm addicted to tinkering with them all day long.

Much appreciated, thanks Jason!

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