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Canon DSLR Challenge | all galleries >> CSLR Challenge 87: Living Colour (hosted by Gayle Knowles) >> Eligible > daffodils and mustard
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17-FEB-2007 Michael Puff

daffodils and mustard

Canon EOS 20D ,Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM
1/1600s f/5.0 at 32.0mm iso200 full exif

other sizes: small medium original auto
jbhgmvo22-Feb-2007 08:25
The same delicate and surreal atmosphere as in so many of your photos. And it leaves the viewer wondering.. there's an element of illusion present. I can understand the questions earlyer, about how it was done. There's a dash of both Magritte and Escher .. a perspective scew going on.

I wonder if I might have called it "One flew over the daffodils nest". (Mind you, I'm absolutely terrible with titles.) To me it's a very humorous picture anyway. The daffodils seem to be looking in another direction, while their colored sibling, the rather outstanding balloon, quietly goes about its own biz. Which mainly seems to be staying in touch with the blue heavens above, like a little sun on a string, and otherwise remain airborne. I hope the weather remains calm! I like the picture; colors and umm.. maths.
Canon DSLR Challenge21-Feb-2007 10:54
I didn't see the first version of this, but I must say that I really like this one. The placement of the balloon is perfect, IMO to give the picture the right balance. What a terrific concept and wonderful execution. Jim H.
jnconradie20-Feb-2007 05:26
I also prefer version 2 and compliments yet again on the balloon idea. Your creativity is truly remarkable. Regards ~jnconradie
Canon DSLR Challenge20-Feb-2007 01:14
Each image is different of course, with a different feel about it...but I do...(respond/like?)...this one considerably more. Thanks also for the info on the balloon. Best wishes, Traveller
Guest 19-Feb-2007 22:57
New version uploaded per Traveller's and Lee's comments. I added a velvia action to saturate the colors, but masked it out of the balloon because the balloon became very flat and solid after the velvia action and I wanted to maintain its transparency. The secondary highlight on the right side of the balloon was removed.

Lee, naw, I didn't think you were being mean. In answer to your question, I suppose it's a bit real and a bit PS. The final position of the balloon was done in post as I couldn't get into the field to place it exactly where I wanted it. I purchased the balloon and took it with me hoping to find mustard in bloom (it's a bit early in the season). I photographed the balloon on location so that it would have appropriate lighting. I'm not sure why it has two highlights from the sunlight, perhaps the secondary one was coming through the semi-transparent balloon? Be that as it may, I agree the two highlights feels unnatural and I've removed the highlight on the right. -Michael
Guest 19-Feb-2007 18:01

I should have stated that I really like it. I try to not post things just to be mean, but was curious when I saw the two reflections on the balloon.

All the best,

Guest 19-Feb-2007 16:42
Traveller, I'm not going anywhere (except possibly outside to take pitchas). I think you read something in my comment which was not intended by me. Lee's question is indeed legitimate and in no way did I intend to sound offended by it. I *really* was just asking if that was his only impression of the image because, if so, I'm simply not accomplishing what I set out to do. I'll answer Lee's question a little later today.

I thank you for your encouraging thoughts. You needn't worry, I'm not going to take my toys and go play in another sandbox. This is a wonderful place and the playground is filled with good folks.

I hadn't thought of boosting the saturation. I do have a velvia action which I rarely use, but it might be just the ticket here. I'll give it a try. -Michael
Canon DSLR Challenge19-Feb-2007 08:27
Well, Michael, I am a little afraid that, because of your skill and talent previously displayed...this question may haunt you in the Challenges. However, I think that the question is wrongly isn't your skill and talent, that you have, that we know, for me it is

That is rarer than hen's teeth, it is like water in the desert, and I would add that it will be you only shield as you create what you see...what you find in your heart and mind.

I hope you create because you have to. I would hate to see any questions turn you away from your path...whatever that may be, however you want to discover what is inside of you.

Lee's question re PS wasn't meant badly, Lee's bona fides are real as is his repute. He was curious and not mean I sometimes felt were the questions put to Melbob.

Here's the thing...Melbob is the poorer for having left us. He robbed us of his talent, that's no big deal, I don't care about that a whit...but I fear and suspect that Melbob robbed himself by leaving us.

That's a shame...I mean we'll get on, but will Melbob? I miss him.

So listen, Michael, you'd better not be going anywhere. Put the criticisms aside, do your work honestly as you always have. There is nothing else.

(Now that the praise is past...can I ask an honest question? Did you consider pumping up the color a little? I know it's's a winter picture...and maybe some ineffable sense of promise and loss is what you were after and that required muted colors...relatively speaking.

I bring this up because while my Golden Crocodile really is a golden crocodile by formal name, I did pop the color a little with a pass of Digital Velvia. In some images he is much more muted...though in the frame I used he is pretty yellow...and even though Marry Anne asked for even more contrast, I did push that plus 9%.

In my defense, this is a Challenge for Living Color and not National Geographic...but I still, inside myself am mulling a re-do on that image.

Which brings up the question...just how many participants in this Cahllenge boosted Saturation for their entries? Hummmm?)

Be that as it all image delights opens not a question of Photoshop for me...but a door into the wondrous possibilities of life...weird and exciting and just floating out there, if only I would turn that corner, if only I could see.

A Beautifully evocative image.

Best Wishes,

Guest 19-Feb-2007 07:08
Traveller, deeply honored but your words, thanks. Nico, thanks also for your kind words.

Lee, thanks also for your comments, but I have to ask...does it matter? really matter? I have the utmost respect for you and will certainly answer your question in great detail (you'll prolly be surprised), but I think I'm feeling a bit sensitive lately and have to wonder why anything other than the finished image matters. Does it speak to you in the very least or does it just leave you cold except for wondering about perceived multiple light sources on the balloon? I ask because I'm not interested in creating images where people dissect the "how" of the image...I'm striving to create a finished piece where the image has an emotional voice and speaks to people. If the best I can do is leave you wondering about light sources on the balloon then I've failed in my intent and ultimately the image has a very weak voice. I'm not fishing for compliments rather than honest appraisal, I'm just wondering if the question of multiple balloon light sources is the only thing speaking to you.

jnconradie19-Feb-2007 05:28
Great touch, Michael. Amazing contrasts between the trees and the flowers. Wow! Regards ~jnconradie
Canon DSLR Challenge19-Feb-2007 03:09
Real or PS? I hate to ask. But since there are two light sources on the balloon.
Canon DSLR Challenge18-Feb-2007 20:24
We're working today, my secretary and my self and we both just went...Ohhhhh Wow...that's....and I said, that's Michael Puff. Best Wishes, Traveller