This is one of the better portraits we’ve received for critique since starting this group. I like the pose. The light is perfect. The model is beautiful. The exposure is right on. On a scale of 10 I’d give it an 8.9. What could we improve?
The three big things that stand out for me were all mentioned by the other folks who jumped in and gave their opinion. Let’s start with the distracting white spot in the background camera-right of the model’s head. That is very distracting to me. Anything bright – on the same plane as the face and near the face has to go. So in my version I cloned that spot out and toned down the others in the area near her head.
I also agree that while the current crop is fine, a tighter crop would even be more compelling. I think CSBrown is on the right track but perhaps cropped a bit tighter than I am comfortable with. So I cropped her – but not that much. And this act also did away with another major distraction for me – the bright jewelry on her dress. My eye RAN to that spot every time I looked at this image so I got rid of it in the crop.
Lastly, and this is a very small nit – I didn’t like the blown out specular highlights on her lips and that was a 10-second fix with the patch tool in Photoshop.
There is no right way or wrong way to any of this. Just preferences and opinions. I like both the original and my take and congratulate the photographer on a job well done.
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