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  • Level horizons?

    In the light of a recent picture I posted Gods own County it was said, quite rightly by more than one person that the horizon, probably better described in this picture as the skyline did not appear level. I'm not sure that these two terms are exactly the same, so someone may be able to clarify that one.

    Now I'm a bit of a stickler (there's a word for you to puzzle over George ) for level horizons, especially where water is involved, but, with this particular photo, there was little in the way of reference points with which to say things were spot on level.

    I could have rotated CCW a little to make it seem more natural, or just pulled up the right side. However this has a knock on effect on the foreground and middle distance and it doesn't look right. So I decided that the thin line of cloud should be horizontal in reality, which it was, and I left it.

    Surely one can argue that land is not always level, indeed there are many times when the general trend of land is sloping, how else do rivers flow to the sea. I admit though that often the slope in undetectable. In this part of North Yorkshire as you can see in the photo the land is definately not level, and even away in the distance there are rolling hills. So there is the dilemma of adjusting the skyline to fit an average or estimated levelness but at the expense of the rest of the image, or leave it, and in this case use the cloud veil as a guide. The fact is that if the picture is levelled as described you need about 2 degrees of adjustment, and this means the cloud is sloping.

    Now I'm sure Archangel (George) won't mind me doing this, but I offered him the opportunity to adjust my picture from the original unadjusted jpeg which had been converted from my Raw. I gave him the full file, with my watermark on it. I'm not unhappy with the way he has treated it, but I'm still a little uneasy with the adjustment to the skyline. This version is one of two, and was adjusted to take out some of the hazyness. Its not here for critique, or to say that one is better than the other, simply to show the effect of adjusting the skyline.

    Please do comment on whether you think it works though, and my thanks to George, we had a useful chat


    Stephen

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    Check out my BLOG too



  • #2
    Re: Level horizons?

    Hi Stephen,

    Works for me

    Trevor

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Level horizons?

      I feel it works ok generally as a picture - but it's not quite representative what I'd expect to see on a damp/hazy day in the Dales.

      Pol

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Level horizons?

        Originally posted by Stephen View Post
        In the light of a recent picture I posted Gods own County it was said, quite rightly by more than one person that the horizon, probably better described in this picture as the skyline did not appear level. I'm not sure that these two terms are exactly the same, so someone may be able to clarify that one.

        Now I'm a bit of a stickler (there's a word for you to puzzle over George ) for level horizons, especially where water is involved, but, with this particular photo, there was little in the way of reference points with which to say things were spot on level.

        I could have rotated CCW a little to make it seem more natural, or just pulled up the right side. However this has a knock on effect on the foreground and middle distance and it doesn't look right. So I decided that the thin line of cloud should be horizontal in reality, which it was, and I left it.

        Surely one can argue that land is not always level, indeed there are many times when the general trend of land is sloping, how else do rivers flow to the sea. I admit though that often the slope in undetectable. In this part of North Yorkshire as you can see in the photo the land is definately not level, and even away in the distance there are rolling hills. So there is the dilemma of adjusting the skyline to fit an average or estimated levelness but at the expense of the rest of the image, or leave it, and in this case use the cloud veil as a guide. The fact is that if the picture is levelled as described you need about 2 degrees of adjustment, and this means the cloud is sloping.

        Now I'm sure Archangel (George) won't mind me doing this, but I offered him the opportunity to adjust my picture from the original unadjusted jpeg which had been converted from my Raw. I gave him the full file, with my watermark on it. I'm not unhappy with the way he has treated it, but I'm still a little uneasy with the adjustment to the skyline. This version is one of two, and was adjusted to take out some of the hazyness. Its not here for critique, or to say that one is better than the other, simply to show the effect of adjusting the skyline.

        Please do comment on whether you think it works though, and my thanks to George, we had a useful chat


        Hi Stephen,

        Of course I don't mind that you posted my conversion on your full size photo you sent me. Besides that it is your photo anyway. These attempts are to be experiments that can lead into some conclusions generally and personally I like very much experimenting like this in public and in private level with others.

        Stephen, I only puzzle with some English expressions. For individual English words I have English to Greek online dictionary to look up
        You know my opinion about the horizon's level since we discussed that personally over e-mail exchanges. Now it is time to state it here also for the rest of the people who are interesting in hearing different opinions over the forum.

        I personally think, that in distant landscapes, the horizon should be leveled evenly for the following two reasons:

        1. Because it is like that from nature anyway and if leveled in the photo, that is something that denotes reality.

        2. Because when the horizon is leveled as is naturally, then the rest of the objects in the frame reveal their true geometry in the place better (e.g how much is the sloping of a hill, speaking of the example photo).

        3. Because a distant landscape photo, most of the times is taken to show differrent object's position in regards to the horizon leveled line. Though there are some minor exceptions in that when the objects in the frame in a distant landscape shots and are equal or less than two. In that case a compromise can be done, e.g: a surfer jumping on the sea waves where horizon line is included in the frame.

        For any other type of photo I really don't mind any alterations in the horizon line as in some of them, e.g: a perspective of a building photographed from down to up, with horizon misalignment not only does not distract, but also it might add dimension to the photo.

        So I'm only a "stickler" myself too (a person who thinks that a particular type of behavior is very important, and always follows it or tries to make other people follow it) only for distant landscapes
        I'm open to any further experiments too


        Regards

        George

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Level horizons?

          Oh! Heck I gota head ache.
          I liked the original, viewed in isolation they are both good photographs.
          Catch Ya Later
          Tinka

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Level horizons?

            Hello Stephen
            I will comment on the horizon issue only and I feel George has done a good job here. But I must be honest and say that I was not too perturbed by the horizon on you original in the first place.
            Tom

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Level horizons?

              Well I'm proper stumped. I have been viewing both in WE for several minutes now (both copies now deleted again) and I can't decide which version I prefer.
              -------------------------

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Level horizons?

                Sometimes from your point of reference the horizon is not level, or the angle you photographed a subject in relation to it makes it appear un-level. I am often out to lunch as to whether to correct these shots or not, but popular opinion has you correcting them.

                The little camera I recently picked up has no view finder, this makes for some difficulty. But I find by turning on that little composing grid on the LCD, it gives good reference and solves the problem. But always trying to make sure the horizon is level, can result in some strange camera positions.
                Steve40.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Level horizons?

                  "can result in some strange camera positions."

                  Strange positions; does this have something to do with the 'camera shooter'?

                  Re: horizon/skyline; I an see the point to this when taking a seascape, if the sea/skyline appear angled/tilted it looks unnatural as the sea goes in two directions i.e. tide coming in or tide going out, not sliding downwards from say left to right as that is not a natural phenomenon.

                  In landscapes, the horizon/skyline is going to be of an extreme example undulating hills. So, how can the horizon be level?

                  For the horizon/skyline to be level in a landscape; again for an extreme example to prove this is a natural phenomenon one would need to think of Holland were everyone assumes that the land is flat. Less extreme some counties in England again where people would assume that the horizon is level because the land is flat.

                  Believe me Holland isn't as flat as people think.

                  Perhaps I am taking the term/phrase 'horizon' literally and it is a photographic term/phrase that I am unaware of due to being an inexperienced beginner.

                  Brian
                  "The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only one page" St Augustine




                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Level horizons?

                    I prefer the original post. The horizon is level. The skyline is not. In the Dales lots of skylines are not level. Contrast etc I think the original had a sublety lacking in the last version .IMHO. The attached pic shows the issue I think.
                    Attached Files
                    Last edited by carman; 10-02-07, 02:45 PM. Reason: Add picture
                    The older I get the better I used to be!

                    Glyn's Gallery

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Level horizons?

                      Hi carman,

                      Re: your photo and level horizons; first let me say that I have wandered into a forum for a higher level of photographic experience than I have.

                      My understanding of the word 'horizon' as a layperson and an ex-serviceman is where the land/sea and sky meet.

                      In your photo, all I can see from the tree to the horizon is at least two areas of 'dead ground' (dg) (dg means the areas of land that cannot be seen, as they are obscured by the prominent features in the landscape and therefore make things appear closer than they actually are) this does happen in your picture; between the tree and the horizon and does appear to give the horizon an un-level perspective,

                      From a military or walkers point of view this just means that in the first case, there is a greater distance between you and the target you are aiming at which you need to allow for and also in both cases means that you have to walk further than it appears to the eye. I never appreciated that this was a problem for photographers'.

                      Brian
                      "The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only one page" St Augustine




                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Level horizons?

                        I thought thats what I said. If I level the skyline the image will not be level. Stephens original image was level. However I think the contrast changes are detrimental.
                        The older I get the better I used to be!

                        Glyn's Gallery

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Level horizons?

                          I think I've got; "Level horizons?" means something like the first photo below, as opposed to the second?




                          Brian

                          PS sorry about the size
                          Last edited by himmelblau; 11-02-07, 09:17 PM.
                          "The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only one page" St Augustine




                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Level horizons?

                            I surrender!
                            The older I get the better I used to be!

                            Glyn's Gallery

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Level horizons?

                              Stephen.

                              I downloaded the Gods Own Country image above as it had been rotated. I returned it to the original rotation, as per your watermark. I don't see any un-level horizon, only undulating (I like big words) landscape. That is flat considering where I live, and I would really hate to consider shots like this needing correction, I would probably go quite bonkers.
                              Steve40.

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