North Sikkim - reliving the experience

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#31 Nov 14th, 2011, 11:51
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#31
Thanks to aditiban, sagarneel, kshil, Lugubert, amdtraveller,StanleyG, mithun123, suparna and all others who have seen my photographs and appreciated them. I am really overwhelmed with the responses I have got from IM. Writing a travelogue really seems a daunting task with so many experiences but with such encouragement I am receiving from this forum, I may soon start writing it.
#32 Nov 14th, 2011, 12:04
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#32
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Originally Posted by trisha View Post Writing a travelogue really seems a daunting task with so many experiences but with such encouragement I am receiving from this forum, I may soon start writing it.
That would be great Trisha. Please start it ASAP.
#33 Nov 14th, 2011, 14:05
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#33
Quote:
Originally Posted by trisha View Post I am really overwhelmed with the responses I have got from IM. Writing a travelogue really seems a daunting task with so many experiences but with such encouragement I am receiving from this forum, I may soon start writing it.
If a lazy soul like me can start writing, anyone on this planet can . I would never have written a travel report without the continuous encouragement of IMers. Just start writing and you'll find that you can't stop your fingers from typing.
All the best. Looking forward to it.
Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid Albert Einstein


Trip reports:

Syalsaur/ Deoria taal/ Chopta trip report, West and South Sikkim trip report , Puri/ Konark trip report
#34 Nov 14th, 2011, 17:23
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Originally Posted by kshil View Post I am surprised to see so much clouds in Mid October, though the grey shade especially in Gurudongmer simply looks awesome!! Just give a try to make couple of monochrome shots from those, may look really nice.
As per your suggestion I have tried some PP of the images(though I must confess I am not very good with this) and attaching them here.

I am looking for some valuable comments on how to improve my technique
Attached Images
DSC05931.jpg DSC05822.jpg DSC05878.jpg 
#35 Nov 14th, 2011, 17:32
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#35
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Originally Posted by trisha View Post As per your suggestion I have tried some PP of the images(though I must confess I am not very good with this) and attaching them here.

I am looking for some valuable comments on how to improve my technique
Although the suggestion was solicited from Kaushikda, I hope you won't mind if I pitch in with some of my thoughts. I am sure Kaushikda will soon come up with more of his expert advise. Here are some pointers from my side to make a monochrome shot stand out (assuming that you're using Photoshop):

1. Try reducing the level so that the areas stand out. You can experiment by first trying 'Auto Levels' and adjusting the level manually thereafter.

2. Play with the contrast. This differentiates the shades even more.

3. For portraits, you can consider adding a few grains in case you take close-ups (to give it a rustic look), but thats (to me) a no-no for landscapes. Sharpen the image using the 'Filter' tab, and if you're adventorous, you can also use the unsharp mask functionality.

Having said this, the first shot Gurudongmar is beautiful. The monochrome look looks graceful here.
#36 Nov 14th, 2011, 17:56
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#36
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Originally Posted by sagarneel View Post Although the suggestion was solicited from Kaushikda, I hope you won't mind if I pitch in with some of my thoughts. I am sure Kaushikda will soon come up with more of his expert advise. Here are some pointers from my side to make a monochrome shot stand out (assuming that you're using Photoshop):

1. Try reducing the level so that the areas stand out. You can experiment by first trying 'Auto Levels' and adjusting the level manually thereafter.

2. Play with the contrast. This differentiates the shades even more.

3. For portraits, you can consider adding a few grains in case you take close-ups (to give it a rustic look), but thats (to me) a no-no for landscapes. Sharpen the image using the 'Filter' tab, and if you're adventorous, you can also use the unsharp mask functionality.

Having said this, the first shot Gurudongmar is beautiful. The monochrome look looks graceful here.
Thanks for your valuable suggestions. You are wrong in assuming that I had asked them only from Kaushikda. I know you all are veterans of photography and PP (I have seen your albums in TE).
Any suggestion from you can only improve my skill.

Can you suggest on how to choose photos for monochrome (I am sure there are some particulars which looks better in B/W and still others in sepia)?
#37 Nov 14th, 2011, 18:01
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#37
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Originally Posted by trisha View Post I am not aware of the current situation, but when we went I heard that foreign natinals are allowed till Thangu and also can visit the Chopta valley but not Lake Gurudongmer.
Hi Lugubert! (Long time, no see, how are you?)

When we visited North Sikkim (in March 2008), Thangu was the limit, as well as Chopta, as correctly said by Trisha.

I hope that one day Gurudongmar will be allowed for all tourists.
#38 Nov 14th, 2011, 18:13
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#38
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Originally Posted by trisha View Post Thanks for your valuable suggestions. You are wrong in assuming that I had asked them only from Kaushikda. I know you all are veterans of photography and PP (I have seen your albums in TE).
Any suggestion from you can only improve my skill.)?
Please don't take offence. That was just a general comment. Furthermore, I am nowhere even close to being an expert and still have a lot to learn. I'd love to share my tips if it helps you in increasing your skills.

Quote:
Originally Posted by trisha View Post Can you suggest on how to choose photos for monochrome (I am sure there are some particulars which looks better in B/W and still others in sepia)?
I am afraid there's no general rule for that. However let me share my personal opinion. For portraits (by default if they are close-ups) I prefer monochromes, and do some PP as I suggested you earlier.

Its tricky when it comes to landscapes. Some landscapes demand color, for example a snow peak with a blue sky above and a lush green forest below it would certainly look much better in color than its best post processed monochrome counterpart. So, for shots in which the color needs to be highlighted (like a sunrise/sunset shot, a lake with no snow around etc.) I'd, by default go with color.

However, the point is landscapes don't always demand color. For shots evoking a nostalgic or melancholic feeling (eg a huge river and a lonely boatman, or a lonely tree amidst a meadow) I prefer a sepia tone as it renders a mood to it.

Snowscapes are interesting as well. I'd go for a monochrome shot for a place which has snow and rock, as the b/w tone of the snow/rock would stand out more in a monochrome, compared to the bluish white/reddish black tone of the same snow/rock in the photo taken in color.

Not sure if I have confused you even more ...in case you need any further suggestions/tips/advises please feel free to ask them.
#39 Nov 14th, 2011, 19:37
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#39
Thank you, trisha and theyyamdancer, for the info. I hope to make my third Chinese trip this autumn, but I think I can arrange my third India trip in 2012.
#40 Nov 14th, 2011, 19:39
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#40
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Originally Posted by sagarneel View Post Please don't take offence. That was just a general comment. Furthermore, I am nowhere even close to being an expert and still have a lot to learn. I'd love to share my tips if it helps you in increasing your skills.
Sorry if I seemed rude but I was not offended. Its just your modesty that you deny having good photographic skills... It will take us a long time to match up to your levels.

Your tips have definitely cleared some points in my mind. I will try various effects and ask you as and when I face any difficulties.
#41 Nov 14th, 2011, 19:56
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#41
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Originally Posted by trisha View Post Your tips have definitely cleared some points in my mind. I will try various effects and ask you as and when I face any difficulties.
You're most welcome! No question is a bad question.

And you were not rude at all.
#42 Nov 14th, 2011, 20:14
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#42
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Originally Posted by Lugubert View Post Thank you, trisha and theyyamdancer, for the info. I hope to make my third Chinese trip this autumn, but I think I can arrange my third India trip in 2012.
You are most welcome Lugubert. Hope you will have a pleasant trip with lots of happy memories.
#43 Nov 15th, 2011, 01:28
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Great pictures
The travelogue just reminded me about my Honeymoon trip last December. It also reminded me that we could not make it to Gurudongmar. Still, North Sikkim will remain an all-time favorite for me ever Thank you for reminding me all those good memories .
#44 Nov 15th, 2011, 12:38
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Originally Posted by Asmita_Nag View Post Great pictures
The travelogue just reminded me about my Honeymoon trip last December. It also reminded me that we could not make it to Gurudongmar. Still, North Sikkim will remain an all-time favorite for me ever Thank you for reminding me all those good memories .
Thanks Ashmita..North Sikkim is really special...its sad that you couldnt go to Gurudongmar..maybe you can plan another trip now that the roads have opened again..
#45 Nov 15th, 2011, 13:09
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#45
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Originally Posted by trisha View Post As per your suggestion I have tried some PP of the images(though I must confess I am not very good with this) and attaching them here.

I am looking for some valuable comments on how to improve my technique
Trisha, the first snap of Gurudongmer looks awesome, second and third as you rightly pointed out later may not be the right choice to convert to monochrome. I am not at all a PP person and have no idea on Photoshops, all my snaps are straight from the heart of Camera. I actually want to know something on PP and let me see if Sagar or you can teach me something basic on that.

But I agree with you all that the selection of snaps which should be converted to monochrome is absolutely important.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sagarneel View Post 1. Try reducing the level so that the areas stand out. You can experiment by first trying 'Auto Levels' and adjusting the level manually thereafter.

2. Play with the contrast. This differentiates the shades even more.

3. For portraits, you can consider adding a few grains in case you take close-ups (to give it a rustic look), but thats (to me) a no-no for landscapes. Sharpen the image using the 'Filter' tab, and if you're adventorous, you can also use the unsharp mask functionality.

Having said this, the first shot Gurudongmar is beautiful. The monochrome look looks graceful here.
Quote:
Originally Posted by trisha View Post Can you suggest on how to choose photos for monochrome (I am sure there are some particulars which looks better in B/W and still others in sepia)?
Quote:
Originally Posted by sagarneel View Post I am afraid there's no general rule for that. However let me share my personal opinion. For portraits (by default if they are close-ups) I prefer monochromes, and do some PP as I suggested you earlier.

Its tricky when it comes to landscapes. Some landscapes demand color, for example a snow peak with a blue sky above and a lush green forest below it would certainly look much better in color than its best post processed monochrome counterpart. So, for shots in which the color needs to be highlighted (like a sunrise/sunset shot, a lake with no snow around etc.) I'd, by default go with color.

However, the point is landscapes don't always demand color. For shots evoking a nostalgic or melancholic feeling (eg a huge river and a lonely boatman, or a lonely tree amidst a meadow) I prefer a sepia tone as it renders a mood to it.

Snowscapes are interesting as well. I'd go for a monochrome shot for a place which has snow and rock, as the b/w tone of the snow/rock would stand out more in a monochrome, compared to the bluish white/reddish black tone of the same snow/rock in the photo taken in color.
This is a wonderful discussion and I have learnt couple of things from here and thanks to Trisha for initiating this and Sagar to share his knowledge.

One point I would like to add here, this is not just for monochrome, rather valid for all kind photographs, the more you see and get exposed to various style, art of taking photograph, more you learn, you definitely should be creative but many a times looking at others shot might give you some excellent ideas to experiment. So just start looking into monochrome snaps and you certainly develop an idea on what should be parameters to consider for choosing a correct monochrome frame.

I always get inspired from the monochrome work by one close friend of mine(incidentally stays in Delhi, close to Sagar) , he loves monochrome and certainly patterns, see some of his work here:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/a_peek_in_my_world/

See them and I am sure it would spark some ideas in your mind on what could look best in monochrome.
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