The Great Head to Head Photo-Off Death Match!!

Welcome to the first ever Photo Death Match, in which Tabula Rasa and I incidentally took photos of the same object and will now share said photos for you, our small but wonderful group of viewers, to tell us which one of us got it right or wrong.  


Each attempted set-up and shot out in the field is akin to finding a diamond in the rough. Before you roll your eyes at the florid analogy, consider that a diamond cutting is a daunting task. The cutter must fashion the largest, most valuable gem while chipping away as little as possible of the very precious mineral. A clumsy cut, meanwhile, can ruin its value. So with each place we visit, I feel there is a “right” shot: correct exposure, framing, editing, etc. I thought this shot of the hose is not”right”. The hose spilling out is nice, and an opened glass door seems like it would add some drama. The monotony in color and middling light needs to be contended with, and here I don’t do well with either. And the angle of my shot is too dead on, everything looks flat.


I think I did better with this one. Tweaking the lighting, color balance and framing yielded something I’m not ashamed of.


-Tabula Rasa

This little match was my oh so brilliant idea.   I just picked the two things I knew for fact that we had both photographed, not considering the quality of my photos .   I consider this a good thing as neither of us really liked our results very much so we’re not pitting favorites against one another.  (This is my not subtle way of telling anyone commenting they are free to honestly critique the hell out us on these.)

I debated for a minute if I should post my stairway/firehose photo as HDR since neither of Tabula Rasa’s photos are in HDR.  I decided that since I took it with intention of making an HDR photo that I wouldn’t be bending or breaking any of the non-existent rules of this death-match.   When I first saw the firehose I knew I wanted a photo of it, but feared that with all the white and so little detail everything would be flat and uninteresting.  I chose to use the HDR technique in order to enhance all the little details of decay in the frame but still wasn’t terribly thrilled with the results.  Thus I give you this.

2 24 13 hospital 100_1_2_tonemapped

As for my second entry, well, I’m seriously unhappy with the results.  I feel it is fine as a documentary photo, but artistically I took too extreme an angle and I had forgotten about that annoying dust inside my lens that causes orbs to appear in my photos when I shoot on a certain angle to the light.  I had to scramble to “fix” this one and it is not a very good job to say the least.  I rarely ever do much fixing since my personal goal is to do everything in camera and not have to change anything once it is on the computer (excluding HDR of course, I can’t afford the cameras that do that automatically.  Nor do I want one, but that is a whole different topic.)  On to “Please Handrails”!


-The Idiot Photographer

Want to see more Head to Head Photo-off Death Matches?  Want Tabula Rasa to come up with a better name for it?  Please let us know in the comments, and have fun critiquing our modest offerings to you.

3 responses

  1. There are qualities I like in each photo. I could critique them to death (I do a fair amount of graphic design critiquing) and attempt to declare a winner, but I prefer to simply enjoy the beauty in both and not sully my opinion on lighting, composition, contrast… takes the fun out of it. :D

    March 1, 2013 at 9:08 am

    • tabularasa88

      Thanks, Avocado! It’s good at least to hear that others see beauty in these shots. If, however, you had any critiques, would they be aesthetic or technical? The former is subjective, but if you some nuts-and-bolts issues with any of these shots, please share!

      March 1, 2013 at 1:13 pm

      • I second what Tabula Rasa said. This isn’t really about us being in competition with one another, it is more about what we can to do to improve.

        March 1, 2013 at 9:34 pm

Oh really? Tell me more....

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s