Well Said Terry and Steve,
I’ve been out of commision for a few weeks, but I did get to watch a lot of YouTube videos.
Most recently, I was watching a lot of lectures from the on landscape channel https://www.youtube.com/c/OnlandscapeCoUk
It was interesting to me that the landscape genre, or at least the speakers at this conference, spanned the full range of photographic interpretation of the “land”
It started with the most literal interpretations of the scenery, (pejoratively referred to as “eye candy”), to those that have been manipulated delicately colorwise, to aggressively colorwise or with other filters. Then also those who concentrate on smaller intimate scenes, and those who take images outdoors that would qualify as complete abstractions.
I was equally impressed and awed by “all” variations of outdoor photography, and will probably try to play with some alternatives on the continuum to complete abstraction. I’ve just got to get this color thing worked out first 🙂
Regarding your original images Terry, I think that they are great. Well balanced, colored, and impactful.
Which is “best”? – The criteria I am using these days on my work, is the image which makes me the most happy, or best expresses what I felt when I made the exposure. Unfortunately, I find that this criteria is not as consistent and rigorous as my engineering brain would like. To get around this ambiguity, I might be doing an exercise similar to yours with these two presentations. I just make a few versions, export them as jpgs, and live with them for a few days to see which one survives the scrutiny. (or maybe both do…)
Back to your images,, for me, the first stylized one is the most impactful. Having seen it, the second to me appears halfway literal – kind of an “almost” stylized with the in focus boy and deeply blurred dark background. But then again, on a second viewing it works as well. (I wonder whether the sequence of presentation has impacted my appraisal?)
I’m sure others might see it differently.
Anyway, glad to have a forum for image critique back on line.
I’ll try to get some stuff up soon.
Kudos to Steve Ruddy for getting this on line. The full size images are awesome!