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  • Contrast Rejections: Too much or too little?

    Since there have been more than a few requests to have the contrast rejection split into two separate reasons (Too Much or Too Little), it might be a good idea to clarify why this is not a change the crew intends to proceed with any time soon.

    First, by making this change it would imply that to fix a rejection, one would simply need to add (or subtract) contrast, and the image be should then be acceptable. This is simply not the case in the majority of contrast rejections. A majority of contrast rejections are due to poor overall lighting (resulting from overcast or hazy weather conditions) which no amount of editing would make suitable for JP. Someone receiving a Contrast Too Low rejection for such an image would logically conclude that by simply adding contrast, the image would then be suitable, something that is quite unlikely. This is an example of weather conditions that pretty much preclude the chance an image would be acceptable for JP:

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    - if you're faced with conditions like this -or worse-, take photos as you please, but do realize that there is unfortunately little to no chance your image will be suitable for JP


    Second, without relying on being told what the exact issue is, it is hoped that photographers can try to sort the issue out themselves, both saving the crew time, and hopefully improving the eye and technique of the photographers. A big part of this is being able to read the histogram correctly. While the histogram can't always predict whether an image deserves a contrast rejection, it usually does give a good general indication of whether contrast might be an issue. This is not to say you can rely completely on the histogram to judge contrast (an aircraft in the shadow in the foreground with a bright background would look fine on the histogram, but would almost certainly be rejected), but it is definitely a tool worth learning how to use. You can see from these examples that the histogram can often be a good guide as to whether the contrast may be acceptable or not:

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    - Notice the large gaps on the edges of the first histogram indicating weak shadows and dull highlights. The second (middle) while still a bit flat, shows improved contrast, as the edges are closer to the middle. The final histogram has large spikes on the edges indicating both very strong shadows and clipped highlights, a good indication that the contrast is too strong in this case.


    Finally, the vast majority of rejections are for a lack of contrast, so one can assume that is likely what the issue is. The next step after a contrast rejection would be to assess whether the conditions were good enough (as hinted at in the first point above, this should also be the first step before submitting. Recognizing unworkable conditions will help avoid many a contrast rejections in the first place). If this is the case, one can check the histogram to consider whether simply adding contrast will suffice, or even appeal if one feels certain the contrast is acceptable. If this is not the case, then consider that the image may not be fixable (or suitable in the first place) for uploading. If one is unsure at any of these points, it's strongly encouraged to use the Processing and Feedback forum to seek advice.

  • #2
    Thanks for shedding some light on the matter - this is helpful. Although, while realizing that you are trying to prevent the team from doing extra work, perhaps you could actually split this into three categories?
    - bad contrast - this would be unfixable image
    - too much (will allow users to reduce)
    - too little (will allow users to add)
    I would guess that 80% or even more would fall under “bad contrast” category and not much would change for the team, but for the few cases where contrast is fixable, your guidance would be greatly appreciated
    Regards

    Comment


    • #3
      I saw a lot of rejections due to contrast on cloudy days, is impossible to have blue skies always and overcast sky is part of the aviation too, I think that is a good idea be a little flexible on that cases.

      I agree with the idea to find another rejection reason, because, when I see the contrast rejection the first thing that comes to my mind is Ok, I can fix it, but if the rejection is beyond of the contrast should be good idea add another rejection category, to avoid double upload.

      Comment


      • #4
        Thank you for addressing this. I recently considered posting about this subject because I find contrast rejections rather frustrating. I don't submit images unless I think they are processed properly, so I have a hard time figuring out whether there was too much or too little contrast. One time, a reviewer commented on the contrast in the rejection message and I found that helpful. I don't bother attempting to fix contrast rejections and re-upload because I figure they're either not fixable, or I'm unsure of how to fix them.

        While I understand and appreciate dlowwa's explanation, I personally would prefer the contrast rejection categories be separated. I like the suggestion of Oleksiy Naumov above. Based on my experience, most of my contrast rejections are from overcast days, so I generally avoid submitting those photos.

        Comment


        • #5
          Hello to all,
          It would be much useful to separate a "Contrast rejection" into two categories, and I'd like to suggest these two ways:
          1. Poor / inferior contrast : for an unfixable image.
          2. Marginal contrast : for what we have now as "Too much or too little contrast".

          This is an importent issue and would be great help for the benefit of all photographers.
          With all due respect to the screeners,
          Ike

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by ikeharel View Post
            Hello to all,
            It would be much useful to separate a "Contrast rejection" into two categories, and I'd like to suggest these two ways:
            1. Poor / inferior contrast : for an unfixable image.
            2. Marginal contrast : for what we have now as "Too much or too little contrast".

            This is an important issue and would be great help for the benefit of all photographers.
            With all due respect to the screeners,
            Ike
            Hi,
            Well before I joined the crew I was a guy who got hooked on photography. As I travelled I became curious and experimented (1980's) film days. After waiting for a few days for the film to be processed I kinda thought ...amazing to crap. What did I learn? in the first place put the camera away. Many occasions are a waste of time.

            Whats the morale?

            Easy - crap in = crap out

            jp is a web site providing images to a fast and dynamic app - yes many are keen to see their image however there are published guidelines.

            If you (the photographer) don't understand that move on. No need to change what should be obvious.

            Regards T

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by 777MAN View Post
              Whats the morale?

              Easy - crap in = crap out
              That sums it up quite nicely!!
              My photos on Flickr www.flickr.com/photos/geridominguez

              Comment


              • #8
                Ike,
                1. Poor / inferior contrast : for an unfixable image.

                That point shouldn't be needed. We need people to know what has a chance to be accepted and what not. It benefits YOU, with a better acceptance rate which means more free slots... and US for not having to screen pics which have zero chance. And last but not least, it benefits the whole community because less bad pics in queue means faster screening

                Kind Regards
                Alex

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Diego727 View Post
                  I saw a lot of rejections due to contrast on cloudy days, is impossible to have blue skies always and overcast sky is part of the aviation too, I think that is a good idea be a little flexible on that cases.
                  Yes that's part of the game, and we are all on the same boat here. Please remember that before being crew members we're also photographers. We know all about the bad weather, the last minute-change-of-rw, That Murphy-Law tiny cloud covering the sun JUST when that rare Il-76 lands... But where's the problem ? I'm taking picture because it's FUN to do so. I share great moment with friends, travel the world to make new ones, discover new cultures, new beers... at the end of it, getting my picture on JP is just a bonus, not the goal of the whole hobby. The JAL 777 up the page is mine, I travelled half of the planet with 2 buddies, our first time spotting at HND and we get that crappy weather... But on the same day we had some great food, met up with some Aussie friends, enjoyed our vacation time... and that's what I want to remember. No pics o JP from that day, who cares ? I edited some I kept on my computer, shared a few on FB or FlickR and that's it. In a few years, all I will remember from that trip will be the great moments, not the crappy shots on a crappy day

                  Kind Regards
                  Alex

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Alex - Spot-This ! View Post
                    Please remember that before being crew members we're also photographers.

                    Love those words Alex, sometimes I feel a little frustrated with my rejections, but I never get rude against the screeners, because be a screener must to be a hard work too.

                    I had a recent and unexpected work trip to Prague and Frankfurt 2 months ago, and had just 4 hours for spotting in FRA returning back to Costa Rica, it was my first time in Europe, and the weather were really bad, and I had troubles to get some accepted photos in JP, buts is not your fault, you do what you can do.

                    To be honest I spotting only for jetphotos, I discovered this lovely web 15 years ago and I grew up as a spotters thanks to JP and the rejections and Im still learning thanks to you guys, that's why when I go to spotting I do it thinking to upload my best shots to JP.

                    Best regards

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Hi Alex.
                      Well, that doesn't really help in some cases, actually making thins worth for the community. There are some borderline photos that do get uploaded into the queue and (by thinking that they can be fixed by either increasing or decreasing the contrast = guessing game due to unclear rejection reason), some photographers will either appeal or re-upload.
                      Having a "bad contrast" rejection would help eliminate those re-uploads and would teach rookie spotters better habits right away.
                      Regards,
                      Oleksiy

                      Originally posted by Alex - Spot-This ! View Post
                      Ike,
                      1. Poor / inferior contrast : for an unfixable image.

                      That point shouldn't be needed. We need people to know what has a chance to be accepted and what not. It benefits YOU, with a better acceptance rate which means more free slots... and US for not having to screen pics which have zero chance. And last but not least, it benefits the whole community because less bad pics in queue means faster screening

                      Kind Regards
                      Alex

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I literally had no idea that contrast rejections sometimes implied poor lighting until now. Thank you for posting this.

                        Having said that, if there is going to be a rejection for poor light, maybe it shouldn't be named "contrast" at all? I like the suggestion Ike presented, although I would just have it say Poor / inferior lighting. Contrast should refer to the color balance, as IMO having it also refer to lighting conditions is really stretching things and creating a bit of a discrepancy. I feel like it would clear up a lot of confusion and be more clear-cut as to what exactly is wrong with a rejected image and whether it is salvageable or not.

                        Just my 2 cents.
                        My profile: https://www.jetphotos.com/photographer/110302

                        Flickr: https://www.flickr.com/people/[email protected]/
                        Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/bigev21/

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Or we could just add "quality" to any image which has no chance of being accepted ? I would like that solution better than adding an extra rejection reason

                          - Contrast alone - Room to improvement
                          - Contrast + quality - No Chance, one for the personal collection

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Alex - Spot-This ! View Post
                            Or we could just add "quality" to any image which has no chance of being accepted ? I would like that solution better than adding an extra rejection reason

                            - Contrast alone - Room to improvement
                            - Contrast + quality - No Chance, one for the personal collection
                            Completely on board with that too!
                            My profile: https://www.jetphotos.com/photographer/110302

                            Flickr: https://www.flickr.com/people/[email protected]/
                            Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/bigev21/

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Alex - Spot-This ! View Post
                              Or we could just add "quality" to any image which has no chance of being accepted ? I would like that solution better than adding an extra rejection reason

                              - Contrast alone - Room to improvement
                              - Contrast + quality - No Chance, one for the personal collection
                              That's how the "Quality" rejection reason was implemented here ... in the dark ages at the beginning of JPnet ... when Zeus and Kronos were fighting each other .... well, a long time ago.

                              The idea was: For any photo, if it is rejected for "Quality" there no chance for acceptance. So, "Contrast" and "Quality" together -> no chance.

                              So, that's the way I screen:
                              - "Contrast" and "Dark": brighten it up without clipping the highlights, which may be OK
                              - "Contrast" and "Overexposed": tone down the exposure without clipping the shadows which may be OK
                              - "Contrast", "Dark" and "Overexposed" (sometimes also without "Contrast"): Both, shadows and highlights are clipped
                              - "Contrast" alone can be too harsh or lack of contrast
                              - "Contrast" and "Quality": move on
                              My photos on Flickr www.flickr.com/photos/geridominguez

                              Comment

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