Silverlight olympic statue

Got any tips to make this picture better?

Hey, looks nice! I would get rid of the car, or change its color to an earthy tone and put it on the road, like it’s driven.

Looks nearly perfect, but especially the buildings on the right could use some dirt. Also the windows (glass) middle-top.

It’s a very nice scene !

Maybe I’d angle the camera a bit to the right and change the camera’s height depending on what you want to express … I’d also try for a bit more contrast.

You could also try different lighting conditions, maybe at dusk with the street lamps on … it feels a bit “cold” maybe shift lights towards lower color temperature.

I’d also try a vignette and play with DOF … I’d remove the car too it somehow feels odd …

Hello Vadrigar.
You render looks like you have spend much time creating it!

To make it look more photorealistic/better looking I would change the following points:


  • Everything looks perfect. If you look at photos taken of pavements you will notice that the stones are never that perfect aligned to each other. Some are a little bit higher some are a bit tilted.
  • The scene is a bit to clean. I would add little tiny stones (like 5mm) + leaves/little branches maybe even some waste and just use a particle system to spread those over the floor.
  • As the buildings have an old style they are probably old. So I would add some dirt and so on in the edges or some between the stones.
  • I would reduce the reflectivity of the windows. They look like perfect mirrors.


  • I would add some moss to the inner part of the walls.
  • As the water is moving some parts of the inner part of the walls should look wet (darker + more reflective)

I think the main object of the scene is the statue. I would defocus the background. It looks strange if everything is perfectly sharp.

Everything is kind of brown (stones, buildings, banks). The only thing that has a different colour are the trees, plants and the car. But those aren’t the main objects the viewer should focus on. If I look at the image those objects immediately pull the attention at them. So I would change the colour of the plants and car. Trees are green so I wouldn’t change that.

Camera view
: Everything important happens on the right side of the image. I would either crop the image so only the fountain is in frame or maybe move the camera to the right. Than the fountain would be on the left side of the image and on the right side you would have the light source (gab between houses).
Lighting: I really like how the light interacts with the water! I am not sure how you lit the scene but if you don’t use one already I would use an HDR image to lighten the scene.

I hope you find this helpful!

Thanks, those were some really helpful tips.

There’s a basic composition problem here.

Your eye is always drawn to the brightest and/or most-contrasty part of the picture. Then, it follows a path. It wants to have that path return to the starting point. But, what does the path look like here?

Well, your eye hits the pool below the statue, slides to the left, pauses to study the car because we’ve been sent directly at it, then goes z-i-i-i-p-p! down the brightly-lit road, right out the top of the picture frame and into the sky.

Meanwhile, the supposed subject – the statue – is dimly lit and has no highlights at all. So much for it being the “subject.” (The car is easier to spot.)

There’s wasted space on the left side of the frame, and the nose of the statue on the right edge appears to be cut-off. I’d say, "lose the car completely, crop the picture on the left just to the left of the light-pole, and turn the camera about 10 degrees to the right so that we in fact see the entire statue and its base.

Now, you need an old photographer’s trick. All around the camera, out of view, there would be a large stack of passive reflectors … white and golden cloth. We want to inject a lot of light onto the front of that statue and the front of the base. We also want to warm it up considerably. A few powerful strobes might be used to create specular highilghts on the statue itself. The distant areas can be cool because it’s evening, but we want the “warm bronze” statue and its surroundings to stand-out subtly in terms of color as well as clear illumination.

When printing the shot in my darkroom, I would probably “dodge” the sky and the reflecting pool very considerably. I want to bring those light-levels way down relative to the others. I might experiment with a slight sepia filter in my enlarger to see if I could warm the entire shot up slightly without making it look toned.

I think my biggest critique would be that it feels so sterile.

As others have said, there’s a noticeable lack of ‘dirt’ or dust.
I also get the feeling that there should be more lighting…like ambient light around the buildings. Especially coming through those arches because otherwise those are just consistently dark places begging for nefarious deeds to go down.

The car distracts the eye. It stands out. I’m not saying to lose it; it’s your art, but it definitely draws the eye away from the camera’s focal point.