Critique the Community

Long Exposure

Submit your best long exposure image to win a free Fstoppers tutorial.
  • Submission Deadline: Tue, 12 Nov 19 04:45:00 +0000

    This contest has ended.

  • Voting is closed.

  • Congratulations to the winners!

    View Results

Our next Critique the Community will feature your best shots with long shutter times. What cool effects have you created with long exposure? 

Between now and November 11th at 11:45PM EST, you have the opportunity to submit up to two of your best long exposure images. This means your shutter had to have remained open for more than one second, preferably longer. We will choose a total of 20 images to provide feedback to and two lucky entrants will win a free Fstoppers original tutorial. The first will be chosen based on the highest community rated image and the second will be chosen randomly. 

Once you've uploaded your photos, scroll through the other entries and provide ratings and feedback of your own using the Fstoppers rating scale below. The easiest way to assign ratings is by using the number and arrow keys on your keyboard. If you see an area where an image could be improved, kindly pass along some advice to your fellow community member. 

  • Submission Deadline: Tue, 12 Nov 19 04:45:00 +0000

    This contest has ended.

  • Voting is closed.

  • 703 people have cast a total of 58,765 votes on 852 submissions from 529 contestants.
  • Congratulations to the winners!

    View Results

Previous comments
Rob Eakins's picture

Haha thanks. I think that's why I struggle with even posting my images here. Not everyone has the same view or provides any constructive criticism so it doesn't actively help me grow in my skill. But there's always the hope to be featured in an episode and see the guys critique the shot!

George Popescu's picture

I really don't care if people give my images 1's and 2's but it's just fascinating that these same images can win awards on one website and be considered as snapshots on another website.
That's a huge difference of points of view between two websites and many, many people.
It's fascinating really, and it does help to drive in the point that people rank images lower here just to try to keep others' scores down and get their image chosen for the live critique.
I can find no other logical reason for it.

Stas Aleksandersson's picture

I am not sure that’s the idea behind it. I assumed those who pick the photos won’t take the community ratings into consideration.

Robert Anderson's picture

Depends, Lee has stated that he likes picking higher rated images whereas when David picks them, they tend to be more of everything

Robert Anderson's picture

I mean Patrick Hall already told you why your images are 2's and you still insist that they're award winning. You're only going to improve if you take a hard look at your own photos and question why they're being rated low. Going to other sites where everything is a big circlejerk of people trying to get followers isn't going to help you improve.

The lighting in your car photo is strange. You can see the uneven catch light lines in both cars and there are blown out areas on the cars. The lights in the background look sloppy and should be cloned out. The lighting on the ground surrounding both cars is uneven and has hot patches. Take a look at some professional automotive photos and see where you can improve, because you certainly can.

Your logic is flawed because there are plenty of high rated shots, so did the "trolls" just forget to downvote those ones?

George Popescu's picture

You do realize the cars were both light painted at the same time by two different people, and each process took almost 2 minutes.
So, it's almost impossible to get even catch lights or even anything in that situation, also it was shot outdoors near a parking lot that's why the lights are in the background and I thought they add to the image, so why would I clone them out?
If you've never done any automotive light painting or any light painting photography whatsoever then you're not even qualified to give advice.

Robert Anderson's picture

I have done automotive lightpainting thank you. The proper way to do it is by doing multiple shots and blending them in post. That way you can get good lighting without catch lights on each area of the car you want to be lit.

The lights in the back are overexposed and take your eye away from the cars. If they were properly exposed then they'd be fine where they are I guess.

You're getting very defensive over some advice that you should listen to if you want to improve your automotive photography. Or you can just keep complaining about your 2 ratings. Up to you.

George Popescu's picture

And you have absolutely 0 photos in your portfolio and haven't entered an image in this contest, yet you feel the need to critique other people's photos.

So my original point stands, you are not qualified to give advice. Trolling much?

Robert Anderson's picture

This is an anonymous account because people like you would undoubtedly revenge vote me for critiquing your photos. The photo I submitted on my real account is in the mid 3's in this contest. I use this account to respond to people like you. Was Patrick Hall "trolling" when he critiqued your photos? Honestly, you should be happy he did that, not everyone gets that.

Tell me what I said that was incorrect if you think I'm trolling? Was I wrong that professional automotive photographers use multiple shots to light paint their cars? Look up any tutorial on the internet for lightpainting and it will back up what I'm saying.

You're just the classic case in every one of these contests of submitting photos that need improvement and then crying that they're getting poor ratings and calling everyone trolls. Instead try listening to the people around you, might actually improve that way.

George Popescu's picture

You lost me at anonymous basically created an anonymous account to troll people.
So, I'm done having a conversation with you or paying attention to your anonymous opinion.

Robert Anderson's picture

Again, you're just shouting troll because you have nothing else to say. You can't refute any of my points. Please explain how I am trolling. I gave you reasons why your images are 2's but instead of listening or approaching this with a rational mindset you just lashed out because you can't deal with criticism. Maybe you should stick to viewbug, since professional advice isn't for you.

Being anonymous doesn't negate anything I've said, whether you want it to or not.

Ruth Carll's picture

Curiosity question - what awards did these images win?

Patrick Hall's picture

Asking the real questions here...I’d be curious to know too

Steven de Vet's picture

it was posted in an earlier comment. It's through viewbug. A photo-contest website. With contest wins in a "creative lighting contest" (light painting) and a "roadking" (assuming car only?) contest. And finalist positions in other car related contests.

Either way, from what I can tell, the contests in which the awards were given seem to have been very specifically related to cars, light painting and automotive images.
Here, the images are competing against an entire genre of photography, filled with milky ways, stars, thunder, waterfalls, waves, camera trickery, light painting, etc, etc. It's a far wider spread of images. It's not impossible for an image to do well in a specific category with a genre, but might fall short looking at the wider genre.

Also, I had a look at the website, seemed interesting, so, had a look at what reviews had to say on the website itself. So far, shows some weird stuff. Lacking transparency in the contests, being quite "like for like" heavy regarding the results and awards, and not actually judged by a panel. + the amount your photo's get seen by others (and voted on) seems to be helped with a premium membership and your activity on the website by awarding and voting others.

George Popescu's picture

The photos on the viewbug and contests are also judged by other people on the website, sometimes the editors choose the winner but not all the time.
There are probably a lot less "pro" photographers on that website and more amateurs but many people have awesome photos.
In terms of the "awards" as they call them this is the list for the image:
Winner in Creative Lighting Car Photography - Natural light or Natural mixed with Strobes Photo Challenge
Contest Finalist in Light Painting Fun Photo Contest
Winner in Road King Photo Challenge
Contest Finalist in Playing With Darkness Photo Contest
Contest Finalist in On Four Wheels Photo Contest
And here's the link to the actual website:

So, no I didn't make up the "awards" and yes they are not from time magazine or national geographic or something, but they are awards for this photo chosen by peers as the winner of some contests, same as Fstoppers.

If you want to compare the two websites then be my guest, but that has nothing to do with the merits of the photo itself.

Robert Anderson's picture

No one said you made up the awards, they said they were curious as to what awards they were.

Brock Torunski's picture

I was excited to see his photo after all this hype, but it seems he removed it out of spite?

Robert Anderson's picture

They're still there, just hover your mouse on the little image icon under his profile picture. Prepare yourself for award winning images.

Andrea Re Depaolini's picture

I might be the only one but to be honest I think I'm getting slightly higher votes than I expected in here

Ibrahim Touhami's picture

The milky way guarantees you an average of 3 and above

Gleb Karpetkin's picture

You are not the only one! I think my shot is lower 2. But community gave me almost 3 so far, which is mind blowing! At first it was even around 3.5!

Rob Eakins's picture

Funny, the image I submitted has a 3.97 on my profile and like a 2.5 on the challenge.

Tyler Schwab's picture

I agree that there are a lot of good images here and I think I only voted one image 1 star. Long exposure is a pretty advanced way of shooting compared to just taking a shot And I think most people here did very well. I rated quite a few 3 and a select few 4, but no 5s. I’m kinda bummed that mine isn’t sitting over 3. I think it fits this theme better than the last “Moody” theme that I had over a 3 rating. With that being said, I’m really looking forward to seeing this episode.

nagarjuna kolli's picture

i think my picture got that 1 star. LOL :)

Tyler Schwab's picture

No. Wasn’t yours.

nagarjuna kolli's picture

thank god!! :)

Mohammad Hassabo's picture

I think i might make the cut with my photo

Robert Anderson's picture

Lee has stated in a past video his dislike for lightpainting like that so maybe they'll put it in to bug him

Roberto Cordero's picture

I'm new here, curious to see how this contest goes..

Rob Honkonen's picture

It would be awesome if a 2/"needs work" vote had a prompt or drop down menu for the voter to indicate what they believe needs work (composition, post-processing, subject matter, etc. . .). Would make it easier for people to provide feedback without typing a message for each image. New here, so not sure if this has already been suggested or not. Just my two cents.

Chri Chri's picture

I very much agree with this idea. If a image is rated 2 stars as in 'needs work', the person rating propably has something in mind already about what needs to be done so the image would be better.

A B's picture

I like this idea a lot.

Dan Grayum's picture

Hey FSTOPPERS, Maybe on one if these CTCs you could have guest judges that know nothing about photography and judge the images based on a client or consumer perspective. I'd find value in their opinions in addition to the opinions of fellow photographers. After all thats the target audience for most of our photography right?

Kieran Stone's picture

Didn't Lee's mum do one?

J D's picture

She did! And whilst on alot of images they had similar opinions there was a few where they had very different ratings and opinions and it was really interesting to hear her reviews.

Dan Grayum's picture

Yeah that was a good one. Not exactly what I had in mind tho. I was thinking more of people that have no understanding of the technical skills or composition rules, just to see what they would consider a 3, 4 or 5 star image. You have an awesome portfolio by the way!

Kieran Stone's picture


Robert Tran's picture

Maybe an IG influencer? That might be an interesting critique.

Dan Grayum's picture

Yea, thats certainly an alternate opinion that would be worth hearing.I am interested in hearing the feedback from the people who would be buying or using an image rather than taking an image.

Joel Lam's picture

Love looking at everyone's long exposures. I feel like if i get a 2.5 on this category, it'll feel like 5 stars to me.

Bryan Carleton's picture

what about doing a "details" contest? gettingall the fine details of certain things such as cars, people, buildings etc.

Ludovic Migneault's picture

Me : "I'll submit, then check out and rate a few photos to see what other people are up to."
- 3 hours later-
"Please, somebody help!
I can't stop!"

Josh Sanders's picture

How do the community (and Lee and Patrick) feel about entering an image into this critique that is a 30 second base exposure with a couple waves composited in from a shorter exposure (.6 seconds)? I know I'm late to the game here, and there might not be enough time to get an "official" ruling of sorts, but wanted to float the question out there. I'll create corresponding posts in the Long Exposure and Landscape and Nature groups if anyone is curious to see the choices before rendering a judgement.

Ryan Hill's picture

100% enter them, i love them. Wether it is blend of two exposures it's still classed as a long exposure shot! They look great

Josh Sanders's picture

Thanks Ryan, glad you like them! I'm definitely submitting one of them. I don't usually do composites, but this situation seemed like a good application since I wanted to get a bit of a surreal ethereal look in the water and pull out the light streaks coming through, while also conveying the power of the surf crashing around me.

Allen Ng's picture

I did 160 seconds in day light....heheheh

J.a. Spieringhs's picture

Only 160s....

Eli Wilson's picture

Everyone is rating these simple long exposure photos very high cause they don't understand just because the water is blurred does not make it a good shot.

Michael Borisenko's picture

Ok, this deliberate down-rating is definitely a thing, I submitted an image and almost immediately got 1 star, and the same rating was given to adjacent images in the stream. I'm fine to get an honest and brutal feedback, but this is outrageous.

De-anonymisation might help, also the rating system might be changed so that it strips off one lowest and one highest vote, like it's done sometimes in international sports competitions.

Carl Irjala's picture

I think the best medicine is to be active and take part in the discussions about the members' submissions with constructive and encouraging feedback. Then we get to know you better and know that your advice really works.
A few months ago I got two stars for a photograph that has been published by National Geographic. So it can't be that bad. The criticism here helped me on the other hand to rethink and look for new methods to be better.

As for your pictures, I voted for them. One of your pictures got from me four stars, a five would it have been if it had told a stronger story.
Best regards from me here in Finland.

More comments

Contest Submissions

Click on the thumbnails below to comment and vote on each image.

Click here to learn about the Fstoppers rating system and what each star value means.