Weigh In: Reflection or Illusion?

Updated: Aug 24, 2020

Right now, I am editing photos from last night’s lifestyle shoot.  An image that intrigues me is of a reflection in a pool.  I can’t stop looking at it.

I would love for you to weigh in on the 2 “After” images.  Take a look…

BEFORE (straight-out-of-the-camera)


AFTER, version A

I oomphed the color and contrast, “dodged” (lightened) parts of my subjects, then flipped the image upside-down!


AFTER, version B

Same as above, but cropped out the bottom, so all you see is the reflection in the pool.


Which do you prefer:  Version A or Version B?

My thought process:

I took the shot to include the actual subjects’ legs, so that it would be obvious the image is a reflection.

Once I started editing the image, I realized that I preferred the image upside-down, so the reflection looks right-side-up!

The more I looked at it, the more I love the image.  Except now, I’m not sure if I like the legs at the bottom.  With the bottom cropped out, it looks like you’re looking through a window — or maybe through a big hole in the ground (ha ha).  You only realize it’s a reflection when you see the random leaves and stuff floating in the “sky”!  The image becomes more of an illusion when cropped.

Not sure if I prefer the image to look like an illusion, or if I’d rather it be an obvious reflection.

Please weigh in.  I’d love to know your thoughts!


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