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Thread: Dark-eyed Junco

  1. #1

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    Dark-eyed Junco

    Dark-eyed JuncoCanon 50D, Canon 300mm f4L, 1/1250 @ f4
    Last edited by redrew; 1st August 2012 at 02:11 AM. Reason: Less foreground & background clutter

  2. #2

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    Re: Dark-eyed Junco

    BEAUTIFULLY done background!

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    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: Dark-eyed Junco

    Hi "redrew",

    I do like to know who you are though (Drew?)
    Could you possibly Edit your Profile and pop a first name into the Real Name field and also where you are into the Location field please? - thanks.

    It looks like you had significant problems with foreground branches blocking the view, but you have got a nice, sharp result.

    Good composition too, well done.

    Cheers,

  4. #4

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    Re: Dark-eyed Junco

    I substituted a new Junco image with no clutter in the background and foreground.

  5. #5
    RockNGoalStar's Avatar
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    Re: Dark-eyed Junco

    I like it, nice background, nice detail on the barbed wire fence and the bird.

    I think I'd prefer a little bit more room on the right of the frame into which the bird can look / breathe. I am also wondering whether you can squeeze a bit more contrast out of the bird to make him 'pop' a bit more.

    Thanks for sharing :-)

  6. #6
    RockNGoalStar's Avatar
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    Re: Dark-eyed Junco

    I hope you don't mind, but I took the liberty of showing what I mean about boosting the contrast somewhat.

    Using Photoshop CS5, although any version should do, I followed this tutorial to apply a high contrast effect to your image. I then just increased the saturation a tiny bit and added a very subtle S-Curve before a final sharpen. I then cropped it slightly before adding a very subtle vignette.

    I think the result is very pleasing, but may not be to your taste, but it's just a different perspective on your lovely image.

    Dark-eyed Junco

    If you click on the image you can alter between the two in the lightbox by pressing left then right

  7. #7

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    Re: Dark-eyed Junco

    Thank you Tommy, I am delighted to have your suggestions, it is the contributions of other photographers that assures my progress in learning new skills. Though I feel the natural color of this particular bird is black to grey as depicted in the original postings, adding the border and removing the second strand of barbed wire clearly improves the composition. Utilizing Curves to enhance the amount of contrast in images is very difficult for me to grasp, particularly in posted images. In this particular case I tried the S curve but felt that an increase in contrast induced stray colors not in keeping with the color of this particular specie. I am struggling a bit with posted bird images which need more sharpening, saturation and contrast in many instances. When applied they appear over done on my monitor, but after posting it seems a normal balance.

    Best wishes

    Rollin E. Drew

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    jprzybyla's Avatar
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    Re: Dark-eyed Junco

    Hello Rollin, nice Junco. I have read the above posts and then read your response. I wondered if you profile/callibrate your monitor? I struggled also with posts until I bought Spyder 4 and now callibrate my monitor at least every two weeks. For me it made a big difference. I agree with Tommy that your post looked a little flat, the grey color seemed too soft. But then just my opinion. Keep shooting Rollin.

  9. #9

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    Re: Dark-eyed Junco

    Thank you jprzybyla, several have suggested that I utilize the Calvin Holywood method for enhancing contrast because my image appeared flat. On my monitor the image prepared by Tommy shows the Junco with a slight blue cast to part of the bird and few sprinkles of colors to the neck and head feathers. I would appreciate it if you would look at Tommy's image again and tell me if those color caste show up on your monitor. The Dark Eyed Junco does not have any color, the breast feathers are a light grey and the head and coverts are almost black to dark grey in this species. If you could let me know it would help me in getting a handle on my monitor,s color calibration. Though initially calibrated, my monitor has not been checked for calibration in some time.

    Best wishes

    Rollin E. Drew

  10. #10
    jprzybyla's Avatar
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    Re: Dark-eyed Junco

    Hi again Rollin, I see what you point out on my monitor. Hope that helps you. I understand what you say about true colors of birds, I do the same with flowers.

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    Re: Dark-eyed Junco

    Thanks, I still think I need to check my monitor's color calibration and I note that Scott Kelby also recommends the Spyder for monitor calibration, that is what I will do. Very much appreciate your suggestion.

    Best wishes

    Rollin E. Drew

  12. #12

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    Re: Dark-eyed Junco

    Excellent shot again. Nicely done.

    Excuse my ignorance - can someone tell me about the Calvin Holywood chap and his technique?

  13. #13
    RockNGoalStar's Avatar
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    Re: Dark-eyed Junco

    The techniques I used do exentuate the colours a bit... ...I agree. Perhaps I should have masked off the bird when I increased the saturation a fraction, or even desaturated him somewhat. I certainly think the increased contrast works, but if I've made him look more like a common sparrow than a dark-eyed junco then I guess I didn't do my job properly!

    I'm not familiar with this type of bird, but if I'd done a bit of research then maybe I'd have produced a result more similar to the actual bird. My bad!

  14. #14

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    Re: Dark-eyed Junco

    Tommy, these birds are probably not found in Great Britain. My Sibley Guide To Birds (North America) indicates that they do vary in shades of grey and some even a slight rust color. However none are shown as having any other color. That does not satisfy my concern that my monitor may be off which would display your efforts inaccurately. I am looking into that potential problem.

    Bobo, Calvin Hollywood is a German Photoshop graphic artist who specializes in photographic portraiture utilizing unique Photoshop techniques, one of which is referenced by Tommy for enhancing contrast. The particular technique suggested by Tommy in this thread requires a lot of button pushing but is popular for certain types of photography.

  15. #15
    RockNGoalStar's Avatar
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    Re: Dark-eyed Junco

    Quote Originally Posted by redrew View Post
    Tommy, these birds are probably not found in Great Britain. My Sibley Guide To Birds (North America) indicates that they do vary in shades of grey and some even a slight rust color. However none are shown as having any other color. That does not satisfy my concern that my monitor may be off which would display your efforts inaccurately. I am looking into that potential problem.
    Hi Drew. Do you have an iPhone or iPad or similar? I sometimes email photos to myself and check them out on my iPad and iPhone, which I think have superior displays to my old Dell monitor. If you can do that and compare to your monitor, it may give you a slightly better idea.

    Quote Originally Posted by redrew View Post
    The particular technique suggested by Tommy in this thread requires a lot of button pushing but is popular for certain types of photography.
    I processed that in less than 5 minutes. I used that technique a lot for my wildlife pics that I took in Borneo, so I've got it down now! It can make a dramatic difference to some pics. I'll post an example shortly...

  16. #16
    RockNGoalStar's Avatar
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    Re: Dark-eyed Junco

    Having looked at it more closely and taken it back into Photoshop I think you are definitely right about the blue colour cast.

    All I have done here is lower the saturation of the blue and cyan channels...

    Dark-eyed Junco

    ...any better?

    If you flick between the two in the lightbox then there is a marked difference.

    It's interesting. I wonder if this technique adds that colour cast as a kind of by-product? It's certainly something that I will be looking at more closely when I use it in future.

  17. #17

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    Re: Dark-eyed Junco

    Tommy, thanks for the suggestion in testing my monitor, will give it a try. Yes my monitor shows your newest image removed the color caste of your first image. I also note that in my original post, the bird's breast plumage has a slight blue caste that I had not really focused upon. That may have been enhanced in applying your technique. The bird in real life that I have viewed here in Oklahoma City is not in the slightest any color but dark grey in the hood plumage ( almost black in some) to light grey in the breast plumage. I think that in my attempt to prepare the image for posting I cranked in a little to much saturation which picked up the blue caste. I have several other images of this specie not taken with the same camera at the same time or place and I found no blue caste in any except the one I posted.

    You have been most generous with your time in helping me with my post, I am most appreciative.

    Best wishes

    Rollin E. Drew

  18. #18
    RockNGoalStar's Avatar
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    Re: Dark-eyed Junco

    I don't think you need to check your monitor. The first edit I posted definitely had a blue cast to it. The second one doesn't though. Plus I don't think my advice for 'checking the calibration of your monitor' is particularly scientific or proven!

    Glad to be of some sort of assistance. Occasionally I see images that I really like and that I think have lots of potential, such as this one, and I enjoy putting a different spin on it. I like it when people do that with my images and I guess that's what this sort of community is all about. I don't profess to be an expert in anything photography related and still consider myself a novice, but just like to try to help out where I can

    Looking forward to seeing more of your pics...

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