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Thread: No Salmon. A splash of colour instead

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    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    No Salmon. A splash of colour instead

    Went back up to Buchanty Spout this morning to try and improve on last week's efforts at capturing salmon leaping. But as Bobo suggested in that thread, it will now be next year before I get a chance to try again, because there were, indeed, no salmon. Looks like the run is over. The holding pool down from the Spout was empty.

    Anyway, it was nice just to sit and listen to the water for a while. There was about half the amount of water that there was last week (we've had no rain in the last 7 days). Some of the rock you see in the picture below was covered by white water last Saturday.

    Well, I thought I needed to take the camera out of the bag, since I had got up early and made the journey.

    Ever since Frank posted the first entry in his Project 52 thread way back at the beginning of the year, I've been fascinated by what he taught us in that about blending fast and slow water in order to achieve a good photographic effect. I tried it, earlier this year, at this same location as this one below, with the results being in this thread.

    So when I found myself with no salmon wanting their picture taken this morning, I thought we could look again at trying to apply Frank's teaching. As you can see from the Exif data reproduced below the image, this is a blend of two. The blending is on the water. I did this through a process of adjusting the opacity both of the top layer and the brush to different levels in different parts of the water flow to try and reach what I felt was a good representation of the water pouring down the Spout.

    How do you think I did?

    No Salmon. A splash of colour instead
    Canon 40D, EF 24-70 f2.8 L @ 24mm. ISO800. 1/90s @f5.6 and 1/500 @f5.6 (water)
    Last edited by Donald; 27th October 2012 at 06:20 PM.

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    Re: No Salmon. A splash of colour instead

    It's clear that I need to review Frank's thread. I wouldn't have known that you blended this image if you hadn't provided the explanation. The water looks terrific to me, though it looks as if it was accomplished using just one exposure.

    You should take that as a compliment, though I do wonder if you couldn't have gotten the same look using just one exposure. It would be really helpful if you wouldn't mind posting the two exposures so I can get a better idea of how you created the final image. I might want to go in that direction myself.

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    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Re: No Salmon. A splash of colour instead

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Buckley View Post
    .... if you wouldn't mind posting the two exposures
    My pleasure.

    As you can see, it was all about the amount of light. I'm at the bottom of as fairly dark gully. There was no way I could expose for the land at get a shutter speed that didn't turn the water all foamy/fluffy (as you can see from the first file). These are as out-of-camera.

    1/90@f5.6. ISO800
    No Salmon. A splash of colour instead

    1/500@f5.6. ISO800
    No Salmon. A splash of colour instead

    After I did the blend I then did some dodging on the water just to brighten it up a bit.

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    Re: No Salmon. A splash of colour instead

    That's very helpful, Donald. Thank you!

    I didn't expect your exercise to clear up a misunderstanding that I had, but that's the case. I misunderstood that you had blended the water (used both shutter speeds of the water itself in the final version). I'm still wondering if Frank's thread doesn't explain how to do that, as I haven't checked it out yet.

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    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Re: No Salmon. A splash of colour instead

    Mike

    Just to clarify - there are elements of both shutter speeds on the water. It is not a case of blending the water at 100% so that what you see here is only the water at 1/500. I lowered the opacity so, for example, on the middle and upper section of the water some of the blurred (1/90) water is showing through along with the water at 1/500. It's trying to get that mix of the water from different exposures being blended together rather than it just being a case of either one or the other.

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    Re: No Salmon. A splash of colour instead

    Quote Originally Posted by Donald View Post
    there are elements of both shutter speeds on the water.
    Ahhhhhhhhh. So, indeed, you did do as I initially thought. Very helpful!

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    Re: No Salmon. A splash of colour instead

    Lovely shot Donald! It awes me that salmon will travel up a river that small to spawn!

    I had the same problem when I tried to get shots of the salmon leaping the river near the Russian Falls on Alaska's Kenai Peninsula. No salmon jumping and therefore, no bears fishing for the salmon. It was very disappointing after I had hiked about five miles along a trail to get to the area. I was hoping to shoot the prototypical Alaska image of bears grabbing leaping salmon from the river.

    No Salmon. A splash of colour instead

    A salmon story that I must share was from that trip to the Kenai Peninsula. My guide and I were fishing the Kenai River for Pacific salmon and wading along a cut out bank that was about ten feet high. Suddenly something dislodged a big stone from high up on the bank. The guide's eyes went wide open as he looked to the top of the bank for a bear which was the only animal big enough to dislodge the stone. Luckily, the bear showed no interest in us - probably because we had not caught any fish and therefore our stringers were empty. However if I had caught some fish, I would have been happy to give them all to Mister Bear!

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    Re: No Salmon. A splash of colour instead

    Very interesting work there Donald. A very natural looking outcome.

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    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Re: No Salmon. A splash of colour instead

    Quote Originally Posted by rpcrowe View Post
    Luckily, the bear showed no interest in us -
    Good grief! Luckily the only bit of wildlife I've seen here, apart from the salmon, has been the once threatened and still fragile in terms of existence, red squirrel.

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    Re: No Salmon. A splash of colour instead

    Richard, if the bear had been interested in you, I hope you know that you wouldn't have had to have been faster than the bear. You would only have had to have been faster than your guide.

  11. #11
    Daisy Mae's Avatar
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    Re: No Salmon. A splash of colour instead

    Aren't you suppose to throw your school satchel at it? That's what we were told but there weren't huge amounts of bears hanging around Central Scotland so the very teachers who gave the advice refused to take it as an excuse for homework undone.

    Ohh to have had a camera.

    Exits stage left..pursued by a bear.

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    gaijin's Avatar
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    Re: No Salmon. A splash of colour instead

    A place where I remember seeing lots of salmon was Amhuinnsuidhe on Harris - closer and warmer than Alaska and free from bears all year round. The sea was teaming with them and there were loads making their way up the burn.

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