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Thread: Revised Project 2013 - Anything Goes

  1. #1
    Brownbear's Avatar
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    Revised Project 2013 - Anything Goes

    My goal is to improve my photography, especially my focusing skills..

    I especially love photographing nature, in particular birds in fight. However the latter usually pose to be too much of a challenge... So throughout the year my postings will of course include less than perfect shots of birds in flight, but also photos of anything I feel I need to work on, which of course is everything, including photographing different things, learning to convert colour photos to black and white, or anything that strikes my fancy...

    Frankly just birds in flight or action is is too stressful... Especially if I have to manage one once a week.... Sometimes I may post more than once a week and sometimes maybe just once a month..

    Thus anything goes...

    Today I have...

    A stationary duck...


    Revised Project 2013 - Anything Goes


    A flying duck... (Aperture priority f8, iso 320, in good light, so if I had upped the shutter speed, I could've done better with the duck in flight... next time )

    Revised Project 2013 - Anything Goes

    C&C most welcome and always appreciated...
    Last edited by Brownbear; 10th March 2013 at 02:17 PM.

  2. #2
    terrib's Avatar
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    Re: Revised Project 2013 - Anything Goes

    That first picture is gorgeous, Christina. I like it a lot. Beautifully focused and good DOF IMHO. Love it.

  3. #3
    Brownbear's Avatar
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    Re: Revised Project 2013 - Anything Goes

    thank you Terri... Great to hear because I like it too

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    Shadowman's Avatar
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    Re: Revised Project 2013 - Anything Goes

    Very nice, those colors are popping.

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    Re: Revised Project 2013 - Anything Goes

    Although the wings of the second duck are blurred, you can usually 'get away with this' in an action shot, providing the head, and possibly feet, are sufficiently sharp.

  6. #6
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    Re: Revised Project 2013 - Anything Goes

    Good to know, Geoff... Here goes with more duck photos, and the editing I did is what you taught me (far from perfect I know)

    I selected just the ducks head and beak and sharpened it, and the white part of the wing was super overexposed (is there anyway to avoid this when photographing birds with white patches?) So I used the brush tool, and painted the white part of the wing a little darker. It looks a little artificial to me, but with practice I suppose I will improve.

    Revised Project 2013 - Anything Goes

    On the duck below the white part of the wing was again way overexposed, I tried darkening just the selected white part of the wing and darkening it, but frankly it looked horrid, so instead I cloned from darker parts of the wing... Again I think it looks artificial? And with practice I suppose I will improve. I also selected just the belly of the duck and decreased the noise..


    Revised Project 2013 - Anything Goes


    On this shot, I just selected the head of the duck and sharpened.


    Revised Project 2013 - Anything Goes


    These shots were taken at a kids park and the ducks were flying low to the ground (for food)... When the sun comes out again I will return and try shooting shutter priority or manual after I figure out what shutter speed is fast enough.

  7. #7
    Brownbear's Avatar
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    Re: Revised Project 2013 - Anything Goes

    Something different... (a landscape is different for me)

    A view of Deep Cove in Vancouver... I like the colours and the composition (rocks in the foreground), hand held because I did not have a tripod with me..

    Aperture priority F9 iso 500 matrix metering...

    The original photo

    Revised Project 2013 - Anything Goes



    I sharpened 25% in photoshop elements, use colour curves default and increased the contrast (but I'm not sure if the increase contrast improved the photo or not?)

    Revised Project 2013 - Anything Goes

    On second thought, maybe the rocks in the foreground are distracting? Cropped to eliminate the rocks.. Is it better with or without the rocks in the foreground?

    Revised Project 2013 - Anything Goes

    For landscapes I suppose a tripod is always essential even at an iso of 500?

    For landscapes is higher contrast always better?

    I shot this at high noon, so the lighting was not the best but the shadows of the masts of the boats were strong, which I think is good... Is it true that one should only should landscapes during the golden hours, ie around sunrise and sunset?
    Last edited by Brownbear; 14th March 2013 at 07:43 PM.

  8. #8

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    Re: Revised Project 2013 - Anything Goes

    With regard to the birds. If there are going to be white parts to your subjects, but you can't meter directly from them in advance, your only option is to spot meter from a similar area of brightness in the background and manually set your camera based on that reading.

    Some areas may be dark but that is easier to cope with during editing.

    Alternatively, estimating the amount of exposure compensation under exposure is possible with practice. But a couple of test shots are advisable.

    Some over exposed areas can be partially recovered during Raw conversion but as a general rule; when it is blown it is lost for ever.

    During editing you may be able to paste in a patch of correctly exposed surface then clone away from that. But a lot of trouble is involved.

    And the same exposure problems can be encountered with other scenes, like these white boats. Although in this case, there should be sufficient brightness in the overall scene, including clouds, to give a truer exposure reading.
    Last edited by Geoff F; 10th March 2013 at 08:56 PM.

  9. #9
    Brownbear's Avatar
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    Re: Revised Project 2013 - Anything Goes

    Thank you Geoff. For the birds, I will try spot metering and underexposing a bit, next time around... Good to know that blown bits can't be recovered.

    Thank you for the tip on the boats... Will try metering off the clouds next time around... I've noticed that this also happens with parts of buildings. So much too, learn!

  10. #10
    Brownbear's Avatar
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    Re: Revised Project 2013 - Anything Goes

    I tried to shoot some sports... Pretending the people were birds (good idea to whoever suggested it) For this one I know my focus is not there... I think their were so many things going on that I did not know where to focus and therefore no focus... But I will try again with sports another day...

    Manual F 5.6 SS 1000 iso 800

    Revised Project 2013 - Anything Goes

    Today we have a pigeon... I think my focus is good?


    Revised Project 2013 - Anything Goes


    Revised Project 2013 - Anything Goes


    And a goat... I think my focus is good? But the shot looks soft? And I should've gotten the top of both ears in the photo............................................. ...........................

    Revised Project 2013 - Anything Goes

    Revised Project 2013 - Anything Goes

    And after all of this, I realize that I have too, many questions that overwhelm my project, so from now on I am going to post individual photos with questions specific to that particular photo.. So I'm going to close this thread.. But thank you.

  11. #11

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    Re: Revised Project 2013 - Anything Goes

    The goat looks fine to me, Christina. There are individual hairs visible.

    Possibly a fraction of over exposure on a couple of lighter areas is losing fine detail; which gives the appearance of softness. Always difficult to photograph black and white animals, or anything else, particularly in direct sunlight.

    With sports, or any other crowd shots, all you can do is to concentrate on just one person, or the person nearest the ball, etc. If you get that well focused everything else should more or less fall into place.

    This is where one point autofocus, or a limited number of close focus points, is helpful. AI Servo can also work for moving people; just like flying birds. But you do need to pan and keep focusing on the intended target.

  12. #12
    Brownbear's Avatar
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    Re: Revised Project 2013 - Anything Goes

    Thank you Geoff,

    Will do. There are a lot of sports activities close to where I live or there will be in spring and summer, and I can see how capturing the action and expressions on the players faces could be fun, and great practice.

    I've used one point autofocus before with AI servo. Will do.. Thank you as always..

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