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Thread: A new weekly series - Morning adventures - Week #1

  1. #1
    FlyingSquirrel's Avatar
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    A new weekly series - Morning adventures - Week #1

    Some of you may have seen this thread where I proclaimed that I am now going to become an early bird. I will be rising quite early to get morning photos, sunrise, fog, frost, wildlife, etc. If you haven't read that thread, feel free to if you wish to get a background on the challenges I was facing. Anyhow, I am excited to say that I feel like I have really hit a turning point with this. Something just "clicked" in my mind recently and I am feeling very serious about this being a permanent thing. It feels good. Anyway.....

    This is now a weekly series; I am not letting myself off the hook, and you shouldn't let me slack off either! I was just thinking how I picked a terrible time of year to make the switch to being an early bird, because as fall and winter come on, there will be much less time to be out shooting, and the DST clock switch is going to really kill me in that aspect as well. Oh well, life happens and I'll make the best of whatever I can. I'll find some advantages in there somewhere! Anyway, I will get up early and take pics each weekend to the best of my ability. We'll see what happens with the sunrise times and scheduling. Either way, I'll be up early.

    The more I get up early, the more I am going to enjoy it, I can already tell. It's getting past my bed time, I must hurry up and post this!!!

    I got up at 5:45am on the weekend and went to a local spot that I haven't been to in a while. I scoped it out and really enjoyed the wonderful fog and mist blanketing the pond. As the sun came up, the light was gorgeous, and of course the fog looked really nice. It was just really beautiful and peaceful, and of course nobody else was around for a good while, so I had the place to myself to relax.
    While these photos are not of the caliber that I'd prefer, I am still happy with them considering I haven't been out shooting much in the past month and a half.

    Please C&C if you have anything to say. Always want to improve so feel free to point out anything that you think could be done differently in shooting or processing. View full size for best detail/sharpness. Thanks for viewing.

    Mallard - Would have preferred a lower angle but I was not prepared or able to get into the water and mud at that time. Also, unfortunately there is an OOF plant stem lower right, what a shame (cloning out didn't look right so I left it)

    A new weekly series - Morning adventures - Week #1


    Fall colors - Had some trouble keeping the details in the red leaves here. I pulled down the highlights, reduced the red luminosity and saturation a bit...the rising sunlight was hitting the leaves obviously, so they are kind of "glowing" which contributes to the really bright look. I think if the photo size here were much larger, the red details would be there and it would look less "globby"

    A new weekly series - Morning adventures - Week #1

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    Re: A new weekly series - Morning adventures - Week #1

    I look forward to your weekly series and it's clear that you're already off to a great start. The photo of the mallard is quite special despite the errant out-of-focus thingy. Rather than using a cloning tool to fix that, try copying and pasting a part of the image to solve the problem.

    The second one doesn't work nearly as well for me for the reasons that you mentioned. I would be willing to guess that you didn't use a polarizer and that your problem would have been solved if you had. Am I right?

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    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Re: A new weekly series - Morning adventures - Week #1

    Matt I congratulate you - not only on the quality of the images above, but on your decision as to how you're going to live life.

    I am one who has made the exact same journey as you (apologies for not seeing your earlier thread, which I've now read). If I am serious about getting out for a shoot, particularly to a pre-determined location, then I have to be up and out before sunrise. In the summer, up here in the north-west corner of Europe, that means at about 3:30/4am. Now that we're heading into the winter season, that changes. At the moment, in October, that means at about 6:30am and it will get later through to January.

    People think I'm odd when i say I love it. But, for me, there is something completely energising about being up and out at that time of the morning. I am not a religious person, but it's that thing about God being in his (her) heaven and all being well with the world.

    And as for that thing about having the place to yourself. Well, it's bliss. This one, which I posted up a couple of weeks ago, captures, for me, all of that thing about being up early. Go for it.
    Last edited by Donald; 9th October 2013 at 10:17 AM.

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    Re: A new weekly series - Morning adventures - Week #1

    Hey Matt, wake up. It's 8 am here on Cape Cod, Ma so it's 5 for you!
    Go get some more great shots.
    That duck is excellent! I would have thought that stem was just a reflection in the water, so it doesn't bother me, but to the more trained eye, I guess they see it.
    Nancy

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    Re: A new weekly series - Morning adventures - Week #1

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Buckley View Post

    The second one doesn't work nearly as well for me for the reasons that you mentioned. I would be willing to guess that you didn't use a polarizer and that your problem would have been solved if you had. Am I right?
    What would the polarizer have done to help resolve the issues with the second picture? I've taken some images that had that "globby" look and finding something to help with it would be nice.

    Getting up and out early is a treat for the psyche. If it were easy everybody would be doing it. I think the business about having a "biological clock" that is set for later hours is nonsense. Like most worthwhile things it's a matter of resolve and practice to achieve a result; even if the result is something as personal as adjusting one's sleeping hours.
    Looking forward to more early morning images.
    Andrew

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    Re: A new weekly series - Morning adventures - Week #1

    Hi Matt,

    Your image of the duck is incredibly beautiful. I think the plant stem is just fine, artsy bokeh, removing it might make your image seem too, perfect.

    Early mornings are easier if you pack your camera gear, any essentials and lay out your clothes the night before. Nothing to think about in the morning until you're fully awake..

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    Re: A new weekly series - Morning adventures - Week #1

    Quote Originally Posted by AndrewMcD View Post
    What would the polarizer have done to help resolve the issues with the second picture?
    It could have eliminated most of the glare on the leaves, changing their appearance from nearly white to the color of the leaves. It can't eliminate all of the glare because not all leaves are positioned the same relative to the sun and the camera lens. It's very possible that Matt did use a polarizer and that the issues would have been worse without it.

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    Digital's Avatar
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    Re: A new weekly series - Morning adventures - Week #1

    Matt, I applaud your determination to improve your photography. I USE to be an early riser myself. As Donald related there is something all right with the world at that time.
    Your mallard shot is excellent IMHO.


    Bruce

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    Re: A new weekly series - Morning adventures - Week #1

    Hello Matt, welcome to the world of a morning person. I like nothing better than to greet the dawn with a cup of coffee. Nice images... wonderful mallard. You wrote that you wished you had shot it at a lower angle... I disagree. A lower angle would not have given the wonderful mirror image in the reflection. I took the liberty to clone out the out of focus stem. What you have to do is first with a cloning brush and the opacity set at 100% pick up the ripple lines and carefully match them from one side to the other. A little practice and you can get it to look acceptable. Then with an opacity of 50% ( which gives you a softer brush ) blend in between the ripple lines until looking right. Work little pieces of it rather than trying to do it all at once. Think how an artist would paint it.

    A new weekly series - Morning adventures - Week #1

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    Re: A new weekly series - Morning adventures - Week #1

    Nice job, Joe!

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    Re: A new weekly series - Morning adventures - Week #1

    Yes, indeed. It looks perfect, perfect.

    thank you for sharing Joe.

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    FlyingSquirrel's Avatar
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    Re: A new weekly series - Morning adventures - Week #1

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Buckley View Post
    The second one doesn't work nearly as well for me for the reasons that you mentioned. I would be willing to guess that you didn't use a polarizer and that your problem would have been solved if you had. Am I right?
    Mike, you caught me pulling a rookie move. I did not use a CP. In fact I went out with the intention of shooting only wildlife, and never thought to bring a CP. Thank you for reminding me of that option. Normally I'd think to use one for landscapes, but I was using my 400mm lens. So I was thinking *inside* the box and would never have considered it for a telephoto. Either way, I was unprepared for such a shot and the proper methods. I will have to double check if my only CP that I own will fit my telephoto. Thanks for the comments!

    Quote Originally Posted by Donald View Post
    Matt I congratulate you - not only on the quality of the images above, but on your decision as to how you're going to live life.

    I am one who has made the exact same journey as you (apologies for not seeing your earlier thread, which I've now read). If I am serious about getting out for a shoot, particularly to a pre-determined location, then I have to be up and out before sunrise. In the summer, up here in the north-west corner of Europe, that means at about 3:30/4am. Now that we're heading into the winter season, that changes. At the moment, in October, that means at about 6:30am and it will get later through to January.

    People think I'm odd when i say I love it. But, for me, there is something completely energising about being up and out at that time of the morning. I am not a religious person, but it's that thing about God being in his (her) heaven and all being well with the world.

    And as for that thing about having the place to yourself. Well, it's bliss. This one, which I posted up a couple of weeks ago, captures, for me, all of that thing about being up early. Go for it.
    Donald, thank you for the kind words and the motivational comments. It's nice to know that you can relate. That is an absolutely stunning and sensational image of the forest. I love it and it brings back certain memories of places and times past for me.

    Quote Originally Posted by AndrewMcD View Post
    Getting up and out early is a treat for the psyche. If it were easy everybody would be doing it. I think the business about having a "biological clock" that is set for later hours is nonsense. Like most worthwhile things it's a matter of resolve and practice to achieve a result; even if the result is something as personal as adjusting one's sleeping hours.
    Looking forward to more early morning images.
    Andrew
    Thanks Andrew, I agree 100% with everything you said

    Quote Originally Posted by Christina S View Post
    Hi Matt,

    Your image of the duck is incredibly beautiful. I think the plant stem is just fine, artsy bokeh, removing it might make your image seem too, perfect.

    Early mornings are easier if you pack your camera gear, any essentials and lay out your clothes the night before. Nothing to think about in the morning until you're fully awake..
    Christina, thanks for the nice comments. I agree with your statement about packing the day before. I always go that route as it makes things much easier and less stressful

    Quote Originally Posted by jprzybyla View Post
    I took the liberty to clone out the out of focus stem. What you have to do is first with a cloning brush and the opacity set at 100% pick up the ripple lines and carefully match them from one side to the other. A little practice and you can get it to look acceptable. Then with an opacity of 50% ( which gives you a softer brush ) blend in between the ripple lines until looking right. Work little pieces of it rather than trying to do it all at once. Think how an artist would paint it.
    Joe, thank you very much for taking the time to do that and describe your methods. You did an excellent job and it looks great! Thanks again for your comments and help


    Thanks again to everyone for your comments, advice, and support. I look forward to sharing more of my morning jaunts and associated photos. Here's to all the exciting adventures, great memories, and awesome photos that await me

    edit: p.s. My new bedtime deadline approaches! Off to prepare for a good night's rest!

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