Sunday, November 22, 2009
A cracking month this month and lots from everybody but always room for more.
Following on from Paul's this is an owl from last month in Auz at the Tangarona Zoo.
Face is sharp but wings are just a bit soft but they are in full flight just out of the stump.
Hope you don't mind had a bit of a play in photoshop and been able to tweak the reds up. As this is only low res it's still not good but if you have the time to cut the mask you can bring color back. However strobes are much better.
Saturday, November 21, 2009
- Landscapes with a Prop/Person for Perspective
- 'The Hero Shot' - What is the desert for you?
(f5.6 1/1250 ISO200 -1EV, Manuel Everything, Metered off the Sky)
Tried to avoid the same old same old of silhouetting on the horizon against a blank sky and instead used the setting sun reflecting off the dunes. I swear there is no HDR in this shot (or any of these for that matter)
Nikkor 28-200 @ 170mm, F/5.6
I promise this is the last of my 'Animals'.
Camera-mounted flash produced all kinds of red-eye problems, so I did the dirty deed with that Adobe software. Cropping, and shrinking aside, I also took Richard's earlier tip to boost the colours, just to see what would happen.
Off-camera flash might have been the way forward, but I didn't have the kit with me. It was a day trip to a theme park, falconry centre and petting zoo. The birds of prey were not part of the latter.
Actually, when zoomed into the original the detail isn't particularly sharp. I'm hoping that by reducing the resolution in an 800x600 no-one will notice.
For those whoe didn't come out and play yesterday this is what we saw, wild in the sand out behind Albwardy. Just in time for another submission to animals.
Shot AV at 5. (full open), ISO 200 to get some shutter speed back 1200-2000 at 500mm (on an APSC=800).
Will post more in a part 2.
Thursday, November 19, 2009
The course was pretty good with lots of pointers and tips and most importantly a all permission granted opportunity to take the cameras AND TRIPODS in to Mandiate - or at least the hotel part. It therefore thought I'd share a couple of images from the course as well as a few of the top tips:
A reminder that the end of the month is fast approaching so get snapping.
I know some of you have done it just not posted so come one get the cable out and download of the camera. (If you got time to download the latest eddition of Grays Anatomiy you can download your shots !)
Also on a personal note I'd also ask a everyone to join in the critique ;-)
I'd much rather have 20 hard critique comments than one "nice shot".
You don’t have to know all the technicalities but we all know some of the basics and more importanly what we like.
For example I posted an underwater shot this month, you don’t have to know about diving or underwater housings and strobes but is it sharp ? Is it a bulls eye ? or does the diaganal line off set that ? what are the colours like ? negative space ? aspect ratio ? etc..
Here is a good guide if anybody wants pointers.
The opposite also works as well if somebody likes a shot and wants to know how it was done etc the idea is to share and learn.
p.s. I know sometimes people just post snaps because they want to so if anybody doesn’t want critque on a certain image just add a note in the post.
Monday, November 16, 2009
Nice simple trick to give your photos a bit of punch.
They say with divers, there are two sorts of divers, those that pee in there wet suits and those that lie about it. Photoshop and Photographers is the same so this tip is for all those that lie ;-)
1- Duplicate the background layer.
2- Set blending mode to soft light.
3- Adjust the opacity as you like (about 50% is a good start).
Nice subtle way to boost the saturation and tonal range.
You almost have to look hard for the difference, its more of an impression, however check out the gray and the texture of the steps. (If need be right click and save the cropped shots to your desk top and flick between.)
There is no other adjustment between these two photos, NO levels, NO curves, NO dodge/burn.
For those who have a lot of photos to work with it's a very quick step and can even be added into your default actions.
The blending modes in photoshop are very clever and worth playing with. Soft light as here mutiplies light tones and dark tones together from the different layers to subtly lighten the lights and darken the darks.
p.s. This photo is not finished, jsut used like this for ilustration.
Coments, critique, abuse and questions welcome.
While the whales were submitted this month they weren't quite shot this month so here is one taken this month.
Sunday, November 15, 2009
Also the left hand bush balances nicely on the top left third with the cow on the bottom right. Maybe if it was my shot rather than a quick crop and re-post I'd also clone out the bottom of the tree in the middle back ground but that's by the by.
Paul - hope you don;t mind me having a fiddle with your cow.
Nikkor 18-200 @ 29mm F/16
I took some of Richard's comments and redid the image. This time you can see the whole of the tree's shadow, emphasising its isolation. I tweaked the cows' brightness using the Mask tool in PS Elephants 2.0 so that the cows were rendered a little brighter without blowing out the detail of the sand and the blue sky.
Less tweaking of the palette this time. See how the sand is redder?
Friday, November 13, 2009
Nikkor 18-200 @150mm and F/16
There were plenty of animals out and about during last Friday's Gulf News Fun Drive rehearsal. Unfortunately most were camels, and I cannot in all conscience post a picture of a camel here, no matter how cute the young might allegedly be. There was also one sheep; someone had clearly got the flock out of there.
Anyway, here it is: two cows on the roadside, sharing what little shade is available. I have tried to tweak up the brightness so that the animals aren't in silhouette, but the background tends to blow out when I do that. I messed with the colour palette too. In the original the sand is redder, but I think this one is more pleasing to the eye. Oh, and I cropped the background crap out of the image and, as usual, reduced it to 800x600 for the InterTubes.
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
Monday, November 9, 2009
In order to add some abuse and lively debate . . . . . . I hope.
HOW MUCH IS TOO MUCH ?
This is the original, I like Nell's expression, the out of focus background and composition except for the ballance of the shot.
It can be comon practice to crop a shot heavy, up to 50%, to frame it. It is also comon practice to extend seamless white and balck portrait shots al la Zak Aries, (as I did in "light").
So is this to much ? (Double click for large size image)
It's not a crop, it's not white seamless I've just done a "bit" of photo shop and replicated the backgroud. As the background is so out of focus it's really just an amorfus background so I think its fair.
It also means that you don't loose the resolution like you do in a heavy crop. (Original 2.2 MB JPEG, Edited 7.1MB JPEG and 109 MB Photoshop PSD.)
Let fire with comments, abuse and any questions.
(p.s. It didn't take long, only about 20 minutes to do all the PP.)
Thursday, November 5, 2009
Not quite back catalogue but taken JUST before new topic and I've only just done the post production so I'm going to claim them.
If I take anymore and I'll try and post them as well.
Generally this is the EXIF :-
Canon 28-300mm 3.5-5.6 IS L, about 250-300mm no mutiplier
AP mode at f5.6, give a bit of DOF but also all maximum light.
1/2500sec, nice and fast, moving subject, moving boat and moving water drops.
ISO 100, as pleanty of light.
-1.33 EV, to keep water darker and avoid "splash" blowing out.
Servo Focus mode (posted copies may be a bit soft but originals are all in focus)
All shot in burst mode.
Don't you just love motor drive....
If anybody wants to see hi res film strip 16 MB Jpeg and 168 MB in photoshop jsut shout and I'll mail.
Comments, Critque and abuse welcome :-)
Wednesday, November 4, 2009
After Pauls back catalogue I thought I'd share some of mine.
These all are from Honeymoon in South Africa, managed to see the big five but these are the photographich highlights.
Hate to say "All the Gear No Idea" but it's true and I will admit to having little photogrpahic skill / understanding when took these but I did have a big long bit of glass (but only 6.3?) which helped.
This is from the back of a open landrover about 40m away.
NOT with a long lens, more like wide angle, they were very close.
My mum used to say I fought for my food.
It used to be a giraffe.
Nice and helpfull with the composition.
Liked it so much that we have a 3x2ft black and white version in our bedroom.
Okay this one wasn't in the kruger but it is a great white.
Not shot with my normal underwater photo rig, only used a cheap disposbale camera.
Nikkor 28-200 @ 80mm F/5
My previous blog submission made mention that it rained almost continuously in Istanbul over Eid, November 2005. Here is further proof. I’m sure that the novelty of riding in a horse-drawn vehicle rapidly wore off. The blurred spokes and legs were all done in camera; no ‘rotation blur’ tweaking in this picture. Unfortunately the background is rather cluttered and distracting, but the reflection in the wet road is nice.
Nikkor 28-200 @ 98mm F/8
The gulls are at least co-operative as they wheel around the ferries plying up and down the Bosphorus. I took lots of photos, and picked this one because the bird’s eye is in focus and there’s no distracting background.
Nikkor 28-200 @ 45mm F/11
This particular blast from the past was taken at the Dibba end of Wadi Bih back in 2005 when it was still permitted to drive all the way to Ras Al Khaimah. I think my subject looks like a philosophy student, with the merest hint of a beard on its chinny-chin-chin. The goat hair is rendered better in the full-size version.
Back in March 2007, taken in Phuket, Thailand. I really like the way the gibbon’s eyes are lit up with reflection highlights, and I’m also pleased with how the fur came out, particularly considering the camera that I used.
Sunday, November 1, 2009
I've posted these simply because I like the black backdrops. It's not often that the subject is lit by the sun, the cloudy background is as black as your hat, and I have a camera to hand.
Need I say that the rain threw down almost continuously throughout our stay?