Critique Another afternoon floating on the boat.

Joined
Nov 14, 2005
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Winter Haven, florida
I am trying to get more environmental type portraits of the local birds than the closeup images of the bird without the environment that I have shot for so long.
This is new- and hard- for me. This is pretty much pick the background and the light, anchor the boat and hope something comes by. Occasionally it is see a bird, and maneuver around to get a good background. I had actually forgotten how our foliage changes color in winter.
A couple from this afternoon. Challenging light- but when the sun broke through the clouds it was wonderful. Only saw one other boat in 4 hours all afternoon.
Life is good, it is a great time to be a photographer.
gary

1, Flying home
LakeEloise123020 25716_DxO.jpg
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2. Posing Anhinga
LakeEloise123020 25633_DxO.jpg
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3. Great Blue Heron sunning
LakeEloise123020 25593_DxO.jpg
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4. Just a little light found its way back into the swamp, on an otherwise cloudy day.
LakeEloise123020 25396_DxO.jpg
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Joined
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Winter Haven, florida
The last one works especially well for me because, unlike the others, the subject stands out so well from the rest of the scene while the subject and background complement each other so nicely.
In these works- which is an experiment for me and may or may not work- I really don't want the subject to be too obvious.
When I watch people look at my work- or others- they first see it from far away. Something then has to attract them to come forward and spend their precious time looking at my image. Here I want the background to be an interesting abstract or color so they will look. I want the bird, or whatever the subject is, to not be noticed until they are looking. A surprise.
I am probably overthinking this- but that is my approach for a while. Looking for a challenge. If this doesn't work, I'll try something else.
Taking sharp pictures of birds no longer is really challenging. I can just do it. They will be sharp.
It is a great time to be a photographer- but sometimes it is just too easy.
gary
 

Butlerkid

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Excellent to try something different! In #1 the environment is so dominant in the frame, but OOF.... that it didn't work for me. A closer crop on the bird might work..... In #2, the environment is a bit clearer - and the lighting nice - that this is my fav in this series. So a thought....if you want to focus on the envionment, do you always needs a bird? And if the environment is the emphasis, shouldn't it be in focus? Just thoughts......
 
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Nice set. Good on you stepping out of your comfort zone to try something different. For my own taste I like nos. 1 and 2 best. Because of the light and color. IMO due to the blurred BG in no.1 it is still obviously a shot of a bird but gives a clear sense of the environment and takes advantage of the light/colors. The second it more of a true "wildscape" or whatever you want to call it.

In the low country we don't tend to think so much about our fall colors. But everything is relative. Well lit brown/rust colors contrasted against greens/moss/shadow can appear quite brilliant.
 
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Northern VA suburb of Washington, DC
I want the bird, or whatever the subject is, to not be noticed until they are looking. A surprise.
I am probably overthinking this- but that is my approach for a while. Looking for a challenge. If this doesn't work, I'll try something else.

It's so good to see you thinking through your experiment. It really doesn't matter what the outcome is. That's because you'll learn from it and either decide to stick with it or move on. How could anyone argue with that?
 
Joined
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Winter Haven, florida
Thanks for the thoughts on my experiment. I have shot some of the backgrounds just as landscapes- but I like them better with a second subject- like a bird in the corner somewhere.
I can use these thoughts and ideas to guide me on this journey. I'll go back out in the next day or two- lets see what happens.
gary
 
Joined
Nov 14, 2005
Messages
2,765
Location
Winter Haven, florida
One thing I find interesting is the difference between the final image and the experience while taking it.
#1 was just a beautiful scene. One bird flew by and I remember thinking this will be a spectacular picture. It wasn't.
#3 was also really a beautiful thing to see. I was frustrated and photographed this bird for 30min from multiple different vantage points because I knew I was not capturing what I was seeing. Never did get it the way I remember it.
#2 was kind of a quick snap while floating by- turned out to be one of my favorites of the day. Was a surprise when I was culling the files.
#4 had absolutely terrific lighting. I know this bird from last season. It is blind with a damaged eye which is visible in print, probably not noticeable on a web sized image. It is always something. Might have to fix it in post.
I will spend several weeks floating along these areas, which are pretty small. 2 separate small areas each about 300yards long. Hardest thing is to get something different from last year.
I guess that is the challenge. The birds are not nesting yet, but the coloration is much nicer this early in season.
I will put up some new images as outside guidance is really helpful.
Thanks again
gary
 
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