Critique request



Just a Robin but I see all these great photos on here and want to improve. What can or could I have done to make this a better shot.
Converted from raw to Jpeg with NC and then added a little layered sharpening in PC.

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May 7, 2005
Germany / Bavaria
It looks quite good to me.

Good,Background, not distracting from the subject.

Great moment captured (maybe not for the worm in the mouth!)

...just the light seems a little hard!

I`m Struggling myself what can be done about that!

Maybe someone of the birding Pros can help on that?


In saying hard do mean on the cold side of the spectrum?

Forgot to add that this was taken with the 70-200VR plus the TC 1.7.
Jan 26, 2005
Viera Fl
Well that look pretty darn good to me. Heck I don't have one of those pretty robin shots.

Harsh light is in the middle of the day..

Best shooting light is morning and late after
But hey you get what you can when the occassion arises. Thet bird and worm not going to wait for you.

I use a Moose polarizer during the day. Helps cut the glare and ups the color. Like it for sunsets or sunrise also. Lots of things you can do.

A ND filter sometimes helps.

Have fun... you are doing well and have a great lens in that 70-200 VR.. Way to go.


You could mow your St. Augustine lawn first. Just kidding. Nice shot. I don't see how you could improve it.

Feb 13, 2005
Rochester, New York

This is a very good image. I would not change it at all. What you may want to do, if you can and won't scare the subject, is to take the image in different angles to compare.

Jan 26, 2005
Marysville, WA
Move to your right for a bit of a profile trying to get more catch-light in the birds eye. Often the best way to do this, which I don't do often but should do more, is to use a flash for fill and to bring out the catch-light. Really makes the bird look more "alive".

Nice image, Robins are pretty birds.
May 17, 2005
Pleasantville Ohio
I'm struggling with the same thing -- opportunities that arise in less than optimal lighting conditions. I've been playing around with filter applications in post processing to "correct" the problem. In the case of your excellent robin, I thought Wratten No.s 81 or 81A helped.

My experience is quite limited and the result might have been a fluke. Perhaps some of the experts can comment on that approach.
Jan 29, 2005
Edmonton, Alberta
Overall pretty good shot considering the harsh light, have to agree with Bill, try to position for the catch light on the bird, by doing that you will find some shadows, that is where flash fill comes in. Mike M. is the pro at that ;-)

If your serious in critiques, it would help to see the exif data to see what you did, more from a technical perspective than composition..... :roll:
Then again what the heck do I know :lol:


Thanks for all the comments. Now hearing you say that I think the main thing I am missing other then the lighting is like you said getting the eyes!! The pictures I see on this site you always seem to get the eyes while mine are always dark and obscure.

Here is the capture data:

Nikon D70
2005/06/04 07:39:05
RAW (12-bit) Lossless
Image Size: Large (3008 x 2000)
Lens: VR 70-200mm F/2.8 G
Focal Length: 300mm
Exposure Mode: Aperture Priority
Metering Mode: Multi-Pattern
1/400 sec - F/7.1
Exposure Comp.: 0 EV
Sensitivity: ISO 320
Optimize Image: Custom
White Balance: Auto -1
AF Mode: AF-C
Flash Sync Mode: Not Attached
Color Mode: Mode II (Adobe RGB)
Tone Comp: User-Defined Custom Curve
Hue Adjustment: 0°
Saturation: Enhanced
Sharpening: Normal
Image Comment:
Noise Reduction: OFF


Also I don't know if it matters too much but my focal point ended up under the beak or throat area.
Feb 2, 2005
Maple Bay, Duncan, BC, Canada
Real Name
Andreas Berglund
Some minor suggestions that you might want to consider.

1. I imported this into NC 4 and if one presses L for lost highlights one can see that you might have overexposed this image by about +0.5? and not surprisingoy it is the red and the green channel that have blown. (might be the picture you posted since I dont have the original.
2. I think your white balance might be a a bit off to the warm side maybe 200 degrees to warm or so?
3. Composition, like Bill Dewey said going from the side and focusing of on the beak will make the image pop out of the picture more. maybe opening up the aperture to say F4-F3.5 would make the background softer so one concentrates on the bird not the grass. Going lower to the ground and you see the bird more in outline if you want and then the exposure you used possibly could have been right on the money.I personally would have tried to get a rule of thirds picure with the bird on one of the side facing in to the picture - but then again the birds aren't on a payroll and ususally dont repsond well to commands :)

anyway some suggestions tat you might want to consider...

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