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Heron on the river Weaver

By Jabbott
ISO 800 f/5.7 1/1,600

Whilst photographing friends rowing along the river Weaver happened to have my zoom lens set up as a Heron flew past. Hoped to get an image of the bird in motion but haven't really done much wildlife photography as yet. The bird does seem a little over exposed.

Tags: Wildlife and nature

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This photo is here for critique. Please only comment constructively and with suggestions on how to improve it.


banehawi Plus
14 1.8k 3893 Canada
19 Nov 2012 4:25PM
Welcome to EPZ Joe.

Youve done quite well here in general for someone not familiar with this area of photography. Youre right of course about exposure, but I think if the heron hadnt been flying into a sun-lit area, you may have done better.

The action mode seems to have worked well, and as you get into this area you will work with both Aperture Priority and Shutter priority for more control.

I suggest you look through the galleries, - do a search for birds, - you will see many really good photogs here, and take a look at their shot settings.

Your camera also has an AI Servo focus mode that allows you to track a moving bird by moving the camera with it, with the shutter half pressed, allowing you to take the shot when you want, - give it a try.

Meanwhile, you can recover this shot to some extent in Photoshop, - so let us know which software you have so we can target feedback for you. I have uploaded a mod to show what can be done, - scroll up the page and click the Modifications tab to see it.

As a new member, you should also know that if you like a comment, you can click the Like EPZ icon on the upper right of the comment box, and/or if you find the feedback constructive, you can click the "Nominate as..." link in the lower right.

Enjoy the site, and take a look around at the bird and wildlife shots,



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19 Nov 2012 4:41PM
Hi Willie,

Thanks for your reply and your modification to the photograph. It looks amazing. I have recently purchased Photoshop CS6 and am slowly getting to grips with the new software. But must admit it's taking a while!

I did feel I cheated a little switching to the action mode setting, was the easiest thing to do as the bird flew in... Thanks very much for the feedback and tips!
paulbroad 10 123 1250 United Kingdom
19 Nov 2012 7:24PM
Not a bad effort at all, but you make your own valid comment. You are a stop over exposed. Willies mod is pretty close to correcting things but, as I'm sure you know, slight under exposure is always to be preferred to over exposure. For routine use I have all camera bodies set to - 1/3 stop as it is easy ti brighten shadows but burnt out detail is gone forever.

Focus_Man 8 481 631 United Kingdom
20 Nov 2012 9:43AM
Welcome to EPZ Joe. This must have been nice to behold, but a great pity that the sun has bleached out the bird’s head somewhat, because you have caught it really well apart from needing a slight compositional adjustment.

Before uploading here, why not go through a lot of the previous uploads to this gallery, look for pictures similar to your own and read the comments applied there. That will give you an initial learning and tuition ie self-help.

Take good note of the comments which appear to present themselves the most and ignore the comments ,like “Good shot” or “Love the colours” that is not the help you are after, you want to look at critique, which is what this galley is all about.

Looking back at comments and learning from them will give you a very good start without the need for members to keep adding the same advice time after time to picture after picture.

Here your bird is flying from right to left so attention on such images generally leads the viewer to the bird’s head so leaving some space to the left here makes a lot of sense. I think you will find that if you leave space ahead, to the LHS, for the bird to metaphorically 'fly into', placing its eyes much further right, you will be more pleased with the shot. This can be achieved here by a small canvas addition, a little cloning and crop but it is always better to frame and compose your subject within the viewfinder of your camera.

This applies to birds, people, animals, vehicles, maritime craft in fact anything that moves always seems to look more natural having space allowed in which to see or advance into.

25 Nov 2012 1:51PM
Thank you very much for the comments and advice, and Frank I take your point about reading other comments from the other galleries as well... Looking forward to improving my technique!


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