Back Modifications (5)
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Little Egret

By tom_earwaker
I've increased contrast a bit and brought out a little more blue from the water with a selective colour adjustment. Thanks for looking.

Tags: Bird Warwickshire Little egret Wildlife and nature Brandon marsh Warwickshire Wildlife Trust


dudler Plus
18 1.8k 1892 England
13 Apr 2017 12:30PM
This is rather nicely done, Tom. There are only two things which I wonder about a bit.

The first is that the reflection he's almost framed by the greenery in the foreground, but not quite.- part of it is hidden. Of course, you may not have been able to do anything about this.

The other thing is that the top left corner is very bright compared with the whole of the rest of the photograph. This drags the eye and that's a distraction. I tried darkening things a little bit, and this reveals that you had done some work to balance the tones between the bird and the background - there is a characteristic halo around the bird. I wonder if a levels adjustment might have helped this.

To sum up, the light wasn't really on your side for this. And, despite this, you've produced a rather charming and characterful portrait.
mrswoolybill Plus
15 3.1k 2475 United Kingdom
13 Apr 2017 12:48PM
John and I have been working simultaneously on this, I've just uploaded my mod.

As he says, things weren't entirely on your side, but it's an attractive shot. Three important elements - the egret (obviously), its reflection and the baseline of greenery. That tells us that we the viewers are standing on terra firma, which is always reassuring...

I made three changes. First of all I rotated clockwise to position the eye immediately above its reflection. Reflections always drop down vertically from their subject, whatever angle they are viewed from...

Secondly, I cheated and filled in a few more leaves at the bottom.

Finally I darkened highlights slightly overall, then I isolated both bird and reflection and worked to bring out the mid- and darker tones while keeping highlights in the plumage. I think it gives a bit more 'body'.
paulbroad Plus
14 131 1293 United Kingdom
13 Apr 2017 1:59PM
Difficult lighting and it shows. The only mod that comes close is the first by John with some decent tone in the water, but that is the problem, the very bright water. You should have tried less exposure, then brighten the bird with the dodge tool.

Not bad, though, considering.

dark_lord Plus
17 2.9k 793 England
13 Apr 2017 8:19PM
No, not bad in the conditions, and wildlife often has a tendency to appear in less than ideal cofditions, so it's always worth a shot or two even if that means a little time spent in post processing.

Of course, for the more abundant species if the light isn't great then it's a question whether or ot to take the image (personally speaking). But it may be your first capture of it anyway so I certainly wouldn't advocate not shooting.

And talking of abundance, going by the tags it's good to see these birds increasing their range. Twenty years ago they'd have been quite a novel sight in a few remore locations in the UK.
paulbroad Plus
14 131 1293 United Kingdom
14 Apr 2017 7:51AM
Always get a shot. Digital is free, once you have the gear. This is a perfectly good record and aid to identification, but not a competition piece.

banehawi Plus
17 2.6k 4281 Canada
17 Apr 2017 12:55AM
Quite nice. It already has a blue colour cast, so enhancing blue is not a direction I would go.

It needs a cw rotation to alight the reflection, and I would crop space left and bottom, adding to top and left for a better composition.

I shot some egrets just last week, very difficult to get right.



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