Back Modifications (2)
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Male Siskin

By LukeParkinson  
Good morning,

First upload in a very long time. Some of you may not remember me - I started on here 11 years ago as a junior member overloading EPZ with Kingfishers.

I do a lot of low key work now, so I知 interested in your thoughts on this please? Anything i could of done better?

Thank you in advance

Tags: Photography Studio Birds Studio lighting Garden birds Wildlife and nature

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dark_lord Plus
16 2.6k 684 England
15 Jun 2020 3:29PM
Welcome back Luke.

Firstly, this is very nicely done.

It looks, with the highlights on the tap, that you used two lights on this. Nothing wrong with that but the main light is very frontal so the siskin and wooden perch look very two dimensional. Having the main light away from the lens axis will give some shape to those elements.

I also wonder about the black background and because it's uniformly dark did you darken it in software. So that also leads me on to think that the second light you used was actually the sun, glinting on the tap, and the bird is purely lit by frontal flash.

For some, the dark background is vert stark and gives the impression of a studio shot.
Either wy it does have a cardboard cut out appearance and would be more appealing had that flash been to the side just as would be the case for a human portrait.

All that said this would get votes and possibly some awards in the main Gallery

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dudler Plus
17 1.3k 1682 England
15 Jun 2020 4:44PM
Whether it could be done better depends on what you were aiming for...

It's well-exposed and sharp, and that's more than I can manage with any form of wildlife: but it would really help us if you could say a bit more. A conversation always makes the most of the Critique Gallery.
LukeParkinson 10 30 3 United Kingdom
15 Jun 2020 4:48PM
Hi both - thank you for your comments.

This was in fact intended as a studio type of shot. 2 lights were use - one infront if the bird and one behind slightly to the right. I also had a black sheet behind which created my black background.

I agree about the light being too central, and maybe more of a shadow would have more of a 3D effect to it
pamelajean Plus
14 1.4k 2149 United Kingdom
15 Jun 2020 5:09PM
Welcome back to the Critique Gallery, Luke.

The plain black background obviously does away with any distractions, but does look odd when it's a wildlife image. What do you think about it yourself? Is it something you particularly like?

I have done a modification.
Firstly, I cropped and placed the siskin on a thirds intersection (according to the guideline called The Rule Of Thirds). My other reason for the crop is because I felt there was a bit too much of the wooden post in the frame, causing the bird to look quite small.
The tap is very large, too, but it does become an important part of your composition.

So that crop is my first modification. For the second one, I gave your image a graduated background, just to show you how different this can look when treated in this way. I chose colours that complemented the bird, post and tap.


PS: I was typing and doing my modifications whilst yours and John's comments were made, so I have only just seen them.
chase Plus
14 1.7k 420 England
16 Jun 2020 10:20AM
Hi Luke, I do remember you as a Junior here, welcome back.

On first glance at this, my initial thought was the perch...very nice btw...overshadows the bird. It seems this frame is all about the tap.
I am not sure the black bg has done this frame any favours, it looks very stark and un-natural to me, Pamelas mod cropped and with the bg she has used looks much better and shows the bird off.
The detail looks to be on the tap and not so much on the bird.
So, I'm not sure about this one Luke, sorry.
dudler Plus
17 1.3k 1682 England
16 Jun 2020 2:56PM
Thank you for the extra info, Luke.

I think Pamela's second mod really nails it - tighter, less stark, and more environment. Black can be very stark.
LukeParkinson 10 30 3 United Kingdom
13 Aug 2020 8:35AM
Thank you all so much for your comments. I take them all on board. I am starting to be more creative with the textured backgrounds so something to work on. I知 going to put this in the main gallery to get other opinions too Smile I値l then give the background a go and see how it works out. Thank you al very much again Smile I really appreciate your time

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