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Some bird in garden

By Bigpoolman
I believe that this is a blue tit, at any rate it was in the garden getting ready to pounce on the bird feed. A bit ruffled by the wind but otherwise seemed to be in good shape.

Nature photography is quite a new venture so comments much appreciated.

Edited quickly in LR and PS.

thanks for looking


Tags: Summer Nature Home Wildlife and nature 2017

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Maiwand 14 3 73 England
16 Aug 2017 8:39PM
Blue Tit it is. You have made a good start.
banehawi Plus
16 2.5k 4240 Canada
16 Aug 2017 11:14PM
Excellent detail.

Colour seems a bit off, but still nice.

A quick mod.


dudler Plus
17 1.6k 1849 England
17 Aug 2017 9:42AM
Nothing to add - I'd vote for this!
paulbroad 13 131 1293 United Kingdom
17 Aug 2017 2:20PM
You have fallen foul of the minimal depth of field with a long lens wide open. Even with a tiny bird like a Blue tit - a very common bird - the rump is reasonably sharp, the head is not. You must ensure the focus is on the right spot then, with the cheaper long lenses, try and stop down at least one stop. They will not be at there best wide open.

You also needed a half to one stop less exposure. How are you arriving at your manual setting? a hand meter?

pamelajean Plus
15 1.5k 2218 United Kingdom
17 Aug 2017 7:07PM
It's a good start, Tim.

Just a few things to remember for next time:-
1. Try to ensure the whole of the bird is in the frame (here you have clipped the tail feathers). You were right to give more space on the right, for the bird to fly into.
2. Avoid intrusions that are in front of the bird. There is a leaf across the tail and, though very blurred, it takes away detail from there.
3. Aim to shoot from the front or side. Here you are looking up and the nearest part of the bird to the lens is its rear. But at least it's looking round, so that's good.
4. Set your focus firmly on the bird's eye/s.

Sometimes you only get the one chance, but it's still worth practicing with different apertures, depending on what's in your background and how much background blur you want.


dark_lord Plus
17 2.8k 769 England
17 Aug 2017 7:34PM
Pamela has beaten me to it here with her detailed feedback.

The tail is clipped but this is a cropped image so either the tail is there complete on the original or you had a very off centre composition to start with which I find hard to grasp becuase it that's the case the centre of the image would be in dead space and many wildlife images have the subject too central as that's where the focus point is.

Having said that it's not bad at all for an early attempt (I'm sure my first attempts weren't as good!).

Wrestling with long lenses and small fast subjects isn't easy and does take some practice. ISO and shutter speed look fine, as does your approach of having some feed near to a perch.
Patience is something you'll need for this type of photography. The birds are normally more active in the morning so planning when to shoot is another piece of the jigsaw. You may know this but it may be helpful for others who read this.
18 Aug 2017 9:31AM
Morning everyone and thanks for the feedback.

Ive uploaded a mod with the tail feathers now fully in, have very slightly cooled the colour temperature and also reduced the exposure a bit.

To answer a few comments:
- I did try to focus on the head using spot focus, looks like I just missed it fractionally and it picked up the shoulder (don't think birds have shoulders but never mind).
- I should have used a larger f stop and no real reason why I didn't other than I didn't think it through enough.
- I use manual speed and f stop setting with auto ISO. The over exposure comes from me in LR rather than the camera
- ditto the missing tail feathers come from a poor crop rather than missing composition.

It was all a bit impromptu in that I was back from a long bike ride and slumped in a chair by the patio window, the birds were very active so I thought I would have a practice without requiring much further movement!

Thanks for the guidance, I will have another go and try and put the lessons into practice.



dark_lord Plus
17 2.8k 769 England
18 Aug 2017 10:21AM
Thanks for the reply Tim, that puts things into perspective.

Full marks for getting on with taking photos after a long bike ride though!

Using Auto ISO is still an Auto mode so as I understand it exposure compensation does work then.
However, shooting against a white sky would tend to underexpose the subject anyway so I'd be giving positive compensation. Adjustable in LR though wothout affecting image quality if it's not horrendously out.

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