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Pelican at Sunset in Nuevo Vallarta, Mexico

By liparig
Pelican at Sunset in Nuevo Vallarta, Mexico

Tags: Sunset Wildlife Pelican Wildlife and nature

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3 Jul 2017 11:52PM
Lovely shot! Im new here and loved your photo! Ellen
mrswoolybill Plus
14 2.8k 2424 United Kingdom
4 Jul 2017 9:16AM
Hi Giuseppe, welcome to the Critique Gallery! You've been on the site for a long time but I think this is the first time you have ticked the critique box? I guess you know what we are about here, I hope you'll find it useful.

The interesting thing for me here is that in a soft, faint silhouette the identification and character of the pelican still come through perfectly. There are many tidy, sharp ID images around, this is different. This is about atmosphere. I read your 'About' page, photography for you is about relaxation and calm after a busy day at the office, I can understand that this is very personal. Which also makes it difficult to critique.

Two suggestions. First of all inner vision needs careful technique to convey it fully. Think carefully about settings. This needed a faster shutter speed, I would go for 1/500 second or faster. It did not need F36, going that small takes you way past the range where you will get top quality results.

Second suggestion - This is about atmosphere, the feel of the moment, and a fair amount can be conveyed by placement of the subject. Central placement tends to give a static feel. By moving the bird to the left of the frame you give it space to fly into; by placing it proportionally higher, you convey soaring. I'm going to try a couple of crops, to illustrate.

I guess you know where to view modifications - under the blue modifications button below your upload, click on the numbers to view.

Back soon, I hope.


Quote:A wonderful bird is the Pelican.
His beak can hold more than his belly can.
He can hold in his beak
Enough food for a week!
But I'll be darned if I know how the hellican?

(Dixon Lanier Merritt)
pablophotographer 10 1.9k 407
4 Jul 2017 11:22AM
Buongiorno from me too Giuseppe. I shall agree with Ellen, it's a lovely picture, an opportunity which is in front of your eyes for a very very small amount of time. Such is the occasion, that talking about settings, as if they were set by you at the second before taking the picture, where they could be "transferred over" by your previous subject(s) you were shooting, is not a path to go down to, unless you clarify about them.
In general, I would say, shooting into the sun, is safer for your eyes to look at the back screen rather your optical viewfinder. Then I would say you could keep the ISO low, to even 100, provided that you do not do that during from 10 AM to 5PM when the sun is strong, and that you do not do it too often as the sunlight, may, damage the camera sensor. You are safer if you use a film camera in that occasion.
Having the camera free to decide automatically all the factors that will affect your image after having set yourself the speed of 1/160 sec is a risky option. Birds as Moira says get to look more sharp if shutter speed is set to 1/500 when the lighting conditions are good. I suspect that the " blur" we are taking about is not only due to low speed but mainly because the camera had to focus on a moving subject overlapping another object, namely the sun. And to my opinion it did a pretty good job not to blow everything up.
I do not think that your pelican is dead centre (not necessary to be) in the frame yet I enjoy the overall balance in the frame. It gives enough space from all the sides to let the eye relax after looking at the burning sun and the pelican. The climaxing intensity of the orange colour is pleasantly represented and is proportionally adequate for the size and orientation of the frame. No other framing offered satisfies that unless you are prepared to lose a part of the sun. I might explore that later when I find the time to do so.
paulbroad 13 131 1293 United Kingdom
4 Jul 2017 1:21PM
You are a long way over exposed resulting in a very washy effect. You needed two or three stops less exposure, then never f36! F11 would do and at f36 the amount of flare and light diffraction will be extremely significant, ruining the effect.

The bird is very soft indeed due to both quality loss and camera shake.

The idea is there, but the technique is wrong.

dudler Plus
17 1.6k 1862 England
4 Jul 2017 5:43PM
And welcome from me, too!

Does the picture look as you want it to?

Are you happy with the result

Your answers will inform comments here...

Enjoy the site!
dark_lord Plus
17 2.8k 776 England
4 Jul 2017 8:25PM
Welcome from me too.

This would look better with the main subject sharp, and all that's been covered above.
It would be helpful if you could answer John's questions as that woud help us to give appropriate critique.

Nevertheless I like your timing for this shot with the bird just touching the edge of the sun. But as it stands, being a very central composition with no other elements in frame it looks very static. There are other more visually interesting compositions as Moira has shown, which if you couldn't manage at the time of capture you can certainly do later in post processing.
liparig 16 233 United States
4 Jul 2017 10:50PM
I do like the first crop modification leaving the pelican and sun in upper left. I do like the shot especially since it was a chance shot. Walking on the beach with family when a flock a pelican were flying by, noticed the sun and took 4-5 pics quickly. This was my favorite No time to compose best shot. I was also also hand holding the camera so I think I do find it to be a bit soft and not at sharp as I would like but then again it does look more like a painting to me.

Thank you for all your help and ideas, this is what I like about ePhotozine. With 2 kids I rarely have time as I used to.
liparig 16 233 United States
4 Jul 2017 10:54PM
I added my own modification with new crop, thank you again
dudler Plus
17 1.6k 1862 England
5 Jul 2017 5:46AM
Thank you for your response, Joe.

I understand the difficulty of shooting with family - time pressure, and you can't carry all the kit you might want to. And I can understand the attraction of a ore impressionistic look, as well - that was what I was wondering about, really. Sharp is good, and almost always makes a good picture, but sometines a vaguer,blurry look can convey a lot.
dark_lord Plus
17 2.8k 776 England
5 Jul 2017 11:12AM
Thanks Joe.
I realise there's little time if amy to compose the shot at the time, with or without family aound. Which makes he positioning really fortuitous.
You could have cropped before upload but it's useful for us to see the complete frame in any case in the Critique Gallery.
Certainly for conveying a mood I think you have it here.
pablophotographer 10 1.9k 407
7 Jul 2017 8:32AM
Hi, I have made a crop myself.
The frame retains the shades of orange, the yellow of the sunlight, some of the bright white sun and the pelican Wink

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