Back Modifications (2)
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Look at me...

By Mobieus
This swan was so proud of itself it seemed to glide towards me shouting look at me, look at me. I'm not too pleased with the result though, seems like the swan fooled the camera and it is rather overexposed and lacking detail in the body.

Any thoughts on how i could improve this in the future much appreciated.

ISO 200

Edit: I have just looked at this onmy works monitor and the detail is much better, image less overexposed, I think my 4yr old may have been playing with the settings again Sad.

Tags: Wildlife and nature

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vickyal 13 United Kingdom
3 Mar 2009 7:56AM
Lovely shot and detail, well done.
conrad 17 10.9k 116
3 Mar 2009 8:43AM
I'm glad that you seem to have solved the mystery yourself, because I couldn't see the problems you mentioned. Of course, shooting white subjects is easier when there is less direct sunlight, or at an earlier or later moment during the day when the light is softer, but it does look like your camera recorded the scene and the subject well enough.

Now, how to keep the four year old away from the buttons on your screen? Hmmmm...

CathR 14 151 564 United Kingdom
3 Mar 2009 11:40AM
I think the exposure is fine, Paul. You have done well to control the lighting cos as Conrad says softer light gives you fewer problems.

I have uploaded a mod for you. The light has given you a hint of a catchlight, which is a great achievement as swans' eyes are so dark. I have enhanced it using a one pixel brush with white at 50% opacity. I have also boosted the saturation of the beak just a tad. I sometimes put a blue filter on my swans cos it really makes the whites whiter than white. Here I have applied a cooling filter (80) at 14%. See what you think.



PS do you really need such a fast shutter speed? Around 1/1000 should be enough and you could reduce your ISO to 100.
bricurtis Plus
16 2.5k 51 England
3 Mar 2009 12:47PM
First impressions - this is not as bad as you first thought.
Agree with the above about your shutter speed.

I think the water is an unnatural blue and the swan lacks a little clarity - so it needs a few tweaks.
I always look for the purity of the white in swans - unfortunately I see the mod above has given the swan a blue tinge that was not on your image.

I used Capture NX2. I selected the water and reduced the blue level.
Adj levels to slightly boost light on the swan - and darkened its beak.
Selected and sharpened the fluffy parts of the swans plumage 1 pix @ 50%.
Hope it's OK - we all view things differently.
Mobieus 14 48 Wales
3 Mar 2009 3:09PM
Thanks for the feedback folks much appreciated Smile.

Conrad, yes it seems that my little one may be responsible for pressing the Auto button my Samsung monitor and my carefull ateempts at calibration are now for nothing Sad. Will have to do again i guess. In reference to the light, well it was far from perfect, 1pm on a very bright day, however, i was trying to combine family time at the park with a photo opportunity lol.

Cath, yeah didn't see the shutter speed till i looked at my exif data :s, a result of me previously trying to catch and freeze gulls swooping down for the bread my little un was throwing to the birds. It was just then that this fella glided into shot and i simply swung around to catch a few shot of him. Your correct 1/3200 is big overkill, hey ho, we learn every day. Like what you have done to the image, yes i was pleased to have caught some catchlights, glad you saw those. Not quite so sure of the slightly blue cast to the image though, though I can see what you mean by whiter than white. Didn't they used to add a blue dye to whites in the wash many years ago, just for that reason?

Brian, thanks for that, that is pretty much what i saw in the viewfinder, I am still learning, and had a quick tweak in CS3. I like what you have done, and will practice on some other shots.

Once again thanks for the great feedback, a great learning process for me. Smile
bricurtis Plus
16 2.5k 51 England
3 Mar 2009 3:39PM
Thanks for taking the time to acknowledge the critique - always appreciated.
Mobieus 14 48 Wales
3 Mar 2009 4:40PM
Your welcome Brian, seems only polite when you all have taken time to give advice and to make and upload a mod Smile
susanbarton 13 11 1 United Kingdom
20 Apr 2009 12:39AM
Its a lovely picture the swan has posed beautifully, they are not easy to capture successfully because of the white and the sunlight I think it is a beautiful shot


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