Back Modifications (1)
Views: 40 (23 Unique)  Award Shortlist   

Robins roost

By tamasalucy  
This photo was taken whilst on meal break at work. i would have liked the image to be sharper has anyone got any ideas on knowledge of how to achieve a sharper image.

Tags: General Close-up and macro Wildlife and nature

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This photo is here for critique. Please only comment constructively and with suggestions on how to improve it.


Trev_B 11 151 68 England
23 Apr 2013 7:54AM
Hi Simon, I assume that you are hand holding the camera.

First the way that you hold the camera will help, hold it firmly whilst tucking your arms into the side of your body and firmly against your face. With a long lens I often hold the focus ring with my left hand.

Apply the reciprocal rule and set the shutter speed in excess of your focal length, taking the crop factor in the calculation. In this case 1/470 or greater.

Set the auto focus to centre weighted and focus on the eye.

Make the bird as large as possible in the view finder so as not to over crop the image in post production.

Don't use a high ISO that will increase the chance of noise, 600 would have been more than enough.

Get it right in the camera as trying to fix it later will always be a compromise.

Hope this helps


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tamasalucy 8 242 United Kingdom
23 Apr 2013 10:30AM
Hi cats_123 : How did you achieve the modification GrinGrinGrinGrinGrin
NEWMANP 10 1.6k 574 United Kingdom
23 Apr 2013 10:59PM

from your metadata, it looks as if you are using a zoom wide open and full stretch which will give you minimal depth of field, a iso setting that subject to your particular camera may be a quality compromise and it looks as if this has been heavily cropped which is also a shortcut to loss of quality.

there is no real need for the bird to be this large in frame and the closer you get the less depth of field you will achieve. better to back off slightly, and attempt to isolate the bird against a bg that will easily throw into out of focus to lose detail and distractions.

i do not like taking my d300s Nikon past 500 iso for birds and like to keep any zoom just short of its extremes and at least 1 to 2 stops down from wide open as most lens have a sweet area and its pretty much always not wide open at full reach.

your speed was ok at 400 and if supported you may have got away with a robin at slower but most small birds are pretty twitchy and its hard to freeze them. usually some quality light helps give some contrast in the feather detail and brings the picture more to life.

its no good pretending its easy to get sharp birds particularly all over but in general the beak and eye must be pin sharp. its no secret that serious birders generally invest in prime lenses as they perform much better and often have wider apertures than zooms that areactually usable.

also dont forget that direct from camera your picture may need some levels adjustment and sharpening to achieve a satisfactory upload.

best regards

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