Monday, February 20, 2017

20 San Diego Bird Photographs

For the first time in some time, I ventured forth on a bird-photography-specific adventure. My destination was San Diego, where I was lucky to get some tips & tricks from the legendary San Diego birder/photographer Jim Pawlicki. (Thanks Jim!)

Long story short, is that I somehow managed to take 19,000 photos... Since I don't really have a functioning website these days, I came up with roughly twenty photos (each showing a different species) that also happened to be some of my favourite images from the trip. Needless to say, there are more, but i'm not really sure if/when/where they'll surface in the future.

Hope you like them!

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Nature Photography 104 - Feb 16, 2017

Back in the day (way back in the day) I did several posts looking in depth at some of my bolder editing practices & recently edited a photo that convinced me to do another post.... Inevitably I dislike doing a lot of editing, preferring to get it right the first time, but rarely I end up with a photo that I decide to "do some work" to see if I can save it... Here's the final product:

And here's what I started with:

(Full frame)

With of course, guest appearances by the photos that I took immediately before and after this one:

So, as you have guessed - I used the body parts of the other two photos that weren't clipped, and stuck them on with the magic of photoshop... With a cropped photo (or even when using a teleconverter) - this is easy peasy... Unfortunately I was shooting with just the 600mm, so you end up with the mostly invisible but forever present "vignetting" ... Because I'm shooting through a round piece of "magnification glass", the corners/edges bend the light slightly differently and you end up with a brighter centre / darker edges... On a clean background (like this) is easily detected... 

To see it, or to find pesky dust spots on a clean background, I temporarily adjust the "levels" much darker... Check out this screen capture: 

So - while this is all fine and dandy... It helps illustrate my next point - that even though I added "canvas" to the sides of the *final* copy (first image I posted), it is hardly a "perfect" job due to the gradient present in the originals... I did my best to tidy it up a bit, but overall I just don't care enough to try and make it better! (maybe you or someone else could do a better job - here are the underlying secrets of the final copy):

Pretty difficult to see until someone points it out... I shutter to think what would happen if this was printed for a book/mag... Hopefully it'd stay invisible but sometimes digital to print just doesn't work out the way you had planned!!

Speaking of which, I've also conducted all of this editing on my macbook, which seems to do a TERRIBLE job of properly displaying photos, so there's a chance i'll get onto a *better* computer in the next few days and be terrified at this version...

So there we go... A blog post... Done.