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Challenge: Birds III (Advanced Editing VII)
Camera: Canon EOS-20D
Lens: Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS
Location: Bird of prey sanctuary, England
Date: Jun 19, 2012
Aperture: 11.0
ISO: 100
Shutter: 1/250
Galleries: Studio, Birds
Date Uploaded: Jun 19, 2012

A wildlife shot with artificial light. This is a Martial Eagle. If you're working with captive birds, why settle for natural lighting anyway? This was originally meant to be shot with three good wireless strobes, but one failed (aka broke into pieces) at the start of the shoot. Ouch, my wallet. So i decided to take a low-key shot instead. Here the flash is zoomed in to 70mm, about 6ft from the bird on the left. This is actually in broad daylight but against a dark background. Glass stopped down to f/11 at ISO100 and flash sync shutter speed means that you don't see any natural light at all though, and the angle of incidence of the light makes the eye glow nicely without any need for postprocessing.

No crop, slight tweak in contrast and tone curve, cloning some stray feather bits on the beak and around the place, tiny subtle bit of dodging and burning to bring out a little more texture on the feathers above and below the eye and to dial down the feathers below the beak.

[Jun. 26th, 2012 11:09:34 PM]


Place: 4 out of 110
Avg (all users): 7.3707
Avg (commenters): 8.1667
Avg (participants): 7.1702
Avg (non-participants): 7.5072
Views since voting: 2162
Views during voting: 289
Votes: 116
Comments: 20
Favorites: 3 (view)

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06/30/2012 06:03:54 PM
Beautiful tones! Congrats on the the HM!

(Was without a computer for a week, so my congrats are a bit belated. :)

(though I think I like outtake just a tad better:
  Photographer found comment helpful.
06/29/2012 08:17:39 PM
I knew this one would do well, such a touching image with amazing detail and lighting. Congratulations on your top 10.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
06/29/2012 03:13:49 PM
Very crisp and well framed. Congratulations on the HM.

Message edited by author 2012-06-29 15:14:20.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
06/29/2012 01:16:46 AM
"A wildlife shot with artificial light."
Fabulous work and spot-light as mentioned in my original comment. I voted an 8.
However I contest this is not a wildlife shot. It is a nature image shot under controlled in captivity conditions and I feel very strongly about the distinct difference between the two. I have no problem with zoo or sanctuary images and encourage my photo students to visit them, support them, and practice technique there for the day that that elusive subject appears before them in the real wild. I just make sure they make that distinction if they publish their captivity photos.
Again, a marvellous image and congrats on your HM!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
06/29/2012 12:38:09 AM
06/29/2012 12:04:39 AM
Lovely and clean!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
 Comments Made During the Challenge
06/28/2012 11:38:27 PM
nice closeup! Great eyes.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
06/28/2012 08:56:34 AM
OMG this is beautiful work!!!!!
06/27/2012 11:05:43 PM
Beautiful lighting.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
06/27/2012 08:42:53 AM
The dramatic light really shows off the details well.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
06/24/2012 12:06:25 PM
This is terrific!!!!
06/23/2012 02:15:57 PM
Wonderful detail, light and dark, and strong composition. Great dramatic portrait of a strong bird.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
06/22/2012 06:51:09 PM
Nothing wrong with photographing birds in captivity. But, the viewer should expect lots of detail on a closeup portrait. I'm not too excited about the all black bg, but it is dramatic. The strength of this image is the eye color and detail. Very nicely done.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
06/22/2012 04:51:34 PM
Spectacular, dramatic light. Looks somewhat like museum lighting, but a striking image regardless.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
06/22/2012 12:21:06 PM
Another cracker in my view.8.
06/22/2012 12:02:10 PM
06/22/2012 03:10:59 AM
Awesome lighting and spot on the eye. Great BG and complimentary tones. Most unusual portrait style.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
06/22/2012 12:50:53 AM
Good title, good lighting, good composition. I think the border detracts from your otherwise very strong shot.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
06/22/2012 12:37:38 AM
Wow. Wonderful!

(commenting only)
06/22/2012 12:28:39 AM
My favorite!! 10

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