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Thinking outside the box
Thinking outside the box
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Photograph Information Photographer's Comments
Challenge: Insects (Classic Editing)
Camera: Nikon Coolpix 5400
Location: Home
Date: Sep 3, 2003
Aperture: f/4.3
ISO: 50
Shutter: 1/125
Galleries: Interior, Macro
Date Uploaded: Sep 3, 2003

Every summer I get a mini-plague of these things: not outrgeous, just three or four a week, but it's every summer ...

So I thought I should immortalise one for you all. The box is the match-box I use to collect them and deposit them outside - so it's a significant part of the composition as well as an excuse for a nice title. Should make a change from lots of bees on flowers though.

I was trying to get a shot that showed something of the effort the little guy seemed to have to put in to haul himself over the cardboard, but in those he didn't really look like an insect. His physiognomy is clearer this way. DOF was a real issue - needed to use the sharp focus on him and softer on the box to isolte him a little, so he had to right at the back of the focal area - tricky with the Nikon.

Background is a sheet of plain 80gsm paper, clipped to a greeting card so that it would curl up and give a studio floor effect - I like the progression of the light on that surface, so didn't try to kill that effct with levels. Seen lots of comments about 'uneven lighting on backgrounds' recently: well let me say this is better than a plain white background. Lighting is natural indirect from the left, and a halogen desk-light from the right - that's what provides the tonal range on the white cardboard of the box: cold and warm light from different directions is an old theatre lighting trick.

He worked very hard, the little critter - so I carefully let him go somewhere safe. Five hours of shooting is enough for any model, I guess. He would keeep crawling out of the wrong side of the box though, so it's his own fault.

Post-processing. Levels, to bring some detail on the bug out against the box, and a little colour temperature correction - as the morning progressed the daylight grew more dominant, and I'd set the WB early.

Statistics
Place: 6 out of 137
Avg (all users): 6.9873
Avg (commenters): 8.0769
Avg (participants): 6.8750
Avg (non-participants): 7.1613
Views since voting: 3946
Votes: 158
Comments: 37
Favorites: 13 (view)


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AuthorThread
09/10/2004 12:27:41 PM
No print available?
  Photographer found comment helpful.
06/28/2004 05:59:19 AM
I like these little fellas. Cute shot.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
06/09/2004 08:27:00 PM
love it. and the first photo i have commented on here, i think everything has already been said.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/20/2004 01:36:34 PM
Very nice shot. :)
  Photographer found comment helpful.
10/02/2003 06:54:26 PM
Cool shot! GREAT Title. Pretty good placement, too! Congrats!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/16/2003 02:40:27 AM
Thanks as always for all votes and comments. A few 'answers' :-)

ChrisW - no. Tried a closer crop, and it crowded the image; and anyway, why would I want a dead-centre image?

It isn't a spoof on the forum threads - I hadn't read them.

And as ever, interesting to get such varied opinions from people.
09/15/2003 08:35:07 AM
cute!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
 Comments Made During the Challenge
09/14/2003 11:31:28 PM
Creative interpretation, good focus and good depth of field. Good soft lighting with such a light background, too. High marks for technical merit - 8
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/14/2003 11:01:38 PM
Maybe crop it a little more to less of the white around the box. Try 3/4 inch off the right, 1/2 inch off the top, and 3/8 to 1/2 off the bottom. Nice creative shot!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/14/2003 08:51:49 PM
I like this picture and the title but the border is something that you don't need for this picture. -7
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/14/2003 06:28:47 PM
One of my favorites! This is a great shot and also a well done spoof on all the forums about "outside the box". I like to think that my photos are outside the box too. They don't win me any prizes, but I think this one will win you one. 10
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/13/2003 07:55:14 PM
Excellent idea and composition. Almost perfect DOF too. The lighting seems a little soft on the left side of the picture, possibly some soft lighting from this side wouldve evened the lighting out. Still not enough to detract from the picture though. 10
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/12/2003 05:12:28 PM
Clever and nicely done
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/11/2003 09:44:26 PM
I have seen variations of this shot but still like it. One of my favorites of this challenge.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/11/2003 06:59:59 PM
I imagine hoardes of them crawling out of the matchbox. Beautiful photo, I espescially like the shadow of the box.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/11/2003 12:17:39 AM
I like your comp and colors, very nice shot
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/10/2003 06:25:23 PM
Great concept and good execution! Well done! Focus coulf have been a bit better, but it's not enough to majorly detract.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/10/2003 12:06:34 AM
This is a refreshing break from the "bug in the garden" shot. Taking the insect out of his normal context really works. Great technically too!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/09/2003 03:09:51 PM
Beautiful focus. Great depth of field. Composition is really good. The frame works great with the shot.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/09/2003 11:59:36 AM
very nice
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/09/2003 11:31:37 AM
Great use of depth of field, way to capture the critter 'escaping', good title too. Nice job.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/09/2003 11:31:24 AM
excellent!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/09/2003 10:16:17 AM
thhat's a nicely original response to the challenge
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/09/2003 09:22:35 AM
Cute idea
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/09/2003 12:36:44 AM
Strike while you can. Good picture!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/08/2003 11:58:15 PM
I like this ! How long did you have to wait for him to crawl out ? Good photography.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/08/2003 08:21:33 PM
Wonderful set up!!! I love everything about it. Jacko. 10 Super use of shallow DOF
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/08/2003 08:05:40 PM
This seems to be a popular topic in one of the forums. Nice DOF.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/08/2003 06:35:59 PM
Clever. It's nice to see something other than an insect and a plant.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/08/2003 05:49:40 PM
My favorite in this challenge. Great capture! 10
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/08/2003 05:00:00 PM
:-) Simple and effective. Good shot.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/08/2003 04:03:58 PM
Great DOF, it really sets the bug off. I like the box and capturing him escaping...it adds story what could have been just another picture of an insect.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/08/2003 02:40:57 PM
Great idea and weevil shot.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/08/2003 02:18:08 PM
Nicely setup, effective background and lighting. Not sure about the weighting of negative space in your crop. You 'posed' the beetle nicely. Good dof. 9
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/08/2003 01:31:16 PM
Fantastic humor. Love the creativity....Congrats really well done.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/08/2003 11:40:53 AM
LOL I like the title :-) Nice photo as well.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/08/2003 01:09:11 AM
What in the world IS that thing?? I love your creativity!! 9
  Photographer found comment helpful.


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