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Peacock Love
Peacock Love

Photograph Information Photographer's Comments
Challenge: Free Study XV (Advanced Editing IV)
Camera: Canon EOS-20D
Lens: Canon EF 28-135mm F/3.5-5.6 IS USM
Location: Charleston, SC
Date: Nov 26, 2006
Aperture: f/7.10
ISO: 400
Shutter: 1/50
Galleries: Emotive, Nature
Date Uploaded: Nov 22, 2006

This photo was taken as a study in \"magic hour\" lighting, about one hour prior to dusk. Taken at Magnolia Plantation just outside Charleston. I was very happy to get this capture, as I didn\'t have a tripod and the light was quite low. I dodged some whites and adjusted contrast, shadows. I softened the background with Gaussian and added green tint, as original tanish color blended too much with peacock\'s back.

Place: 418 out of 501
Avg (all users): 5.1154
Avg (commenters): 6.2500
Avg (participants): 5.0377
Avg (non-participants): 5.2800
Views since voting: 654
Views during voting: 214
Votes: 156
Comments: 9
Favorites: 0

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12/09/2006 03:06:25 PM
I'd never have known you tinted the background - it looks perfectly natural to me which means you did a great job not only applying a tint, but picking the right one. I'd never even have thought of that. To me, it's just a little soft - I'd normally suspect camera shake (that's my problem) but I see you're using an IS lens. May have been just a bit of movement by the birds themselves. But soft isn't always bad - often it's a matter of taste.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
12/09/2006 10:56:33 AM
Catherine, I think you did really well with the composition. The angles and colors are very nice. I agree with the score, though like Julianne, I'm having a little trouble figuring out exactly why. First, it could be sharper. It's a shot to be proud of, but to really pop, it needs sharpness. 1/50 was probably a little slow if they were moving, but I realize you were at dusk, so your options were limited, esp. as you were already at ISO 400. Try working with a wider aperture. I don't know how zoomed you were, but you might have been able to keep everything sharp even with a lower f-stop, which would've let you use a faster shutter.

Try this in processing: unsharp at 55, 1.4, 0. It seems to sharpen things up without too much haloing except under the male's neck. Since this is advanced editing, you can go in and erase that either by painting green or cloning a few pixels along that line.

I think you did a good thing making the background different from the tan, but maybe a reddish tint would've made the hen's top piece stand out more? Or make it darker.

One last suggestion: whens shooting, try different settings on multiple shots. Sometimes I'm surprised when I get home how much better an alternate setting works.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
12/08/2006 09:50:35 AM
These birds are lovely and the pose is touching. The light is good. I gave it a 6, and I am trying to understand why it is lacking in impact. I think it is the green background. The peahen's colors are so soft that I think the green overpowers her. Also her topknot is not standing out well against the green. Really nice shot though.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
12/08/2006 08:46:23 AM
Now that I go back and look at the details of the shot (should have done that first), I think that hand held at 1/50 may be what caused it to not be so vivid.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
12/08/2006 08:42:33 AM
I think the subject and the compositon is really nice. I just think the colors need to be a little sharper. Nice shot.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
 Comments Made During the Challenge
12/06/2006 07:34:39 PM
good composition and great subject capture. but the colors look flattened, the way I get if I use the shadow highlight tool a bit too much
  Photographer found comment helpful.
12/06/2006 02:00:05 PM
terrific composition. 7
  Photographer found comment helpful.
12/06/2006 12:41:20 PM
Peacock's fascinate me. I would like to see the peacock's a bit sharper. I like this photo a lot though.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
12/03/2006 01:42:36 PM
Really good composition and colors in this shot. My preference would lean towards sharpening this image more though, but that's only my preference. Good entry!
  Photographer found comment helpful.

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