DPChallenge: A Digital Photography Contest You are not logged in. (log in or register
 
Challenge Entries
Portfolio Images
Staredown: Canada Lynx @ 640mm
Staredown: Canada Lynx @ 640mm
scalvert


Photograph Information Photographer's Comments
Challenge: Wildlife III (Advanced Editing V)
Collection: Favorites - Ribbons
Camera: Canon EOS-20D
Lens: Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS
Location: Beardsley Zoo, Bridgeport, CT
Date: Jan 20, 2007
Aperture: f/5.6
ISO: 400
Shutter: 1/200
Galleries: Animals
Date Uploaded: Jan 21, 2007

Yes, it's a zoo shot. So sue me. I really enjoy wildlife photography, but the only animals I could find in the coldest week of the year were some rather ordinary birds, and even they were wearing heating bills. ;-)

I still had to get tricky though...

For one thing, I've never seen the lynx active at this zoo and the enclosure is downright hostile to photography. This is an old zoo and the lynx area, while a nice habitat inside, has heavy iron bars all around it. To blur away the foreground bars, you need a long lens and wide aperture, and you have to be close to the bars with some distance between them and the animal on the other side. I had to lean way over the rail in an effort to get as close as possible to the bars. Normally, the animals are used to people and won't make eye contact, but this one was probably fascinated at the frostbitten lunatic stretched out over the rail making weird small mammal noises.

To further complicate matters, I had to zoom all the way in to maximize blur (anything less made the bars more obvious). At the equivalent of 640mm, I was actually too close, and I had to frame whatever I could within the camera. Thus, the shot was composed exactly as you see it- no cropping or rotating. I would have loved to have the ear tufts, but I chose to hold the chin instead and didn't get a second chance.

Now for the trick: no matter what I did, I still couldn't eliminate the bars completely, so I positioned myself where a bar would fall right between his eyes. What looks like a darker area of fur running from the top of his head down to the chin is actually a blurry bar (there's another one visible in the background). Pretty sneaky, no?

Processing: Convert from RAW, Levels, Curves, Channel Mixer for saturation, desaturate the blue, a little Photo Filter for warmer tones, assorted light dodge & burn (mostly the eyes and forehead), Noise Ninja on the background, sharpen and saturate the eyes, and two rounds of USM.

Statistics
Place: 10 out of 218
Avg (all users): 7.0685
Avg (commenters): 8.3333
Avg (participants): 6.7767
Avg (non-participants): 7.2759
Views since voting: 4215
Views during voting: 519
Votes: 248
Comments: 64
Favorites: 7 (view)


Please log in or register to add your comments!

AuthorThread
01/30/2007 11:30:55 PM
Great finish, Shannon. I'm tellin' ya, that guy has some INCREDIBLE eyes!!!!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/30/2007 10:56:40 PM
Originally posted by rob_banks:

...if the guy that took the picture of the STUFFED Canadian Lynx had won, he still wins.


I'm pretty sure that's been done (it was a museum display), but I couldn't find it in a brief search.
01/30/2007 10:11:32 PM
Man, I got to get myself a zoo. Many congratulations on such a high score with no ribbon, and ignore the sore losers.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/30/2007 06:42:31 PM
Congrats on Top Ten Shannon. Hey did you hear about all the hubub about zoo vs. natural environment? :P
If I had voted, I think I would have voted you down for the bar on the right, not for being in the zoo, but because it is a little distracting. Congrats again.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/30/2007 12:18:47 AM
Originally posted by scalvert:

Originally posted by rob_banks:

"Ha. Look at me! I'm on the Site Council, I can make up rules as I go along! Nanananana!!!"


The challenge description is not a rule. Your own "At the Beach" entry was all water, when the challenge description clearly defined beach as the strip of land bordering the water. Did you break the rules? No.


You're right. My FIRST ENTRY did not include the actual beach in the photo and I learned from my mistake. The rules said "Go to the beach and photograph what you find..." Because I could see the wakeboarder from the beach, I felt it fit the Challenge description, took my lumps and tried to learn from my experience. Ditto, the B & W Portrait Challenge. I took a picture of a horse (portrait seems to mean "person" to a lot of people) and I'm sure many people downgraded it as a result. That's why it scored a bit lower despite having one more favorite.

You, on the other hand, are on the Site Council, have been her a LONG time and obviously "get it" because you've won quite a few awards.

I guess it's going to be awhile before I "get it" if I decide to keep competing. Just because "see" is a synonym for "find," it doesn't mean you can replace it in the description. Portrait means person. Thinking out of the box is bad. Check all the old challenges if it's a sequel.

Oh yeah. The Description is only a Description, it's not a rule, except when the VOTERS think it's a rule, THEN it's a rule!

And, by your reasoning, if the guy that took the picture of the STUFFED Canadian Lynx had won, he still wins. Be sure and visit the taxidermist for Wildlife IV.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/29/2007 11:50:40 PM
Originally posted by rob_banks:

"Ha. Look at me! I'm on the Site Council, I can make up rules as I go along! Nanananana!!!"


The challenge description is not a rule. Your own "At the Beach" entry was all water, when the challenge description clearly defined beach as the strip of land bordering the water. Did you break the rules? No.
01/29/2007 10:50:47 PM
Originally posted by scalvert:

Zoo shots were within the rules and fared well in Wildlife I and Wildlife II without complaint. Considering the time and effort I spent in sub-zero wind chills to get this, I would hardly call it poor sportsmanship to poke fun at myself.


"...living in a natural environment." That's a direct copy from the description. A zoo is NOT a natural environment, no matter how you want to rationalize and twist it.

That's not poking fun at yourself, it's a slap in everyone else's face. "Ha. Look at me! I'm on the Site Council, I can make up rules as I go along! Nanananana!!!"

  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/29/2007 10:23:45 PM
Zoo shots were within the rules and fared well in Wildlife I and Wildlife II without complaint. Considering the time and effort I spent in sub-zero wind chills to get this, I would hardly call it poor sportsmanship to poke fun at myself.

Message edited by author 2007-01-29 22:24:24.
01/29/2007 10:08:59 PM
"Yes, it's a zoo shot. So sue me."

I think it's a real shame that a Site Council member would engage in such a blatantly poor display of sportsmanship.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/29/2007 01:11:00 PM
beutifull shot, good colors,grait work
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/29/2007 01:09:01 PM
I didnt get to vote on this one, but this is absolutely stunning. And the fact that you cant tell that you did to much edting (the bars) is great. I would love to see the original to get the full affect of your editing process!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/29/2007 09:04:36 AM
For me this was a ribbon because of the less pp look. I didn't know it was a zoo shot though. The look of the lynx is just amazing.

I thought yellow ribbon and this one would be in the top three.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/29/2007 07:34:04 AM
Your talent in making this shot happen like this is AMAZING!

Congratulations on a top 10 reward for your efforts on this gorgeous photo!

  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/29/2007 06:37:50 AM
Congrats on your top 10 Shannon...great shot, love the eye contact
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/29/2007 12:50:00 AM
I thought this was you Scalvert. You always enter nice cat photos.

You must be a cat lover...cause you catch some beautiful captures of the beautiful creatures.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/29/2007 12:35:49 AM
Nice effort to shoot through the bars but when I saw this I immediately thought that shadow in the middle was due to a bar and because of that deducted 2 points. I'm glad I was right as I would have hated if this wasn't the case but you probably still hate it anyway.

Regardless it's a great shot with better technicals than mine but lucky for me I didn't vote on mine. :P
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/29/2007 12:20:04 AM
Great zoo shot!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/29/2007 12:18:11 AM
You are an amazing photographer! So nice of you to document your steps so that we can all learn.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
 Comments Made During the Challenge
01/28/2007 11:44:48 PM
looks incredible mean& cute at the same time. great shot!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/28/2007 11:23:42 PM
What a wonderful shot! Too bad the framing is a bit too tight IMO.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/28/2007 09:55:21 PM
What a great face! Love how the color of his eyes is mirrored in the background.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/28/2007 07:38:51 PM
great picture
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/28/2007 06:43:49 PM
Very nice colors and detail. <<9>>
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/28/2007 06:16:37 PM
Beautiful closeup, love his expression. I admit I wish I could see the tufts on his ears, because they are so distinctive to the lynx. What a telephoto you have! 8.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/28/2007 01:39:21 PM
Love this! Focus is right on. Great work.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/28/2007 10:42:40 AM
Too close a crop on head...9
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/28/2007 10:21:09 AM
Beautifully done.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/27/2007 10:05:11 PM
Well done. I like the off center crop.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/27/2007 09:29:40 PM
fantastic shot.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/27/2007 07:41:23 PM
Excellent shot! Lovely light and superb clarity.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/27/2007 06:52:55 PM
wow! this is great!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/27/2007 04:52:58 PM
Returning for comment.
Great detail and lighting. Fantastic at 640. A wonderful capture.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/27/2007 04:08:01 PM
Gorgeous, the light on his face, the expression in his eyes. The focus and clarity of the shot is brill, you can see every tiny hair!!!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/27/2007 03:05:26 AM
nice light and quite sharp at 640mm...I like the composition but wonder what it would have looked like as a sq crop without the negative space on the right
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/26/2007 09:29:11 PM
This is just plain awesomeness!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The best in the challenge so far. Nice going!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/26/2007 02:43:13 PM
love this shot..the composition and light are fantastic.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/25/2007 07:42:19 PM
Great expression. I really like the background as well, nice subdued colour and soft shapes.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/25/2007 01:08:14 PM
wow what a great shot,I cant stop looking at it.you positioned it well in the frame,the background gives it so much depth. 10
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/25/2007 01:38:38 AM
nice light, great detail.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/24/2007 04:45:18 PM
Beautiful. Great focus and lighting. Very crisp.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/24/2007 04:28:02 PM
That's some detail you managed to achieved.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/24/2007 11:18:56 AM
Lovely detail and DOF.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/24/2007 07:58:10 AM
very impressive...
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/24/2007 06:58:30 AM
Never saw this kitty so much up close, beautiful light coming in from the right..
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/23/2007 10:10:38 PM
Absolutely love it!! Beautiful!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/23/2007 09:48:31 PM
The eyes have it. Great capture. The lighting is nice and focus is very good. Nice bokeh too.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/23/2007 01:25:33 PM
Great shot! Looks like he's not too impressed to be having his picture taken. Nice colors in the fur/good lighting! :)
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/23/2007 01:08:59 PM
Beautiful detail and texture!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/22/2007 08:44:07 PM
He looks like he is popping off my screen! Great sharpness.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/22/2007 04:50:37 PM
What a beautiful animal. Very nice composition too. 10
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/22/2007 02:53:46 PM
Lovely.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/22/2007 01:10:52 PM
Only a slight nit-pick to make on an otherwise wonderful photo: I wish it were not cropped so tightly on the left side. It would be nice to maintain the soft lines of the fur on the side of his face.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/22/2007 12:41:35 PM
Beautiful cat. Only nitpick is the tops of the ears being cut off.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/22/2007 11:19:52 AM
who won? 9
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/22/2007 09:03:10 AM
10- cat has my tongue other than the score
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/22/2007 08:51:14 AM
Beautiful shot!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/22/2007 07:21:05 AM
I need the ears to make a perfect lynx. Cut to close.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/22/2007 06:53:58 AM
Great capture. Beautiful detail and the colors are lovely. It must be a genetic trait of house cats and wild cats alike to look pissed off when they are having their picture taken. Bumping up to 8
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/22/2007 06:47:38 AM
Thats what I call an "oh shit" moment! 10
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/22/2007 05:18:05 AM
wow .. an amazing photograph .... excellent detail .. lots of entries in this challenge are obviously not in their natural environment .... but at 640mm this could be?? ..... =10
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/22/2007 03:31:20 AM
wow look at that face! 8
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/22/2007 02:12:57 AM
I love this photograph. I hope it wins... fantastic!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/22/2007 01:41:25 AM
beautiful shot, but voting it a bit lower due to not trusting it's in its "natural environment".
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/22/2007 12:44:26 AM
WOW - it's like he's about to smile at you. Intense eyes. Great bokeh!! wish his ears weren't cropped.
  Photographer found comment helpful.


Home - Challenges - Community - League - Photos - Cameras - Lenses - Learn - Prints! - Help - Terms of Use - Privacy - Top ^
DPChallenge, and website content and design, Copyright © 2001-2019 Challenging Technologies, LLC.
All digital photo copyrights belong to the photographers and may not be used without permission.
Proudly hosted by Sargasso Networks. Current Server Time: 06/16/2019 04:33:12 PM EDT.