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Portrait of a Pintail
Portrait of a Pintail

Photograph Information Photographer's Comments
Challenge: Free Study 2008-06 (Advanced Editing VII)
Collection: Ducks and Geese
Camera: Nikon D200
Lens: Sigma 100-300mm F/4.0 EX IF HSM for Nikon
Location: Washington, DC
Date: Jun 12, 2008
Aperture: f/5.6
ISO: 640
Shutter: 1/640
Galleries: Nature, Birds
Date Uploaded: Jun 13, 2008

I found this gorgeous Bahama Pintail at the outdoor aviary of the National Zoo in DC. He was sitting under a bush on a sunny day, which made for stunning lighting. I moved around till I found a good angle and he cooperatively let me get fairly close, watching me the enire time, which resulted in an expression that really grabs me and great detail. Classic portrait that really does him justice. I know some folks hate duck pictures but I LOVE this shot :-)

PP - converted from RAW, cropped, levels, 2nd layer to reduce noise (Gaussian blur, lightened, merged in multiply mode), increased contrast, burnt remaining bits of color in the background, dodged/burnt eye a little, colored feathers reflecting something red to tan to match the rest of him, 3rd layer (painted black on his spots, merged in soft light mode), cloned some texture onto the blown cheek, added border, resized, sharpened with noise reduction.

Place: 55 out of 473
Avg (all users): 6.4631
Avg (commenters): 7.5000
Avg (participants): 6.4107
Avg (non-participants): 6.6216
Views since voting: 1443
Views during voting: 240
Votes: 149
Comments: 17
Favorites: 2 (view)

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05/04/2009 12:40:33 PM
I have a wood carving of a Pintail Drake which I purchased 25 yrs ago and gave to my mother as a gift. This is a lovely capture and the detail and lighting is extraordinary! Excellent job!!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/07/2009 11:31:15 AM
55th is a disgrace, this is easily top 10

Message edited by author 2009-01-07 11:31:28.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
12/06/2008 01:06:37 AM
I really love this shot. The bird seems to have connected with you.
The angle and the lighting are unusual and beautiful.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/09/2008 02:09:49 AM
' . substr('//images.dpchallenge.com/images_portfolio/80000-84999/82985/120/677021.jpg', strrpos('//images.dpchallenge.com/images_portfolio/80000-84999/82985/120/677021.jpg', '/') + 1) . 'PostLuminous Award Nominee!
so well done!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/08/2008 12:59:53 AM
Killer composition! Unusual and beautiful.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
 Comments Made During the Challenge
07/07/2008 10:54:41 PM
Love how the duck is vamping it for you. Beautiful lighting.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/06/2008 02:08:42 AM
Good detail and great lighting. 9
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/06/2008 12:28:11 AM
okay, it would seem snarky to say this is the best Duck Portrait I have ever seen--since it is the ONLY duck portrait I have ever seen. So let me follow with: WOW--this is very out-of-the box: how many would have thought to do a Duck Portrait, and then if they did, how many would have done such a perfect and beautiful one? I am guessing the answer, amazingly enough is One, and then One again. And this is also, portraiture aside, this is the best image of a duck I have ever seen. 10
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/05/2008 01:33:38 PM
love that eye, and the detail is fantastic
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/01/2008 09:09:01 PM
beautiful, nice composition
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/01/2008 07:25:43 PM
very nice - wish it was a little sharper
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/01/2008 05:49:37 PM
Fantastic composition and the colours are perfect, the glow on the feathers completes your perfect 10.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/01/2008 02:39:01 PM
I love birds & animals pictures and this is a very nice one, well done.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/01/2008 10:11:02 AM
great lighting, looks almost like a painting 7
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/01/2008 09:27:53 AM
It's almost like he posed for a formal portrait. Nice.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/01/2008 08:52:29 AM
Beautiful softness and detail...too much grain over the edge of the beak.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/01/2008 05:42:19 AM
Good composition, nice details , 7
  Photographer found comment helpful.

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