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Old Feb 26, 2007, 2:15 PM   #1
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I'm new to all this photography malarkey, but I can't get enough of it at the moment. My main focus is onbirds, and due to a run of bad weather here I haven't really had a chance to get far beyond the back garden. I've taken a few shots but to be honest, i've beena bit frustrated at the quality. I'm well aware the photo's aren't exposed correctly, or even anywhere near the quality of some of the shots on the wildlife forum, but i'm sure it'll take time to get to know my camera and even just to learn the basics of photography. My camera is a Fuji S6500fd (hopefullya suitable learners camera), and I have Photoshop CS 8 installed with a couple of plugins (Noiseware Pro and Nik Sharpener) but after sitting here fiddling for hours I just don't know where to start to get the best out of my (poor) images.

I have uploaded 3 photos (2 TIFF files converted from RAW, and 1 JPEG) straight from the camera, and I would be chuffed to bits if someone could have a quick look and suggest what I should be doing to improve them, or even have a go at improving them themselves and posting back the results. They are quite a dull variety of species i'm afraid, a starling, and a maleand female blackbird, but they're all I could find in the short time I've been able to get out there!

Thanks in advance...I hope it doesn't come across like I'm taking liberties here!

Blackbird Male TIFF
Blackbird Female TIFF
Starling JPEG


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Old Feb 26, 2007, 3:52 PM   #2
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The first one is tough. IMO you need to pull the bird out of the background some. That washes out the leaves and maybe even the bird. You could select the bird and treat the background separately. I was too lazy to do that. I used selective color and curves to change the contrast and sharpened it a little. The starling seems to need pretty much the same approach.
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Old Feb 26, 2007, 3:53 PM   #3
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The second one is the opposite of the others in that it needs darkening. Auto Levels did most of it. I like Auto Levels when it works because it is pretty sophisticated in working with the different channels separately. Sometimes it really messes up and sometimes it does nothing. But I usually give it a try and just drop back in the history if I don't like the result. It is sharpened some.
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