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Old Sep 2, 2004, 12:31 AM   #1
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Some times I go out to shoot, other times I just go out to birdwatch. This came from a birdwatching morning where I got up with the sun and went to a local place I enjoy. I saw mostly flycatchers & others of that family, but most were far away. This lovely female goldfinch came closer and I got some decent shots of them.

When I got there it was so early the sun hadn't gotten over the trees. This drove me nuts as I was getting 1/80th or so which just isn't enough to stop most birds. But this shot came in my second hour then the sun had finally come out for me. Still, 1/250th for that focal length isn't great, and I'd have rather used a larger aperture for more DOF. But you gotta take what you can get. I wish it were sharper, but I'm not unhappy with the results. I should have broken out my flash, but I didn't feel like it. I wanted the "natural" look.

Camera: 10D 600mm +1.4TC f5.6 1/250 ISO 200
PhotoShop: RAW convert, neatimage, contrast, levels, crop, reduce, sharpen multiple ways.

Eric
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Old Sep 2, 2004, 12:56 AM   #2
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Eric, you may call this photo a "little soft" but it looks pretty sharp to me - just beautiful detail in that plumage:!:

How much of a crop was this? I'd also be interested if you have a description somewhere that you can point me to of the typical workflow you use in processing an image once it's downloaded from the camera...


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Old Sep 2, 2004, 1:03 AM   #3
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eric s escribió:
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Camera: 10D 600mm +1.4TC f5.6 1/250 ISO 200
600mm +1.4tc = 840mm

You can shot a worm from a mile away!!!!

Great lens! Sharp very sharp!

Of corse... great photo skills too! :?
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Old Sep 2, 2004, 9:27 AM   #4
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sure, he could shoot the worm from a mile away, but try finding the worm from a mile away....lol

beautiful shot eric...

did you try unsharp mask? i've seen that work wonders when you get used to wat each slider controls...

see here, it's weird...it does seem a little soft, (if you want me to be picky, cuz i'm not gonna get a shot like this in a million years) but the details are there...so i think it just needs some USM

great composition btw..

Vito
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Old Sep 2, 2004, 9:55 AM   #5
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Question: What do you think of the larger size. I've noticed that Eric CAN posts larger size pictures than I do. I was going smaller for the benefit of others (and the detriment of some of the pictures.) Do people mind 1000 pixel on the largest size & 200k or so? I was doing 800 pixel and 125k.

geoffs
Actually, this is a fairly large crop. I was not that close to the birds (there was 1 male and 4 females... groups seem to scare more than singles so I didn't approach.) I was probably... 30 feet away, and this is a small bird. I think its about 30% of the frame or so? Maybe a bit more. Actually, I have PS open. Here is a reduced RAW conversion with nothing but white balance change. You'll notice it's very soft (in my opinion.)
http://www.marx7.org/~esmith/galleri...inch3_orig.jpg

This is the result of the shutter speed and I think something's wrong with the AF in my camera. but I'm going to wait until winter to send it off. It hunts more than I want and it miss focuses some times (stops doing AF without actually locking), but I've just been dealing with that.

Jedi
Yes, that with 840mm, which makes it really hard to get a crisp shot. It doesn't take much motion to blow it. I'm with Vito, finding that worm would be difficult. I'm lucky in that I have a knack for finding what I want with the camera. It has so much power you can think you're pointed at it but you're not....

Vito
Thanks, I like the composition as well.

Oh, I used USM. 4 applications of a smaller amount and some lab sharpening (which uses USM.) I also tried to let neat image sharpen it, but the halo was a bit too much so I backed it out.

I can't exactly place what seems odd in the picture to me. Maybe Eric CAN can comment... he has a good critical eye too (and great PS skills.) I can see some great detail in the feathers (some of the cross-hatch overlapping feathers are great) but then the head & eye look a little OOF.

Ah! You know what it is? The head is a little out of the DOF. I bet that is it. That is what is throwing me because I look at the body and it looks amazing, but my attention is drawn to the eye (as always) and it looks off.

Eric
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Old Sep 2, 2004, 10:08 AM   #6
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eric s wrote:
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Question: What do you think of the larger size. I've noticed that Eric CAN posts larger size pictures than I do. I was going smaller for the benefit of others (and the detriment of some of the pictures.) Do people mind 1000 pixel on the largest size & 200k or so? I was doing 800 pixel and 125k.
There's two aspects to larger size, Eric. Larger in dimension is sometimes a problem because it will cause a lot of people to have to scroll the window to see all of the image. Larger in file size is not as much of a problem except for people like Norm that only have dial-up internet access (question: where is Norm? ...haven't seen him around here since that thread that caused the blowup a week ago). With file size I have allowed myself to post pictures in the 200kb range which allows for higher jpeg quality when saving the image from your photo editor.

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geoffs Actually, this is a fairly large crop. I was not that close to the birds (there was 1 male and 4 females... groups seem to scare more than singles so I didn't approach.) I was probably... 30 feet away, and this is a small bird. I think its about 30% of the frame or so? Maybe a bit more. Actually, I have PS open. Here is a reduced RAW conversion with nothing but white balance change. You'll notice it's very soft (in my opinion.)
Yes, I'll agree that this unprocessed image does seem soft. Actually, as you mentioned later in your message, it really does seem to be a DOF issue as you can really see the effect of DOF based on looking at the branches the bird is perched on.

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This is the result of the shutter speed and I think something's wrong with the AF in my camera. but I'm going to wait until winter to send it off. It hunts more than I want and it miss focuses some times (stops doing AF without actually locking), but I've just been dealing with that.
Maybe you should put your 10D up for sale on ebay and get a 20D?
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Old Sep 2, 2004, 10:19 AM   #7
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i'll take your 10D off your hands so you can get the 20D

lol..

Vito


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Old Sep 2, 2004, 10:24 AM   #8
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Yes, the head looks a bit soft to me also. Maybe the bird moved the head a bit while you were taking the shot. I hear people say about selective sharpening but I have no clue how to do it.

What I seen is that doing sharpening in CaptureOne, I get better output than using USM of PS elements.

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Old Sep 2, 2004, 11:00 AM   #9
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Selective sharpening is very easy to do, and I could try it here (I didn't originally, it was a bit late and I wasn't exactly fully awake when I worked it.) What I should do is try a deconvolution tool I have and see if that helps. This is exactly what it's designed for.

I think the larger picture size that Eric CAN uses can produce more impressive results (show more detail) so I started to wonder about not reducing the picture as much (this wasn't a great example 'cause it was a vertical shot which causes more scrolling.) Maybe I'll only do it on the more horizontal shots.

Actually, I was thinking of getting a 1DMkII. I'm planning on replacing my car in the next several months, so the idea of a new camera has become difficult. I could afford it if I wanted to (I live rather frugaly) but I dislike spending that much money too close together. Influence of my "lived on a farm during the depression" Dad, I guess.

I don't know what I'm going to do yet. The value of the camera is dropping quickly right now, and the cost of the repair (out of warrenty) could be more than I'm willing to spend on it.

Eric
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Old Sep 2, 2004, 11:11 AM   #10
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eric s wrote:
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I think the larger picture size that Eric CAN uses can produce more impressive results (show more detail) so I started to wonder about not reducing the picture as much (this wasn't a great example 'cause it was a vertical shot which causes more scrolling.) Maybe I'll only do it on the more horizontal shots.
Actually, Eric, it's the horizontal scrolling which is more bothersome, at least for me. I can accommodate the vertical scrolling.

What I often do is to post an image whose size can easily be taken in on a typical person's screen resolution (probably 1024x768 for most people, 1152x864 for me). This usually means something like 640x480 or 800x600 max image size, assuming that people don't use their browser so that it is maximized on the screen (well, I don't maximize my browser but others might). Then, I link that smaller image to a larger image so that if viewers are really interested they can just click and view the larger size image.
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