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Old Nov 30, 2009, 9:51 PM   #1
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Default Northern Cardinals - a nice surprise

Rule #1: Low light, below reciprocal FL shutter speeds, mid-ISO and birding photography generally don't mix...

I didn't have an opportunity to do much of what I wanted last week, although I managed to sneak in a few shots at the end of the day. I would never recommend photographing birds when the sun is barely above the horizon - the light is very low, the shadows are becoming more prevalent. Regardless, here are the attempts I came back with - it's good that they are becoming a bit (but not much) used to me...

Northern Cardinal (male) #1:


Cropped to 2386 x 2032 for better composition/framing. Those are the actual wing feather details, untouched. Sorry about the foreground branch - no choice there unless I tried cloning it out or something similar.

Northern Cardinal (male) #2:


No cropping, no sharpening, nothing - straight conversion from RAW.

Northern Cardinal (female) #1:


No cropping or sharpening. Just a bit of a global exposure boost, nothing more.

Northern Cardinal (female) #1 - cropped for details:


Cropped version is still over 3100 pixels on the long side.

Lesson learned about Rule #1: Sometimes you can be surprised by trying even when the odds are against you. I hope you enjoy these images!

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Old Nov 30, 2009, 10:11 PM   #2
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Well done, terrific detail and very pretty.


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Old Nov 30, 2009, 10:26 PM   #3
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Wow! I'd love to know how you get shots like that under those conditions - these are incredible!
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Old Dec 1, 2009, 7:47 AM   #4
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Beautiful detail, good DOF, all in low light! just supper shots Marc.

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Old Dec 1, 2009, 9:58 PM   #5
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Very very nice!..You have captured perfectly colours that only nature can provide.
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Old Dec 2, 2009, 5:47 AM   #6
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Stunning as always - such amazing illustrations of the beauty of creation!

Last edited by mole; Dec 2, 2009 at 5:48 AM. Reason: (typo)
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Old Dec 2, 2009, 7:00 PM   #7
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Some nice ones Mark. They do like the shadows don't they.
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Old Dec 2, 2009, 7:07 PM   #8
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Well, just goes to show what you can get with the right gear in the right hands!
Outstanding job, Marc.

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