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Old Feb 26, 2010, 7:48 AM   #11
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Thanks for taking the time to respond. I can use all the help I can get and I will be taking a few courses.
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Old Feb 26, 2010, 9:27 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Jim Tidd View Post
Thanks for taking the time to respond. I can use all the help I can get and I will be taking a few courses.
Since I make money with shooting wild birds, let me toss in my two cents.

This is a nice shot, which was "damaged" by all the wood. Life sucks...

Trying to eliminate the wood is not going to work with this shot. Live with the wood, use the wood, and do the best you can. But since the wood IS, don't try to eliminate it.

I will be happy to post some examples of "Living with the Wood"

Ultimately, wildlife photographers underpay their models, and as a result they refuse to pose appropriately. They just don't cooperate...

Yet the first goal of shooting wildlife is to "Get the Shot!"

There's a lot of wood in wildlife photography...

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Old Feb 26, 2010, 11:15 AM   #13
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Tikamidnight thanks for your comments. If you can post or email me some examples that would be fantastic. I have other photos of the same bird but I used this one simply because I could see his eye so well. I have attached one of a critter I really like just because his colour blends so well into the tree.
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Old Feb 26, 2010, 4:41 PM   #14
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I know I'm going against the popular opinion here but I like to see a lot of space around wildlife so I can see it in context. If you crop it too close it's like imprisoning a wild bird in a cage. :/ There is a difference between a photo of 'a bird' and 'a bird in its natural habitat'. The 'dead space' gives me a feeling of space - a bird outside in the wild - so from my point of view it's not dead at all but an essential part of communicating something more meaningful than the purely aesthetic qualities of the bird.
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Old Feb 26, 2010, 5:22 PM   #15
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That's kind of what I thought and I also left the space on the side that he might fly away towards. I am very new to this so I have a lot to learn but I really like the detail of the wood around the bird. My last camera was $68 from Wal-Mart and couldn't show all the detail I can get now. What really does impress me though is the number of people who are willing to help me learn. It shows me everyone has a little bit different taste and opinion and so far everyone has been direct but polite. I think I can learn a lot from the group. Maybe I have weird taste but I also like the one of the squirrel above as it depicts for me what I see with my eye and gives me the feeling of capturing something unique. He blends into the tree and any minute he is going to run from his current position. I strongly, or should I say very strongly expect I could have done much better with more knowledge so I do want to hear your suggestions on how I could have made the shot better. I have signed up for a few courses which I will no doubt learn some things but I suspect I can learn more from a whole group of teacher (you guys) Just keep being kind as I am very sensitive to criticism.
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Old Feb 26, 2010, 7:15 PM   #16
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Im similar minded concerning some space around the wildlife. As long as it makes a good composition.
As for the squirrel shot. The only thing I could say to be careful of when shooting something like is your focusing. Id set the camera for spot focus and put it right on the squirrel. Otherwise if you have multi spots some branch might set your camera lens to the wrong setting and the squirrel will be anything from a little out of focus to a whole lot.
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Old Feb 26, 2010, 7:29 PM   #17
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Its my belief, as far as wildlife photography, that unless the surrounding scene offers interest to the subject, its best left out. The bird is the subject here. The branch its perched on in addition to the bird itself is all that is needed to make the picture good. I am not really qualified to judge a picture but from the start I think this one is immediately held back by the fact of the birds head being mostly shaded out.
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