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Old Dec 27, 2004, 5:11 AM   #1
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A couple of shots of nuthatches I took yesterday. Both are 50% crops.
ISO was 200.

SS 1/320 sec, f/6.3


ss 1/200 sec, f/5.6
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Old Dec 27, 2004, 6:42 AM   #2
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Nice job! I really like the first one. We have a lot of these here, and I know they don't like to sit in one spot very long.

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Old Dec 27, 2004, 7:47 PM   #3
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I especially like the first one as the bird (in it's classic pose)appears to be an extension of the tree; exposure good; color a bitpale but what canone do on a grey day; focused and sharp; decent crop choice. The last one looks slightly over sharpened to me, but that's subjective and a matter of taste mostly.
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Old Dec 27, 2004, 10:28 PM   #4
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I'll echo what Norm said and just reiterate that the first shot is a really nice shot! I think with some work with curves in PS you can put some punch into that first photo.

Woodmeister, I hope you don't mind, here's a quick rework I did of your posted photo as an example of what I was saying above:


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Old Dec 27, 2004, 11:02 PM   #5
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They both look great to me Woodmeister. I don't have WB Nuthatches here in Georgia but I do have the Brown Headed ones. Just haven't made any good catches on them yet. I will in time though.

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Old Dec 28, 2004, 4:20 AM   #6
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Thanks for the comments and thanks for the tip Geoff. As for the sharpenning,
it seems to me that there are two camps among birders, those that demand
absolute razor sharp detail to the finest hair on the feathers with hard edges and the
other camp thinks sharpenning that hard is un-natural and some
of the softness should be retained. At this point, I am probably somewhere
in the middle, flip-flopping back and forth.

This thought just struck me, should one's goal be to enhance the subject
or should one try to maintain the overall image to reflect the environment
at the time of the shot? Or is it just a matter of taste? Or is it just half
a dozen of one or six of the other?
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Old Dec 28, 2004, 8:43 AM   #7
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Hi, woodmeister. You bring up some good questions.

My experience has been that all photographers in general draw the line on sharpening when that sharpening has been excessive and there are halos present around the outlines of the elements of the image. Up to the point of halos appearing, the degree to which sharpening is employed is probably an issue of personal taste. In my mind it's always been a balancing act between not wanting to present too soft of an image but yet not allowing the image to get too "crisp". Too often oversharpening isemployed in an attempt to negate the appearance of an original image that was too soft to begin with - it rarely works...

Your second question is more difficult to answer. Many photographers see their mission as an artistic one while there are others that see it as an attempt to portray reality as faithfully as possible. This issue has been debated many times in many forums. Those in the artistic camp feel that they are free to alter the image in whatever direction they are moved to do so, cloning elements in or out with abandon. I tend to be more in the latter camp but also realize that the ability of the current generation of cameras to accurately portray what the human eye originally saw is limited, especially in brightness range. As a result, I am not against post-processing adjustments that put more pop into the image to better bring it into alignment with what I may have seen originally.

In the case of your image, I obviously don't know exactly how it appeared to you when you took the picture. My adjustments were purely based on what would make the image "pop" more for the viewer.
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Old Dec 28, 2004, 8:11 PM   #8
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Quote:
This thought just struck me, should one's goal be to enhance the subject
or should one try to maintain the overall image to reflect the environment
at the time of the shot? Or is it just a matter of taste? Or is it just half
a dozen of one or six of the other?
My 2 cents in this question is to do it exactly how you want it to be done and those who like your method will probably keep looking at your work. Ifone startsdoing things that they don't personally like then there's probably no point in doing it at all. If you like sharp, do sharp, if you want natural, try to use your USM as a tool to that end, and if you like soft, then do soft. Personally, I think it depends on the particular work what the goal is. I've intentionally softened something or parts of a work because that's what I wanted to do at the moment. I was exercising my artistic right to create and manipulate.

If you don't like it, don't do it. If you like it, do it no matter how many don't seem to like it. You do, and that's your main audience. If you can't please yourself then it's not likely that you'll be pleasing anyone else :lol:
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Old Dec 29, 2004, 3:34 AM   #9
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Thanks for the comments. Sounds like since you can't please everyone,
then do what you like, and let the chips fall as they may. BTW Geoff, my
post comments were in no way meant to knock what you did. It was a
very good tip. They were just some philosophical thoughts that had been
bothering me for some time.
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Old Dec 29, 2004, 8:51 AM   #10
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woodmeister wrote:
Quote:
BTW Geoff, my post comments were in no way meant to knock what you did. It was a very good tip. They were just some philosophical thoughts that had been
bothering me for some time.
No problem - I didn't take what you said as a knock...
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