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Egret. First photo post ever. C&C welcome

Here's an older photo that I recently decided to try a little (very little) post produciton. Its the first photo I've taken thats been submitted for C&C. The body seems to be overexposed maybe? and the composition... I'm not sure its the best cropping for it. Overall, I do like the sharpness I got using the kit lens that came with my d5000.


  • WaterEngineerWaterEngineer Posts: 24,415 AG
    Nice work for a first go. White birds are so, so tough as they blow out easily.....and it doesn't even need to be that bright to ruin individual feather contrast.

    Cropping is fine. Eye is great.

    Next time intentionally under expose to protect the highlights and shoot in *.NEF format, not *.jpg. Then increase the exposure in Lightroom, Photoshop, **** or whatever you are using.

    Post again soon.
  • mississippi macmississippi mac Posts: 4,222 Captain
    Egrets and ibis are very hard to expose for.....
    easy to blow high lights....
    i usually shoot them at -1/3 ev and do what i need to do...if anything in PP...
    also helps if you're in "spot metering" mode....if the camera was trying to expose for the foliage that would hurt...

    The Real White Dog

    if you can't catch a fish...catch a buzz....
    #12976, joined 8-17-2002
  • GuidenetGuidenet Posts: 239 Officer
    I don't mind blowing the white a little. People who try to keep the white from blowing too much tend to underexpose and get a grey bird. It's very hard to get it just right but you seem to be pretty close. I like it. Good job.

    If you meter the bird, you'll get a grey bird. That bird is about 2 to 3 stops above neutral gray, so I'd maybe meter it, then open up two stops. Or, I'd meter the green and just go with it. Green is usually close to 18% grey.

    If you shoot gray, you underexpose then bring it back whie watching your levels trying never to let anything above 255. You want as close to 255 on any channel without going over. Then you get the perfect white bird. A grey bird will show more texture, but the bird isn't supposed to be grey. :-D

    Here's an Ibis where I judged wrong. I tried for more texture, and got it, but Ibis aren't grey. LOL I should have increased exposure in RAW and let it almost blow. I can still go back and do that, but I'm too lazy to find it. Wait, edit. I went back and got the image and reprocessed it properly, though many might not like it as well.


    Now this is the same shot but I increased exposure over two stops. There are no channels blown, though it might look like it. No numbers are at or over 255. It might look that way because white tends to make us see less texture. It's there but there's little to no contrast so we can't really see it, but an all white bird in the wild is also that way a lot of the time.

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  • Broward LawmanBroward Lawman Posts: 72 Deckhand
    Thanks for the comments. Back when I took this I wasn't as familiar with the camera as I am now, but there is still a lot of room for improvement with my working knowledge of DSLRs. I came from a 35mm manual (Minolta x-370) to the D5000, so its been a big change. The editing software I have is very limited... Just the program that comes with the camera. I have been thinking that I must get some better software, but my budget is really limited right now.

    I was shooting in jpg format back when I took this photo, but having picked up a 16g card recently, I now shoot and save both formats so I can later process the RAW format. If I can find some software that is affordable, I may switch to shooting only in RAW.

    I dont know when I will get to go shoot more wildlife, so I may play with some more older photos that I've never done any processing with. I have a couple of them that I'm fairly happy with, but so often the shots just seem a touch too soft for me to want to post them... :(
  • FlashFlash Posts: 11,193 AG
    Kit lenses tend to do that, Some of Nikons finest will get you nice and sharp.

    My 80-200 2.8 ED lens is stellar and very sharp. Not the best for Wildlife maybe, but it serves me very well in sports.


    Since the ref got in the way of the play, I cropped in on 1st baseman.


    Only thing I dislike on your shot is no feet. I always like the feet and legs of this bird.

    Never seem more learned than the people you are with. Wear your learning like a pocket watch and keep it hidden. Do not pull it out to count the hours, but give the time when you are asked. --- Lord Chesterfield
  • Broward LawmanBroward Lawman Posts: 72 Deckhand
    Flash wrote: »
    Only thing I dislike on your shot is no feet. I always like the feet and legs of this bird.

    I had some others with the whole bird, but this was by far the sharpest. I agree with your sentiment though.

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