70-200mm IS lens, Animals, Canon 50D, Nature, One Word Sunday, Photo Challenges, Photo Editing, Photography, Picfair, Thursday Special

Seals

Although my 70-200mm lens in a bit heavy, there are several reasons why I love it. One is the opportunity to get a close shot of nature with minimum disruption to my wild subjects, in this case, the seals near Blakeney Point. There are two types of seals in the area, this first photo is of a Grey Seal:

ISO 1250 195mm f/16 1/500 sec

Here is the original shot.

ISO 1250 195mm f/16 1/500 sec

This next photo is of the Common Seal:

ISO 1250 170mm f/16 1/640sec

Here is the original of that shot:

ISO 1250 170mm f/16 1/640sec

These photos were taken from a boat and my lens was set at 195mm and 170mm for the photos. In addition to having a long lens another trick to making the seals look closer than they were is to crop the images.  In the case of the first photo, the crop is fairly small. I didn’t want to lose the shore or too much of the water as I thought they were important parts of the photo. I was more aggressive with the second photo in a couple of ways. The first is the crop, I’ve removed the blood-streaked seal completely. Secondly, I have changed the tone of the photo completely. While I warmed the first photo a bit, for this second one I wanted to change it completely, make it look like I had taken the shot in completely different light conditions. It’s a different look, but you still can tell how well these seals blend with their surroundings.

What do you think of my photos and their edits? Do you have a favorite? Feel free to leave a comment below.

A variation of that first image made it into my Instagram feed:

Picfair: Grey Seal and Common Seal

Added to Travel With Intent: Afar and Thursday Special: Marine.

Cheers!

 

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11-22mm Lens, Canon 50D, Photo a week Challenge, Photo Challenges, Photo Editing, Photography

Looking Up

The original photo for this post I took almost a year ago, and have been tinkering with off and on ever since. It was taken with my wide angle lens which is an 11-22mm lens. The lens was purchased for two reasons, one is for landscape purposes. Wide angle lenses can deliver sweeping landscape shots.  The other reason was for shots like this one below. The lens made it possible for me stand inside Holyrood Abbey and get a lot of the interior in one shot:

ISO 800 10mm f/13 1/500sec

In this case, it almost looks like I’m shooting from below the Abbey. The first edit I chose to convert to black and white, but I kept a lot of the blue tones in.  It was a beautiful, almost blindingly blue day. So painfully blue, that for my first color version I toned the blues down by dropping the vibrancy:

ISO 800 10mm f/13 1/500sec

When I revisited the edit later, I added some warmth by increasing the yellow tones:

ISO 800 10mm f/13 1/500sec

I’m still not sure here, there are things I like about each of the edits and things I don’t, so your opinion is welcome below in the comments.

A bit of an aside, but in case you are wondering the Queen is at Holyrood this week:

Cheers!

Added to A Photo A Week Challenge.

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70-200mm IS lens, Birds, Canon 50D, Cee's Black & White Photo Challenge, Instagram, Monochrome Monday, Photo Challenges, Photo Editing, Photography, Picfair

The Swans

I live near several small lakes, one of which has a swan family:

ISO 640 78mm f/16 1/500sec

This image is one of the first I captured of the whole family. I first posted about this family last week and my aim there was to keep the images as true to the original scene as possible. For this post, I am wandering out to a bit more creative territory. First a black and white edit:

ISO 640 78mm f/16 1/500sec

The first thing I did with this edit was to crop it. I wanted to really bring the swan in the foreground to an almost uncomfortable closeness. This swan was acting in a very protective manner and I think the crop helps tell that part of the story. I then brought the highlights in the image down and the shadows up. I wanted this black and white version to be a bit smoother than its original as shot exposure. I then added a vignette, darkening the corners.

I like this image and the crop, so I decided to create another color version:

ISO 640 78mm f/16 1/500sec

For this version, I started with a preset that was suggestive of a film camera. I kept the brightness of the original exposure though. It has a completely different color cast to it than the original. The luminance sliders for yellow, green, aqua and blue have all been boosted, and the color temp of the overall photo was also increased.

I’m sorry to say that one of the swans went missing shortly after these photos were taken. I posted the sad news on my Instagram:

And then there were just two #cygnets #thingsiseewhilewalking #nofilter

A post shared by Amy Maranto (@marantophotography) on

 

How do you like the edits? Do you have a favorite? Feel free to comment below.

Cheers!

Added to Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge.

Picfair versions: Black & White and Color.

 

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11-22mm Lens, Canon 50D, One Word Sunday, Photo Challenges, Photo Editing, Photography, Picfair

Giving New Presets a Try

Pointe du Hoc was part of the Allied invasion of the Normandy Coast on June 6, 1944. Today there is a memorial monument on the site that overlooks Omaha Beach. It is maintained by the American Battle Monuments Commission and if you are planning a visit, I would highly recommend downloading the tour they have available on their website.

While I was visiting, I took this photograph:

ISO 640 14mm f/16 1/160sec

When I went to edit, I wanted to accentuate the barbed wire in the foreground and give the photo a bit more of a punch. Here is what I came up with:

ISO 640 14mm f/16 1/160sec

The barbed wire was a stark reminder of the German positions that were waiting for the American Rangers that scaled these cliffs.

I edited this photo in Lightroom. I had received an e-mail notification earlier in the week that there were new presets I could download that had been created by Max Muench, who has a pretty cool Instagram feed. So, I figured out how to import the presets and got to work experimenting. I like presets, I think they can be an interesting starting point for editing. After having applied the preset, I manipulated the settings until I came up with what I thought would work for this photo.

What do you think of my edit? Does it pack more of a punch than the original? Do you use presets in your photo editing? Feel free to leave a comment below.

Cheers!

 

Added to Travel With Intent: Stark.

Picfair version available here.

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50mm Lens, Canon 50D, Flowers, Nature, Photo Challenges, Photo Editing, Photography, Picfair, Tuesday Photo Challenge, Wandering Wednesday

Flower Power

I love taking nature photos. This one was a bit of an unexpected find:

ISO 800 50mm f/16 1/250sec

Unexpected for two reasons. The first is that it was taken in a cemetery, though you’d never know it from this photo. The second is that it was taken with my 50mm lens. I was able to get that close without the butterfly flying away.

The original file is this one:

ISO 800 50mm f/16 1/250sec

I chose this file to work with because I thought the exposure was pretty much perfect. I liked the amount of detail in both the butterfly and the flower it is sitting on. I also loved the summery colors in this image, what can I say, this winter just seemed to drag its feet on the way out this year. I cropped the photo and then the biggest edit was to remove the blade of grass that was just to the left of the flower, I found it pretty distracting. I used the healing tool in Lightroom for the removal.  I have also boosted the luminance and clarity and added a vignette.

What do you think of the edit? Have you ever come across a nature image in an unexpected place? Feel free to comment below.

Cheers!

Added to Wandering Wednesday and Tuesday Photo Challenge.

Picfair version is here.

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70-200mm IS lens, Animals, Canon 50D, Cee's Black & White Photo Challenge, Monochrome Monday, Nature, Photo Editing, Photography

Monochrome Monday: Zebra Portrait

ISO 800 200mm f/18 1/400sec

For this particular edit, I thought I would attempt to make a black and white portrait of an animal that was already black and white. The challenge here was that the color version was a pretty bright exposure and the greens in the foliage really competed with the zebra. So, I have chosen a black and white edit that wanders pretty close to a sepia. I’ve done this by bringing down the exposure and vibrance sliders.

Do you like this edit? Do you like animal portraits like this one that don’t include the whole animal or do you prefer images where you can see the whole animal? Feel free to comment below.

Cheers!

Added to Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge.

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70-200mm IS lens, Birds, Canon 50D, Instagram, Nature, Photo Challenges, Photo Editing, Photography, Tuesday Photo Challenge

New Neighbors

There are some photos that I’m not sure are going to happen.  This is one of them:

ISO 1600 70mm f/16 1/2000sec

And another:

ISO 1600 70mm f/16 1/2000sec

These are our new cygnets. I thought there was a nest this year, but I wasn’t certain. The weather was a bit different from last year, and the vegetation around the lake has grown up in a different way. Last year’s next I could clearly see from the shore.  This year I was only guessing. Last year’s clutch was very successful, six healthy offspring, this year I have spotted four.

Generally, when I set out to photograph these swans, I take my 70-200mm lens. You will see that for these photos, the lens is at 70mm, the swans are incredibly close, particularly when you consider that this lake is on a path that is frequented by a lot of people and dogs. I chose these two images to edit in part because, despite the fact they were taken at the same time, the color of the water appears different.  As far as edits go, for this round I have chosen to stay very close to the original exposures, the images have been cropped and sharpened.

Was I excited to see them? You bet! Here is a photo from the day I first spotted them:

Do you like my true to life edits? Do you have new neighbors this Spring? Feel free to comment below.

Cheers!

Added to Tuesday Photo Challenge: New

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