70-200mm IS lens, Birds, Nature, Photo Challenges, Photo Editing, Photography

Weekly Photo Challenge: Morning

In the morning, you can often find me outside.  I love being out in the light and quiet of the early part of the day.  I’ve just moved over this summer, and so my landscape has changed.  Meet one of my new neighbors:

ISO 100 155mm f/13 1/100

ISO 100 155mm f/13 1/100

Between the two lakes I visit in the morning, there are five adult swans.  There are plenty of other birds and the beautiful haze of morning light.  I don’t usually take my camera with me first thing, I’m out for my morning run or walk just soaking in the day, not yet photographing it.  Yesterday morning, I made an exception, I went out with my camera before going out for my run.  I got a few photos of these swans, I took them from several angles so the light looks different in them.  This particular one, I shot into the sun.  I wanted the saturated light of the sun to be in the photo.  What I lost by doing that was detail in the swan.  To bring back some of that detail when I was editing in Photoshop, I duplicated the original layer.  The bottom layer I sharpened.  The top layer I put a mask on and then masked back in some of the details in the swan.  This meant that the more hazy feel of the light could stay in the photo.  Then I cropped the photo, because as you will see below, this swan was not by himself:

ISO 100 155mm f/13 1/100

ISO 100 155mm f/13 1/100

To me, these edits made a pretty radical difference.  To be honest, I’m not sure which I prefer.  The second seems more like a snapshot and the green near the second swan just kind of bugs me.  But the overall feel of the light I do like in the second photo.  There is another photo from this series that I am editing that I am having a similar struggle; I’m just not sure which version of the photograph I prefer.

Do you run into this with your photography, having difficulty picking between two versions of an image?  What do you think of my versions, do you have a preference? Feel free to leave a comment below.

Cheers!

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50mm Lens, Animals, Canon 50D, Flowers, Nature, Photo Challenges, Photo Editing, Photography

Weekly Photo Challenge: Good Morning!

This photo was shot on a sunny morning over the summer.  I pulled it out of my archives in part to re-edit it.  In my Photoshop class we have covered split toning and I thought this image might be a good candidate for that.  Here is the edited version:

ISO 200 50mm f/5.6 1/250

ISO 200 50mm f/5.6 1/250

Here is the original photo:

ISO 200 50mm f/5.6 1/250

ISO 200 50mm f/5.6 1/250

Split toning can be done in Camera Raw if you have Photoshop.  Basically what I have done is first convert the image to grayscale.  Split toning then allows you to bring a hint of color back into your photo.  In this case I set the hue slider to yellow and bumped up the saturation until I go the image that you see.  I then sharpened the image a bit.

Photoshop is not the only editing software that has split toning.  If you are interested in knowing a bit more about the topic I would recommend this blog post by Sonel.  I have provided a link to a post she wrote about a month ago where she explains in some detail how it works.  She has also included screen shots of her process which are very informative.

This post was written in part as a response to the WordPress weekly photo challenge which has the theme, Good Morning!

Thanks for stopping by, feel free to leave a comment about split toning or my image in the comments below.

Cheers!

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50mm Lens, Canon 50D, Flowers, Nature, Photo Editing, Photography

Another Frosty Morning Photo

I was out a few days ago taking frost pictures. Today’s picture I decided to edit in black and white.  Yesterday’s photo was in color, but I thought black and white would be a better choice for this spent dandelion stem:

ISO 100 50mm -1ev f/5.6 1/200

 

Since there was a lot of frost on the ground and I really wanted to draw attention to the stem, I cropped this photo pretty severely, making it more of a panorama style image.

The original image was shot using a bracketed exposure.  In this case -1, 0, and 1.  I combined the three images into one using Photomatix.  Photomatix gave me several black and white options, but I chose this one because I thought it gave the image enough sparkle without being over done.  Then I did my cropping and sharpening in Aperture.

So what do you think?  I welcome your comments below!

Cheers!

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50mm Lens, Canon 50D, Nature, Photo Editing, Photography

Fun with Frost

It was chilly here this morning, so I went out to take a frost photo:

ISO 100 50mm -1ev f/2.8 1/200

ISO 100 50mm -1ev f/2.8 1/200

This was a exposure bracketed photo that I then edited in Photomatix.  I was trying to get as much detail of the frost as possible.

Cheers!

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Animals, Canon 50D, Photography

This Goat Has A Beard

Promise, it does,

ISO 500 44mm f/4 1/125

it just isn’t in the picture.  I was trying to get as many people as possible out of the background.  So no beard in this photo.  The other distracting factor was my youngest screeching about how another goat was going to eat all my stuff.  I don’t know if some people can manage that decibel level at 8am, but I can’t.  The goats didn’t seem to care.

I did lighten this up a bit in post-editing.  I think I should have tried the shade setting in WB, and the photo might have been better straight out of the camera.

Cheers!

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Flowers, Nature, Photography, Uncategorized

Best of the Morning Walk

ISO 100 85mm f/5.6 1/5 tripod

Yes, this photo has some post-editing done to it.  I messed with the color and cropped the photo.  I was surprised that the color in camera came out a bit washed out looking.  It was cloudy out, so I thought the light would be pretty good.  Any suggestions on shooting on cloudy days?

Had to make a quick exit as well, the skies opened up just minutes later.

Cheers!

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Nature, Photography, Uncategorized

Gorilla in the Garden

I guess technically it is supposed to look more like a jungle or something like that as opposed to a garden, but you have to have a catchy title right?  These photos were shot in the morning, under an overcast sky.  I haven’t done any post editing, what kind might you do with these photos?

ISO 100 135mm f/7.1 1/8

What I like about the one above is that the gorilla was looking at the camera.

ISO 100 127mm f/7.1 1/6

The “problem” with both pictures is that you can tell the gorilla is behind a plastic-like window.  The result is that the color isn’t great.

ISO 640 135mm f/5.6 1/50

This one I like the color better, but you can still see the reflection of the enclosure.

What settings would you use in this situation?

Cheers!

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