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Another Damn Bird Shot
Posted By: Jimbo, 05-12-2009, 05:04 PM

I have been trying over the past month or so [some photo's I have posted here] to work on my exposure and image sharpness right out of the camera. Neither of these shots have to sharpened and the only adjustment was a on the water using levels. I find the Mallard difficult to get the exposure correct given their light and dark colors. I believe I am getting there.. Thought.. comments?

[ 400 ISO / 200mm using my Sigma 70-200 / F 4.0 /EV +.07 for both shots]





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05-12-2009, 05:18 PM   #2
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Hey Jim,

You are getting there! Next time round, try EV 0 or EV -0.3... Besides, your shutter speed will go up and then you can up the aperture a bit more...

Here's a series I posted a while back for your reference - please see the last two images: https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/post-your-photos/40989-more-longer-lens-i...y-few-now.html

Regards,
Marc
05-12-2009, 05:26 PM   #3
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From this post:
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/384514-post10.html

Summary of my answer to Josh (heliphoto):

QuoteOriginally posted by heliphoto Quote
Great shots. Promise you won't look at my recent duck shots ok? Seriously, it's inspiring to see you're work... It makes me want to go bird-stalking.
<snip>

EDIT: I'm surprised to see you used -0.3 EV. Is that just a particularity of this lens? I would think the camera would tend to underexpose from all the light bouncing around off the water.
Excellent question Josh!

"You are correct (your comment) about the possibility of undexposure - I had several, and a simple Levels correction in CS3 took care of business, since I shoot in RAW.

Primary reason for the choice: to ensure I don't mess around too much worrying about the correct EV for the subject bird. Several had white feathers in their plumage, and if I exposed at EV 0, I am certain I would have blown the highlights on the white feathers. Normally lighter colored birds should be underexposed by some, and white birds by up to EV -1 or EV -1.3.

The deciding factor for this choice" the lighting kept changing by the minute (partly cloudy skies). Please check out my other linked posts above to see what I mean."



Does that help Jim?

Regards,
Marc
05-12-2009, 05:27 PM   #4
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Thanks Marc. I tried that but slightly under exposed at EV 0 on the second image. I spot metered to the ducks neck. Here is one more. I think you are right on the first one. I could have easily got away with on image one. This was shot at EV .03 and the shutter speed remained the same. I think I will get a little more out of it as I move forward. A lot has been from the help you have given me Marc. Thank you again. JIM




05-12-2009, 05:35 PM   #5
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My honor Jim! I guess what I am ultimately trying to say is that there is not a best way to do it, just several options, and one is given here. Nothing wrong with spot metering the neck to expose the head correctly!

A lot depends on the lighting and you had an overcast, hazy day. In this case, perhaps a brighter day would have been best for this sort of duck. They are difficult to expose correctly. Give yourself credit where it is due!

I am ashamed to admit that I had never photographed Mallards until those images last year... sorry...

Regards,
Marc
05-12-2009, 05:41 PM   #6
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QuoteQuote:
My honor Jim! I guess what I am ultimately trying to say is that there is not a best way to do it, just several options, and one is given here. Nothing wrong with spot metering the neck to expose the head correctly!

A lot depends on the lighting and you had an overcast, hazy day. In this case, perhaps a brighter day would have been best for this sort of duck. They are difficult to expose correctly. Give yourself credit where it is due!

I am ashamed to admit that I had never photographed Mallards until those images last year... sorry...

Regards,
Marc
You were right about it being overcast today which just adds a whole other element to the shot. I am going to get up early one morning and head out to see if I can get just the right light for these birds. I do like that my sharpness has improved. [no adjustment on these images] cheers and thank you again! JIM
05-12-2009, 05:57 PM   #7
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One more 400 ISO 1/500 sec F 4.0 EV .03. [No sharpening and cropped 100%]

05-12-2009, 06:17 PM   #8
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Interesting... I just checked the EXIF of that shot of the Mallard that I took - it's Metering Mode was Pattern... Guess I wanted to make sure the entire shot and surroundings was exposed correctly. Sorry Jim...

Regarding the last image: what object in the image are you using to lock the focus? I am guessing correctly that perhaps a bit of camera shake is the culprit?

Regards,
Marc

05-12-2009, 08:42 PM   #9
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QuoteQuote:
Interesting... I just checked the EXIF of that shot of the Mallard that I took - it's Metering Mode was Pattern... Guess I wanted to make sure the entire shot and surroundings was exposed correctly. Sorry Jim...

Regarding the last image: what object in the image are you using to lock the focus? I am guessing correctly that perhaps a bit of camera shake is the culprit?

Regards,
Marc
I tend to do spot metering, right or wrong, when the focus point is tight on one subject. The shot was hand held so I am sure it is a little shake in these old hands! The focus point on the last shot was his neck but maybe at F 4.0 it should have been the eye. As you mentioned, maybe going to EV 0 would have given me just that bit of difference on shutter speed to get the shot spot on. Work on progress for me and appreciate to honest feedback Marc. Cheers bud. JIM
05-12-2009, 08:52 PM   #10
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Ok Marc one more for these series. Shot at 400 ISO F 4.0 1/500 sec EV .03 focus the eye, hand held. I do know what you mean by get the best possible light for the Mallard pictures. Small level adjustment. Cheers and on to the next shot! JIM

05-12-2009, 09:13 PM   #11
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I can't stop myself from posting just one more from these series. The only difference from the last shot is it was at 1/400 sec versus 1/500. EV .03+ 400 ISO. I will now stop posting! JIM


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