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Great Everglades Egret
Great Everglades Egret

Photograph Information Photographer's Comments
Challenge: Wildlife II (Advanced Editing IV*)
Camera: Sony DSC-F828
Location: Florida Everglades Near Big Cypress
Date: Jan 22, 2006
Aperture: 5.6
ISO: 64
Shutter: 1/250
Galleries: Nature, Animals
Date Uploaded: Jan 24, 2006

Taken in Florida Everglades near Big Cypress. Egret was loacted in "Sea Of Grass", the name given to the swamp region. This is a very difficult capture, because in the wilds these birds are very "jittery" and are easily scared away.

Photo was cropped and edited in Micrographx Picture Publisher. Slight sharpening, background darkened, Light source added on Egret. Border added, "Vignette Black"

Place: 92 out of 261
Avg (all users): 5.7892
Avg (commenters): 6.0000
Avg (participants): 5.6372
Avg (non-participants): 5.8676
Views since voting: 1002
Views during voting: 437
Votes: 332
Comments: 14
Favorites: 0

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02/06/2006 11:54:52 PM
Greetings from the Critique Club

Technical Qualities
I think this shot is very good technically - there is plenty of sharpness, plenty of detail and the colour is very good. Your aftershot editing of the photo is particularly effective - it really separates the subject from the background.

Having the background disappear to black on the outer edges stops the viewers eye from being drawn away from the main subject. The eye is naturally drawn to light coloured objects. If you take your "Beach Towel" shot as an example - my eye was drawn from the towel to the plants behind it almost instantly. Moving the towel into the sun and having the plants darker would have really changed the feel of this shot.

Composition / Subject
The subject is wonderful - an interesting bird living in its natural environment... Way better than all of the zoo photos amongst this challenge. The shadows across the birds back (from the grasses) really add an element of interest to the shot and it looks a lot more natural than if there was nothing between the camera and bird whatsoever.

The green tint across the head looks odd. Is that natural colour or is that another piece of grass in the way? Placing the bird off centre in the frame works well - particularly so when the empty space is added such that the animal is walking into the frame, rather than out of the frame.

Border / Title
The border blends well with the light-source editing of the background. It's interesting that so many people didn't like the vignette, although I think when it comes to borders there are two schools of thought. Some people don't think borders belong on any image on this site.

The title is very literal, but still works well. Given the simple, non-emotional nature of the shot I can't think of a more appropriate style of title.

Emotional / Challenge
I think you met the challenge exceptionally well - a wild bird in it's natural environment. From an emotional standpoint I don't think you are trying to convey a particular emotion - but that's perfectly ok. Not every shot has to be making a statement. What is conveyed, by both the pose and the grassy reeds, is the stealthy nature of this bird.

I think it's a great shot. Well done on achieving both you highest rating and also highest score so far. Compared to your other recent entries I find this shot better both technically (particularly in detail and sharpness) and artistically.

 Comments Made During the Challenge
01/31/2006 07:32:21 PM
This is definitely a "Wow". Well done.
01/31/2006 02:07:58 PM
I don't care for the vignetting. Detracts from the bird and it's surroundings.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/30/2006 11:08:24 PM
Too much vingetting for my taste.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/30/2006 09:30:59 PM
Nice capture and I like the way the shadows of the reeds describe the curvature of the bird's body, but the lighting puzzles me. If you took this at night then it is an amazing job color balancing, if this was taken by daylight then you burned the edges so much that the pool of remaining light is as much of a feature of the shot as the bird. Either way it detracts form the elegant form of tthe bird.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/30/2006 08:29:20 AM
Nice shot. I like the way the reeds mirror the curves on his neck. I don't care for the vignetting, however.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/29/2006 01:52:00 AM
I like the contrasty feel .. it feels like a very quiet moment.. Beautiful.
Not sure if its a filter or burning you've done to darken the majority of the picture but i like it against the white of the Egret :)
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/26/2006 01:37:34 PM
Shading works well with this one. I like the green/white contrast.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/26/2006 08:23:53 AM
This border takes away from the picture...makes it hard to focus on the bird.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/26/2006 04:15:47 AM
Well captured - looks like a night shot, so I imagine some stealth and patience were required (not to mention balls to sit out there amongst the other creepy crawlies at night!!) Good luck.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/25/2006 06:26:44 PM
Nice shot, I love the way is is trying to shield himself behind the reeds.....
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/25/2006 07:49:10 AM
nice egret, but not to fond of the burning tool work
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/25/2006 05:28:19 AM
the jury is out on the vignetting on this, but great shot
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/25/2006 12:43:23 AM
It is such a pity that the grass has obsured the eye ... you know you should have posed him better :) .. lovely shot.
  Photographer found comment helpful.

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