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Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 22, 2006 10:23 am 
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Virtual Ranger
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Location: In the studio for now
Thanks guys, some great responses and in general we all seem to be in agreement on the main issues. I think the power of authenticity, ie ‘If it’s a photograph, it must be true!’ has been lost a bit with many people believing that anything is possible these days with digital cameras. And that is a bit sad.
I personally always try to get the shot as ‘right’ as possible when I take it, and will not add new elements to it, preferring to just alter the usual post processing settings.
However, I still believe we need to embrace what digital can offer us and one of the main advantages is the ability to learn by playing with the photos long after they were taken.
In the following 2 shots I have learned from playing with a bad happy snap of an Egyptian Goose preening it’s feathers at our local dam. By cropping the hell out of it at home I was amazed at how the composition could be changed and improved so on this past trip I purposely tried to put into practice what I had learned.
First off I had to get really close to the subject – in this case Guinea fowls near my car at Sunset dam, and then I had to try and get them relaxing and preening and generally being a bit willing to pose.
The first shot is the original JPG file unaltered at home (I shoot JPG and RAW) and the second is the picture more like my original idea.

Image

Image

So I guess going back to cheating or not, I prefer my loyalties to lie both with the subject matter in front of me as well as my own interpretation of that scene. I’m an artist remember. :) I have no loyalty to what Fuji Velvia can do nor what my sensors or processors can or have already done. Both( and this is the important bit) the actual scene as well as my personnel input and creativity are important to me.
Leaves me thinking of two of my favourite quotes in photography;

“Great photographs are made and not taken”

And the old classic’ Most important technique used is f 8 and be there’ Because ultimately it’s more about being out there and taking/making good shots, than trying to salvage a bad shot at home. But a reasonable shot can and should be improved if real learning is to take place.

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Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 23, 2006 2:57 pm 
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Junior Virtual Ranger
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Thanx for all the advice, ever if the topic may be controversial.
I particularly liked the following pic from my recent trip to Addo, but the sun was in the wrong place. It is as difficult to move the sun, as to move a herd of elephants and I was limited to my car and the road.
Image
Following the above advice I only played around with the shadows and highlights and now I have the photo that I really wanted. My eye could make this correction despite the position of the sun, so I have just corrected what my camera was not capable of, sure that's not cheating.
Image
A couple of my not so good pics can now get a second chance.

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My latest trip report to Addo during June 2009:
http://www.sanparks.org/forums/viewtopic.php?f=27&t=34300


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Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 23, 2006 3:16 pm 
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Distinguished Virtual Ranger
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HoepHoep :thumbs_up:

Colour is back

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Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 23, 2006 6:17 pm 
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Virtual Ranger
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@Hoephoep - major improvement and I agree, it looks natural,as our eyes would see it.
I was so impressed with this pic I couldn't help fine tuning it a bit more - :) hope you don't mind.

The only comment I have really is about the composition and the fact that in the original, the eye is too easily led over the ellies into the background so I have tried to prevent that a bit by cropping the top very slightly.
Secondly - and this of coarse may be my screen, - I took the blue down very slightly just to warm it up. Either way, I have to say that this is a great image. Would love to see some other before and after pics from forumites.

Image

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Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 23, 2006 6:28 pm 
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Like the idea PP
A few basic tips and tricks wont harm with before and now.
Gosh, sounds like a diet :?

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Unread postPosted: Wed Aug 23, 2006 6:47 pm 
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Virtual Ranger
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No need to diet Bert, we can just fix ourselves up with photoshop :)


Only kidding of course - I don't even have photoshop!

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Unread postPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2006 11:21 am 
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Junior Virtual Ranger
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Hi there all you photographic guru's
I bought a digital camera in April and went to Addo in July. This was my first real go at wildlife. I use to have a SLR, but that was mostly used for family snapshots. Digital manipulation is also fairly new to me, so I am on a steep learning curve and really appreciate what I can learn from this forum.
On this first trip my camera (Canon Powershot S2) was on "auto" most of the time and I have tried to concentrate on composition. Next time round I am going to compose all my shots 10% to 20% bigger than what I really want and then do the final composition on computer. :idea: I believe this will give me more time to focus on shutter speed and aperture because in my opinion that controls blur from movement and dept of field. It is far more difficult, if not impossible, to correct that at a later stage.
Thanx peterpiper for your input. The cropping at the top really makes a difference, but I must admit I missed that. :redface:
Another before and after set. Comments welcome.

Image Image

When will I find the time to give all my pics a complete make over?

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My latest trip report to Addo during June 2009:
http://www.sanparks.org/forums/viewtopic.php?f=27&t=34300


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Unread postPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2006 11:32 am 
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Hoephoep, the after is fine imo
Love the shot and the eye given by the jackel 8)

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