* Wed C&C "No Theme" Thread #697 on 2021 09 01 *

Started 3 months ago | Discussions
Mike Fewster Veteran Member • Posts: 8,621
BIF. I have much to learn.
1

Posted because it's on my mind. The shot was taken yesterday as we were driving to central Australia. At one spot there were clouds of budgerigars. We stopped and I headed into the bush to try to get BIF. Tried for about an hour. Crawled under fences looking for a good vantage point. Chopped up by prickles. Experimented with many different settings. Those birds move very fast and very erratically.

Here is my best shot and it isn't good.

Conclusion. I have much to learn and if I was to get serious about this, Some different gear would help but mainly, this is my learning curve to be climbed.

-- hide signature --

Mike Fewster
Adelaide Australia

 Mike Fewster's gear list:Mike Fewster's gear list
Sony RX1 Sony a7R II Sony a7R III
RoelHendrickx
OP RoelHendrickx Forum Pro • Posts: 27,737
Use of cameras.

19andrew47 wrote:

Nothing but phone cameras in sight, perhaps one on the tripod though! A nice image but you need to exercise your dedicated cameras more. They must be feeling neglected Roel!

Andrew

They really are not neglected.

I use them a lot.  Made hundreds of photos on our trips to Italy, Berlin and Budapest, and a few thousand on paid assignments in the past months.

I have just delivered to the publisher a set of 437 photos (the best of +2000) from which 80-100 will be chosen for a book that will come on the market end October.

The photos made with my EM1 and LX100 and GM5 on our private trips, are on my hard disk waiting to be selected and processed.

So there is the issue : I do still make lots of images with dedicated cameras, but I don't always find the time for the necessary follow-up of selection and processing.  My hard disks are filled with images from the last 3-4 years of travelling and other stuff.

I really need to start thinking of retirement, in order to find the time to dig into those treasure chests and hunt for the nuggets and gems.

The advantage of the iphone photography lies in its immediacy: images are shot, looked at, sometimes polished up a bit and uploaded, ready for display.

-- hide signature --

Roel Hendrickx
lots of images: http://www.roelh.zenfolio.com

19andrew47
19andrew47 Forum Pro • Posts: 41,121
Re: Fungus

KeesSmeele wrote:

Spotted this fellow on a walk last sunday. This mushroom decided to grow right on top of a post of a gate in a fence.

The weather wasn't perfect for photography at all: grey, cloudy and a bit of drizzling rain. Still iI am pleased with the results. Moreover this is a first attempt to process the RAW image in Darktable. Itล› freeware that got my interest for a while, now I have found the time to practice it. The learning curve is a steep one and I am not at the end of the curve. I still need to figure out how to denoise the background, for instance. as an first attempt, I am pleased with the result.

A really lovely little world of its own on top of that post and you have done well with this. For myself I would crop a bit from each side and the bottom to bring that world in a little closer.

Andrew

cropped and a neutral grad filter applied to darken the top area and lighten the bottom slightly and some unsharpen mask as well.

RoelHendrickx
OP RoelHendrickx Forum Pro • Posts: 27,737
Re: A kitschy photo ๐Ÿ˜„

Kumsal wrote:

A very classic composition of two swans forming a heart with their necks and bodies.

Yes, that is a bit of a cliché, but for good reason : the visual impact remains striking.

(Beautiful sunsets could also be regarded and classified as cliché and kitschy, and still we cannot get enough of them.  What is classic does not need an apology.)

You have nicely isolated your subjects without distractions in the frame.  It is effective.

-- hide signature --

Roel Hendrickx
lots of images: http://www.roelh.zenfolio.com

minniev Veteran Member • Posts: 3,945
Re: Fireworks

I think it's a pretty good photo of what you wanted to photograph: the two people in the near ground and the crowd in the distance, all watching a fireworks celebration similar to what we've all experienced somewhere/sometime. It does suffer from a color cast that borders on distracting (because of the streetlights of course). And the fireworks themselves might possibly be more interesting with certain settings, though I confess I've never mastered them. The one time I tried to take a real camera to a snazzy fireworks show I got hauled aside by Nashville PD and told it was illegal to photograph fireworks in Nashville (who knew?). My son, ever protective of his mother, almost got himself in serious trouble trying to put forth a legal-ish defense.

Do you shoot with the iPhone's native controls, Roel, or with something else?

RoelHendrickx wrote:

I went to photograph the big fireworks at 21.00 hours over the Danube in Budapest, on Szent Istvan Nap (Saint Stephen's Day, the Hungarian national holiday).

Not surprisingly, I found the people more interesting than the pyrotechnics.

(yes, another iphone image)

minniev Veteran Member • Posts: 3,945
Re: Searching for Lizards

Well, you found one. I think.

Did you take the photo and then conceive of photographing the photo?  In the same environment? Or did the photo come from an earlier time/place? You've left us to wonder which makes it more interesting but do fill us in on the backstory. It is quite a nice lizard with a most astounding tail.

Oddly, for the first time this week, I also took a photo of a photo and posted it to my 52 group. Trapped inside to ride out Hurricane Ida, I used my camera to take a picture of a photo I'd pulled up on the computer screen. The assignment was "intentional camera movement for effect". So I set the shutter speed for about 20 seconds and zoomed slowly in at the onscreen photo. I was not unhappy with the result.

We should always hold onto the pleasure of playing with our cameras.

P3T3S wrote:

I am visiting family this week, so my internet access is very limited.

This is also an iPhone image. Sort of.

Pete

minniev Veteran Member • Posts: 3,945
Re: Fungus

That is just grand. You've an excellent capture and editing is perfect for the subject. It would have been easy to mess it up with the mixed lighting but you have done well.

Great composition, sharp detailed capture, really evokes the tiny wonder-filled world we so often pass by. I can imagine the feel of the air and the earthy smell of the old post and the moss that is overtaking it. Very nice work.

KeesSmeele wrote:

Spotted this fellow on a walk last sunday. This mushroom decided to grow right on top of a post of a gate in a fence.

The weather wasn't perfect for photography at all: grey, cloudy and a bit of drizzling rain. Still iI am pleased with the results. Moreover this is a first attempt to process the RAW image in Darktable. Itล› freeware that got my interest for a while, now I have found the time to practice it. The learning curve is a steep one and I am not at the end of the curve. I still need to figure out how to denoise the background, for instance. as an first attempt, I am pleased with the result.

minniev Veteran Member • Posts: 3,945
Re: A kitschy photo ๐Ÿ˜„

But who doesn't love swans in love? I've never found a romantic pair like this making their trademark heart sign. I always find the brooding loners. But swans in any case are quite beautiful enough to warrant lots of pixels. You've got lovely detail, carefully preserved highlights, facial features, and richly blue water. What else might one need?

Kumsal wrote:

minniev Veteran Member • Posts: 3,945
Re: The silence of the lamp ..

Nice simply constructed still life that offers a little more: a hint of the living space around it. That is what heightens its appeal, I think. Yes the lamp with its graceful curve, the matching and inverse curves of the fern and other plant, are quite nice. But without that enticing darkened background, it would lack the emotion it conveys now. Well done.

LouHolland wrote:

The silence of the lamp

Lou

minniev Veteran Member • Posts: 3,945
Re: National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa

Lovely building with a dramatic sky and a fascinating foreground sculpture -  and interesting comparison between the two images.  The first, while it entices us with more dramatic cloud colors, has given up some detail in the brights. In the second the blues are richer, the highlights are nicely retained, but the clouds have little color. Interestingly, the building itself is more appealing in the second, with its stronger cyan reflectivity.lf I had to chose, I'd go with the second version.

When you say single image HDR, I'm assuming you mean you took one image into PP and by raising and lowering values created a wider dynamic range than it had initially. If that's a wrong assumption, please share.  Did you try a multi image HDR either in camera or in PP? If so, how did that turn compare?

19andrew47 wrote:

A single image taken with the Venus Optics Laowa 7.5 mm f/2 m4/3 lens at f/4 with the EM1ii. Processed two ways.

Andrew

done as a single image HDR file in PSP and Nik

initial processing in OW finished in PSP and Nik.

minniev Veteran Member • Posts: 3,945
Re: BIF. I have much to learn.

Oh what fun to photograph some of those colorful birdies. Clouds of them? My word!

Birds are the most uncooperative subjects you can find anywhere. They are never still even when they appear to be, they do not respond to requests, they disappear as soon as you confirm your settings.

A good start. Looks like you got many of them pretty sharply in focus. Of course with a big flock moving fast, getting them all in focus isn't possible. I think the picture would feel more pleasing without the leftward downtilt, but that may be just me.

Finding the focus settings and tricks that work best for you is the first quandary on this journey, and this varies between cameras and between photographers. Some like BBF, others not.  When you find a batch of settings you like best, save them to a slot or button on your camera and you'll save a lot of time in the field. I use continuous autofocus, small single point, the Pro Capture feature on Oly cameras, a starting shutter of 1400 (this varies according to the birds as darting terns are very different from flapping egrets), auto ISO with a maximum, and spot metering.

Of my BIF, about 90% are useless. So you may not want to listen to me at all!

Mike Fewster wrote:

Posted because it's on my mind. The shot was taken yesterday as we were driving to central Australia. At one spot there were clouds of budgerigars. We stopped and I headed into the bush to try to get BIF. Tried for about an hour. Crawled under fences looking for a good vantage point. Chopped up by prickles. Experimented with many different settings. Those birds move very fast and very erratically.

Here is my best shot and it isn't good.

Conclusion. I have much to learn and if I was to get serious about this, Some different gear would help but mainly, this is my learning curve to be climbed.

Mike Fewster Veteran Member • Posts: 8,621
Re: Fireworks

minniev wrote:

I think it's a pretty good photo of what you wanted to photograph: the two people in the near ground and the crowd in the distance, all watching a fireworks celebration similar to what we've all experienced somewhere/sometime. It does suffer from a color cast that borders on distracting (because of the streetlights of course). And the fireworks themselves might possibly be more interesting with certain settings, though I confess I've never mastered them. The one time I tried to take a real camera to a snazzy fireworks show I got hauled aside by Nashville PD and told it was illegal to photograph fireworks in Nashville (who knew?). My son, ever protective of his mother, almost got himself in serious trouble trying to put forth a legal-ish defense.

Do you shoot with the iPhone's native controls, Roel, or with something else?

RoelHendrickx wrote:

I went to photograph the big fireworks at 21.00 hours over the Danube in Budapest, on Szent Istvan Nap (Saint Stephen's Day, the Hungarian national holiday).

Not surprisingly, I found the people more interesting than the pyrotechnics.

(yes, another iphone image)

minniev's revelation re Nashville by laws is as eyepopping as the fireworks. Someone needs to get a ladder and have a good look at those laws as well. I can't possibly imagine, even at my most conspiracy fueled, imagine what could be the reason for such a law.

A slight smile at the keenness of the spectator and his stand, while his partner remains grounded. The framework of the pusher to the right  and the frame of the ladder help us move from forground to background. The fireworks stand out because of  the attention getting highlights and some careful framing.

Mike Fewster
Adelaide Australia

 Mike Fewster's gear list:Mike Fewster's gear list
Sony RX1 Sony a7R II Sony a7R III
Mike Fewster Veteran Member • Posts: 8,621
Re: Searching for Lizards

P3T3S wrote:

I am visiting family this week, so my internet access is very limited.

This is also an iPhone image. Sort of.

Pete

Isn't nature wonderful? The ability of many critters to do camouflage is really impressive. Now Pete has captured an important next evolutionary step. This little guy has also added the frame to his routine.

A close relative,

https://www.9news.com.au/national/lyrebird-crying-screaming-baby-taronga-zoo-bird-calls-national-news/06a4e6ee-669a-4869-b330-5dbaa92a18a5

-- hide signature --

Mike Fewster
Adelaide Australia

 Mike Fewster's gear list:Mike Fewster's gear list
Sony RX1 Sony a7R II Sony a7R III
RoelHendrickx
OP RoelHendrickx Forum Pro • Posts: 27,737
MInnie

minniev wrote:

I think it's a pretty good photo of what you wanted to photograph: the two people in the near ground and the crowd in the distance, all watching a fireworks celebration similar to what we've all experienced somewhere/sometime.

It does suffer from a color cast that borders on distracting (because of the streetlights of course).

I've used the "processing" sliders to cool down the image a bit but I did not want to go all the way down, nor to B&W.

And the fireworks themselves might possibly be more interesting with certain settings, though I confess I've never mastered them. The one time I tried to take a real camera to a snazzy fireworks show I got hauled aside by Nashville PD and told it was illegal to photograph fireworks in Nashville (who knew?). My son, ever protective of his mother, almost got himself in serious trouble trying to put forth a legal-ish defense.

W-T-F?

Do you shoot with the iPhone's native controls, Roel, or with something else?

I have a whole string of camera-apps on my phone, but use them not very often.

There is one that allows me to control aperture and shutter speed and I trust that one day it will prove useful, but OTOH, when I would be diving into that kind of settings, I would rather use a real camera.

I also have a number of processing apps, and use Snapseed frequently.  The others not so much.

Novelty and special effects apps (like Koloid or Hipstamatic) catch my eye but I fall out of love with them quickly.

The Iphone's native camera app is quite good, both for the actual taking of the shot (switch between the three lenses, control overall brightness, etc).  And it's "magic brush" post-processing is often a good starting point for optimizing visual impact.  I have a number of tweaks I use often.

RoelHendrickx wrote:

I went to photograph the big fireworks at 21.00 hours over the Danube in Budapest, on Szent Istvan Nap (Saint Stephen's Day, the Hungarian national holiday).

Not surprisingly, I found the people more interesting than the pyrotechnics.

(yes, another iphone image)

-- hide signature --

Roel Hendrickx
lots of images: http://www.roelh.zenfolio.com

Mike Fewster Veteran Member • Posts: 8,621
Re: Botanical Garden Project Part 1

minniev wrote:

This week and probably next I'll be sharing sets from a project I'm doing for our local environmental group.

In the 1970s the area where I live was just "developing" out of wilderness and less than 200 families lived out here, most having moved from a nearby big city. The ladies, perhaps bored, formed a garden club, but found the area so different that their usual projects were untenable. So they focused on creating a large botanical garden featuring native plant life, with walking trails throughout. As the ladies aged they became less able to maintain it, and now only a few are still afoot. Today's generation of women are too busy working to keep the club alive. Our non profit took it on as a project, got a grant, and by spring will have completed the cleanup/fixup/refurbishing. It will be handicapped accessible and braille certified. I'm doing the photography for the print and kiosk guides (except for the birds, who are being done by a local Audubon bird photographer). These aren't in order, but plucked from the larger set of the spring/summer grouping.

This is the main trail, about a mile long with some unpaved side trails and features to explore. It will all be smoothed for easy wheelchair access and marked for safety for the visually impaired.

The first thing the ladies planted was camellias. Unchecked for half a century they are now large trees. After their camellia phase, they decided to plant only native plants, but they left the camellias where they were.

Bill has written several books on "fernology" and led the development of the fern bog, which features every kind of native fern in central Misssissippi.

I don't know all their names but they are fun to photograph in closeup.

Wild morning glories abound in summer.

Because a creek runs through the middle of the garden we often have a light fog in the mornings that makes photos more fun. There's bird boxes like this, individually chosen for the types of birds our Audubon folks have identified as residents. The signage for the visually impaired will have bird songs and tactile images.

We wanted an outdoor classroom to encourage field trips by school groups as well as grown up groups like garden clubs, so volunteers built us one.

I've taught photography classes in the outdoor classroom. It's free to the public for anyone to use.

One of my assignments was to photograph a Devil's Walking Stick which I would have thought was an insect. After several tries, I finally found someone who knew what and where one was - ancient breed of trees with few leaves and lots of thorns.

There is a raised butterfly garden out front that is accessible for wheelchairs, so the original ladies' club members, many of whom are wheelchair bound now, can putter around with trowels if they wish.

Very pleased to note that this is part one. Lots and lots of reasons to like this series and I will enjoy subsequent Parts.

It is a feel good story of a valuable project. The project has many sides. History and changing generations, the plot as an environment, the individual plants and inhabitants, the varied people who give their time to the project and the work done.

You have caught the many aspects that make up the story. It is a brilliant little project that gives meaning to photography. It must be very satisfying.

A PS. Shock. Horror. Beautiful butterfly but what is the flower? Is that Lantana? If so in Australia it is listed in the 10 most damaging invasive species to ever arrive here.

-- hide signature --

Mike Fewster
Adelaide Australia

 Mike Fewster's gear list:Mike Fewster's gear list
Sony RX1 Sony a7R II Sony a7R III
Mike Fewster Veteran Member • Posts: 8,621
Re: Fungus

KeesSmeele wrote:

Spotted this fellow on a walk last sunday. This mushroom decided to grow right on top of a post of a gate in a fence.

The weather wasn't perfect for photography at all: grey, cloudy and a bit of drizzling rain. Still iI am pleased with the results. Moreover this is a first attempt to process the RAW image in Darktable. Itล› freeware that got my interest for a while, now I have found the time to practice it. The learning curve is a steep one and I am not at the end of the curve. I still need to figure out how to denoise the background, for instance. as an first attempt, I am pleased with the result.

It has to be viewed, at least, at "original size".

A good choice of perspective. The simple, but exquisite form is shown off to perfection. The dark, out of focus background is just right. Its creamy plainness complements the delicate folds of the fungus. Likewise the narrow plane of focus does the same for the framing moss. The stronger light falling on the moss spotlights your subject.

All very nice.

If this is to be shown as a small image I'd be cropping it quite hard so that the fine details are more apparent.

-- hide signature --

Mike Fewster
Adelaide Australia

 Mike Fewster's gear list:Mike Fewster's gear list
Sony RX1 Sony a7R II Sony a7R III
RoelHendrickx
OP RoelHendrickx Forum Pro • Posts: 27,737
Hmm..

P3T3S wrote:

I am visiting family this week, so my internet access is very limited.

This is also an iPhone image. Sort of.

Pete

I really like the idea, but I am not sure if I really like the practical execution shown here.

Because there is nothing holding the phone, I have a hard time suspending my disbelief.

Is that phone just floating in the air?  Is it photoshopped onto a photo of grass?

Or is it lying on the grass itself (it seems so)?  In that case, it is clear that the phone is used as a way to inject some fauna in this scene that is only grass.  Obviously, a phone lying with its lens straight onto the ground, cannot photography anything below it.

If you would have photographed a hand holding a phone a meter or so above the ground (with some shallow DOF maybe) I would have bought into the illusion that we are seeing an actual critter, present there, through the lens of a smartphone camera, i.e. like many people nowadays view ANYTHING that they encounter.

It would have made not only a clever shot, but also a bit of social commentary, and thus be more multi-layered.

-- hide signature --

Roel Hendrickx
lots of images: http://www.roelh.zenfolio.com

Mike Fewster Veteran Member • Posts: 8,621
Re: A kitschy photo ๐Ÿ˜„

Kumsal wrote:

OK, it is kitschy but absolutely no apology is needed. You would have to be very old and cynical indeed not to get a glow from this shot.

I think it is worth some further work. It may not come off but I'd experiment with a small amount of shadow lifting in the eye/bill area of the closest swan and a very small amount of highlight dropping in the brightest area of the rear swan.

-- hide signature --

Mike Fewster
Adelaide Australia

 Mike Fewster's gear list:Mike Fewster's gear list
Sony RX1 Sony a7R II Sony a7R III
RoelHendrickx
OP RoelHendrickx Forum Pro • Posts: 27,737
Re: Botanical Garden Project Part 1

minniev wrote:

This week and probably next I'll be sharing sets from a project I'm doing for our local environmental group.

In the 1970s the area where I live was just "developing" out of wilderness and less than 200 families lived out here, most having moved from a nearby big city. The ladies, perhaps bored, formed a garden club, but found the area so different that their usual projects were untenable. So they focused on creating a large botanical garden featuring native plant life, with walking trails throughout. As the ladies aged they became less able to maintain it, and now only a few are still afoot. Today's generation of women are too busy working to keep the club alive. Our non profit took it on as a project, got a grant, and by spring will have completed the cleanup/fixup/refurbishing. It will be handicapped accessible and braille certified. I'm doing the photography for the print and kiosk guides (except for the birds, who are being done by a local Audubon bird photographer). These aren't in order, but plucked from the larger set of the spring/summer grouping.

I really like this project, and its results.

Documenting not only the final product (the finished Botanical Garden, restored), but also the process of getting there, with many volunteers, sounds also like a great photographic subject.  The photos shown here, are very promising.

I'm not a big fan of flowers, but I love the sensuality of ferns.  I expect more fern shots coming our way.  Please humour me.

Bill looks like a character worth following around.  His T-shirt looks very MAHA (make America humble again).

And that butterfly shot is a beauty.  I'll have a large helping of those too, yes, please.

This is the main trail, about a mile long with some unpaved side trails and features to explore. It will all be smoothed for easy wheelchair access and marked for safety for the visually impaired.

The first thing the ladies planted was camellias. Unchecked for half a century they are now large trees. After their camellia phase, they decided to plant only native plants, but they left the camellias where they were.

Bill has written several books on "fernology" and led the development of the fern bog, which features every kind of native fern in central Misssissippi.

I don't know all their names but they are fun to photograph in closeup.

Wild morning glories abound in summer.

Because a creek runs through the middle of the garden we often have a light fog in the mornings that makes photos more fun. There's bird boxes like this, individually chosen for the types of birds our Audubon folks have identified as residents. The signage for the visually impaired will have bird songs and tactile images.

We wanted an outdoor classroom to encourage field trips by school groups as well as grown up groups like garden clubs, so volunteers built us one.

I've taught photography classes in the outdoor classroom. It's free to the public for anyone to use.

One of my assignments was to photograph a Devil's Walking Stick which I would have thought was an insect. After several tries, I finally found someone who knew what and where one was - ancient breed of trees with few leaves and lots of thorns.

There is a raised butterfly garden out front that is accessible for wheelchairs, so the original ladies' club members, many of whom are wheelchair bound now, can putter around with trowels if they wish.

-- hide signature --

Roel Hendrickx
lots of images: http://www.roelh.zenfolio.com

RoelHendrickx
OP RoelHendrickx Forum Pro • Posts: 27,737
Re: Fungus

KeesSmeele wrote:

Spotted this fellow on a walk last sunday. This mushroom decided to grow right on top of a post of a gate in a fence.

The weather wasn't perfect for photography at all: grey, cloudy and a bit of drizzling rain. Still iI am pleased with the results. Moreover this is a first attempt to process the RAW image in Darktable. Itล› freeware that got my interest for a while, now I have found the time to practice it. The learning curve is a steep one and I am not at the end of the curve. I still need to figure out how to denoise the background, for instance. as an first attempt, I am pleased with the result.

One of your best shots shown here in this thread until now.

The scene on top of the fence post looks like a mini landscape.

If you would have moved closer, we would not have gotten the perfect impression that we are getting now : that nature will always find a way to create serene beauty even in the unlikeliest of places.

Having the little fungus stand exactly in the center of the frame, defies all conventional wisdom of composition, but it works wonderfully: there is a clear focus of attention from which our gaze can meander and drift in all directions (mostly down obviously, the top part functions mostly as breathing space).

-- hide signature --

Roel Hendrickx
lots of images: http://www.roelh.zenfolio.com

Keyboard shortcuts:
FForum MMy threads