Study Group 2


Linda Chubb - A

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SEPTEMBER 2019 ROUND

Title:     Butterfly Nectar Treat 
   
Goal:    Capture butterfly drinking nectar
 
Equipment/Source:   Nikon D750, F5.7, ISO 1000, 1/320, Nikon 28-300 lens
 
Technique:   Hand held; took picture from various views

Processing:   
Used Smart Photo Fix in Paint Shop Pro 8

  

Comments/Scores (N, T, P, E, Total)


  Critique Image (only members of Study Group Two may critique this image)


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AUGUST 2019 ROUND
Title:     Goldenrod Crab Spider Seeing Dinner
     
Goal:    Capture close up with telephoto lens 

Equipment/Source:   Nikon D750 18-300,  F/5.6, ISO 125, 1/60, taken in Harrisville, Michigan

Technique:   Hand Held.  I took this picture many times in an effort to get a sharp picture.  At first I didn't even think it was a spider as I couldn't identify 8 legs.

Processing:    Crop, Sharpen

Comments/Scores (N, T, P, E, Total)

  Critique Image (only members of Study Group Two may critique this image)

 Review by commentator Rick C.
These gals often go overlooked so that is a nice bit of seeing. You have captured the open forelegs position that they use when hunting prey. They know that the insects they feed on will typically come to a nectar / pollen source and so they lie in wait. The nature story is effective, but would be stronger from a lower angle where we see into the spider’s body from its level or where it had captured prey. I am rating this as a 2 as it is more of an environmental portrait as shown.

Primary focus looks good to me, but I do not feel the subject itself is optimally sharp. That does not surprise me given that you were doing this handheld and our normal post processing sharpening techniques are not the best for dealing with what I will classify as shake softness. The depth of field is reasonable but the back ground remains prominent and does provide some competition for the main flower and subject. The exposure looks good for the subject and lighting. I am setting the technical score at 2 based on sharpness of the principal subject and some competition from the background.

The central composition is understandable for the way in which you made the capture. It is static, but I think you could get away with it in this case if the background were less competitive. Alternatively, this is a case where, if the pixels allowed for it, cropping in to a much tighter view with only part of the flower showing could improve the potential composition markedly. I do like the fact that the spider is placed at the 10 o’clock position as this adds to the visual tension of the scene. I think you can make your spider a bit more prominent by using the Sponge tool set on Saturate and an opacity of around 20% to just bump up the saturation in the spider’s body a bit. I am rating the pictorial measure at a 2 due to the background’s influence. Normally I won’t mark down in more than one area for something such as this, but in this instance minimizing the background is critical to the image’s effectiveness.

N-2, T-2, P-2 = 6 (see the adjusted version where I have compensated for some shake in capture, adjusted the background tonality and boosted the spider’s saturation very slightly.)


Review by Natalie M

NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
The pose of the spider certainly implies that something is happening. However, is the pose really about the bug, or the big lens pointing in is direction?

SCORE N (Nature) 3-nature story strong

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
The image isn't really sharp. The best macro shots generally have a greater depth of field, and in order to achieve this either a flash, or a tripod is required, both will make things trickier when trying too shoot bugs etc that move quickly. If you are interested in this type of photography, a macro lens will be a worthwhile investment.

SCORE T (Technical Quality) 1-Inadequate exposure color balance and sharpness

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
The square crop works well. Unfortunately the small grub is so small in the frame that it could easily be missed as an element.

SCORE P (Pictorial Quality) 2-Average composition and impact

TOTAL BASIC SCORE 6


Review by Andy H

NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
There's a clear story, spider and prey.

SCORE N (Nature) 3-nature story strong

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
Macro is tough and trying to get the maximum DOF to get as much in focus is not easy. Focus stacking and some in camera functions can help a great deal. Saying that I think you done a good job in getting the spider and caterpillar sharp. Colours are good.

SCORE T (Technical Quality) 2-Average exposure color balance and sharpness

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
I quite like the square crop for this image and good contrast between the different elements. The flower at the back is a little distracting. I carry some soft clips with me and move any distractions out of the frame.

SCORE P (Pictorial Quality) 2-Average composition and impact

TOTAL BASIC SCORE 7


Review by Louis P

NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
definitely a nature image

SCORE N (Nature) 3-nature story strong

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
could have been sharper; and perhaps the main subject should have been enlarged.

SCORE T (Technical Quality) 2-Average exposure color balance and sharpness

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
composition was very good, but small size of insect limited its impact.

SCORE P (Pictorial Quality) 2-Average composition and impact

TOTAL BASIC SCORE 7


Review by Natalie M

NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
There is possibly a story there, however a closer view would make it more obvious to see.

SCORE N (Nature) 2-Nature story of average strength (portrait

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
The shot is a little soft. If you are interested in macro photography I recommend investing in a dedicated macro lens. More depth of field and a faster shutter speed would have improved the sharpness, and although not always easy, a tripod or flash usually achieves better shots.

SCORE T (Technical Quality) 2-Average exposure color balance and sharpness

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
While I think the square crop suits the flower, in order to really tell the story of the spider and the grub I believe you needed to be closer.

SCORE P (Pictorial Quality) 2-Average composition and impact

TOTAL BASIC SCORE 6


Review by Dennis H

NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
Interesting study of spider looking for a meal.

SCORE N (Nature) 2-Nature story of average strength (portrait

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
I believe your shutter speed is too slow with that equipment to obtain a sharp image. I would select 1/320 sec as a minimum. Other camera settings look good Also the use of a tripod or monopod would help.

SCORE T (Technical Quality) 2-Average exposure color balance and sharpness

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
The flower certainly jumps out at you but tends to overpower the spider.

SCORE P (Pictorial Quality) 2-Average composition and impact

TOTAL BASIC SCORE 6


Review by William S

NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
I think that your nature story was met with the insect on the flower.

SCORE N (Nature) 3-nature story strong

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
The image is acceptably sharp however the bokeh of the background seems a little busy; Reducing the brightness on the insect would make a better image.

SCORE T (Technical Quality) 2-Average exposure color balance and sharpness

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
As a nature photograph I would like to have more visual emphasis placed on the insect’s actions.

SCORE P (Pictorial Quality) 2-Average composition and impact

TOTAL BASIC SCORE 7


Review by Janice R

NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
Nature story not clear except that it is a spider on the flower. I would have liked to see the spider engaged in some activity. To me this is an environmental portrait of the spider.

SCORE N (Nature) 2-Nature story of average strength (portrait

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
Nice focus on subject and center of flower. good color balance and nice blurring of the background. good choice of dof.

SCORE T (Technical Quality) 2-Average exposure color balance and sharpness

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
I find this to be a nice image of the flower and spider but for me, the "bullseye" composition lacks impact.

SCORE P (Pictorial Quality) 2-Average composition and impact

TOTAL BASIC SCORE 6


Review by Martin P

NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
An interesting nature image I think. I am not sure what the spider is doing, but I assume it is either hunting or feeling threatened. It certainly stands out as doing something (I am not an expert on spider behavior )

SCORE N (Nature) 3-nature story strong

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
The image appears sharp and well exposed. The depth of field works well to soften the background. I might have used a higher iso to give a faster shutter speed likely to give you more sharp images. The lighting might be a little flat and direct.

SCORE T (Technical Quality) 2-Average exposure color balance and sharpness

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
Centrally framed and filling the frame, the flower position works well. The slightly diffuse background supports and works well with the flower. The spider is a nice surprise and adds to the image.

SCORE P (Pictorial Quality) 3-Excellent composition and impact

TOTAL BASIC SCORE 8

 

I’m a retired Legal Secretary who moved back to Austin, Texas, the first of this year.  I’ve been interested in photography going back to trying to take action shots at my son’s soccer games with a Pentax 35mm camera.

When I retired, I moved to Sun City, in Georgetown, Texas, where there was a great Photography Club.  We entered PSA competitions on a Club basis.  We also had Club competitions and critiques on an individual basis.   I have also participated in a few outside competitions.

I later moved to Galveston, Texas, where I lived for two years before returning to Austin.  While living in Galveston, I took two Birding classes and became very interested in my current interest in “Birds.”  Galveston was a wonderful place to see many bird species.

My present goal is to improve my photography and go on some trips with birding/nature groups to places outside of Texas.  I currently use a Nikon D750.  Taking pictures really excites me….I love this hobby!!!!