Study Group 2


Richard Fisher· (B)

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JULY 2019 ROUND

Title:     
   
Goal:    

Equipment/Source:    
   
Technique:    

Processing:      

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

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

NOT PARTICIPATING IN THE JULY OR AUGUST ROUNDS












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JUNE 2019 ROUND
Title:    Great Horned Owl Landing
 
   
Goal:  i wanted to capture a Great-horned Owl as it lands on post at night
  

Equipment/Source:   Nikon D850 with 180-400 lens.   

Technique:  The owl was trained to fly toward food. As it crossed the beam, a series of flashes went off. As soon as the food was placed, I opened my shutter (the event occurred in a dark barn, at night). The shutter was opened 2-5 seconds and immediately closed after the first class.

Processing:   Besides from adjustments in lightroom, luminous masks were used to make the image pop, a 3 stage sharpen process used and curves applied to adjust the luminosity of the wings.

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

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

Review by commentator Rick C.

The image provides a lot of information about a Great Horned Owl landing and in that regard, I think you have a successful capture. While there is behavior, I do not feel it is sufficient as shown to raise the image above the environmental portrait level. If the owl had prey in its talons, it would go up markedly as the story would be much more complete.

 

The technical aspects of the capture look pretty good to me. There is some nice detail and seeing how the feathering adjusts when landing adds interest. There is a little light falloff for one side to the other, but I do not find that objectionable. Your note about three stages of sharpening was interesting as the eyes still look a touch soft to me. I did not download the image and magnify it to confirm that impression.

I feel the image is effective pictorially. It has good initial impact and sufficient interest value in the elements to keep a viewer involved. It is a little tight, but not to the point of being objectionable. The black background is effective and, given the nature of the subject, also reasonably realistic. I do wish there was a bit more separation between the lead foot and the perch.

N-2, T-2, P-3 = 7 (T-2 due to slight apparent softness in the eyes / facial area.)


Review by Janice R.
NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
Nice portrait of the Great Horned Owl. Not sure that the nature story is.

SCORE N (Nature) 2-basic shot--no nature story

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
Sharp focus, great detail, good color. The only thing that bothers me is that it's really obvious it's a flash photo. Turning down the flash just to provide fill may have helped or perhaps it's because of all the flashes going off.

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

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
Dramatic composition with the bird well placed within the frame.

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

TOTAL BASIC SCORE 7


Review by Prasad D.
NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
A fine capture of the Owl poised to settle with the balance of its wings spread out completely.

SCORE N (Nature) 3-positive nature story

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
To me it seems over exposed on the feathers of the right wing and the claws.

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

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE


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

TOTAL BASIC SCORE 7


Review by Andy H.
NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
The story for me is in the action. I accept its a staged event with pre-organised set ups but that shouldn't detract from the quality of the image. Flat top to post, HOM?

SCORE N (Nature) 3-positive nature story

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
Technically the image is spot on for me. Given the set up I wouldn't have expected any less.

SCORE T (Technical Quality) 3-Excellent exposure color balance and sharpness

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
The image is strong and well composed. Personally I like to see a little movement in the wings to give the feel of being alive and not frozen in time. Black backgrounds can be an issue with some judges.

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

TOTAL BASIC SCORE 8


Review by Natalie M.
NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
Great shot of the owl landing, however because of the studio-like conditions I haven't given full points for storytelling.

SCORE N (Nature) 2-basic shot--no nature story

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
Appears to be a well executed shot with good feather detail.

SCORE T (Technical Quality) 3-Excellent exposure color balance and sharpness

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
Well captured action shot, background is black, so seems to emphasise a staged shoot. I wonder if it would do better in an open category.

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

TOTAL BASIC SCORE 7


Review by Dennis H.
NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
Good nature depiction of owl detecting food in dark environment. You've captured the owl at the precise moment.

SCORE N (Nature) 3-positive nature story

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
The owl displays nice colour balance. The head and eyes are sharp.


SCORE T (Technical Quality) 3-Excellent exposure color balance and sharpness

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
The image is nicely composed with good impact.

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

TOTAL BASIC SCORE 9

 

Rich could be described as a modern-day Renaissance man. Though now retired from Kraft Foods (2012), he is trained in the sciences with a PhD from UCLA in Molecular Biology and has earned an MBA from the University of Chicago where he specialized in Finance, Marketing and Statistics. In addition to his analytic side, Rich is artistic as demonstrated from his photography. 

During his tenure at Kraft Foods his career spanned such diverse areas from Physical Chemistry and computer simulation to Marketing Analytic (last brand positions were Director of Analytics for the Cheese & Dairy Business Unit and The Pizza Company). As head of Analytics Rich was responsible for forecasting volumetric and financial impact of changes in marketing spending and price changes. 

Rich has been a member of the Garden Photographic Society (GPS) since 1997 and the Riverwood Nature Photographic Society (RNPS) since 2002. In GPS he has held numerous positions such as newsletter editor, president, competition chair, DPI coordinator and Treasurer. In RNPS he has been Outing and Program Chairs, and Vice President of Competition. Rich has been on the board of CACCA, Chicago Area Camera Club Association, since 1999 and Rich has been Treasurer for most of his tenure on the board except during his term as president, 2014-16. In addition, he has been additional roles as the information manager and coordinator of speakers and judges. 

On a personal note, Rich lives outside Chicago with his wife Jane and their delightful Golden Retriever, Denali. Both Rich and Jane love to travel and are planning their 23rd trip Africa.