Study Group 2


Gang Zheng - C

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NEXT 2019 ROUND
Title:    A wild duck in the water
     
Goal:     In February 2018, I filmed two wild ducks about to slide into the water at Beijing Yuanmingyuan Park.

Equipment/Source:   Nikon D500, NIKKOR 18 ¬ ¬ -300mm, handheld lens

Technique:    F / 5.6, 1/1250 seconds, iso-320, focal length: 280mm, evaluated photometric

Processing:   Pscc 2017, Image Cut, Saturation, Sharpness 

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

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

 


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JULY 2019 ROUND

Title:    wait
   
Goal:    In February 2018, I took this picture at Beijing Yuanmingyuan Park. Two rest birds were like lovers, and the other magpie seemed to be peeping at them. It was very human. 
 
Equipment/Source:   Nikon D500, NIKKOR 18 ¬ ¬ -300mm, handheld lens
 
Technique:  F / 5.6, 1/1250 seconds, iso-1000, focal length: 300mm, evaluated photometric

Processing:  
Pscc 2017, image color balance, Green, sharpness, saturation.

  

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


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

Review by commentator Rick C.
Welcome to the ND 2 study group family.

You have the right idea. We are looking for images that show nature subjects, ideally displaying some aspect of behavior that provides insight into how they interact between their own species and those in the environment around them. Unfortunately, in this case your equipment was a limiting factor and we do not have enough image size for the ley elements to effectively convey that story. If we were to crop in to an adequate image to show the subjects well, we would run into pixelization due to the extent of the crop on this frame. For now, working with the 18-300 you will want to try working with subject which you can approach more closely without disturbing them. From what I can see in the image, you pair of lovers are male and female Mandarin Ducks. Due to the lack of a clear story the image would only garner the 1 (minimal) level.

Your exposure looks good for the lighting present. AT this magnification it is difficult to fully evaluate focus and sharpness. I would say that focus looks reasonable but sharpness could be improved on in post processing.

Pictorially, the composition is centers and somewhat static as a result. The reeds can make an effective backdrop, however, given the nice reflection and the lack of structure in it that might compete with the subject, if we were able to focus (or crop) in more closely on them I would be inclined to crop slightly above them and include more of the reflection (effectively placing them in the upper left quadrant of the frame. The right side of the frame would stop just beyond the Magpie. Arranging the elements in this manner will provide improved visual tension and interest in the image.

N-1, T-2, P-1 = 4 (N-1 nature story is so small in image that it is overpowered by non-contributing elements. T-2 Lack of critical sharpness on key subjects. P-1 Central composition is static. Cropping will improve image dynamics, but would require too large a crop for image size if pixelization is to be avoided.)


Review by Louis P.
NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
definitely fits criteria

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

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
I do not understand why I could not view an enlarged view; therefore, from what I could see, it was well captured with nice detail.

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

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
in my opinion all 3 birds comprise too little of the image; therefore, I believe that it would benefit from
substantial cropping, could use more contrast between the birds and the grass, particularly the 3rd bird. I would have also added some saturation.

SCORE P (Pictorial Quality) 1-Inadequate composition and impact

TOTAL BASIC SCORE 5


Review by Larry T.
NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
The image simply shows three birds standing in water. This is ordinary bird behavior and does not rise to the level of a strong nature storyline.

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

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
While the camera settings should be adequate to capture this image however when placed in the expanded view none of the birds are truly sharp. In addition these two birds occupy a minimal position in the overall image and are unable to be identified. To obtain a compelling subject they should certain fill a larger portion of the total image. Due to the general light tones of the grasses the image may be a little bit overexposed as well. I would suggest that when shooting wildlife you should strive to be at eye level with your subject and even at this distance you should not be shooting down on them.

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

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
In this image you simply have too much of the unnecessary items (the grasses and the water) and too little of the subject (the birds). If the birds were sharper you could easily crop off have the foreground and half of the background and not lose anything of importance. For this image you have either too little lens or are too far away to make it anything other than a snapshot. I suggest you bring down the exposure a bit,add some contrast to define the grasses and sharpen everything. You should at least crop out the light grey colored items in the upper right corner.

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

TOTAL BASIC SCORE 5


Review by Janice R.
NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
Without reading your description of the image, I'm not sure what the nature story is.

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

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
The subject is very small in the image so I'm not able to really see their interaction or any detail on them. It would have helped to crop the image so the subject is a more prominent part of the image. Good exposure, the gold-brown color of the grasses is and their reflection is pleasing.

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

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
The current composition and smallness of the subject limits the impact of the image.

SCORE P (Pictorial Quality) 1-Inadequate composition and impact

TOTAL BASIC SCORE 4


Review by Andy H.
NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE

Welcome Gang Zheng. The subjects are quite small in the image, the magpie is obscured, and it doesn't help with the story. If you could have got closer it would have made it easier to interpret the story.

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

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
As in the nature review I think this image needed to be closer in. Subjects are a bit soft. Colours and tones look fine.

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

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
The image, in my view, needs more content to give it impact. There is an optical illusion that the image is not level. It probably is level but I would rotate the horizontal to make it artificially level.
Keep at it, most of us have been at it for years and still don't get everything right.

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

TOTAL BASIC SCORE 6


Review by William S.
NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
I like your description of the photograph but I don’t think that it qualifies as a nature story.

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

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
It seems that your photograph suffers from atmospheric distortion that results from shooting at a long focal length over water on a sunny day. The dirt and humidity in the air between your lens and the subject causes distortion when shooting at a distance. I have thought that I had captured a sharp image only to discover it suffers from atmospheric distortion.

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

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
A closer crop would remove much of the negative space, focus more on the subject and create more visual impact.

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

TOTAL BASIC SCORE 6


Review by Isabella Z.
NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
The story of this picture is vivid. I can tell the birds are truly in love.

SCORE N (Nature) 3-positive nature story

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
I think the picture might be a little bit over exposed. the details of the white part of the birds seem to be lost

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

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
I think this picture needs to be cropped so that the birds can be a little large.

SCORE P (Pictorial Quality) 1-Inadequate composition and impact

TOTAL BASIC SCORE 6


Review by Dennis H.
NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
Your image fits the nature definition showing behavioural traits of birds. A little difficult to see what's happening.

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

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
Your settings for speed and ISO could be reduced for sitting birds. Image looks a little over-exposed on my screen.

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

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
Your image could be improved by straighening and also cropping the top and bottom to enhance bird activity.

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

TOTAL BASIC SCORE 6


Review by Natalie M.
NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
It's difficult to see the story here. Because you have included so much of the surroundings I have scored it as an environmental portrait.

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

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
You have spotted a potential story here, however you are just too far away from the birds to tell it. Because they are so far away there is a great loss of sharpness.

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

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
Once again, the subjects are too far away to see what's really going on. Bird photography is a wonderful pursuit so keep practising.

SCORE P (Pictorial Quality) 1-Inadequate composition and impact

TOTAL BASIC SCORE 4


Review by Martin P.
NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
A touching moment caught between a male and female mandarin duck. We are of course not supposed to attach human emotions and actions to animals, but it is hard not to in this case

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

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
Image looks sharp and well exposed, but the main subjects are a little small in the frame.

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

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
I am enjoying the backdrop to this image of the wonderfully tall reeds in such a neutral colour to show off the main subjects. I really wish the ducks were much larger in the frame overall. The reflections work very well and add to the image

SCORE P (Pictorial Quality) 1-Inadequate composition and impact

TOTAL BASIC SCORE 5

I am an amateur photographer who likes photography. After work, I take pictures of people and still life around me. I find pleasure in photography. Hope to join the study group to get more guidance and help.