Study Group 2


Nirmalya Bhattacharya (A)

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JULY 2020 ROUND
Title:   Tug of War  

Goal:   To capture interaction of spotted Hyena. I had no scope to cover full body with Nikon 200-500mm still I preferred to opt for this lens because in my perception the drama of this photograph is more emphasized with a close up shot than a documentary coverage of the complete scenario with full body of the animals.   

Equipment/Source:   Nikon D 7200, Nikon 200-500mm;   

Technique:    F 200mm, f: 5.6, s: 1/500mm, ISO: 560, Exp compensation: -0.3; taken from safari vehicle on bean bag supported on window.  

Processing:    Converted to black and white with selective dodge and burn, sharpening and contrast enhancement.   

Score this Image: YES

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JUNE 2020 ROUND

Title:     Baby care
   
Goal:    Bengal Tiger is the largest member of the cat family and 70% of it's population belongs to India.This photograph was taken at Ranthambhore Tiger reserve, Rajasthan. It is a natural habitat for Bengal tiger.Deciduous arid forest on the hill terrain provides perfect habitat for this magnificent apex predator.Photographers across the globe visit this forest with single track of mind of finding and capturing Bengal tiger in it's own homeland. As it is not possible or allowed to walk or even place your vehicle as per your choice most of the time and finding a tiger is always a chance factor, no predetermined goal works most of the time. We were lucky to trace the mother and her cub near a natural waterhole following the alarm call of sambar deer.We waited for more than an hour till the mother walked down to drink water near her cub. The cub expressed her happiness too and the mom cuddled her out of affection.It was almost 5PM and light condition was very poor as the waterhole falls between two ridges of hillock.A bunch of dry grass was obstructing vision but we had no option to change the place at that moment due to presence of too many safari vehicles at a time on a narrow road.  
 
Equipment/Source:     Camera Nikon D750, Lens: Nikon 200-500mm,
 
Technique:    Focal distance 260mm, f:5.6, S:1/1000Sec, ISO:2800, Handheld from safari vehicle.

Processing: 
Photo was cropped, sharpened selectively, adjusted contrast, Black & White points, applied curve for increasing luminosity of the subject.  

Score this image: YES
  

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

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Review by commentator Dan C.

Your image has a strong nature story that clearly shows the interaction between a mother and her cub, even if that cub is almost full size.  Other aspects of the image add to the story such as the wet bodies that shows this is one cat species that actually likes water.  The leaves also give a hint to the time of year the image was taken.  The interaction, as well as the other clues, are what prompts me to award a 3 for nature story.

Technically your sharpness is good.  Your overall exposure is acceptable but a bit flat.  I recommend reducing it slightly and adding some contrast to make the two tigers stand out as in the attached example.  Just do not go too far so the image no longer looks natural.  As I said with Maitham’s image, If you decide to use this in an exhibition please pay attention to how the exhibition plans to present the image to the judges.  If they indicate the presentation will be by projection, be sure to convert your color space to sRGB instead of the Adobe RGB it currently is.  There are no color problems if shown on a HDTV or on computer monitors.  If shown by actual projections, the colors can look flat if you use the Adobe RGB color space. The need for additional contrast brings the technical score down to a 2.

Pictorially I recommend cropping down from the top to focus more intention on the tigers.  The rocks being cropped out do not weaken your nature story.  Not cropping is a personal decision so I will keep the pictorial score at a 3.

N3, T2, P3, E0, Total 8


Review by Maitham A

NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
the image shows a romantically moment between the tigers and a reflection on the water which I wished it was showing the full tigers faces

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
there were some plants blurred but showing on the right tiger body and a leaf on the left tiger's leg which kind of need to be given more attention of removing it or at least show from better angel

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
the image of showing the love between the tigers is an amazing moment but need to have more attention to surrounding details not to be overlep with the tigers body

SCORE 8


Review by Adrian B

NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
You were more fortunate than my wife and I being tigers cleanly like this - we went in November 2018 and saw none! While this is a pleasing image, I don't find it tells much of a story. The two are nudging each other I think, but not licking each other as cheetahs do after eating their kill. You had some water to provide a reflection, but not of a face.
You were looking down on them - its better, if one can, to be face level.
So for Exhibition submissions, where a story is important, I suspect the above would hold you back. Still a nice image for your records!

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
It is sharp and clear where it needs to be. I don't find the grass distracting.

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
It is not that interesting an image to engage with, partially as we are looking from quite a hight, but also the lack of anything going on to provide interest.

SCORE 6


Review by LC B.

NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
Great storytelling with this image. 3

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
From your statement I know you were working with some light issues, but I still think you produced a strong image. I do think that lack of focus on the left side of the image is a distraction. 2


PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
I think there are compositional issues with this image by choosing to place the subjects in the center. I would love to see the uncropped version of this image, as I think adjusting how it is cropped could easily create a stronger composition; accentuate the movement of the cub across the frame; and address the previously mentioned focus issue. I feel that as the bottom half the image is cluttered with, for me, distractions (the rippled portion of the reflection, the stems of grass and the unfocused hind-quarters of the cub) that thus recropping might produce a more impactful image.
 2

SCORE 7


Review by Suman B.

NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
the cuddling scene evokes an emotional feeling thus leading to a higher nature story value. And with your choice of showing backgrounds of the Arid Terrain helps it to a 3 in nature stories. the leaves tagged along the tail of the sub adult and the water soaked belly of the mother tigress indicates that they were probably cooling off in the pond helps your nature story.

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
although you mentioned that since seeing Tiger is a chance and no predetermined goal setting works perhaps you may consider some technical points I advise you upon. First of al l use a stand / safari vehicle widow panes or a beanbag if you could manage one. It will help you greatly reducing your jerks associated with handhelding your equipment. since the safari vehicle is standing still you will have plenty of choices before the sub-adult cuddles with the mother tigress. the light conditions in that part of India are pretty good at 5 PM as I found out myself. use a slightly higher aperture than 5.6 as that is the minimum your lens offers and you will get good depth. Also you may needed to focus a bit tighter as Nikons auto focus on contrasts which is evident from the sharp leaves seen just below the throat of the sub-adult. Technically a 2 for this shot.

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
pictorially I would love to see the reflection not being cut in the bottom part of the image (perhaps you have that in your raw image). that leads to a 2.

SCORE 7


Review by Bogdan B

NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
You have captured a gentle moment.

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
The blurred grasses in front are distraction. Cub is a little bit unsharp and with less contrast.

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
Composition is good.

SCORE 8

I always liked photography since childhood but the curiosity turned into passion during 2011-12, when I had my first DSLR. I went through the photography course at National Academy of Photography, Kolkata, India during 2012. Then started participating in National and International salons and competitions from 2013. I was active participant till 2016 and by that time completed EFIAP with more than 1700 international acceptance and 159 awards from across 56 countries through salon participation. My works were also recognised at 2014 Monochrome award, 2015 Sony World Photography Award as Commendable one and during 2017 Olympus International photography competition.

My area of core competence were always people and fine art photography. I developed a liking towards Nature and wildlife photography when for the first time I had a chance to visit Kaziranga, the world heritage sanctuary in eastern India. Last 3 years I have mostly focused on wildlife and visited Indian forests and Africa several times. I am at 52 now and by profession in sales and marketing job promoting organic concepts of agriculture in India.