Study Group 2

Bogdan Bricelj, MPSA, EFIAP/g

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Title:   Drops on the Eyes  

Goal:   Capturing insects with dew drops early in the morning
Equipment/Source:  Panasonic FZ-50, 110mm on built in lens, macro converter +10, ISO 100, F5, 1/640s Manual, handheld, sunny.

Technique:   On a photo trip our hotel was near a large meadow. I woke up early in the morning and found some beautiful butterflies. Here I used+10 macro converter to make visible the dew drops on it's eyes. Some minutes later it washed them with its legs.

Processing:   Crop, selective burn, contrast correction with levels and curves in Photoshop Elements, noise reduction with Nindja Noise.

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

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

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Title:   Three Blossoms
Goal:   Geting some spring photos  

Equipment/Source:   Panasonic FZ-50, 80mm on built in lens, macro converter, ISO 100, F8, 1/640s Shutter Priority, handheld, sunny.  

Technique:   On a spring photo-walking we have found many beautiful flowers of spring saffron. I like this trio the most. Could hardly understand, how these flowers grew through the snow. 

Processing:   Crop, contrast correction with levels and curves in Photoshop Elements.  

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

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

Review by commentator Dan C.

This one will be tricky if ever used in a competition. It will depend highly on the knowledge of the judges.  The crocus used for saffron is a hybrid, C. sativus.  There is a corresponding wild saffron, C cartwrightanus that is similar.  The length of the stamens on your crocus could easily be an indicator this is the wild variety.  The commercial saffron stamens are much longer and thinner threads.  I am giving you the benefit of the doubt here.

It is not easy to provide good story value with botanical subjects but the snow helps you provide that story value here.  Technically your exposure and sharpness is good and shows good texture and detail in the snow.  Pictorially the trio works well together, with one dominant crocus and two supporting crocuses. 

N2, T3, P3, E0, Total 8

Review by Andy H.
Lovely image, nice group of three. Suites square crop. Never to sure how to score the Story perhaps Dan could give us some direction in this area. Technically good. Viewpoint, for me, could have been a little lower. Some fill flash or a reflector might have helped illuminate the LH flower and taken away the shadow.
N-2, T-3, P-2, E-0, Total-7

Review by Bruce F.
Color is good, but could be better. Have you ever thought to carry a small diffuser with you? I would tie the loop of the diffuser case to my belt or clip it to my vest, especially if I was going out to take flower images. The diffuser gives you cloud cover light, and images taken under a diffuser have color that pops. This would dramatically increase the impact of the image. Even though you did well to hold the highlights in the bright sunlight; diffused light would have given richer color with beautiful transitions between the individual shades of color.
I do like the story of the flower pushing through the icy snow to bloom and germinate. That’s a strong nature story.
Also, your point of view is a human one, looking down at a subject. I think moving your camera down, getting on the flowers level, while still including some of the snowy ice would added more drama to the composition and final image without sacrificing any of the nature story.  
N-3, T-2, P-2, E-0, Total-7

Review by Suman B.
the safron whose reproduction hinges on human assistance. which makes it a non-nature story. so nature wise it can be termed as a cultivated plant and hence according to nature definition it can not come under nature. I may be wrong but WIKI tells this story. Link given for you to check - "".

Review by Jim D.
I like the story of spring breaking through and life finding a way. Technically the photo was solid in parts of it like the flowers the use of shadows enhance the overall while on the ice the seemed to distract the color and tone were goog. The ice background had some debris that distracted from the over all
N-3, T-2, P-2, E-0, total-7

Response to critique from Bogdan B.:
Suman: In our country Slovenia, there are large meadows with safron, that are large from houses and civilisation. Safron in gardens is very rare. I think Dan had explained the differencies.


Bogdan Bricelj, MPSA, EFIAP/g, was born in Jesenice in Slovenia. He graduated at Faculty of electrical engineering in Ljubljana. He was working for 9 years in steel factory Zelezarna Jesenice as service engineer. Since the year 1990 he’s manager and co-owner of computer company 3BM d.o.o. Jesenice.

He took his first photograph when he was five years old. When his parents were away from home, he used his mother’s camera to take a photograph of his younger brother which stood in the middle of the kitchen holding a knife in his hands. After developing of film, his mother wondered when she had taken that picture. He learnt the art of photography and developing of black and white photos in the photo school in the primary school. After that he passed over to diapositives. In 1973 his first diapositive was accepted on State exhibition in Nova Gorica.

More than thirty years he had on all his journeys an ordinary Praktica without any electronics. Gradually he bought a flash, macro rings, one broad-angled objective and two teleobjectives. Most of all he took pictures on trips and mountain tours. Primary he was attracted by small flowers and wild animals. The growing up of his daughter was also one of his favourites themes. When he was young he was experimenting a lot with taking snaps of »moon surface« until his lunar module exploded.

With introduction of digital cameras he started to occupy himself with photography more professional. He bought his first digital camera in the year 2004. He has realised that compact digital cameras have many advantages with respect to classic ones. He has found many new options which were not possible by using classic cameras: sharp photos with perfect depth sharpness, high magnification without objective changing, good macro photography, immediate photographs viewing, faster reviewing and sorting of snaps.

The previous knowledge of photography helps him a lot when testing new cameras and advising, recommending and instructing of their customers how to work with digital cameras. His presentations of digital cameras on Craft-fair in Jesenice and in Photographic clubs were accepted by interest. In the year 2005 he affiliated himself to photographic club Fotografsko drustvo Jesenice. At the end of the year 2008 he acquired the photo title Candidate for Master of Photography from Photographic Society of Slovenia. In the year 2010 he’s got the title PPSA and in the year 2011 he has got the title EPSA. The same year he’s got also the title EFIAP. In the year 2013 he received the title EFIAP/s, in the year 2015, his EFIAP/g and in the year 2017, MPSA. He had 17 exhibitions of his own. From 2009 to 2017 he’s been president of fotographic club Fotografsko drustvo Jesenice.

His photos

Since he has started to take pictures in digital technique, he does not use any other technique. All of his photos are taken with compact digital cameras, mostly with his HP-945 and Panasonic FZ-50. He knows cameras quite good and for that reason he always tries to get out of cameras as much as possible. The knowledge about camera efficiency enables him to get few unsuccessful shots. He expanded the efficiency of his camera by adding teleconverter, macro lenses and filters. Although digital photography allows a lot of possibilities of photo modifying, his photos are as much as possible pure representation of moments captured in the nature. Of course, some of the photos are a little bit beautified by contrast. He makes some cuttings somewhere, especially where he could not approach near by animals. Sometimes it is good to remove disturbing branchlet or reflections of camera¢s lenses from the shot. But it is very strange to him to modify background and various montages. That doesn’t seem to him a real photo.

He prefers making photos of nature: animals (macro, birds, wild animals), flowers and landscape. He captures also underwater photos. The other preferred theme is sports, especially outdoor sports. Compact cameras are there as good as SLRs. His most successful sport photographs are dog’s races and ski jumps.