Study Group 2


Bogdan Bricelj, GMPSA, EFIAP/p

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JANUARY 2021 ROUND
Title:  Gulls quarrel

Goal:  Exploring gull's life.

Equipment/Source:    Nikon P950, built in lens at 350mm, ISO 100, F5, 1/640s Shutter priority, handheld.

Technique:    On the beach I was observing gulls. One was on the rock near the sea. The other rushed there. I've just pressed the shutter with motor drive and one of images is quite interesting. 

Processing:   crop, contrast improvement with levels and curves, in Photoshop Elements, noise reduction with Nik Dfine2 and sharpening with Nik Sharpener.

Score this image: YES

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

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

 







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DECEMBER 2020 ROUND
Title:     Squirrel on Rocks

Goal:   Capturing squirrel eating.

Equipment/Source:   Panasonic TZ-35, built in lens at 150mm, ISO 100, F5,4, 1/800s Shutter priority, handheld.

Technique:   While sunbathing on the shore a squirrel has come near. It was very unusual color. Here in Slovenia squirrels have much dark brown color. Just on the edge of sunshine it has found something to eat.

Processing:   crop, highlights, selective burn, contrast improvement with levels and curves, everything in Photoshop Elements. 

Score this image: YES


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

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

Review by commentator Tom S.
Yes, it does have an unusual color to the point of looking phony, but are you sure the squirrel was that red or did your camera make it that color?  The squirrel eating is a nature story, but it is hard to see what it is eating because it is mostly facing away from the viewer.  Also, the very bright rock it is sitting on draws the eye and becomes the center of interest, and the very dark shadow behind is too dark and merges with the squirrel’s back.  So, reduce the luminosity of the rock, brighten the dark shadow, brighten the squirrel, and reduce the red.  I did all that and flipped the image horizontally so you see the hear first instead of the back.  See my adjusted image.

N2, T1, P2, E0 = 5


This Review is written by: Haru N.

NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
Squirrels are very quick and difficult to capture in the frame. I should be a difficult shot but you captured well in the frame. Congrats. And you captured in the light. So well done on those points.
On the other hand, The image does not provide more information than my knowledge on squirrels, but only surprise is the color. I could not read or feel the information to support the nature story here, I am afraid.

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
Although I feel the sharpness is a bit loose on the main subject, but I can take as it is.
It looks its temperature is lean toward the warm side, which makes entire image yellowish in my eye.
But again, good to capture the main subject in the light and dark shadows in the background.

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
I feel the image is a bit tight. I want to see a bit more space on top and right.
It is simple composition to place the main subject in the center and it worked to have viewer's attention to the main subject.

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

TECHNICAL SCORE 2-Average exposure

PICTORIAL SCORE 2-Average composition and impact

EXTRA POINT 0-No extra point

TOTAL SCORE 6


This Review is written by: Andy H

NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
The story is there in the squirrel bee ng on the rocks and eating.

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
Given the strong light I think you've done well with the exposure. The image is sharp. I might have opened the aperture to blur the background more, Tones are unusual but you say that your squirrels are a darker brown

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
The squirrel looking away doesn't help and the shadow split divides the image. Compositionally its not right but other than tryin g a diff erent viewpoint Im not sure how you could improve the image. For me there is no impact.

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

TECHNICAL SCORE 2-Average exposure

PICTORIAL SCORE 1-Inadequate composition and impact

TOTAL SCORE 5


This Review is written by: Natalie M

NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
Some may see this as common behaviour, however if you can catch an animal doing something, them there is a story.

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
While the image looks reasonably sharp, there appears to be a blue colour cast, particularly in the shaded areas.

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
The tail provides a nice leading line. It would have been a nicer photo with the squirrel looking towards the photographer and not looking away.

NATURE SCORE 3-Natu re story strong

TECHNICAL SCORE 1-Inadequate exposure

PICTORIAL SCORE 2-Average composition and impact

EXTRA POINT 0-No extra point

TOTAL SCORE 6


This Review is written by: Dennis H

NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
Good capture of squirrel eating in a natural setting.

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
Nice colour on squirrel but lacks detail. Eye clear with catchlight.

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
I feel the image could be improved by lightening the dark area, and also rotating the image.

NATURE SCORE 3-Nature story strong

TECHNICAL SCORE 2-Average exposure

PICTORIAL SCORE 2-Average composition and impact
TOTAL SCORE 7


This Review is written by: Robert D

NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
Unique and interesting nature portrait.

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
The highlights and shadows are very contrast diagonally across the picture. This is very distracting. Very little of the]e tail and body is in focus and the animal is looking away.

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
Nort a wall hanger

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

TECHNICAL SCORE 1-Inadequate exposure

PICTORIAL SCORE 2-Aver age comp osition and impact

EXTRA POINT 0-No extra point

TOTAL SCORE 5


This Review is written by: Bruce F

NATURE REVIEW OF THE IMAGE
The nature story element is the squirrel eating something. You say that it was sunbathing on the shore. However, I don’t find any evidence of water or shoreline in the image. Arthur Morris, the famous bird photographer, always talks about the head angle. Here the squirrel face and head are quartering away from the viewer. This takes away the power of the nature story and diminishes it. The nature story would be stronger and more impactful if the head angle was 45 degrees toward the viewer.

TECHNICAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
Good exposure settings for the sunlight rocks. What disturbs my mind is the colors. The red color of the squirrel’s fur appears unnatural, too red, too saturated. Also, the blue color of the rocks in the shadows appears to be unrealistic. Only the color of the rocks in the sunlight appears to be real. I am not sure what you did in post-processing, but the color of the squirrel and the rocks in the shadows is off, and overly saturated. Sharpness is acceptable, only because this is probably the best this camera can do with its built-in 20x optical zoom.

PICTORIAL REVIEW OF IMAGE
As mentioned above, the oversaturated unrealistic colors, and the facing away of the subject, all hurt the pictorial elements as well. The image crop does leave a good-sized subject with a good ratio between environment and subject. A crucial aspect of nature photography is capturing the decisive moment. This was achieved wit h the sq uirrel feeding, but your angle of view is less than desirable. I would have shifted myself to the right so I could have the squirrel’s head and face perpendicular to the camera’s film plane. Rendering a side-angle profile of the subject, instead of having the subject looking away. Positioning oneself is a key component to making impactful nature images.

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

TECHNICAL SCORE 1-Inadequate exposure

PICTORIAL SCORE 2-Average composition and impact

TOTAL SCORE 5

Biography

Bogdan Bricelj was born in the year 1958 in town Jesenice, Slovenia. He graduated at Faculty of electrical engineering in Ljubljana. He was working for 9 years in steel factory as service engineer. Since the year 1990 He’s manager and co-owner of a computer company.

He was learning the art of photography and developing of black and white photos in the photo school in primary school. After that he passed over to slides. In 1973 his first slide was accepted on a state exhibition. More than thirty years he had an ordinary Praktica without any electronics on all his journeys. 

He bought his first digital camera in the year 2004. All these years he uses compact cameras with large zoom. In his opinion photographer is more important then the camera like driver is more important than the car. Although digital photography allows a lot of possibilities of photo modifying, his photos are as much as possible pure representation of the moments captured. He prefers to make photos of nature: animals, flowers and landscape. He also likes macro and underwater photography. His other preferred theme is sports, especially outdoor sports like skiing, ski jumping, kayak and swimming. Mostly he goes photographing together with his wife Danila. 

In the year 2005 he joined to the photographic club Fotografsko drustvo Jesenice. He’s sending his photos to many exhibitions worldwide. Until the end of the year 2018 he has got 226 awards. Until now he has made 29 exhibitions of his own. In the year 2018 he has got title EFIAP/p and in 2019 GMPSA as the first Slovenian photographer. 

He was the president of photographic club since 2009 to 2017. In these years the club was first or second most successful club in Slovenia.

His photographs were published in many Slovenian and foreign books, magazines and other publications. He has written also four articles for PSA Journal. He’s especially proud, that also National Geographic has published his photos.