Study Group 2


Bogdan Bricelj

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JANUARY 2015 ROUND
Title:  White Heron on the Beach

Goal:   Capturing different birds in different places and situations

Source:  Panasonic FZ-50, 420 mm, ISO 100, F6, 1/640 s, Shutter Priority, hand held

Technique:  Trying to get a closer photo of timid white herons

Processing:  Crop, contrast corrections with levels and curves, color correction, noise reduction in Photoshop Elements.

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

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

Review by Les L., 1-15-2015
I feel the image is a little underexposed or should be lightened in LR. This is an example of an everyday moment but needs a bit more imagination.
N-2, T-2, P-2, E-0, Total=6
Review by Tom B., 1-24-2015
I also find this image to be a little under exposed. I am wondering if this isn't an image of a "LITTLE EGRET" because of the coloring of the bill and the two white long plumes on the head. The coloring on the feet is not clear enough to help confirm identification.
N=3, T=1, P=2, E=0, Total=6
Review by Butch S., 1-28-2015
Do not see these kind of herons around here so very interesting. The feather crest on the head is neat. I have found that when shooting birds, close, and even closer is great. Absent that, the image quality (pixel wise) has to be able to suffer the pains of tight-in cropping. Also, I have had one heck of time getting the "white" right when shooting white birds. That is one tough job. I have found that using curves with masking to be a help + making sure that your WB is good.
N-2, T-2, P-2, E-0, Total=6

Review by Rick C., 1-25-2015
You made an interesting capture on this sub-species. The bill is darker than usually seen, though the crest plumes and yellowish coloration in the legs would support your ID. I like the pose with the raised foot. It is particularly helpful in this case to provide added information to the viewer to aid in the ID. It also shows the plumes of nicely. The side lighting coming into the breast and facial area is a plus. Your exposure looks good for this lighting. Primary focus also looks good. In this case I would say we have too much depth of field, even though only F6, and so with this lighting our subject is not separating as well as we would like from the background beach dirt. The viewing angle you have taken the shot from is fine; however, if possible, try to get even lower for this type of shot. An even lower angle would actually help you to control the apparent sharpness of the BG even more. Les’s idea of lightening the subject has some merit, but it will be difficult under this lighting to get the separation on the bill from the BG where both are dark. That is where an even lower viewing angle would help. (With the BG effectively even farther behind the subject it would be rendered with much less detail allowing for separation on the bill.) Good job under this lighting.

N-3, T-2, P-2 = 7



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DECEMBER 2014 ROUND
Title: Fishes in Medusa's Shelter

Goal: Capturing the small fishes under the medusa's hat

Source: Panasonic TZ-3 in underwater housing, 24mm, ISO 100, F3,3, 1/200 s, Auto Exposure

Technique: Getting a closer look at the medusa.

Processing: Crop, contrast corrections with levels and curves, noise reduction and sharpening in Lightroom and Photoshop Elements.

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

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

Review by Lisa A., 12-13-2014
What a very clear shot. You have captured the fish quite well. The eyes of the fish are sharp, and I like the one that is headed toward you. The background water adds to the image without being distracting. I think you achieved your goal. A bit more of the medusa jellyfish would have also been interesting.
N-3, T-2, P-3, E=0, Total=8
Review by Les L., 12-19-2014
I really like this photo. It's interesting, sharp and the color contrast blends nicely. I would have to believe it is difficult capturing a sharp image like this under water.
N=3, T=3, P=3, E=0, Total=9

Review by Butch S., 12-17-2014
This is a real nice image. Shows the relationship between the small fishes using another creature for protection. Nice and sharp, like the colors. Real pleasing. Was this image cropped? The size of the fishes says to me that this was an image taken at a short focal distance. In that case, the size of the medusa may not allow for it to all be included in the frame and you got all you could get.
N=3, T=2, P=3, E=0, Total=8
Review by Tom B., 12-28-2014
Nice sharp and crisp image. I especially like the underwater aspect with such brilliant colors
N-3, T-3, P-3, E-0, Total=9
Review by Rick C., 12-17-2014
To my eye this is a very nicely handled underwater image. The nature story is clear and easily apparent.The crop is defined enough to be clear that it was intentional. The exposure holds detail in the highlights while still letting the viewer see into the shadows under the Medusa’s dome. The focus and depth of field both look good. The right section of shadows is a bit dark, but I would leave them alone. I think if you tried to open them up any more they would show that telltale gray-black. The only small nit I see is what appears to be a very thin halo along the top of the red dome on the Medusa. It is likely a sharpening artifact. If you sharpened it on a separate layer, just add a mask to the layer and paint (on the mask) over the edge of the dome in black. That will eliminate the halo and leave the other sharpening untouched.

N-3,T-3, P-3 = 9

Biography

Bogdan Bricelj 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 has got title EFIAP/s. He had 17 exhibitions of his own. Since 2009 he’s 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.