Study Group 2

Butch Spielman


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FOR SEPTEMBER 2014 ROUND - Posted 9-8-2014

Title:  Resting Pelican
Goal:   Went fishing and always bring my camera, no telling what will be seen.. At the mouth of Belle Pass saw a flock of Brown Pelicans waiting for the fog to lift. Got as close as I could with my boat and started shooting.
Source:   Canon 5D III, Canon 100-400. f5.6, 1/2000, ISO 250, zoom to 400 mm.
Technique:  The shooting was hand held and had to be shot with a fast shutter speed since the boat was gently rocking with the waves. That is why I used 1/2000. Also had to shoot before getting inside of the pelicans' flight distance--usually around 30 yards. In the background of this image you can see part of a pelican that is flying away, we were beginning to push our welcome.
Processing:  Camera raw with Nik for noise and sharpness, PS for small amounts of hue/sat. adjustment, also light local dodge/burning.
Study Group Comments and Scores (N, T, P, E, Total)

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

Review by Lisa A., 9-13-2014
There are many things to notice in this fine image. Your colors are precise. The pelican’s eye is sharp. The wing of the bird in the background adds to the image. You took this photo in a boat which means it must have been challenging to get such a sharp image if the boat was rocking at all. The rocks in the foreground have an interesting texture and color, and compliment the rest of the image. Rocks, the long bill, and the face of the pelican all work well in your composition. Action in the image would have given you the extra point.
N=3, T=3, P=3, E=0, Total=9

Review by Bogdan B., 9-20-2014
Butch, your Pelican is really colorfull, sharp and fine exposed. The background is really undisturbing. The enviroment is really sutable for the bird.
N=3, T=3, P=3, E=0, Total=9

Review by Tom B., 9-29-2014
I like the sharpness of this image. The bird is crisp and the detail and colors of the bird are right on. Wonderful capture.
N=3, T=3, P=3, E=0, Total=9

Review by Les L., 9-29-2014
Good action orientated image. Good focus, cropping. A little dark in the foreground which might be lightened with the lasso.
N=3, T=3, P=3, E=0, Total=9

I am recently retired (chemical engineer/attorney) and I needed something to fill the resultant hole. I have fished and hunted all of my life, but was looking for a “soft” way to enjoy the outdoors and nature. Old age does that to you. I became interested in photography about 4 years ago. My photographic interests are wide in scope but I am now beginning to focus on wildlife. The “nature” category is a challenge.

I am an opportunistic photographer and try to find subjects wherever I go. My main “studios” are the swamps, marshes, woods and bayous of Louisiana. My subjects are mainly birds, flowers, insects, gators, etc. There are some excellent photo opportunities in the spring at the rookeries located in Louisiana’s Acadian (Cajun) country. Great food too!!!

I lean heavily in the direction of shooting “hand-held.” However, I will use a tripod in low light. I shoot Canon (70D and 5D III). I have several lenses, but my go-to lenses are the 24-104 mm 4.0L, 100-400 mm 4.5-5.6L and 70-200 mm 4.0L. Also use converters and extenders. Shoot in RAW and process with Photoshop CC and Nik Software.

I am only now beginning to enter competitions, etc. I have found success and recently won a Best in Show ribbon. I want to learn more (a lot more) and see what others folks are doing.