Pissed Off « Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

Pissed Off

Grand Prize: You Be the Judge

Join in the fun and learn a ton while you still have the chance by clicking here. Voting for the Grand Prize winning image in the BIRDS AS ART 1st International Bird Photography Competition will be closed at 8am this coming Tuesday, September 18.

black-belliedplover-winter-plumage-threat-display-_q8r3605-fort-desoto-park-st-petersburg-fl

This image of a molting adult Black-bellied Plover was created yesterday afternoon from my SUV with the Canon EF 800mm f/5.6L IS USM Autofocus Lens and the Canon EOS-1D X Digital SLR Camera (Body Only). ISO 800. Evaluative metering +1 stop: 1/800 sec. at f/5.6 in Manual mode. The big lens was supported by a BLUBB (Big Lens Ultimate BeanBag) resting on the lowered window of my vehicle. Converted in DPP.

61-Point AI Servo/Rear Focus AF active at the moment of exposure. Click here if you missed the Rear Focus Tutorial. Click on the image for a larger version.

Pissed Off

Not me, the plover. 🙂 This bird was a big bully. It spent most of the afternoon beating up other black-bellieds and bluff-charging the SHort-billed Dowitchers that were foraging nearby. I managed a few frames of one fight but with the wind from the east I got nothing usable. In this image the bird is performing a threat display that is being directed at another plover feeding nearby in an effort to defend its feeding territory.

As you might surmise I am loving my 1D X. The AF system is actually better than the similar AF system in the 5D Mark III . As I said before I even got my hands on a 1D X, “It will be a 5D III on steroids.” My assessment proved to be accurate. That said, the 5D III has a superbly effective and accurate autofocus system.

bbpl-scr-cap

This is a DPP (Digital Photo Professional) screen capture showing the active AF points at the moment of capture.

1D X AF

Even though the latest version of BreezeBrowser Pro supports the 1D X, the Show Focus Points feature does not function. As you can see in the screen capture above showing the original image, 61-Point AF worked superbly here (though I could have pointed the lens even more to the right). Note that I cropped from the left and below to get the subject even more into the corner of the frame. I have set up my 1D X so that only three of the AF Area Selection Modes are active. I will be sharing all of my thoughts on the 1D X AF system in the 1D X User’s Guide; as I am beyond swamped, it will be a while before I even begin working on that….

Careful readers will note that I have been doing more and more of my 1D X conversions with DPP recently, that with help from brilliant BPN member Arash Harzeghi. I am trying hard to get Arash to write a basic guide to doing conversions in DPP as the results are clearly superior to ACR conversions in terms of color fidelity and image quality.

NIK COlor Efex Pro

Note that the bird in the optimized image that opens this blog post seems spotlit. After I applied an 80/3O NIK layer (80 Tonal Contrast/30 Detail Extractor) I painted the effect in on the bird using a Hide-All Mask. Then I clicked on the layer and pulled the curve (Control M) quite a bit to lighten only the subject. A new technique was born. I love the spotlit look of the subject as compared to its dreary rendition in the original capture as seen in the screen capture.

Learn how to use Regular and Hide-All Masks in our Digital Basics File, an e-mailable PDF that includes our complete digital workflow, our customized keyboard shortcuts, and dozens of great Photoshop tips.

NIK 15% Discount

As regular readers here know, NIK Color Efex Pro has drastically changed my digital workflow. Remember that you can save 15% on all NIK products by clicking here and entering BAA in the Promo Code box at check-out. Then hit Apply to see your savings. You can download a trial copy that will work for 15 days and allow you to create full sized images.

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8 comments to Pissed Off

  • avatar Chris Cooke

    Great idea Artie, use your influence to persuade Arash to publish a DPP Guide and I will take at least one off his hands.

    Thank you
    Chris

  • avatar Richard

    Arty, briefly, Arash HAS a tutorial available for sale through his web site.

    • avatar Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

      Richard, Arash’s excellent guide is a Noise Reduction guide; the basics of DPP conversions are not covered.

  • Rats! I was hoping to find out what it is that would be serious enough to piss Artie off. I afraid that it was something that I had done. At least, for once, this was not the case. I shall mark this date on my calendar 😉 Not knowing me personally is apparently no protection against being pissed off at me. . .

  • avatar Ted Willcox

    Hi Artie
    If you are able to get Arash to do a guide for DPP put me down for one.

  • avatar Hossam Sadek

    “Careful readers will note that I have been doing more and more of my 1D X conversions with DPP recently, that with help from brilliant BPN member Arash Harzeghi. I am trying hard to get Arash to write a basic guide to doing conversions in DPP as the results are clearly superior to ACR conversions in terms of color fidelity and image quality.”

    Artie:
    I would love to know more about how to effectively use DPP. I compare DPP to what I get out of Aperture and there is a world of difference, I am noticing more of a difference with my 1Dx pictures even more than the 7D. Problem is DPP is not user friendly, and looks very cumbersome.

    • avatar Gerald Kelberg

      I have also recently become a convert to DPP and I am quite delighted with the results – even images from my 1D Mk III. I have used the guide that Arash has already published – ‘Professional Photographers’ Guide to Noise Reduction for EOS Cameras’ which took me through conversion from RAW in DPP, Noise Reduction with Neat Image and Smart Sharpening in Photoshop. He promotes it from his BPN Forum postings. It is well worth the $35.00. Now I just need to figure how to take some of his amazing raptor flight images!!!

      • avatar Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

        I have Arash’s guide. But it does not cover many of the basics of a DPP conversion. That’s why I am trying to get him to write a simple guide that covers the conversion basics 🙂