A Face-less Square Crop: Like It, Hate It, or Delete It? « Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

A Face-less Square Crop: Like It, Hate It, or Delete It?

Stuff

Monday morning started out very tough. A lovely image of that amazing super moon in a pink, predawn sky at 500mm was available but we were blocked by utility wires. By the time we got set up and in position the fog had covered the moon which was not be seen again that morning. We — Anita North and I — started out at ISO 3200: 1/500 sec. at f/4 for pelican flight but the action was poor. After an hour or so the sun began peeking in and out very few minutes so we really had to keep an eye on our exposures. Action picked up a bit but was far from fantastic. We decided to head over to North Beach and take a long exploratory walk. We found a Reddish Egret, a small flock of Dunlin, and first one — and then two — cooperative young Greater Yellowlegs. And we met several nice folks.

Just before we got back to our parking lot we found and stuck with some resting gulls and terns. As it had clouded over nicely, we did some serious damage with our 100-400 IIs both with and without the 1.4X III TCs. We had a superb lunch at the SeaPorch Cafe in the historic Don Cesar hotel on St. Pete Beach. We did not head out until very late on Monday afternoon but enjoyed several really good chances with a variety of herons and egrets though we never made it back to Fort DeSoto.

There is still lots of room on San Diego #2; please see the details below if you are considering joining this very, very, very small group in a woudrous location at just the right time of year.

Brand New Listing

Canon Canon EOS 7D Mark II

Sangeeta Chakraborty is offering a Canon EOS 7D Mark II in near-mint condition for $999. The sale includes the front lens cap, the strap, the original battery, and insured ground shipping to US addresses only by UPS.

Please contact Sangeeta via e-mail or by phone at 1-720-609-8537 (Mountain time.)

Both Patrick Sparkman and I used and loved the 7D Mark II until about two years ago when we both committed to using full frame Canon bodies. We both made some truly great images with it. Two of my three 2016 Nature’s Best honored entries were created with the 7D II, one still, and one video. One thing is for sure: the 7D Mark II is the greatest value ever in a digital camera body. With a new one going for $1499 you can save a cool $500 by grabbing Sangeeta’s lens. artie

5dIV

Amazing 5D Mark IV Sale!

5D Mark IV Still on Sale!

Right now you can purchase a Canon EOS 5D Mark IV with the BG-E20 Battery Grip for the crazy low price of $3199. I am not sure how long this Black Friday sale will last …

Blog regular Bill Hill was so excited when he read of this sale that he forgot to use my affiliate link. 🙂 He wrote, “I still think the 5D Mark IV sale is is too good to be true. I will believe it when it arrives. Thanks for the heads up.

Note: Bill went for the one with the free battery grip and the free Canon PIXMA PRO-100 Wireless Professional Inkjet Photo Printer.

The Streak

Today makes one hundred thirty days in a row with a new educational blog post! This one took about an hour to prepare. With all of my upcoming free time (or not …), the plan right now is to break the current record streak of 480 … Good health and good internet connections willing.

Booking.Com

Booking.Com came through for me twice again recently with both the DeSoto Fall IPT and next July’s UK Puffins, Gannets, and Bempton Pre-trip room reservations. And all the rates were great. If you’d like to give Booking.Com a shot, click here and you will earn a $25 reward. Thanks to the many who have already tried and used this great service.



Gear Questions and Advice

Too many folks attending BAA IPTs and dozens of folks whom I see in the field, and on BPN, are–out of ignorance–using the wrong gear especially when it comes to tripods and more especially, tripod heads… Please know that I am always glad to answer your gear questions via e-mail. Those might include system, camera body, accessory, and lens choices and decisions.

5dIV

Amazing 5D Mark IV Sale!

5D Mark IV Still on Sale!

Right now you can purchase a Canon EOS 5D Mark IV with the BG-E20 Battery Grip for the crazy low price of $3199. I am not sure how long this Black Friday sale will last …

Blog regular Bill Hill was so excited when he read of this sale that he forgot to use my affiliate link. 🙂 He wrote, “I still think the 5D Mark IV sale is is too good to be true. I will believe it when it arrives. Thanks for the heads up.

Note: Bill went for the one with the free battery grip and the free Canon PIXMA PRO-100 Wireless Professional Inkjet Photo Printer.

The Streak

Today makes one hundred twenty-nine days in a row with a new educational blog post! This one took about an hour to prepare. With all of my upcoming free time (or not …), the plan right now is to break the current record streak of 480 … Good health and good internet connections willing.

Booking.Com

Booking.Com came through for me twice again recently with both the DeSoto Fall IPT and next July’s UK Puffins, Gannets, and Bempton Pre-trip room reservations. And all the rates were great. If you’d like to give Booking.Com a shot, click here and you will earn a $25 reward. Thanks to the many who have already tried and used this great service.



Gear Questions and Advice

Too many folks attending BAA IPTs and dozens of folks whom I see in the field, and on BPN, are–out of ignorance–using the wrong gear especially when it comes to tripods and more especially, tripod heads… Please know that I am always glad to answer your gear questions via e-mail. Those might include system, camera body, accessory, and lens choices and decisions.

Brown-Pelican-starting-dive-_W5A8433--Fort-DeSoto-Park,-Pinellas-County,-FL

This image was created at Fort DeSoto on the morning of Monday, December 4, 2017. I used the Induro GIT304L Grand Series 3 Stealth Carbon Fiber Tripod/Mongoose M3.6-mounted Canon EF 600mm f/4L IS II USM lens, the Canon Extender EF 1.4X III, and my favorite pelican flight photography camera body, the Canon EOS 5D Mark IV. ISO 800. Evaluative metering + 2 stops off the sunlit gray sky: 1/1250 sec. at f/5.6 in Manual mode. AWB on a somewhat sunny foggy morning with the light changing every five seconds.

LensAlign/FocusTune micro-adjustment: -2.

Center AF point/AI Servo/Expand/Shutter Button AF was active at the moment of exposure. The selected AF point was on the trailing edge of the secondaries of the upper wing as originally framed.

Brown Pelican, ready to start dive

A Face-less Square Crop: Like It, Hate It, or Delete It?

As noted in part above, conditions were quite difficult; from two hours of pelican flight photography, I kept only two images (including today’s featured image), mostly due to operator error and lack of operator skills. With the sun going in and out seemingly ever few seconds this one was very bright but not overexposed. Folk have done a great job the past few days on sharing their opinions and justifying them as well. Today’s question is a simple one: like it, hate it, or delete it? Do let us know why you made your choice.

San-Diego-2017-card

2017 in San Diego was a very good year ….

2018 San Diego 3 1/2-DAY BIRDS AS ART IPT #2: Sunday, JAN 28 thru and including the morning session on Wednesday, JAN 31, 2018 and a free morning session the day before the IPT starts: 3 1/2 days (+1/2!): $1699. Limit: 8: Openings: 7.

Meet and Greet at 6:30pm on the evening before the IPT begins; Saturday, Jan 27, 2018.

San Diego IPT #2: Shorter and Less Expensive!

Please remember: I go with one.

Join me in San Diego near the end of January to photograph the spectacular breeding plumage Brown Pelicans with their fire-engine red and olive green bill pouches; Brandt’s (usually nesting and displaying) and Double-crested Cormorants; breeding plumage Ring-necked Duck; other duck species possible including Lesser Scaup, Redhead, Wood Duck and Surf Scoter; a variety of gulls including Western, California, and the gorgeous Heerman’s, all in full breeding plumage; shorebirds including Marbled Godwit, Whimbrel, Willet, Sanderling and Black-bellied Plover; many others possible including Least, Western, and Spotted Sandpiper, Black and Ruddy Turnstone, Semipalmated Plover, and Surfbird; Harbor Seal (depending on the current regulations) and California Sea Lion; and Bird of Paradise flowers. And as you can see by studying the two IPT cards there are some nice bird-scape and landscape opportunities as well. Please note: formerly dependable, both Wood Duck and Marbled Godwit have been declining at their usual locations for the past two years …


san-diego-card-neesie

San Diego offers a wealth of very attractive natural history subjects. With annual visits spanning more than three decades I have lot of experience there….

With gorgeous subjects just sitting there waiting to have their pictures taken, photographing the pelicans on the cliffs is about as easy as nature photography gets. With the winds from the east almost every morning there is usually some excellent flight photography. And the pelicans are almost always doing something interesting: preening, scratching, bill pouch cleaning, or squabbling. And then there are those crazy head throws that are thought to be a form of intra-flock communication. You can do most of your photography with an 80- or 100-400 lens …

Did I mention that there are wealth of great birds and natural history subjects in San Diego in winter?


san-diego-card-b

Though the pelicans will be the stars of the show on this IPT there will be many other handsome and captivating subjects in wonderful settings.

The San Diego Details

This IPT will include four 3 1/2 hour morning photo sessions, three 2 1/2 hour afternoon photo sessions, three lunches, and after-lunch image review and Photoshop sessions. To ensure early starts, breakfasts will be your responsibility. Dinners are on your own so that we can get some sleep.

A $599 non-refundable deposit is required to hold your slot for this IPT. You can send a check (made out to “Arthur Morris) to us at BIRDS AS ART, PO Box 7245, Indian Lake Estates, FL, 33855. Or call Jim or Jennifer at the office with a credit card at 863-692-0906. Your balance is payable only by check. Please print, complete, and sign the form that is linked to here and shoot it to us along with your deposit check. If you register by phone, please print, complete and sign the form as noted above and either mail it to us or e-mail the scan. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me via e-mail.

If In Doubt …

If in doubt about using the BAA B&H affiliate link correctly, you can always start your search by clicking here. Please note that the tracking is invisible. Web orders only. Please, however, remember to shoot me your receipt via e-mail.






Please Remember to use my Affiliate Links and to Visit the New BAA Online Store 🙂

To show your appreciation for my continuing efforts here, we ask, as always, that you get in the habit of using my B&H affiliate links on the right side of the blog for all of your photo and electronics purchases. Please check the availability of all photographic accessories in the New BIRDS AS ART Online Store, especially the Mongoose M3.6 tripod head, Wimberley lens plates, Delkin flash cards and accessories, and LensCoat stuff.

As always, we sell only what I have used, have tested, and can depend on. We will not sell you junk. We know what you need to make creating great images easy and fun. And please remember that I am always glad to answer your gear questions via e-mail.

I would of course appreciate your using our B&H affiliate links for all of your major gear, video, and electronic purchases. For the photographic stuff mentioned in the paragraph above, and for everything else in the new store, we, meaning BAA, would of course greatly appreciate your business. Here is a huge thank you to the many who have been using our links on a regular basis and those who will be visiting the New BIRDS AS ART Online Store as well.

Facebook

Be sure to like and follow BAA on Facebook by clicking on the logo link upper right. Tanks a stack.

Typos

In all blog posts and Bulletins, feel free to e-mail or to leave a comment regarding any typos or errors. Just be right :).

14 comments to A Face-less Square Crop: Like It, Hate It, or Delete It?

  • Where have you been Artie ? I have missed the your posting each day. I found your Pelican Image a bit confussing. I just received my new Canon 5D IV it cost £2050.00 its gray import
    but a have saved £1000.00 I have not had time to take it out of the box yet . Its truly great to have you back.

    Love
    Kel
    UK

  • avatar Jim Amato

    Love it!
    Glad to be back with the Blog!
    Thank you.

  • Hey Arthur, I would delete this one. Doesn’t do anything for me.

  • avatar Bill Hill

    I love it. The overall position of the bird, tail, feet etc in special. Much more interesting than the standard “mug shot”. I like that you sometimes do flight shots with a tripod, big lens and a converter. A great technique that too many don’t take advantage of.

  • avatar David Policansky

    Hi, Artie. I neither love it nor hate it. You captured an interesting moment as the ungainly bird started its dive, and it’s technically excellent (sharp, well exposed, good composition), but to me it’s not particularly compelling or even particularly pleasing. I think that’s because it takes a second or two to figure out what’s happening and because it’s the east end of a bird heading west.

  • avatar Elinor Osborn

    The circle created by the wings is wonderful. For me, the big white blob of breast cutting into the bill and not seeing the eye is bothersome. If I could see the eye that might make the breast ok though.
    Doug’s idea to make a mirror composite is intriguing. Or maybe duplicate the image several times and combine them into a large circle. Denise Ippolito would probably have lots of ideas. Her mini planet might work.

  • avatar James Saxon

    I like it, because it is different not to see the entire bill of the bird. The cupped wings frames the bird and the position is something you do not see in other photos.

  • I like it as an art piece. The “C” shape really frames the head and it really makes it look like some kind of abstract lettering. I’d keep it. It may not be your best work, but it doesn’t deserve a delete.

  • avatar Mike Cristina

    I would delete it. Too confusing, with not enough important content. Now if you could flip it vertically so the top of it’s head and back were visible, that would be something 🙂

  • Like it. Lots of interest in trying to figure out what it was doing. Preparing to dive? Like the curve of the wings and opposed head/neck angle.

  • avatar Sandy

    I really like it! Because it is unusual, it grabs the eye. As Doug West mentioned, you could try some interesting things with creative digital work.

  • avatar Don M.

    I love it Artie!

    I think it’s the best image I’ve seen from you in many posts. I find it visually impactful because of the way the pelican’s wings frame its body. Although it’s a departure from your usual style, I think it’s very effective because it is so unique.

    Recently, I captured a Ring-billed Gull flying with it’s head upside down. It’s not my best image technically, but it conveys an “I love flying” look that makes it unique among my gull shots.

    I also appreciate your narrative that some days are more difficult than others. Although I’m lucky sometimes, it usually takes quite a bit of time and effort to capture a memorable moment.

    Thanks for sharing,

    Don

  • I would do something weird to it…like expanding
    the canvas a little horizontally, then create a mirror
    image of the pelican, flip it and have its wings touching.

    Doug

  • avatar Johann Mey

    Create fractious art with it else delete.

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