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Thread: 200-400 with Two 1.4X TCs. Hand Held

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    Default 200-400 with Two 1.4X TCs. Hand Held

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    This White-tailed Sea Eagle head portrait was created on the morning of February 21, 2014 at 8:03am on the Japan in Winter IPT with the Canon EF 200-400mm f/4L IS USM Lens with Internal 1.4x Extender, an external Canon Extender EF 1.4X III (hand held at the maximum 784mm) and the Canon EOS-1D X. . ISO 400. Evaluative metering +1 stop as framed: 1/400 sec. at f/10 in Av mode. AWB.

    Central Sensor (by necessity)/AI Servo-Surround/Rear Focus AF on the middle of the bird’s bill was active at the moment of exposure. Click here to see the latest version of the Rear Focus Tutorial. Click on the image to see a larger version.

    Learn more and check out two great flight shots in the "The Under-Appreciated Eagle..." blog post here.

    As for the image, don't be shy; all comments welcome.

    Quoting from the blog: We made 3 eagle boat trips on the Japan in Winter IPT. We did so well on those that we skipped the fourth one (sorry artie, no refunds) so that we could get back to our lodge with time to pack for our flights back to Tokyo the following day. That necessary because of the several day blizzard-in-Rausu delay. In any case, I must admit that with dozens of spectacular Steller’s Sea Eagles flying around the boat and perched nearby on the sea ice I barely paid any attention at all to the numerous White-tailed Sea Eagles. Time after time they would fly by the boat at close range and I would just stand there with my lens by my side in the rest position waiting for yet another Steller’s….

    I was on hand holding for the image above having added an external 1.4X TC so that I could do tight head and shoulders portraits of the Steller’s on ice when I noticed this bird off to my left with the boat drifting slowly towards it. What can I say? I could not resist the powder-puff blue background…. This image is un-cropped.
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    Amazing details, excellent DOF and perfect framing. The blue sky makes the bird pop. Great overall!!!!

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    Exquisite details, killer light and lovely blue sky bg. What a handsome raptor. Looking forward to more ...

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    I shake my head in awe...exquisite. A beautiful bird I did not know of. Thank you for sharing.
    Joe Przybyla

    "Sometimes I do get to places just as God is ready to have somebody click the shutter"... Ansel Adams

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    Quote Originally Posted by Karl Egressy View Post
    Amazing details, excellent DOF and perfect framing. The blue sky makes the bird pop. Great overall!!!!
    Thanks Karl; it was the sea lit by magical early morning light!
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    Crazy details in this photo! Beautiful portrait!

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    I like the detail in the eye a lot, very nice but I think it could use just a tad more contrast...
    Dan Kearl

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    Quote Originally Posted by dankearl View Post
    I like the detail in the eye a lot, very nice but I think it could use just a tad more contrast...
    Thanks Dank, I was thinking perhaps a bit less contrast :)....
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    nice capture,sharp,great detail in this portrait.well done.

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    Hi Artie, having used the 200-400 for a couple of days last year, and having come away with the versatility and IQ on the images I shot, I can see in this with the additional external 1.4 TC that you havent lost any IQ. Brilliant detail, tack sharp, and yes, nicely set against the smooth blue BG.

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    A very striking portrait Artie, great sharpness too, considring the focal length. I don't know the true colours of this species but it looks as though it could be a tiny bit darker / more contrast.

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    Awesome looking raptor. Very well composed image, especially in regards to the amount of space on the right. A boost in the blacks is worth exploring. Excellent sharpness. I can see quite a few dust sensor spots, albeit they are small and I really have to look...

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    Indeed, a beautiful image, Artie.

    If it were mine, I'd make it slightly less bright. I'd achieve this via a gamma adjustment, not a simple 'contrast/brightness' one.

    I did just that, sliding gamma in PS to 0.75 on my calibrated monitor, and the photo looks, to my eye, more natural, while retaining the detail, as well as the BG blue, though somewhat less bright than the OP.

    And thanks for bringing the image of this striking raptor to a wider audience !
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    Incredible detail in the iris of the eye! Stunning portrait.
    Does not look overly bright to me and can't really comment on the blacks/contrast since I'm not familiar with this species.
    www.mibirdingnetwork.com .... A place for bird and nature lovers in the Great Lakes area.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Jobes View Post
    Indeed, a beautiful image, Artie.

    If it were mine, I'd make it slightly less bright. I'd achieve this via a gamma adjustment, not a simple 'contrast/brightness' one.

    I did just that, sliding gamma in PS to 0.75 on my calibrated monitor, and the photo looks, to my eye, more natural, while retaining the detail, as well as the BG blue, though somewhat less bright than the OP.

    And thanks for bringing the image of this striking raptor to a wider audience !
    Thanks Bill. Where and how do you change the Gamma???
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    Super looking raptor and image. I am impressed with the IQ considering your equipment.
    Marina Scarr
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arthur Morris View Post
    Thanks Bill. Where and how do you change the Gamma???
    You're most welcome, Artie.

    In Photoshop CS6, select the Exposure icon from the adjustment layers icons at upper right.

    Selecting Exposure opens up three sliders: Exposure, Offset, and Gamma Correction.

    In this instance, I slid the Gamma slider from its 1.0 starting point to 0.75. It also looked beautiful, and somewhat brighter at 0.85.

    This group is one of my favorites in CS6, and has great powers to adjust the image 'feel' to suit your artistic vision.

    BTW, once finished with any adjustment layers, be sure to go to the top menu line, select Layers -- and then select Flatten Image.

    That's it !
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marina Scarr View Post
    Super looking raptor and image. I am impressed with the IQ considering your equipment.
    Thanks Marina. I'm not :)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Jobes View Post
    You're most welcome, Artie.

    In Photoshop CS6, select the Exposure icon from the adjustment layers icons at upper right.

    Selecting Exposure opens up three sliders: Exposure, Offset, and Gamma Correction.

    In this instance, I slid the Gamma slider from its 1.0 starting point to 0.75. It also looked beautiful, and somewhat brighter at 0.85.

    This group is one of my favorites in CS6, and has great powers to adjust the image 'feel' to suit your artistic vision.

    BTW, once finished with any adjustment layers, be sure to go to the top menu line, select Layers -- and then select Flatten Image.

    That's it !
    Thanks a stack Bill. That was easy to learn. I now have another arrow in my Photoshop quiver thanks to you.
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    You're very welcome, Artie. I love your repost !

    That little trick is one I found a while back, while panning the Photoshop stream for hidden nuggets.

    I'm pleased to share it with you, and am flattered that it's a new arrow in your quiver.
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    Denise Ippolito and I have been playing with the new toy; it is amazing.... I will likely be doing a blog post on it soon. So tanks again!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Jobes View Post
    You're very welcome, Artie. I love your repost !

    That little trick is one I found a while back, while panning the Photoshop stream for hidden nuggets.

    I'm pleased to share it with you, and am flattered that it's a new arrow in your quiver.
    Bill, Have you figured out what is different when playing with the Exposure slider as opposed to the Gamma slider?
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    Using the Gamma adjustment is functionally equivalent to pulling the middle of a Curve down or up. There are some very technical differences in changing Gamma and that Curve move, but they aren't going to be visible in the sort of corrections we normally make. And I suspect the "Gamma" slider isn't a true gamma adjustment, but a behind-the-scenes Curve move. Most of the adjustment dialogs we have are just interfaces to some sophisticated curve movements.

    The Exposure slider moves primarily the lighter tones, and Offset the darker ones, but they just push the histogram right or left. It is more precise to do that with Curves because you can bend the Curve as well as move the ends. And using Curves gives you additional flexibility in one package to tweak the dark and light ends and to tune color balance with the color channels.

    In a case like this, if I get into PS with a file and see a significant global adjustment is needed, I will go back to the RAW conversion and do it there. You can argue that with a small adjustment there isn't a significant difference, but where should one draw that line? If I've done a lot of cloning I'd probably do the adjustment in PS, but if I can go back and do it better in RAW, that's my first choice.

    But, more importantly, why flatten a file? That advice has been bandied around quite a bit, and it is some of the worst advice you'll ever get. I would never flatten a master file. Why burn bridges on an adjustment layer? As has just been demonstrated, what was taken for a finished file has been seen to be better with a tweak to tonalities. Suppose the original had been lightened then flattened. Then you decide you want to darken it. If you had preserved the adjustment layers you would just tweak the lightening layer (or turn it off) -- that's non-destructive. Those layers are not actually applied until you print or make a JPEG or any other derivative file for output.
    Last edited by Diane Miller; 03-26-2014 at 11:07 AM.

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    Default Sensor dust

    Quote Originally Posted by Shawn Zierman View Post
    Awesome looking raptor. Very well composed image, especially in regards to the amount of space on the right. A boost in the blacks is worth exploring. Excellent sharpness. I can see quite a few dust sensor spots, albeit they are small and I really have to look...
    Excellent shot, agree with the more contrast suggestion. I checked for sensor dust in camera raw/visualize spots and there is quite a bit of dust and the top right corner could use some cloning.

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    Thanks Phil. How do you use Camera RAW to visualize dust spots???? Especially in a JPEG :).
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arthur Morris View Post
    Thanks Phil. How do you use Camera RAW to visualize dust spots???? Especially in a JPEG :).
    Thanks Artie, to check for spots you will need Photoshop CS6 or CC with Camera Raw, you can also use Lightroom 5. Work flow for PS as follows:

    Open jpg or raw file in PS,
    under Filter choose 'Camera Raw Filter',
    choose the 'Spot Removal' brush from the top left tool panel,
    near the bottom right check the box marked 'Visual Spots' and use the slider to show the spots and use the brush to clean them.

    You can also first choose 'Convert for Smart Filters' before choosing 'Camera Raw Filter' for a non-destructive filter that you can return to later and adjust if necessary.
    Hope this helps.

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    CS6 doesn't have the Camera RAW filter, it's "new" in CC, probably to make up for the fact that ACR can't open a JPEG. (Lightroom has been able to open JPEGs all along and you can do the equivalent of the PS CC Camera Raw filter using it.)

    LR5 also has a spot visualization feature: As stated above, choose the spot removal tool (under the histogram) and there will be a box labeled Visualize Spots under the image window. If it isn't thre, hit the T key to toggle the Toolbar on.
    http://www.tipsquirrel.com/visualize...n-lightroom-5/


    An easy and more general way to for anyone to see spots better is to increase contrast. If you're doing this in PS, do the contrast with an adjustment layer that you will throw away when done. A great way to inc contrast is make a Levels or Curves layer and pull in both ends. If it's too saturated to see anything, change the Mode to Luminosity. Then use the spot removal brush or clone (on the pixel layer.)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Diane Miller View Post
    Using the Gamma adjustment is functionally equivalent to pulling the middle of a Curve down or up. There are some very technical differences in changing Gamma and that Curve move, but they aren't going to be visible in the sort of corrections we normally make. And I suspect the "Gamma" slider isn't a true gamma adjustment, but a behind-the-scenes Curve move. Most of the adjustment dialogs we have are just interfaces to some sophisticated curve movements.

    The Exposure slider moves primarily the lighter tones, and Offset the darker ones, but they just push the histogram right or left. It is more precise to do that with Curves because you can bend the Curve as well as move the ends. And using Curves gives you additional flexibility in one package to tweak the dark and light ends and to tune color balance with the color channels.

    In a case like this, if I get into PS with a file and see a significant global adjustment is needed, I will go back to the RAW conversion and do it there. You can argue that with a small adjustment there isn't a significant difference, but where should one draw that line? If I've done a lot of cloning I'd probably do the adjustment in PS, but if I can go back and do it better in RAW, that's my first choice.

    But, more importantly, why flatten a file? That advice has been bandied around quite a bit, and it is some of the worst advice you'll ever get. I would never flatten a master file. Why burn bridges on an adjustment layer? As has just been demonstrated, what was taken for a finished file has been seen to be better with a tweak to tonalities. Suppose the original had been lightened then flattened. Then you decide you want to darken it. If you had preserved the adjustment layers you would just tweak the lightening layer (or turn it off) -- that's non-destructive. Those layers are not actually applied until you print or make a JPEG or any other derivative file for output.
    A belated thanks Diane. I have been playing around more with the stuff in the Exposure adjustment layer and understand it better thanks to you. The only thing that I would add is that using Offset gives slightly different results than using Curves. Or at the very least it is difficult to match the results perfectly. And I like the convenience of the offset slider.

    On the subject of flattening images, I flatten every master file as I rarely if ever make prints.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Diane Miller View Post
    CS6 doesn't have the Camera RAW filter, it's "new" in CC, probably to make up for the fact that ACR can't open a JPEG. (Lightroom has been able to open JPEGs all along and you can do the equivalent of the PS CC Camera Raw filter using it.)

    LR5 also has a spot visualization feature: As stated above, choose the spot removal tool (under the histogram) and there will be a box labeled Visualize Spots under the image window. If it isn't thre, hit the T key to toggle the Toolbar on.
    http://www.tipsquirrel.com/visualize...n-lightroom-5/


    An easy and more general way to for anyone to see spots better is to increase contrast. If you're doing this in PS, do the contrast with an adjustment layer that you will throw away when done. A great way to inc contrast is make a Levels or Curves layer and pull in both ends. If it's too saturated to see anything, change the Mode to Luminosity. Then use the spot removal brush or clone (on the pixel layer.)
    Thanks again Diane. I have no problem seeing the dust spots straight up. The big problem is that I have gotten away from the habit of doing it first thing.... Then I forget to do it. Is there a fix for that in the cloud???
    BIRDS AS ART Blog: great info and lessons, lots of images with our legendary BAA educational Captions.: we will not sell you junk. 30+ years of long lens experience/e-mail with gear questions.
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    I don't think there's a fix for anything yet in "the cloud." I won't cave in to it until I can't use CS6 anymore, or until they actually come up with some useful new features instead of re-labeled and marginally improved old ones.


    Flattening: The choice of flattening or not has nothing to do with printing or not. (You will need to flatten a derivative file for most output, but shouldn't do it on the master file.)

    Preserving layers by not flattening has to do with non-destructive editing, and is related to the idea of making adjustment layers instead of doing adjustments directly on a copy of a pixel layer (the BG or a composite layer). If you never need go back to tweak any edits (adjustments) then it's not an issue, but that's rarely the case for an advanced user. The example image that stared this thread was gorgeous, but it was found after it was "finished" that a tonal tweak improved it even more. For a very small adjustment it's not of huge significance, but at some point, being able to do tonal changes non-destructively will give better tonal gradations.

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    Publisher Arthur Morris's Avatar
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    Hi Diane, With all due respect, I have been tweaking flattened 8-bit master files after the fact for years. I understand the theory behind a non-destructive workflow but have never seen anything crummy looking when I am done. I do not own a microscope... :)
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    Regional Moderator Bill Jobes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arthur Morris View Post
    Bill, Have you figured out what is different when playing with the Exposure slider as opposed to the Gamma slider?
    Hi Artie,

    Sorry for returning late to the thread. My impression, and it's only that, is that playing with the Exposure slider does little for me personally.

    I'm just not a fan of increasing or decreasing Exposure in CS. Assuming of course, that the image was properly exposed in the field.

    For me, Gamma adjustments have the potential to transform the artistic richness of an image in a much more impactful way.

    I'm sure others are fans of the Exposure slider for their own good reasons. I'm one who uses it rarely, if ever.
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