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Thread: Spotted Sandpiper chick

  1. #1
    BPN Member gail bisson's Avatar
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    Default Spotted Sandpiper chick

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    I was fortunate to have a spotted sandpiper nest on my property this year. Once I spotted the chicks on the beach I watched to see where they liked to forage. The next morning, I set up my blind before sunrise with my lens aimed at this general area.
    I waited 90 minutes....sooo...boring. And then the 3 chicks were behind me for about 15 minutes but I could not move.Sooo....frustrating! But finally, they moved in front of me and I spent about an hour watching and photographing them.
    The biggest challenge was getting them on top of the rocks. Shot about 800 frames and only got 5 that I liked.
    @ of the 3 chicks fledged successfully.
    Canon 1 DX 600mm v3 and 1.4 x v.3
    Crop to 60% FF. Nothing added or cloned
    ISO 1000 SS 1/2000 F 5.6
    Comments and critiques always learned from and appreciated with thanks,
    Gail

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    BPN Member Bill Dix's Avatar
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    See. You don't need to go to Nickerson to shoot cute chicks. Your patience paid off. I love the juxtaposition of the soft fuzzy chick on the hard granite rocks.

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    BPN Member Dorian Anderson's Avatar
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    Such a little cutie! Your patience was rewarded! Setting, composition, and exposure look spot on, but there seems to be slight lack of sharpness/detail on the subject, particularly on the legs. The eye and beak look good, but things seem to fall off a bit from there. Some of that is certainly due to the difficulty in resolving the super fine downy bits, but I would have though the entire bird would be razor sharp since it's so tiny and requires little DOF to resolve. I really like this frame but the chick doesn't quite crack the way I would hope. I wonder if TC would have helped here as it would have put more pixels on the tiny subject? 60% of FF is perfect for larger birds, but I'm just wondering if what I seem to be seeing comes from a lack of resolution with a 2 inch subject. Who knows, I'm just rambling at this point.

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    Lifetime Member Colin Driscoll's Avatar
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    The things we put ourselves through! I agree with Dorian about the focus. Have you checked whether that combo needs a little AF micro-adjusting? Mine was slightly front focusing and needed +5 adjustment and it looks like your little sandpiper is at the back of the DOF with the tail (such as it is!) out of focus.

  5. #5
    BPN Member gail bisson's Avatar
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    Thanks guys! I had another look at this and I purposely did not sharpen the chick because I wanted to maintain the fluffiness.
    So I think that is some of the issue re: sharpness but the other issue is lack of pixels on the subject with this big crop.
    Colin-Interesting that you mention about MAFA. I have been wondering about that since I got my new lens and have an appointment booked in September with a guy in Halifax to check. Will let you know if there is an issue! I tried to do it here with the Lens Align but could not figure it out!!

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    Amazing shot Gail! I love the contrast between the chick and the BG. Really like the colors too. The light is just so sweet. Other than the sharpness issues mentioned, my only other nitpick would be the OOF rocks at the bottom of the frame. They're slightly distracting to my eye but nothing too bothersome. Reducing the luminance/saturation of the rocks a touch might help.

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    Avian Moderator Randy Stout's Avatar
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    Gail:

    Some excellent points made about this cute shot. I tend to be careful too about not oversharpening the little fuzz balls, as they quickly go 'crunchy'. I would consider some additional selective sharpening of legs alone.
    Also agree with Aditya about the rocks at the very bottom. His suggestion is likely to reduce their impact nicely.

    Randy
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    Krishna Prasad Kotti Krishna Prasad kotti's Avatar
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    For me looking at the overall image it really works for me. Even thought feet is not sharp.

    It draws me into the frame, I was trying to photograph Spotted Sandpipers here with eggs / chicks with no luck...

    Very happy to see this image.

    TFS
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    Excellent light and well composed. I like the way the color in the foreground rocks balances the darker color in the background. The sandpiper really pops!]

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    Super Moderator Daniel Cadieux's Avatar
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    Ahh, too cute! It appears to already have the butt-bobbing going on too. Nice light, great rocks. Sounds like some great quality time at the beach, even with the slow waiting period!

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    This is a sweet lil chick Gail and i can understand the over-sharpening cautioned you applied in your processing. I like the BG and the light on the "stepping out" sandpiper, well done.

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    Nice to see the chick in the open on the rocks with no distractions. Like light looks very nice.

  13. #13
    Publisher Arthur Morris's Avatar
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    Great story and perseverance and a truly outstanding image. I have never seen an image of a spotty chick and this one is beyond spectacular. The sharpness, raised foot, great BKGR, and the cuteness factor are all superb.

    with love, artie
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