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Painted ducks on a painted swamp
 
© Copyright (c) Paul Fisher 2001

Painted ducks on a painted swamp


paulfisher
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Nikkor 28-80 at 80mm. No digital manipulation.

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© Copyright (c) Paul Fisher 2001
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I've done a lot of digital manipulation with this, but nothing looks

as good to my eye as this image - just as it came out of the camera.

Nikon FG, Nikkor 28-80 at approx 50mm. Exposure not recorded,

probably around 1/60 at f5.6

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When I saw the thumbnail of this it caught my eye immediately. At first I thought it was manipulated for a painterly effect but the larger view shows it to be better. I like the symmetry of the reflection. Very nice.
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It looks something like a 18th century watercolor, doesn't it? It has that kind of light. I had to take it to my Adobe PhotoDeluxe and make a bw out of it to make sure I wasn't missing anything.....I haven't looked at the rest of your things yet, but I certainly think this site is worth many more photos, and at different times of the day.

I just don't understand the light, though....it's really puzzling...unless I'm missing something...because with light, there is a plan, and I can't catch it here. Of course, I know that light changes amazingly with geography, and this is a place very unfamiliar to me. I feel something of a children's fairytale from it, but in a literary way......the photography itself still has to "snap to"...as a being, a space unto itself.....

222363.jpg
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Thanks Belle. The light is coming from low on the left (late afternoon) and is filtered through a thicket of melaleuca trees standing in the water. The ducks are swimming out of an almost totally enclosed little bay into open water. I plan on burning a lot of film at this location - it is a jewell. BTW the link to your B&W version doesn't work.
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For me this picture is akward to evaluate. I think that circular polarizer or a warming polarizer would have helped. The picture is to busy for me. Try cropping closer on the ducks. Still I like the picture.
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Thanks Gerry. No - there is no painting involved. This is just as it came out of the camera. The only digital work (which I do to all my photos) is auto contrast adjustment, smoothing (to reduce grain) and a touch of unsharp mask if necessary. These wetlands are magical places, which is why I keep going back to photograph them.
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Amazing effect of the dappled light, combined with the swamp and twisted wood. It looks like a scene from another planet.
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That's a very intriguing photograph. It does look like a scene from another planet, as Geraldine suggested, but for me Australia is another planet.

 

If you intended the shot, from the very beginning, to look like a painting, you managed to do that. The question is if it looks like a good painting. I couldn't answer DEFINITLY YES.

 

The technique you used here was to defocus the image. I loaded your image and zoomed it in to the limit of the resolution. The ducks and the trees above the water are clearly out of focus. The reflected image is difficult to judge because of the slight rippled effect. The upper side of the picture seems to be overexposed. The exposure is right for the reflected image only, which represents about 80% of the picture.

 

The colors are the ones that make the picture really interesting. Again the colors of the reflected image are properly saturated, while the colors of the upper portion are not.

 

If you like this spot so much you should try to shoot it again.

 

 

 

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Hi Anton, thanks for the comment. I think the out-of-focus you see is more the effect of not using the full-size scan for uploading. You got me wondering, so I just went back to the original scan to check, and the ducks are in focus. (Phew!) As you rightly point out, there is a big contrast range here - the ducks are swimming out of a shadowed little cove into bright sunlight. I have made an A4 print of this with reduced contrast range, and it comes up quite nicely.

 

I will certainly be taking your advice and shoot more pictures at this site. Thanks for taking the time for such an in-depth critique.

 

Paul

 

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Whoa Paul, thanks for the invite. First thing I thought was "just like a paiting" but your technical explanations take care of that.

What a moment, the light is definitely other-worldly, the image different and much appreciated this end.

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My immediate impression on viewing this photograph is that it springs from the imagination of a rural watercolourist from days gone by. This is perhaps due to the greater contrast found on the water surface resulting in a marginal over-exposure (and therefore tinting) of the trees above the waterline and far bank and where there is less shadow. Adding to the "brush made" experience is that (for me at least) it is difficult to easily detect where the curving branch on the left middle distance, enters the water. There is a continuous sweep unlike the angled entry for the trees on the right. I also notice a range of warmth from right to left. The photograph appears particularly warm against the left margin. All in, an unusual and attractive photograph.
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This does remind me of the old Turner paintings and which usualy end up on jigsaw puzzles, nice shot my friend, well done, Marc
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