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Winning images - Admin's choices - Round five 2014/2015

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    Default Winning images - Admin's choices - Round five 2014/2015

    Hi members,

    In case you are new around here this is where the Admin (me) chooses one (occasionally 2) excellent photos nominated by other members from the Member's monthly choice forum. Once 10 images are nominated, I choose a 'winner'.

    Just so it's clear, the photo(s) I choose are not necessarily the best ones of the month. I've come to realize it's not really logical to pit images from totally different genres against each other. That's why there are categories in photo contests. My goal is to simply choose an excellent photo and talk about why I think it rocks.

    This round of nomination yielded images of exceptional quality and now for the second time in a row I was unable to choose just one.

    This round's two winners are “If you wait by the river long enough, the bodies of your enemies will float by.” by mbrager and Fort Myer's Beach Birding by Mike Bons

    I chose these images for several reasons;


    “If you wait by the river long enough, the bodies of your enemies will float by.” by mbrager

    1 - Mood/Contrast/Exposure - I like everything about this image but it's the exposure itself and the subsequent post-processing (which I'll get to) that are the stars for me. This is a late sunset shot and it looks and feels like it. The contrast is low, as it should be, and yet beautiful shadow detail dances with varying degrees of highlight detail. This creates the wonderfully gorgeous and thoughtful mood of the image.

    2 - Composition - Extremely well framed image and I can see the deliberate thinking that went into making it. Very thoughtful placement of the focal points and other elements that make up the image. I love the dark moody reflections at foreground left that seem to play diagonally with the brighter highlight reflections in the water as well as in the sky. There are lots of gorgeous lines for our eyes to follow in this photograph. These include the snowline at midground left toward the center, bridgeline in the center, vertical lines in the trees and reflections. There are even lines in the sky for our eye to explore and enjoy.

    3 - Post processing - Fabulous choices were made in this regard. Temptation was surely there to pull additional highlight detail as well as shadow detail from the water in particular. This would have made the tones more dramatic and exciting, but it would have forever changed the mood and turned this into a completely different, and less interesting photograph.

    (4) - The title - I don't think it influenced my decision, but I'm a sucker for perfect titles like this one.

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Fort Myer's Beach Birding by Mike Bons (Reddish Egret)

    1- Colour, Clarity and sharpness - All 3 are superb in this image. I really like the tones of grey in the feathers and the reddish feather tones as well. The colours and contrast look natural.

    2 - Gesturing and decisive moment - The bird's gesture is grand and Mike's quick trigger finger was there to capture it.

    3 - Exposure - Exposure is bang on for me. A nice high shutter speed captures the lovely feather detail and a medium aperture on a long lens gets good eye and feather sharpness while blurring the background for good foreground to background separation.


    For all these reasons, these are my choices for this round. Since we all have opinions, some members may disagree with my choices. That's cool but THIS thread is not the place for debate over my picks, NOR is it the place to further critique the image. The purpose here is to suggest strong elements in the photos that we may learn from.

    Congrats again to Mike Bons and mbrager!
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    2 Great choices. Congrats guys.

    I do not envy your task each month Marko - it would be tough.
    - I welcome all critique and comments on any of my photos
    - To see more of my photos visit my Flickr Page

    “The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera.” -— Dorothea Lange

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    Congrats guys! Awesome choices, Marko!
    “If you are out there shooting, things will happen for you. If you’re not out there, you’ll only hear about it.” – Jay Maisel
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    Congrats, Mike and Mike! Great work.

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    We've been on holidays (more about this later as I organize my photos) so I didn't have a chance to respond to this honor until now. Wow, I'm surprised since all the nominations were really high caliber. Thanks for the amazing, well written, very thoughtful critique. I found both critiques very helpful and thought provoking in terms of inspiring further work. I did send this photo out for an aluminum print. Hope it works out.
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    Thanks for the selection Marko and thank to JAS for the nomination (as well as Iggy for the other nomination). Right now I am doing a lot of photographing of migrating waterfowl in icy water and could really use a return trip to Fort Myers Beach, FL.

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    I don't envy you job Marko. So many fabulous images to choose from and congrats to the winners.
    Thanks for doing this and pointing out why your picks are so "fabulous"

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