Animal Photography Photo Critique
by Ana Isabel Martinez
Category: Animal Photography
Canon EOS 7D
Lens: Zoom: Variable focal
Description: A mother's love, protection and tenderness also in nature. Also the baby is very swee see all >
A mother's love, protection and tenderness also in nature. Also the baby is very sweet. Exposure F6,2 Time of day 15:28:19 Lens 18-250, Focal Length:250mm,subject distance: 8,3m (You could not get closer and I have no tele)
Subject of photo
Composition & Perspective
Use of camera, exposure & speed
Color & Lighting
Depth of field
I think that wildlife images of a parent with a baby are always compelling.
I love the perspective on this photo with you being at or near the chimp's eye level. The composition however, could have been improved in my opinion. I understand that you couldn't get closer and that you don't have a larger telephoto lens, however, that doesn't prevent you from cropping the image in software (iPhoto, Aperture, Lightroom, Photoshop, etc) in order to improve the composition and get rid of the stuff at the top of the frame and move the chimp out of the center of the frame.
Focus looks to be well done.
The chimp looks to be overexposed on the edges where the back light is coming through. I suspect this might be a reason why you elected to convert this to a grey scale image and use sepia toning in order to de-emphasize the over exposed areas.
I can't comment on color as it is a grey scale image but I do enjoy the sepia treatment of this image. The lighting is not working in your favour with strong back lighting leaving the faces of the chimps largely in deep shadow.
Given the lens you were using and the conditions the chimp was in, I think you did the best you possible could.
Hi Ana, I think this is a really strong effort. I love the adult chimp with the baby as subjects. I love the perspective you shot this from and I really like the sepia treatment you gave the image. The image just has a few technical problems (some beyond your control) that get in the way of it being an amazing photograph. If the animal is at a facility that is near you, I'd encourage you to go back a few times to see if you can improve on this effort.
How to improve your photo
A fill flash, if allowed at the facility your were photographing at, would have gone a long way to evening out the light on the chimp. This would have allowed you to create a balanced exposure with both the background and the chimp well exposed.
To me, this photograph looks like it was made under harsh afternoon light. If possible, the lighting is tremendously better either earlier in the day or later in the afternoon.
The composition of this image suffers because the eyes of the adult chimp are pretty much dead center in the frame. I know you couldn't zoom in further, but you could use software to crop the photo in a manner that lends itself to a better composition. While you were in the photo editing software, you could also use it to lighten up the faces and bodies of the chimp to draw the viewer in a little. Add a little vignetting to darken around the chimps and it really draws the viewer into the subject of the photo. If you want to see what I did with the photo, check it out here: http://www.bsop.ca/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/img_1330266468_PFB_Edit.jpg
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