Nature shares from spring 2010 (critter alert!)

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Nature shares from spring 2010 (critter alert!)

Please CC if you would like. These are some shots I took at various locations in the Washington, D.C., area this spring. In general, I feel like I need to work on the steadiness with my hand (although, some of these were shot with a macro on windy days--difficult!). I'll have to check the settings when I get home.

1. Rough green snake. I wish I could claim to have spotted this little guy first, but someone else pointed him out to us. He was on the move and difficult to shoot with my 55-200 mm, but I got a couple of acceptable shots.

2. Phantom crane fly. This guy was on the move and hard to get a good focus on! I do like the composition but wish the fly were crisper.

3. Wildflower with red spider mite. Taken with my 60mm macro

4. Pine tree buds

5. Crane fly. I've got an edited pic of the bug with full wings included. I wasn't crazy about the composition. Let me know what you think about the cropped version.

6. Purple wildflowers.

7. Rosebuds. From my own garden, sad to say--I've got aphids! I didn't know until after I downloaded these pictures! It's not a crisp, clean shot, but I like the bokeh and liquidy effect on the flowers. What do you all think?

8. One of my birthday roses (not from my own garden). Too unfocused? Too blown?

Thanks for looking!

Amy_&_Eva's picture
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Yay for "critter alert"! LOL I love that! Smile

Love the snake closeup! He's a beauty!
I like both cranefly shots, #5 is fine to me because you can see the eye detail. I don't mind the cropped off wings. I like the lighting too.

I LOVE #6, those are wild geraniums I think? Your shot is beautiful of them.

I do love the bokeh in #7...can you explain what you mean by "liquidy effect on the flowers"? Is that a type of edit?

#8 is pretty but it does seem blurry/soft.

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Ahhh, SNAKES! :eek: HATE snakes, but you caught an amazing photo!
LOVE the rose one!

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These are really great! They brought a smile to my face Biggrin Love the colours in #4. I wish the rose picture were sharper, but its still beautiful.

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Thanks for the feedback! I'm glad you all liked the shots.

"Amy_&_Eva" wrote:

I do love the bokeh in #7...can you explain what you mean by "liquidy effect on the flowers"? Is that a type of edit?

LOL! No "liquidy effect" was my poor attempt at describing how I thought the buds looked. Looking back, I don't think it's very accurate. I cropped, sharpened, and bumped up the color slightly but made no other edits. I've got to get those rosebushes sprayed ASAP. I bought an organic product that's supposed to kill aphids. I guess I could also feed them to my koi.

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I love nature shots and you have such a great eye for it!

1. focus and color look GREAT! I'm not a fan of snakes (of any kind), but you've captured it well here. He looks perfectly exposed and stands out well against the darker background. That beedy little eye gives me the creepin' willies. Wink

2. focus definitely looks like it's on the blade of grass, but it's still a great catch. really nice bokeh here.

3. did you sharpen here or do a tight crop? the flower petals look grainy. or perhaps that is just their natural texture. that spider mite must be TINY!

4. LOVE THIS ONE!!! I love the super shallow DOF. your bokeh is nice and creamy. I love the soft muted colors. AWESOME!

5. I like this crop. It tends to draw me to those funky green eyes. :+) I do wish just a tiny bit more of him was in focus, but I can only imagine how hard that must be w/ creatures on the move.

6. very pretty. focus and composition seem to be SPOT ON! it looks a touch washed out though. not sure if this is an esposure issue or if it's just a pale color to begin with. either way around, it's still a lovely shot!

7. this one doesn't do much for me ... and the aphids make my skin crawl a bit. it really is nice bokeh though.

8. I like this one. it looks like a painting to me. I'm not sure I'd rush out and get a canvas print of this, but I still like it. I could see it as the wallpaper on my desktop. Biggrin

This is a VERY nice set, Janet! Thanks SO MUCH for sharing it with us!

Best,
GiGi

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Ewww!! Snakes and bugs!! Lol

Great shots! Were these at a high ISO or maybe over sharpened? They look grainy. Maybe run them through a noiseware? I think that would help smooth them out a bit better. Saved two of my recents of my DD.

That snake is just creepy! The last rose picture is beautiful. I don't know if it's blown, but I love it.

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I think I did oversharpen #3. I was trying to get a little more detail out of the spider mite, but I think I'll go back and play with the image. #6 was kind of a happy accident. The flowers were in the middle of a patch of vines and weeds, and I was afraid to step in close because of poison ivy. I used my 55-200 mm to zoom onto the flowers and was happy that it came out focused. I'll play with the color to see if I can't liven it up a bit.

Here's a photo of the crane fly's entire body and wings. I'm just not crazy about the composition. The bug has legs and antennae everywhere, and I just don't like the negative space I have to include to capture it all. I was surprised how interesting these drab little flies look close up.

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I like the full shot, because of the wing detail, the bokeh, and you can still see his cool green eyes. I know most of my insect shots probably don't have "good" composition but I just like seeing details, and of course it's the big factor of how FAST they disappear on you!