Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Gull Photo Study

I'm on my feet when I shoot. Sometimes I like to change backgrounds of a subject. This Herring gull was being very tolerant of my intrusion. I had a chance to shoot the same bird, sitting in the same location from three angles. These are presented in order.

The first shot was taken with the harbor water as the background.
©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

The second, I walked around the gull, eying the background. I took this as a full bust shot rather than a full bird shot.
©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

Judging by the calmness of the bird, I swung around a little further and shot against a darker background. You can see a bit of the ruddy colored door in the second shot. I could have gotten closer to the gull and used a wide angle, but I wanted the ruddy background. By standing back, I could frame the gull with the red and take the shot.
©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

I wonder if this is the same Herring Gull I shot in the same location back on a foggy day in November.
Are tips helpful? Let me know and answer the poll to the right.

13 comments:

John Theberge said...

Great series, I've never been able to get that close to a gull.

Kerri said...

What a beauty! All three shots are GREAT!

Kallen305 said...

Wonderful photos. I am impressed with the fact that you were able to get such a good closeup of the gull that you can see the detail in its feathering and see the clarity of its eyes.

Craig Glenn said...

Very nice shots Steve, and I voted YES YES YES!

Craig

Kelly said...

A beautiful study!! It's interesting how a change in background changes the entire feel of the photo. My favorite is the cool blue...

Richard said...

Interesting set of pictures. I think the blue background looks most natural and doesn't distract from the subject.

dAwN said...

Howdee...
Just found your blog via Kallens...Love the great close up Herring gull shots

Mary said...

How close do you get, and what lens do you use? They are all terrific shots, but I love the first one, with that cool blue background. :)

Steve B said...

Hi John, the trick in Gloucester is to get away from the gulls! It's funny, I was shooting a sunrise on a beach and I wanted to get a shot of the gulls in the red sunlight. I couldn't get within 100 yards and they just took off.

Thanks Kerri and Kim.

Thanks for voting Greg.

Yes, Kelly! That's what makes it fun! Just seeing what works and what doesn't.

Richard likes the blue background. I was worried about the horizontal line.

Hi dAwN, Glad you found SMU! Kim has a fun blog, doesn't she?

Hi Mary, I was using 300mm with a digital equivalent to a 450mm lens. I was about 30 feet. I wanted to one predominate color in the background, so I decided to stay further back and use lots of focal length. This gave me the shoulder to head shot with simple backgrounds. I could have gotten closer and used a shorter length, but that would have made the background a little more complex.

Tabib said...

What a beautiful and cooperative model.
The first pic is my pick, with nice cool blue background and nice side/back lighting that give the 3D effect.

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Very interesting Steve. I like #2 the best although #1 is very good too.

A New England Life said...

I like the contrast's in color. It shows how we all can look different in a different light ; )

Eve said...

All wonderful and I don't know which one I like best! And yes always helpful Steve.

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