2020-02-23: Heading into the photo vault

I have some bird images that I took on my first trip to Africa, which I printed to fill a frame with 4 – 5″ x 5″ openings. While I see it every day, I haven’t really given it much thought in years.  But today when I looked at it, I wondered if with the skills and software I have now, I could improve upon those images.

All of these were shot in raw format with a Nikon D5100 with a 55-300mm kit lens.  I did the best I could at the time with editing them, but we all know that software has come a long way in the last 6 years, not to mention there has been a ton of room for improvement in my skills with editing (and still so much to learn).

A lot of these were taken during the harsh light of midday; but when you are out and about, you shoot what you see, when you see it.  You never know if you’ll even see the same species of bird again, let alone have another opportunity to photograph it.  And as it stands, after 6 trips to Africa, I have only seen carmine bee-eaters on that very first trip while in Zambia, so I am glad I did capture what images I could 🙂

For each image, first is the original edit, and second is the updated edit.

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A lilac breasted roller in flight.  A challenge I still enjoy trying to capture; these are my favourite bird.

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A red bishop in breeding plumage.  

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A pair of blue-cheeked bee-eaters.

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A flock of carmine bee-eaters.

I think in every case, the re-edit made substantial improvement.  As soon as I remember to pick up a replacement light magenta ink cartridge for my printer, I am going to reprint these and replace the original images in that old frame.

I have a few other ideas of images I would like to explore from my archive, so watch this space in the coming weeks and months.

Have a great week!

2018-02-11: Revisiting Old Work

Another week, and another trip down memory lane in terms of my photography.  I’m really glad I made the decision to work on images already captured for this month, as we got rather buried in the snow the past week, and I haven’t had the time, or the energy, to get out and try and capture anything new.

This week is a mixed bag of images, shot locally and in Africa, in colour and black and white.

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From 2014, a sunrise image of the Golden Ears from the dikes in Pitt Meadows where I used to walk my dog.  
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Flying over Victoria Falls on the way into Livingstone airport in Zambia.  Previously, I wasn’t really able to pull out any decent texture from photos shot through windows.  Zambia, April 2013.
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Victoria Falls from the Zambian side.  I was very fortunate to see it with just the right water level; enough so the falls looked incredibly impressive, but not so much that it was completely shrouded in mist.  Zambia, April 2013.

For my then and now image, I chose this zebra from my first trip to South Africa. The original black and white conversion was done in Lightroom using a few basic adjustments, not long after I returned from my trip.  The updated image was edited recently using a combination of plugins in Photoshop, including MacPhun Tonality and Topaz Detail.  I’m sure I could achieve similar results simply using On1 Photo Raw (I’m not using Lightroom any longer for processing), but I like the ease of using Tonality for black and white edits.

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Then – a basic black and white conversion lacking a lot of contrast.
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Now – the zebra stands out much better against the foliage, and there is a lot more detail throughout the image.

 

Please visit:
www.jennifersawickyphotography.com for wildlife, landscape and nature inspired artwork.

and

https://shopvida.com/collections/jennifer-sawicky for textiles inspired by my photography.

A little bit of everything

I’ve just finished a blog post for Londolozi’s guest blog page, and now it is time to get back to keeping up my own page.  Except I’ve got a touch of writer’s block.

A different perspective of an elephant - from on top of his back.  Lovely Danny carried Mom and I for an amazing hour long safari.  April 2013, Livingstone, Zambia. 1/100, f5.3, ISO400, 40mm
A different perspective of an elephant – from on top of his back. Lovely Danny carried Mom and I for an amazing hour long safari. April 2013, Livingstone, Zambia.
1/100, f5.3, ISO400, 40mm
During our transport to Nelsruit Airport, we spotted these lions just as we exited Londolozi's property.  I love that the male is watching the female stalk the impala.  Waiting for someone to get him some lunch! 1/400sec, f11, ISO200, 68mm
During our transport to Nelsruit Airport, we spotted these lions just as we exited Londolozi’s property. I love that the male is watching the female stalk the impala. Waiting for someone to get him some lunch!
1/400sec, f11, ISO200, 68mm

I’ve been trying to think of what angle to take, what animal to highlight, and right now, nothing is coming to me at all.  But these past few weeks, I have been working on a photo book project with my Mom, so I thought I would post a few of the pictures we have selected to include so far.

For some reason, this particular elephant shot makes me think of Dumbo.  Such a soft and gentle face.  At Chobe Park in Botswana. 1/1600sec, f5.6, ISO400, 300mm
For some reason, this particular elephant shot makes me think of Dumbo. Such a soft and gentle face. At Chobe Park in Botswana.
1/1600sec, f5.6, ISO400, 300mm
The antlers on kudo are truly impressive.  Such a beautiful animal.  The timing was perfect as both oxpeckers are looking in the same direction as well. 1/320sec, f5.6, ISO100, 300mm
The antlers on kudo are truly impressive. Such a beautiful animal. The timing was perfect as both oxpeckers are looking in the same direction as well.
1/320sec, f5.6, ISO100, 300mm
We saw 10-12 wild ostrich on the way to and from the Cape of Good Hope.  We even witnessed two members of park staff free a male that was entangled in some wire and had fallen on the rocks.  It was very lucky those men didn't get injured in helping the Ostrich.  Everyone that had pulled over to see what the commotion was started clapping and honking when the Ostrich took off after the rest of his group and the men were safely back in their vehicle. 1/640sec, f8.0, ISO200, 55mm
We saw 10-12 wild ostrich on the way to and from the Cape of Good Hope. We even witnessed two members of park staff free a male that was entangled in some wire and had fallen on the rocks. It was very lucky those men didn’t get injured in helping the Ostrich. Everyone that had pulled over to see what the commotion was started clapping and honking when the Ostrich took off after the rest of his group and the men were safely back in their vehicle.
1/640sec, f8.0, ISO200, 55mm
Sunrise on my last game drive at Londolozi (for now) 1/1250sec, f9.0, ISO200, 55mm
Sunrise on my last game drive at Londolozi (for now)
1/1250sec, f9.0, ISO200, 55mm