Jerry Snyder  

Tundra Swans on Water – Middle Creek by Jerry Snyder

August 2019 - Tundra Swans on Water – Middle Creek

About the Image(s)

This image was taken at Middle Creek, PA early on a cold very foggy morning in February when the migrating Snow Geese and Tundra Swans stop over on their migration north. They congregate in the tens of thousands, sometimes in excess of 100,000 birds and draw birders and photographers to witness the spectacle. When this image was taken, the snow geese had taken flight and left the reservoir to forage for corn in the surrounding corn fields. The tundra swans kept to themselves in a cove-like area of the reservoir. The dense fog was starting to clear in small patches which created spotlights of sunlight that moved across the water as the wind moved the fog. This group of tundra swans was lit by a moving spot of light that only illuminated the swans but left the water and surrounding vegetation shrouded in the fog. This light lasted about 10 seconds. In Lightroom I made some tonal adjustments to enhance the contrast between the swans and the vegetation while keeping enough light on the water and background to them. I also converted the image to monochrome in Lightroom. The image was almost monochrome to begin with. I cropped and resized in FastStone. The exposure settings were f/8, ISO 250, and 1/400 sec. on a tripod mounded Canon 6D and 100-400 mm lens set at 400 mm.

This round’s discussion is now closed!
8 comments posted

Don York   Don York
A most interesting composition enhanced by the panorama. The swans are a little bright. I might try a slight exposure reduction or maybe an increase in contrast. I like the reflections in the water.   Posted: 08/04/2019 20:00:46
Jerry Snyder   Jerry Snyder
Thank you Don and Stan for your comments. I went back to the original image and found much more detail in the swan with its wings outstretched than in the image I submitted. Although the swans are in bright sunlight, the loss of detail is not from blown highlights but from the resizing. I am posting the original image here. Unfortunately the detail in the swan's wings is lost after resizing in this image also. Of course the main point of the image was the illuminated swans in the foggy surroundings, I agree that the detail in the birds is also important.   Posted: 08/09/2019 10:11:51
Comment Image

Stan Bormann   Stan Bormann
I really like this image. Yes, the swans are a little bright, but I don't think lost detail in the swans is all that important in this image. The swans are the detail in the larger image. The natural light on the swans is beautiful and the misty feel to the rest of the image sets off the swans.   Posted: 08/08/2019 21:13:17

Stuart Ord   Stuart Ord
Yes, I'd agree that the swans being bright gives it impact, and the misty background helps with that. To me, it's the whole scene that is interesting, I'm not bothered in examining the details of the birds. Mind you, I'd have slightly preferred it if the one flapping his wings had been on the 1/3! Although he's not far off. The swans in the background give nice depth. Super, I love it.
  Posted: 08/09/2019 11:22:16
Stuart Ord   Stuart Ord
PS, is it slightly leaning to the right?   Posted: 08/09/2019 11:23:23

Jerry Funk   Jerry Funk
I like this image a lot. Great contrast! The only idea I have is to perhaps add clarity to bring out a bit more detail in the fog to increase the atmosphere, at least to my taste.   Posted: 08/12/2019 18:33:29

John Roach   John Roach
I like the image very much. My only nit is the tilt.   Posted: 08/13/2019 18:18:42

Abhijeet Banerjee   Abhijeet Banerjee
I liked the tranquil panorama. Good contrast and the light. A bit tilted toward the right. May be this is due to some reflections on the water. Birds are well spread-out giving good balance to the image.   Posted: 08/29/2019 04:32:02