Peter Hornbostel  

A GORILLA by Peter Hornbostel

July 2024 - A GORILLA

July 2024 - Peter Hornbostel


About the Image(s)

We recently visited the Zoo in Hanover, Germany. I intended to make a monochrome picture of a Gorilla. I thought my Canon 70-200mm RF lens would be sufficient with my Canon R5 camera. But the distance was too great to get my desired image. So, I took my best image, one where the Gorilla looked towards the camera. My plan was to get the eyes a little bit lighter, but the sun and the shadows were very strong this day. Nevertheless, I’m happy with the result. I intend to make a new attempt on my next visit.

4 comments posted

Jim Bodkin   Jim Bodkin
That is a tricky exposure in bright sun, Peter. You captured the detail, but the eyes need help. My suggestion would be the object selection on LR/PS for detail masking and then increase the exposure of the dark area. A quick (imperfect) 3 minute edit is attached to indicate possibilities. You could perfect it to your own tastes.

  Posted: 07/07/2024 22:37:40
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Peter Hornbostel   Peter Hornbostel
Thank you Jim. I have already tried to lighten the eyes. I have had a similar result as yours but this would destroy the eye structure. The lens has been to short to take more information into the dark parts. I will try it with a new lens in two months. Hope, I can present a better result!   Posted: 07/08/2024 01:15:15

Christian Serre   Christian Serre
Yes, this is a tricky high contrast situation. I would add that this is somewhat often true to some extent for a majority of outdoor shots, unless it's a cloudy day. The way I tend to naturally remedy this is to most often push up the shadows and diminish the highlights on the image as a whole. I occasionally up the blacks but that most often degrades the image quality. More often I may even accentuate the black a little. Negative contrast also lightens the dark areas of the image and sometimes works.
I then tried selecting the shadows around the eyes with a Luminance range mask in Lightroom from which I subtracted the areas not directly around the eye with a brush. As you noticed, I also find that you can only do very subtle changes in dark areas if you want to keep it natural looking. I only sharpened and reduced noise with this selection, essentially. Upping the shadows and diminishing the highlights on the image as a whole is what worked best for me. I also selected the subject and then created a reverse selection to get the background and lowered the texture and clarity on it. I also lowered the highlights just a bit.
  Posted: 07/10/2024 14:56:13
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Peter Hornbostel   Peter Hornbostel
Hi Christian,
Thank you for your contribution. It shows one thing above all: my knowledge about Photoshop (I do not use Lightroom) is rudimentary. More than working with tools, a photographer should take care about the situation with the camera, ha! I didn't recognized, that the shutter speed was about 1/8000 instead of 1/800. This pushed the ISO to 3200. All in all too short, to pick up detail information for the picture. First, 200mm are too short for the distance - 300mm will do it better. In a couple of weeks I hopefulla receive my new 200-800mm lens. Second, even on a sunny day a shutter time of 1/400 upto the max of 1/800 should be sufficant for this object moving slow or even rest still. Third, wait, until he's looking straight into the camera. This will hinder, that the eyelashes cover the eyes and destroy a structure while lighten up the dark parts. What does a photographer do in those situations? Try it anew ... I will show a result then.   Posted: 07/10/2024 20:36:19


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