Tammie Simon  

The First Born by Tammie Simon

September 2023 - The First Born

September 2023 - Tammie Simon


About the Image(s)

This was taken at a rookery about 45 minutes from me- Cazan Lake (PJF Farms). Birds are in close proximity to a gravel road, so no boat is required. There are thousands of birds nesting from late February until around May. The best time is March-April before the leaves start growing in on the trees. I chose this image because I felt it had great impact with the chick looking at the mother.
This was taken in late March 2022. ISO 400, 1/2000 7.1 at 500 mm with my Z6ii and Nikon 200-500 lens. This image was edited for Nature competition which doesn't allow cloning, so I tried my best to darken the distracting branches, but I know if I would enter it in Pictorial, I could clean it up nicely with cloning. In post processing, I just used camera raw to increase whites and blacks a bit and the shadows. I used a curves layer to create a slight matte background and masked it off of the birds and nest.

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

Mike Cohen   Mike Cohen
I love the scene and the tonality of the image in general. It's a pleasure to look at. I agree with your thougth process and how you processed it. My only additional input would be to slightly desaturate the green twig that is on the front of the nest. Given my liberal boundaries for my own work, I'd remove it but it's not a big issue with the image. Nice one.   Posted: 09/03/2023 10:22:26

Ann Brixey   Ann Brixey
I really like this image, it shows such a tender moment. I have to agree about the twig, I remove it in PS. Overall the processing works so well. Nice shot.   Posted: 09/13/2023 08:39:15

Ally Green   Ally Green
Very nice capture of the mother and her chick depicting a softness and tender moment. I like how everything flows in a circular motion with the mother looking down and the chic looking up. Great detail throughout which holds your attention.I too agree about the twig but overall i think this is a wonderful image.   Posted: 09/15/2023 17:20:57

Judith Lesnaw   Judith Lesnaw
Tammie, this charming image tells a tender story. The composition is grand. The subjects are nicely framed by the trees and twigs, and the baby is beautifully framed in the mother's protective stance. The detail in the bird's feathers is excellent and those eyes are piercingly sharp. Great catch.   Posted: 09/17/2023 12:42:04

Sharon Prislipsky   Sharon Prislipsky
I think you have captured a lovely nature story. I also commend you for being cognizant of the rules for Nature Division when doing your editing. I too always keep two versions of my nature images - one that follows the strict rules and another that is more artistic for use only in the non-reality competitions. I think you made a good choice in how you handled the background. In Nature the judges do not like to see backgrounds darkened to the point where they appear unrealistic. Yours seems very natueal to me.   Posted: 09/17/2023 13:14:08

Pamela Hoaglund   Pamela Hoaglund
You have captured a beautiful moment between the chick and parent. There is nice detail in the feathers of the adult and both parent and chick are very sharp. I think your crop works well. Being constrained by the Nature rules I think you did a nice job in decreasing the background clutter. To me it seems a bit dark but I am looking at it on my iPad. Well done.   Posted: 09/17/2023 20:03:24