I declare this week is dragonfly week! :)

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Posts: 442
Joined: Wed Jul 26, 2006 8:02 am
Location: Phoenix "Valley of the Sun", Arizona, USA

I declare this week is dragonfly week! :)

Post by twebster »

Hi y'all, :D

I haven't had any time to go out and shoot new images this last month so I've used what little free time I had exploring new software. Here's an image I made a couple of months ago that I have been playing with...

Wandering Glider (Pantala flavescens) Canon EOS 20 D with Canon EF 70-300mm IS zoom lens set at 300mm, 25mm Kenko extension tube, ISO 200, 1/200 sec @ f 11, natural light, monopod with IS turned on.

The original image was decidedly soft and contained quite a bit of noise for ISO 200. I live in Phoenix, Arizona, USA and summertime photography is performed under some very hot conditions. It was probably 108°F when I made this photograph. When it is this hot the noise levels produced by the digital sensor increase. To reduce these higher noise levels I purchased Noise Ninja. This noise reduction program works great! You can download preset noise reduction files tailored to your camera and ISO settings or you can create your own custom settings. So far, the preset settings have worked perfectly for my cameras. :D

I am, also, not the most adept at sharpening images with Photoshop's unsharp mask function. I seem to overdo it and create a lot of sharpening halos. I purchased Fred Miranda's "Intellisharpen II" action for Photoshop. This is a nifty sharpening action that will allow quite a high degree of sharpening to be done on an image without producing noticeable sharpening halos. Left to my own talent I couldn't get this image as sharp as it is posted without lots of sharpening halos. The Intellisharpen action gave me a much sharper image without halos. This was $24.95 that was well spent. :D

Best regards to all as always :!: :D
Tom Webster

Phoenix "The Valley of the Sun", Arizona, USA

The worst day photographing dragonflies is better than the best day working! :)

Posts: 3578
Joined: Fri Aug 04, 2006 4:19 am
Location: Southern New Hampshire USA

Post by beetleman »

We miss you Tom...very nice photo...looks nice and sharp to me. You can see all the veins in the wings very well IMO :wink: I bought a college book on Dragonflies about 20 years ago, cost $55, and I was expecting to see lots of colorful pictures of these beautiful insects and all it had was pictures of wings and sexual parts that they use to ID them. I know it is a great reference but I like pictures better :D
Take Nothing but Pictures--Leave Nothing but Footprints.
Doug Breda

Ken Ramos
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Joined: Thu Jul 27, 2006 2:12 pm
Location: lat=35.4005&lon=-81.9841

Post by Ken Ramos »

I like pictures in text books too, you don't have to read as much and you can draw moustaches on the subjects. Well so it's Dragonfly Week is it? I don't have but one dragonfly and I posted it sometime back. I guess I will have to get out my dragonfly call. :wink: A nicely detailed image there TomW, great colors in the abdomen and background. Kind of comfortable and pleasing to the eye this image. :D

Mike B in OKlahoma
Posts: 1048
Joined: Fri Aug 04, 2006 10:32 pm
Location: Oklahoma City

Post by Mike B in OKlahoma »

If you want something boring, get an identification key for ANY insect family! :-)

Glad to see you keepin' on shootin', Tom!
Mike Broderick
Oklahoma City, OK, USA

Constructive critiques of my pictures, and reposts in this forum for purposes of critique are welcome

"I must obey the inscrutable exhortations of my soul....My mandate includes weird bugs."

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