Scaley Lizard Portrait

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

Scaley Lizard Portrait

Post by Mike B in OKlahoma »

This Crevice Spiny Lizard posed nicely for my camera....

Image
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."
--Calvin

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

Post by Mike B in OKlahoma »

The above was full-frame, just for fun, here is a 100% crop, USM applied:

Image
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."
--Calvin

rjlittlefield
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Location: Richland, Washington State, USA
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Post by rjlittlefield »

Mike,

Interesting textures and anatomy to this fellow. :D

Regarding the picture, I find this actual-pixels version to be visually soft.

So I tried my usual experiment. Resize the image to X%, resize it again to 1/X% (thus restoring to original size), layer it with the original, then flash back and forth to see how much quality has been lost. Question: what's the smallest X for which all the real detail gets preserved?

For this image, X turns out to be around 70%. That is, shrinking to 70% and then restoring by 142.9% produces an image that is almost indistinguishable from the one that you posted -- especially after a bit of USM on the restored image.

So why shrink it? Well, at 70%, the image strikes me as significantly "sharper" (more detail per image area) and also more free of pixelation artifacts. Of course you could also fit a larger part of the image into the same screen space.

I'd be curious to know what you think. Can you give it a shot? Or let me know that it's OK, and I can post here the 70% version.

--Rik

rjlittlefield
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Joined: Tue Aug 01, 2006 8:34 am
Location: Richland, Washington State, USA
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Post by rjlittlefield »

rjlittlefield wrote:Or let me know that it's OK, and I can post here the 70% version.
Whoops, my mistake! I see in your signature that you already said it's OK.

So here without further ado is the 70% version (plus 35% of 0.7 pixel USM).
Image

Your thoughts?

--Rik

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

Post by Mike B in OKlahoma »

Your version looks sharper--Hard for me to be an objective judge, I took the photograph just yesterday morning and am still too emotionally tied to it to judge it well.

The original 100% crop was (I believe) done with 100% USM at 0.6 radius, which is less sharpening than I would normally do for a full-size shot with my 1Ds. I knew I was being conservative in applying USM on this one, because I thought I saw a sharpening halo against the rust-colored b/g above the lizard's head--I'm hypersensitive to that sort of thing because I have a tendency to oversharpen if I don't restrain myself.

I went back and tried a more "normal" amount of USM (I believe it was 160% at 1.3 radius) and I thought it looked better, especially the area around the mouth. But the eye was still a bit soft. It may be that the eye was just not quite in the plane of sharp focus, or at least not enough to be sharp at 100%. Below I am posting a similar 100% crop with no USM applied except for that during sharpening. I invite anyone interested to do their best at sharpening it and reposting here (subject to the moderators deciding that if enough people do this that the bandwidth usage isn't justified by the addition to the discussion). I suspect that the eye just isn't sharpenable (if that's a word) but I'd welcome hearing from anyone who can pull it off.

Image
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."
--Calvin

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

Post by beetleman »

I am not going to join in on this Discussion because it is way over my abilities. I will comment on the photo. Spiny lizards And swifts are one of my favorite lizard types and I think you captured his beauty very well. He does look like he has a little damage to his upper jaw (or he is getting ready to shed) but I love his alertness.
Take Nothing but Pictures--Leave Nothing but Footprints.
Doug Breda

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