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Snowy Egret

Posted by
Ian Bramham (Manchester, United Kingdom) on 19 August 2011 in Animal & Insect and Portfolio.

A Snowy Egret fishing at dawn in the River Arno next to one of the bridges in city centre Florence.

I don't normally photograph wildlife and I was surprised at how difficult these egrets were. The white of the sunlit feathers needed spot metering (a first for me!) with lots of negative exposure compensation otherwise I found the highlights blew out and they are very shy so I only got a couple of shots before it spotted me and moved on.

I was really pleased with how this shot turned out. On the full resolution version of the photo the detail in the birds feathers is simply amazing, particularly those fine tail feathers.

NIKON D700 1/1600 second F/5.6 ISO 200 300 mm (35mm equiv.)

Like what you see here and are interested in photographic composition?.....the blog section of my website now has a complete set of 5 articles covering my personal approach to the subject: Ian Bramham Photography - Blog

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Marie LC from Entre montagnes et Bretagne, France

Wonderful diagonal composition. Great bw and bird in a beautiful light

19 Aug 2011 10:28am

@Marie LC: Thanks Marie!

Anna.C from LA ROCHELLE, France

first step for this kind of photo by you, Ian ! I'm happy you understand, now, how it's difficult to expose as well as possible the white feathers under the sun, especially on a dark background, and a moving subject like bird ! a great result, beautiful work !

19 Aug 2011 11:17am

@Anna.C: Thanks Anna....I've even more repect now for those who manage to photograph birds like this in flight which is even harder.

Scene by Sharon Photography from Kingston, Ontario, Canada

such a beautiful image - I love your perspective and the composition

19 Aug 2011 11:33am

@Scene by Sharon Photography: Thanks Sharon!

Ralph Jones from Detroit, United States

Beautiful and elegant B&W.

19 Aug 2011 11:48am

@Ralph Jones: Thanks Ralph!

Ian Smith from London, United Kingdom

Excellent - and quite a change for you :-) Looks fantastic.

19 Aug 2011 1:46pm

@Ian Smith: Hi Ian, I was actually there photographing the sun rising over Florence city centre until I got distracted by the sight of this Egret in the water below the bridge. I really liked the composition formed naturally by the high viewpoint and also the contrast between the light of the white bird and the dark of the river.

janina from Melbourne, Australia

The POV and feather detail is superb. 4stars. ^)^

19 Aug 2011 2:00pm

Heinz from Hamm, Germany

ein hervorragendes SW-Foto.

19 Aug 2011 5:35pm

Olivier from Manage, Belgium

Great class, an superb realisation!

19 Aug 2011 7:13pm

Oleg from Podolsk, Russian Federation

Very dramatic, dynamic image. And the direction of egret and spectacular diagonal with these leaves create a feeling of the wind.

19 Aug 2011 7:15pm

hugo poon from hong kong, Hong Kong

What painterly grace and poetic expression Ian! How I admire your tone and refreshing composition... such beautiful fine art!

20 Aug 2011 3:49am

Daryl Johnson from New Malden, United Kingdom

I love the diagonals in this composition, very nicely done!

21 Aug 2011 8:04am

DarkElf from Perth, Australia

great example of how to use tones and in this case b&w processing to isolate and focus attention on your subject! beautifully taken!

21 Aug 2011 1:50pm

Shaahin Bahremand from Tehran, Iran

wonderful capture
well done indeed

21 Aug 2011 3:33pm

JCJ from Troyes, France


21 Aug 2011 6:53pm

k@ from Paris, France

Like a B&W Audubon !

23 Aug 2011 7:27am

Didier DE ZAN from somewhere, France

Great shot and composition

24 Aug 2011 9:08pm

Babzy from Besançon, France

very nice :)

25 Aug 2011 5:21pm

Ani from Bordeaux, France

A wonderful picture with a bird's eye view. We feel the egret walking.

30 Nov 2011 2:26pm

1/1600 second
ISO 200
300 mm (35mm equiv.)