Better next time...
Posted 20 May 2008 - 03:13 PM
Posted 20 May 2008 - 04:54 PM
Not sure how it could be much better - great shot. Maybe a little cloning out of the small amount of backscatter in the upper left and a little burning on the underside of the jaw to reduce the brightness. These are nit picks at best.
Edited by Jeff Phillips, 20 May 2008 - 04:55 PM.
Posted 20 May 2008 - 05:25 PM
Of all the cleaning stations, on all the Bommies in the world - you chose this one
Olympus E-520, 50mm macro, 14-42mm, Olympus housing with SnS 110a & Inon Z240-4 flash.
Posted 20 May 2008 - 05:36 PM
The grouper's eye is nicely in focus. The main "story" of this shot, though, is the cleaner wrasse, and it looks a bit soft. Because the cleaner is soft and the grouper eye is sharp, the viewer's attention is drawn to the grouper eye. That's fine, as this allows the viewer to first say "cool shot of a grouper" and then realize there is a wrasse in there too, but if the eye is going to move that way through the shot, the starting point (ie the sharply focused grouper eye) is in a position within the frame that feels uncomfortable. I took the liberty of throwing a quick crop suggestion on your shot (attached) that puts the grouper eye essentially on the upper left third-point, giving a line through the shot down the upper jaw and along the bottom jaw to the wrasse on the lower right third point. Getting a bit closer to the fish would mean you don't need to crop aggressively to achieve this.
Getting back to the suggestion that getting in front of the fish might have been good, another benefit of this would be that the body of the grouper fades out of focus, giving a feel for the three dimensional nature of the fish. A side on shot like this can look a little flat.
Hope this helps somewhat and gives you some things to think about.
I also think the colour is a bit washed out my shots of coral cod/trout are stronger than this. Still they can vary in different parts of the world.
Ardy, given that this was shot in Bonaire, it is actually a type of Grouper called a Red Hind. They look a lot like the Indopacific coral trout physically, but they are less brightly coloured. This is actually a pretty good exposure for this type of fish and is an accurate representation of their colours.
D300, D200, D70, 12-24 f4 AFS DX, 60mm f2.8, 70-200 f2.8 AF-S VR, 105 f2.8 AF-S VR, Tokina Wunderlens.
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Posted 22 May 2008 - 03:00 PM
Thanks for the feedback!
Craig, you hit the nail on the head. I was as low as the reef would allow, but I like your idea of a more head on shot with the body fading out. And your crop addresses what I couldn't put my finger on, the "uncomfortable" composition.
I shot this at f/8 for the most DOF that the 8080 would give me, and it looks like the grouper's mouth is sharp. I think the cleaner wrasse moved on me. After reviewing the shot I remembered a tip about using a high shutter speed (1/500 or so) with the strobe to produce a black background. Guess that might have frozen the wrasse as well.
ID-wise a couple of locals in Bonaire suggested this may be a tiger grouper due to the size, and they apparently can go quite red at cleaning stations. He was 2.5 to 3ft long. Do the hinds get that big?
In any case thanks all for your feed back. Can't wait to get wet again and try this out.
I've got one more of an Eagle Ray that I need to clean up and post later for suggestions.