Green Heron



Green herons nest successfully around the Duck Pond, but they rarely play nice when the bird rig is poi and pointed in their direction. An hour before dusk, the herons usually fly around the pond squawking and placing themselves in beautiful evening light. I noticed one of this years fledglings clinging to the top of an ash tree in very poor light. So I cranked up the exposure compensation and started shooting. Although I was not going for a high key photo, this one turned out OK. I used NX Studio for initial edits and finished the post processing in Photoshop.

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Pertinent technical details or techniques:

Z9 600mm f4 + 1.4x Teleconverter (850mm at 1/1000 sec, F8, ISO 200) Levels, Shadows & Highlights, adj in Midtone contrast, Topaz DeNoise AI, warmed up white balance, crop for comp, Hue and saturation - cyan, + yellow, orange, and red)…Jim

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Great detail and a different pose from what I usually see. The overall image has a painterly feel; something out of Audubon.

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Hi Jim
I think you did an excellent job with this high key photograph. I really have problems, making the bird look normal in my high keys.
I think more Saturday Evening Post than Audubon.

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Well presented high key image. Wonderful composition. I really like this, a lot.

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Well done, Jim. He is not standing for you photographing him anymore. Nice timing and well done with the high key exposure.

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My only suggestion here would be to crop away some of the white on the righthand and top sides of the photograph. It appears to already be a 5:4 ratio so keeping with that, if you bring the top third-line to match with the heron’s beak, I think it cuts out enough of the dead white space to allow the image to shine a bit more, without the glaring distraction it seems to cause (at least to me). Hope that makes sense.