Winged Descent

An Arctic Tern as it descends toward it’s nest. (Sony a6500, FE70200GM @ 297 mm, ISO-100, f/3.2, 1/3200, hand held.)

The problem is that this shot, which is one of the ones I like best because of the fine wing detail, is very tight in the frame with no crop. It also seemed a bit closer to the center than I like. I tried two different crops and thought I’d get some other people’s opinions to help me make up my mind which one is the preferred version. Here are the three versions:

  1. Original proportions (no crop)

  2. Same proportions but cropped a little bit on top and right for more of a rule of thirds composition. The tighter crop on the top seems to give the illusion of more space under the bird (at least to my brain).

  3. Square crop same space on top and bottom as original and tighter on the right because of the direction the bird is flying. So far I’m kind of leaning toward this one as a favorite.

Any opinions will be greatly appreciated!

You may only download this image to demonstrate post-processing techniques.

Either of the first two compositions works for me, Gary I’m not religious about the rule of thirds. Lots of people prefer the golden spiral proportions and those bring the sweet spot further toward the center. It’s more of a ballpark sort of rule anyhow.

A very nice shot.

I agree with Dennis on this one. I think either the first two look real good with respect to composition. It’s really hard to get a good exposure on the turns because their eyes are so dark. If you were shooting this at ISO 100 you must’ve had a fair amount of light though I’m not seeing any shadows.

Stunning. I vote for the square crop.