View Full Version : Zoolife

12-03-2008, 07:55 AM
Well its rather cheating to keep calling it wildlife - least its a lot easier to shoot with a camera in a zoo provided you can avoid the bars in the shot (or make them part of the effect).

Anyway I think I have learnt a few things since last time - some examples from recent months:
All taken with Canon 400D, Canon 70-200mm f2.8 IS + 1.4 Teleconverter

Foxes - from the British Wildlife Centre[/URL]
http://i170.photobucket.com/albums/u275/overmind_2000/my%20works/British%20Wildlife%20Centre%201/1000/IMG_0092.jpg (http://i170.photobucket.com/albums/u275/overmind_2000/my%20works/British%20Wildlife%20Centre%201/1000/IMG_0400.jpg)

Assorted animals from Marwell Zoo

I think I am sort of leanring - least I still have to learn not to cut the legs off things!
Any comments/crits welcome - thanks

12-03-2008, 09:59 AM
Cool shots. I'm not keen on wildlife shots but the tiger one is great, though it seems like the fence pattern is showing through...?

12-03-2008, 10:10 AM
this one right:

nope nope that is a cheetah you have there :)

And yes the bars are sneaking in - problem is unless you get get your lens right up to the bars they can sneak in and most zoos have barriers before the wire - otherwise they would need very fine grain wire to prevent people putting fingers into the cages to touch.

12-03-2008, 02:52 PM
Omg that camera is amazing! And the pictures are awesome too ^^ I need to buy myself a good camera too...it's gonna be Cannon for sure :>

12-03-2008, 04:53 PM
Yeah, that one - sorry my animal identification skills in this case are like 'lion or something-not-lion'. The cheetah shot is the best of the bunch delicious colors and bokeh. Other shots from Marwell zoo are pretty plain, tho I like the first shot from your fox series - it is a bit dull but you can kick the contrast up a bit and crop off some of the top to make it look better.

12-03-2008, 05:49 PM
Agree agree, some contrast would be nice

cool shots nevertheless

12-03-2008, 06:06 PM
err I thought that shot had more contrast than it appears to - something for me to change - thanks both!
till I get round to editing here is a brighter version of the first
its actually a different shot, but I zoomed in more for this one

And yes the Marwell day was totally overcast which made getting nice colours tricky (plus I was playing around with a polarizer so lost out on some light as well for some shots).

12-03-2008, 06:15 PM
I am in absolute LOVE with the fox shots.
The pictures are so clear and crisp. I like how the background in some of them blurs, and it's more focused on the animal.
Great contrast too.
All of the pictures are way good.
Also, I like the last shot in the second group, I think it's an otter?
Anyways, I like them all. Keep it up. ( :

Perpetual Specter
12-06-2008, 08:51 PM
Wonderful photos overwatch! It's to be expected from you though. =]

You've got a great camera, so I knew pixel quality would be nice. I like the angles, lighting, and theme of them too. The fox photos were especially nice.
Also, I couldn't tell what animal is in this pic (http://i170.photobucket.com/albums/u275/overmind_2000/my%20works/Marwell%201/1000/IMG_1975.jpg) you took, but it has a funny, yet cute face. :3

Muzo is correct about the photo of the cheetah though. If you look at it close, it does look like I fence pattern is showing. It's not a big deal at all though, since it's barely noticeable. Darn you AF people...taking away my want to give some criticism to some photos. >.>;

12-06-2008, 09:12 PM
I really like the first two fox pics. You made it seem like they were in their natural habitat. I also like the cheetah and otter pic.

By the way, what is this animal:

[URL="http://i170.photobucket.com/albums/u275/overmind_2000/my%20works/Marwell%201/1000/IMG_1967.jpg"] (http://i170.photobucket.com/albums/u275/overmind_2000/my%20works/Marwell%201/1000/IMG_2085.jpg)

12-07-2008, 01:53 AM
The fox in the second photo has such a dramatic and dynamic face, it would have been nice if you had a shot highlighting just that aspect. The third fox is just so cute and the last one is amazing but it would have looked better if you hadn't chopped the ears off.

That cheetah photo would have been oh so fantastic if you had gotten the legs! I really loved the otter (at least I think it's an otter), it's a nice angle and I like how you've captured the ripples.

12-07-2008, 08:50 AM
Thanks for the compliments all :)
I really do have leg (and tail) problem though - I tend to always focus in on the face of the animal and then forget to check the rest of the shot for legs and the rest! I do the same in macro a lot as well - its something that I really have to correct (that or get a longer lens to get faceshots ;))

Gia Chanel - yep its an otter
Perpetual Specter and Sigma SD - that is a Yellow Mongoose

12-07-2008, 11:29 AM
Very beautiful Pictures. Im a sucker for foxes c:

12-13-2008, 10:38 AM
Heh?...Teleconverter...that's a nice bokeh there, using f2.8. ^^

Lols, my friends used to tell me not to cut off the legs too. Else photos will be useless. xP

12-13-2008, 03:59 PM
Yep the lens give a good bokeh - but with the TC the biggest apeture is f4 and I mostly shot around f5.6 - I like to try and keep the depth of field covering the whole of the animals face if I can - and when close at zoos and parks you do need a smaller aperture because their faces are long :)

12-14-2008, 05:17 AM
I know what you mean. ^^

And don't forget the fence/cage. It's really hard to get a good shot when the animal is inside the cage.
I've only a kit lens, can't do much. Sometimes I get clear shot. Sometimes doesn't.

Hope to see more. ^^

12-14-2008, 06:51 AM
best thing is to get your lens as close to the cage as you can and try to shoot through a gap. If you keep your lens pointing directly infront of you you can usually lose the bars - its tricky in many zoos since there is often a barrier before the cage to prevent people losing fingers ;)

The other tip is to zoom in as much as you can and have the animal as far back as possible - those things also help
If you get bars in the shot they usually appear as a whitish haze in a line - if you edit the shot you can sometimes lessen or totally lose this effect depending on how prominant it is - you do this by boosting contrast in the area that the haze is - and boost it a lot, If you use something like photoshop then use they layermask on a contrast layer to define the area(s) to be affected.
Playing with levels and curves can also help ,but I am not as good in those areas.
If you look at the first fox shot the upper lefthand corner and lower righthand corner both had bar effect in them. Contrast boosting has removed the effect from the top left and I should probably work a little more on the bottom right - but its mostly gone

12-14-2008, 07:31 AM
Haha, lols. I don't photoshop my photos. Mostly it's original files. ^^; Since I also know the trick to blur the cage. xP

Yup, using my kit lens, zooming in to the biggest aperture f5.6 135mm and closer to the cage to shoot. Tried that when my friends twice invited me to join them for zoo shooting. Got some experienced in it. ^^

12-14-2008, 07:41 AM
Haha, lols. I don't photoshop my photos.

hehe you will once you discover RAW ;)