Welcome to “Memoirs of a Photographer” ... I don’t go out with the intent of making lots of pictures ... I’m only looking for one that I really want to share with others, which leads me to photographing a “common” scene into a “unique” way.
“Seagull Frenzy” ... Nikon D850, ISO500, 1/4000 at f8, NIKKOR 80-400mm f4.5-5.6 lens was an experiment using the Set Picture Control adjustments in the PHOTO SHOOTING MENU.
I typically use the “Standard” Picture Control setting and then Decrease Contrast -1.0 and Increase Saturation +1.0 ... but for this image I wanted something different. I chose the high contrast setting of “Vivid” and increased Contrast +3.0 and Decreased Saturation -3.0.
With my “adjusted” high contrast unsaturated Picture Control setting I positioned myself on the beach near a colony of Seagulls. It was 45 minutes after sunrise with a clear sky. I envisioned silhouetting individual Seagulls in flight. I aimed the camera towards the empty sky next to the sun, also the flight approach to the colony.
Using Manual Exposure I made several TEST shots of flying Seagulls: 1/4000 to stop the action, f8 for depth of field, and then experimented with ISO until the background (the sky) was over overexposed with Flashing Highlights while the Seagulls remained silhouetted.
I was enjoying the morning sun and the solitude, but so far the scene was only “common” rather than “unique.”
Suddenly, one lone Seagull plucked his breakfast from the Atlantic and the colony of Seagulls took flight after him. I had already “Locked-On” the gull with food in his bill and continued making images as the frenzy of gulls changed shape and pattern.
A glance at the LCD screen revealed that this one image stood out from the collection of 30 frames of Seagull Frenzy. It contains the cleanest separation between Seagulls, thus providing a “Quick Read” for the viewer to easily define the wings and open bills, and there’s a bonus: the gull that started the food frenzy is easily visible with the catch of the day in his bill.
It’s now 8:30AM, time for breakfast at Latitudes ... After all, I found the one that I really want to share with others. @nikonusa #nikonnofilter #monochromatic #frenzy