Tripod holes 37

great egret Ardea alba in shallows of Portage River in Elmore, Ohio
N 41°28’33.98″ W 83°17’53.35″ Google Earth Location

We needed an Ohio one in here, and I liked this grab shot from 2014. The Manatee and I were returning from a game creators convention (he is, I’m not) and checking out some of the bike trails that he intended to be using a little later on, and while on one of these paths, on a bridge over the Portage River in blink-and-you-miss-it Elmore, Ohio, we spotted this distant great egret (Ardea alba) in a faintly surreal scene, mostly due to the light quality of the day. I like how it has a suggestion of morphing from water into sky in a faintly Escher-like way, and out of curiosity, I modified the image slightly just now to see if I could make it a little more surreal.

previous image with egret inverted
I was hoping to convey an image that inverted itself as you went towards top or bottom, but think it’s a little too subtle to carry that idea well enough. Ah well.

And one more thing: these are both altered, because the original was flatter with lower contrast and a slightly different color register – I’ve featured this before, though the images seen here are another variation. It involved some very careful adjustments with the Curves function, for instance bringing up more blue in the mid-highlights (the brighter water but not the cloud reflections or egret,) while reducing it – thus increasing yellow – in the lower registers, which meant the water at bottom of the frame. All three color channels were tweaked for these versions, trying to strengthen the image while avoiding making it look unrealistic. You’d have to tell me how well, or not, I succeeded.

Meanwhile, I don’t think The Manatee ever returned to this area on his bike trip…

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