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Black-capped Chickadee (1 Viewer)


Well-known member
The black-capped chickadee is my favorite bird. It is cheerful, enterprising, and constant. No matter where I go in the NH woods, I am sure to encounter a small band of these hardy little birds.

It was one of the first shots I took with my Minolta Dimage 7hi. I don't feel that I have really begun to master this camera. Please advise me on how to improve this image.

Camera: Minolta Dimage 7hi
Shooting Date/Time: Nov. 16, 2002
Shooting Mode: Manual
Shutter Speed: 1/180
Aperture Value: 3.5
ISO Speed: 100
Lens: 7X optical zoom
Flash: Off
White Balance: Auto
Metering Mode: Pattern
Focal Length: 44.0 mm
Original size: 2560x1920


  • chickadee_0314b.jpg
    63.2 KB · Views: 357


Well-known member
Hi Loggah,

Well first let it be said to get a photo of these birds staying still is a good accomplishment all by itself.

As far as the actual photo goes, the detail on the bird is a bit soft. Were you using autofocus? I ask because it seems to have focused more on the feet/branch area. I do not know how good the manual focus is in this camera. The room you have above, below, and to where it is looking at is very good. I would suggest increasing the area behind it, then depending what that does for the rest of the photo MAYBE add more room to the area it is looking into. The DOF is very good. The background does have too much white in it, particularly the long white branch right above its head. Some creative cloning can work this out for you.

Rating: 2 stars


Well-known member
Loggah, to me this looks a very nice picture of a gorgeous bird, spoiled by the leaves under the perch which could be cropped or cloned out, and the cluttered oof background, which takes one's attention away from the bird. It would be possible to clone the worst offending bits out and replace them with smoother bits of background.
I love the little bird though but would try to selectively sharpen the eye a bit more.
Hope this helps, as basically it is a nice photo.
My rating: 2 stars
Last edited:


A really nice photo Loggah, one of those that are pleasing on the eye to look at right from the start. I like the colours, pose and clarity.

Compositionally I like the shot too. The bird is located in the right spot laterally, though vertically I'd have lowered the bird slightly whilst keeping the same frame size. This would help it in two respects. Firstly, whilst the bird is looking to the left and you have nicely left room for it to look into, it is also looking slightly upwards, so I would try leaving a little more room above the bird than below. It's a bit too centralised at the moment. Likewise as Paula points out, that leaf, bottom centre and out of focus is very distracting to the eye. The one to the right is just fine. Lowering the shot would crop some of it out and a clone tool could remove the rest. The same effect could be gained as Brian suggests by simply raising the vertical dimension slightly, but still cloning that leaf at the bottom.

The photo has an overall graininess to it. Have you tried something like NeatImage ? It's a great program for eliminating graininess, though be careful not to use too high a setting.

Rating - 2 stars

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