American Goldfinch

September 15, 2012
American Goldfinch

1/1000sec @ f/7.1
420mm, ISO500, 0ev
Evaluative Metering
Nikon D3s, AF-S 300mm f/4, AF-S TC-14EII

This is the first shot I have taken of an American Goldfinch and actually been happy with it. They are so hard to set exposure for. I always seem to end up over exposing the yellow. Surprisingly I didn’t even have to exposure compensate in this shot. The light must have been good that day. There are some parts of the yellow plumage that are a little hot in the histogram; however, overall I think for my first good shot of a Goldfinch I am happy.

Another thing I find hard with Goldfinches is the feather detail. The texture of the feathers seems to blend a little too much. I am not sure why this occurs. My only guess is that the light needs to be just right to get some shadows in the right places; thereby, giving some contrast and in turn sharpness. I am very happy with the detail of the perch in this shot. The orange and yellow lichen is dark enough to be different from the yellow feathers, and doesn’t distract too much. I would have liked the perch to be more diagonal as I feel this would make the shot more dynamic. As always, I am looking for movement to give the shot more visual interest.

Being as bright as the scene is, I could have used a smaller aperture which would have helped get definition on the tail feathers. Aperture is something I am still experimenting with when using the 300mm and 1.4 TC.