The Great Blue Heron and the Pea Soup Pond (Creative Ideas and a simple lesson at the end)

Posted: October 10, 2013 in Birds, Black & White, Creativity, Digitally Manipulated Images, Great Blue Heron, Inspiration, Nature Photography, Photography, Warner Park
Tags: , , , , , ,

Warner Park is not the perfect photo destination. On one hand you have a beautiful bird like the Great Blue Heron in the park. On the other hand, it may be standing in or flying over water that is pea soup green with clumps of I’m not sure what floating about on the water’s surface. Here is what I mean:

Great Blue Heron - October 02, 2013 - 199

What’s a photographer of limited stamina and resources to do. Head for the pristine wilderness of course. Not. I can’t honestly say I feel a great deal of obligation to stay true to the subject matter here. At least not the entire subject matter in this photo. The environment around the heron distracts from it. As a result, I feel it is entirely appropriate to work around it. One obvious way to do that while using the same image is, of course, to a use black and white image. There is no pea soup green in black and white:

Great Blue Heron - October 02, 2013 - 198-Edit-DFX

Other possible ways for addressing unappealing elements of a photo include cropping:

Great Blue Heron - October 02, 2013 - 199(cropped)-2

or using a photo technique that takes the edge off of the undesirable elements of the photo. Below the streaks filter from DFX 3 blurs the image while a mask protects the heron.

Great Blue Heron - October 02, 2013 - 199-Edit-Edit-Edit-Edit

Of course there is always the danger /opportunity of selecting the heron and launching it into new worlds where the pea soup pond has lost its relevance. Below are three images created using Filter Forge 3.

Great Blue Heron - October 02, 2013 - 198-Edit-Edit-4 -2

Great Blue Heron - October 02, 2013 - 198-Edit-Edit-3 -2

Great Blue Heron - October 02, 2013 - 198-Edit-Edit-2 -2

Finally coming back full circle, the simplest of all ways to deal with the problem of the pea soup pond is for the photographer to slightly change position.

Great Blue Heron - October 02, 2013 - 194a-2

  1. gabbie20132013 says:

    Reblogged this on Gabbie Blog.


  2. kiwiskan says:

    fantastic images. What is ‘filter forge’?


    • beluga53 says:

      Thanks I’m glad you like them. Filter Forge is a very cool Photoshop plug-in or standalone that allows users to build their own filters that are usually contributed to the Filter Forge Library. I have no idea how to build filters but you don’t have to do it you can just download and use contributed filters. The are a lot of filters, most of which can be used in hundred or even thousand or more ways. Here is a link to their website: They are testing beta 4 now. I have had it for a long time and don’t even recall what I initially paid for it but I eventually upgraded to the pro version (with a lifetime license) just because I use it with large files and I use Filter Forge a lot. They often have sales on their licenses. Worth a look. I found it very easy to use. It doesn’t do everything, but what it does it does well.


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