8 week online workshop
lesson 1
Topic 1 – “nail it”

I took these on the weekend and was really trying to play with the Aperture and Shutter Priority functions to get the shots I wanted.
In the first shot I was focusing on capturing a deep depth of field as I find I’m taking lots of shots with a shallow depth of field at the moment – Aperture Priority, ISO 100, f/22, 1/60.
In the second shot I switched to a shallow depth of field and got up close and personal with the pelican – Aperture Priority, SO 100, f6.3, 1/800
In the third shot the pelican was moving around so I switched to Shutter Priority and it was walking slowly so I set the shutter speed to 1/500, (ISO 100, f7.1).
After doing the 21 day challenge and applying what I’ve learned, I was pretty happy with these shots and taking the camera to the beach on a Sunday morning for Nippers makes the time go so quickly.

Pelican Pelcian-close-up Pelican-walking

I'm a Sydney mum to 2 gorgeous girls and am pregnant with my 3rd daughter, who will join us at the end of March. I'm keen to learn more about capturing the best shots of my children and am excited to be learning how to use my camera.


  1. Nice of Mr Pelican to volunteer to be a practice subject 🙂 It’s great that you are really starting to think about what you want to achieve and then know how to achieve it.
    Composition wise there are a few things to look at with these but we haven’t covered composition yet so I won’t go into detail here. The only thing that I will mention is the horizon in the first image – it’s not straight and that (and the boat) immediately drew my eye away from your main subject – the pelican. The easiest fix for that is to crop out the sky and just leave the water as the background. That is a super quick fix that I think would improve that photo a lot.

  2. Thanks Robyn…I really don’t know much about editing images (guess that will come later on) but I have cropped it in iphoto and I can definitely see what you mean. I initially felt that the pelican wasn’t the focal point in the shot and got a bit lost, but cropping out the sky makes a huge difference. One question, does cropping reduce the image quality? Thanks for the feedback. 🙂

  3. Ah good question. Cropping CAN impact on image quality to some degree, but how much depends on how radical the crop (the amount you are cropping will definitely not make a noticeable difference), the size you want to print at and the resolution of your sensor. Most newer digital cameras can take a fair bit of cropping because their sensors are very large.
    The best way to tell is to view your image at 100% before you crop and then again after you crop. If you see the quality is impacted undo and use a less dramatic crop.
    I crop a little on most photos and some of them I blow up to massive wall portrait sizes (up to 50″x60″) without any noticeable decrease in quality.

  4. Thanks for the tips. 🙂

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