Pic of the Day: Man feeding birds in Aotea Square

Welcome to the first in a series of “behind the scenes” or “how to” articles for my Pic of the Day on Instagram (@travellingcliff). There’s a video covering some of this although I encourage you to keep reading as there’s some bonus material to follow.

What’s this series about.

The purpose of this series is to demonstrate How you can use your camera (whatever you have) and Adobe Lightroom Classic CC (or Lightroom) in more creative ways.

Who’s it for.

This series was made for Beginners with some more advanced techniques peppered throughout. Also, if you don’t have Lightroom you should be able to do most things in your app of choice. For me, it was Google’s Snapseed (available on iOS and Android).

Pic of the Day.

Today we have “Man feeding birds in #AoteaSquare” (Aotea Square) which is a location or “large paved public area” in the Central Business District (CBD) of my home town (Auckland, New Zealand).

In the scene we have a local hand-feeding dozens of pigeons and seagulls. His palm is open as he looks at us with a curious expression.

How was it done.

Pic of the Day: Man feeding birds in Aotea Square Auckland (unedited)

Man feeding birds in Aotea Square Auckland (unedited).

The photo was taken with a Panasonic LUMIX GH5 + 12-60mm f/3.5 lens and edited in Adobe Lightroom. Here’s some of the steps from taking the photo to exporting the final edit so you can attempt to recreate similar results:

  • Experiment with Shutter Priority mode on your camera (if available) so you can freeze still birds and retain any subtle motion blur in the wings of flying birds.
  • Take multiple photos but try to keep the number as low as possible.
  • Select the best photo which comes down to personal preference.
  • Crop the image into the main subject (the man and birds).
  • Select Black & White from the Basic menu in Lightroom.
  • Adjust Basic settings like Exposure and Contrast for a more balanced overall image.
  • Apply Graduated Filter to blur and darken the background.
  • Use the Remove tool from within the Graduated Filter options to brush over or keep the areas you want in focus (the man and birds).
  • Add Effects (Post-Crop Vignetting and Grain) to give it more of that “old timey” look.
  • Export and Done.
Lightroom Settings for Man feeding birds in Aotea Square

Lightroom Settings for Man feeding birds in Aotea Square

And, there you have it for today’s Pic of the Day. If you have any further questions please let me know in the comments section below. Thanks!

2018-12-07T23:42:07+00:00By TravellingCliff|