« on: February 13, 2015, 10:58:39 AM »
Here is my wife's thought. The tree to the right has to go, once you do that it s just about balancing the negative space and your first version is very close to hers.
to me this is way too tight. isn't the bird heading for the tree where his nest is? then i think it is imperative that the tree is part of the crop. i don't think people want to look at a tightly cropped bird with not story, but maybe at a bird which is approaching his nest, but then you have to have the context in the picture. at least that's my opinion.
In many cases I agree, in this specific case the tree is out of focus due to the DOF and there is no obvious branch, nest, or point of interest that the bird is heading towards. It also touches on other key compositional tenets, light and shade, and colour. The tree is much brighter than anything else in the frame, your eye can't help but keep going back to the tree, which is not the focus of the image, same with the colour, the tree colour is much warmer than anything else in the frame so again your eye gets drawn to it.
Do this simple trick, defocus your eyes* such that the bird blends into the background and see what your brain takes as the point of focus. It will be the tree. The tree is not the subject so the tree is detracting from what is, therefore it has to go in this specific instance.
*I find nearly closing my eyelids is the best way of doing this though some people can actually defocus their eyes.
the we seem to be unable to make this a really interesting shot...