Analysis of a GreatBirdPic

Why Is This Pic So Good?

Last week my Bird Photograph of the Week email was this pic provided by Sgeiger86 of a Snowy Owl:

I received many replies to my email, many adding their own “Wow” reaction (replies to my emails just go to me – be sure to add a comment on the Picture Page so the submitter sees it, too).

So why is this such a GreatBirdPic?  The first thing I noticed was the sharpness of the owl – every feather is seen in full detail.  Next was the contrast of the white/light bird to the rest of the background which brings our attention to the bird.  Note how the Snowy Owl is not centered but on the left side of the frame – the old railroad tracks appears in the center and move off to the right.  You can almost imagine an old steam engine chugging down the tracks toward the Snowy – the composition tells a story about the setting the viewer creates in their mind.  Even though the owl is on the left side of the frame, there are some old stalks sticking up on the right, which gives some additional balance to the overall composition.  Finally, Sgeiger86 caught the owl with its eyes open.  I don’t know how many shots she had to take to get this one but in my experience it is rare to see the owl’s eyes.

So “Wow” again to Sgeiger86 – awesome shot.  Award Worthy!

Stay Safe.  Go Birding.  Take Pics.  Share Here.  Repeat.  


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