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Sleepy Argus II

Sleepy Argus II
Photo Information
Copyright: Nigel Deacon (Merlin) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 445 W: 267 N: 455] (1713)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2006-08-27
Categories: Insects
Camera: Nikon D200, Nikkor AF Micro 105 mm f/2.8
Exposure: f/5.6, 1/60 seconds
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2006-10-12 12:48
Viewed: 4283
Favorites: 1 [view]
Points: 42
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
My final shot of the series featuring the local Brown Argus colony. The sun has finally dropped below the horizon and the entire colony has gathered to roost in small area on a grassy bank. As the light fades, they slowly walk down the stems moving into deeper cover for the night.

Although one of the "Blues" (Lycaenidae) both sexes are brown on the uppersides with a band of orange spots at the border of each wing. They can be mistaken for other female lycaenids but the Brown Argus never has any blue scales at the base of the upperside of the wings whereas other female lycaenids often do. It could also be mistaken for the Northern Brown Argus Aricia artaxrexes but the dark spot on the forewing of agestis is usually white in the two endemic British subspecies of ataxerxes.

Common Rock-rose is the favoured foodplant of the larvae on calcareous soils. In other habitats Dove-foot Cranesbill and Common Stork's-bill are used and possibly other Geranium spp. as well.

Eggs are laid singly on the underside of leaves. The slug-like larvae are green with a pale line along each side and always attended by ants. They hibernate as a fully grown larva and pupate the following spring. The pupae are usually buried by ants, improving concealment and survivability.

There are two broods a year in the southern colonies with adults on the wing in May and June and again in late July till mid September. Further north they are single brooded and fly in June and July.

Photographic Notes
Once again, handheld (elbows braced on the ground), manual focus and exposure. D-ISO 200. Presented as composed in-camera, minimal cropping, minimal sharpening. No saturation or colour balance adjustments, no cloning out of elements, no PP blurring of background - it's all as originally captured.

I clearly broke a lot of "rules" here. The subject is not on a "third," the only diagonal is the butterfly's wing and it's framed vertically which makes it more difficult to view on the screen. Why? Because it is a more natural representation and it's the way I choose to show it. When do "rules" become cliché? Sorry, folks - I disabled workshops just for this one ;)

rufous03, carper, phlr, fthsm, peter_stoeckl, CTP, livios, jcoowanitwong, saeedabbasi, mikou, Adanac has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To vanderschelden: Sleepy Argus II - Composition "rulesMerlin 1 01-18 12:43
To batu: Argus IIMerlin 1 10-12 14:37
To carper: CropMerlin 1 10-12 13:35
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • uleko Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3396 W: 172 N: 3310] (10940)
  • [2006-10-12 13:12]

Hello Nigel,
Of the three I definitely like this one best!
Very nice composition. Superb details and colours and the uncluttered picture appeals to me.
TFS, Ulla

Hello Nigel it's a good photo,
but personal I think it could be better with a crop. ofcoarse is that a personal opinion, farther good point of view and a good dof, very good job.
gr. jaap

Nice shot Nigel, excellent color and detail. Good background. I might try rotating CCW for a diagonal composition so the viewer does not have to tilt his/her head to see the butterfly details.

Excellent work again Nigel.
The natural color and even exposure is very nice.
The vertical compostion works well with the long dried stem running through the frame. Sharp detail, lovely smooth complimentary BG as well :)

  • Great 
  • batu Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1079 W: 293 N: 4497] (16383)
  • [2006-10-12 14:26]
  • [+]

Hello Nigel,
superb picture with regards to all important aspects. 4 points(!) ... but not possible. It becomes a favourite picture, however.
Best wishes, Peter

Hi Nigel,
is he realy sleeping? The eyes are "open" ;-)
A lovely shot with good sharpness and a nice pose. Thanks and greetings
Sabine - wishnugaruda

Hi Nigel.

Wonderful capture in all aspects.Sharpness, details and compositon are all impressive. Striking DOF.

Well Done & TFS.

  • Great 
  • fthsm Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 172 W: 56 N: 512] (3689)
  • [2006-10-12 18:41]

Very beaiful species. It is too difficult to take their photo, they are really active. TFS Nigel.

  • Great 
  • manyee Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3089 W: 230 N: 6774] (23770)
  • [2006-10-13 0:45]

Unusual pose and POV, Nigel.
I like the composition very much.
Excellent focus and exposure on the subject
and beautiful colors in the BG.
TFS. : )

Hi Nigel,
beautiful dynamical composition, very nice pose, perfectly natural.
Very pleasant subtle colours in a well shaping soft light in front of a very well fitting distant and dark background.
Looks very good. Thank you!
Best regards,

  • Great 
  • CTP Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 644 W: 6 N: 946] (2726)
  • [2006-10-16 21:06]

Hi Nigel,
Great capture of this lovely butterfly.
I like your colors,pov,dof,bfly's pose,note,blurred bg,frame and composition.TFS

  • Great 
  • livios Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2150 W: 319 N: 4263] (16942)
  • [2006-10-16 23:25]

Nigel, no problem in breaking the "rules". The image works greatly to me.

Excellent sharpness and blurred bg. The butterfly is colorful and cute.

Another excellent job.

Nigel hi,
I think you have the "third" horizontally, Nigel.
Anyway whether you have it or not doesn't matter; it is definitely a wonderful image.

Hello Nigel,
A fabulous picture. Composition, sharpness, exposure are great. The blurry background supports this beautiful butterfly nicely. Very well done and tfs.

Hi Nigel ,
excellent focus and wonderful colors.
great sharpness,BG and light.
very well composition.
well captured.
thanks for sharing.

  • Great 
  • mikou Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 869 W: 68 N: 1479] (6093)
  • [2007-01-22 9:16]

Hi Nigel.
Beautiful shot.I like nice composition and your POV with fine sharp details.You very well isolate main subject from BG.Light is very pretty.Nice soft tones colourful OOF background.Colours are very nice and pleasant for eye.Very useful note too.
Very nice done.TFS.
Greetings Milos

Very beautiful...

  • Great 
  • Adanac Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1273 W: 1 N: 6188] (21378)
  • [2007-04-28 7:39]

Hello Nigel,
Amazingly sharp details and vivid colors make this image a great view, thanks for sharing.

Hi Nigel,
Beautiful picture of this colourful butterfly. Excellent details.
I would have cropped the top and left but that's only my opinion.

  • Great 
  • lizzie Gold Star Critiquer [C: 207 W: 0 N: 605] (2855)
  • [2008-01-28 14:42]

Hi Nigel,

Amazing capture of the Brown argus. You've captured this butterfly with such a great sharpness, beautiful colours and details all over his wings. Very well done!


Ciao Nigel, lovely little butterfly on a beautiful lighting BG, fine details, wonderful natural colors and splendid sharpness, very well done my friend, ciao Silvio

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