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Tufted Puffin

Tufted Puffin
Photo Information
Copyright: Scott Evers (scottevers7) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 2432 W: 3 N: 3894] (12309)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2006-07-23
Categories: Birds
Camera: Canon 20D, Canon 70-200 f2.8 L IS + EF 1.4X II, B+W UV MRC
Exposure: f/4, 1/50 seconds
Details: Tripod: Yes (Fill) Flash: Yes
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version, Workshop
Date Submitted: 2006-08-08 21:57
Viewed: 4479
Favorites: 1 [view]
Points: 76
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
There have been some amazing Puffin shots posted on this site recently. I have really admired them all. I would love someday to be able to spend several days taking photos of them in the wild. The only Puffins around my neck of the woods are located in the St. Louis Zoo. They have two species of Puffins, Tufted and Horned. They are housed in a wondeful exhibit, but it is all indoors. Very brisk 48F and very dark. The most popular place at the zoo on a hot day!

So the challenge for me was to present my first Puffin post in a way that it did not appear to be a cheesey zoo shot. I went for the dramatic light and composition portrait. I waited till this one got into some of the spotlight effect from the recessed overhead lighting. I then fill flashed to darken out the backround. Shot off a tripod with electronic cable release. I was pretty happy with this pose and lighting.

Tufted Puffin

Scientific Name: Fratercula cirrhata

Range: Northwestern United States and Canada, to Russia, south to Japan

Habitat: Open ocean, rocky shorelines
During breeding season, this puffin sports bright yellow tufts of feathers. These can help attract mates as they flash in the breeze. The bird's cheek feathers are bright white, and its body is black.

Like all puffins, tufteds are better at swimming than flying. They dart after fast-moving fish and snatch them up in their large beaks.

The tufted puffins' home range overlaps with that of the Horned Puffin, though tufteds usually winter further south, along the coast of California and on the main Japanese island of Honshu.

Source: St. Louis Zoo Website

cecilia, aido, lovenature, jcoowanitwong, Hil, wallhalla15, red45, ddg, Janice, RAP, firelord, marhowie, gelor, Dando, PDP, dew77, coasties, jmp, jeanpaul, liquidsunshine, saguzar, sAner, livios, SkyF, metcher, anavazao has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To aido: TEXAS?scottevers7 2 08-09 10:05
To marhowie: ISOscottevers7 1 08-09 08:09
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Critiques [Translate]

Awesome! Stunning composition, well done on the colours and details...
A job well done...

  • Great 
  • aido Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor [C: 1044 W: 156 N: 1218] (4046)
  • [2006-08-08 22:39]
  • [+]

Hi Scott,
Greetings from Texas :-) A very well thought-out and executed shot. Great use of fill-flash, the flash levels are perfect as it's almost impossible to see that flash was used. Excellent colours and the tight framing is spot-on. This is the first time I've seen any sort of Puffin other than the Atlantic variety (Fratercula arctica). Did you know that Fratercula means 'little brother'? I only found out researching for a post.

Way to go Scott!
Really nice closeup....not cheesey at all :))...just kidding.
Wonderful colours and detail especially the beak.
The puffin almost looks as if it should be in the parrot family.
TFS Janice
Have a great week.

  • Great 
  • chiliu Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1457 W: 0 N: 1176] (6526)
  • [2006-08-08 22:59]

Hi Scott,
Fantastic shot! Magic light, excellent composition and great colours.
Really wonderful image!

Hi Scott,
Excellent profile of this Tufted Puffin. Composition and pov are great. Sharp and clearly seen image. Thanks for your informative note.

  • Great 
  • Hil Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 696 W: 13 N: 1407] (5035)
  • [2006-08-09 1:22]

Hi Scott

Excellent head shot, the POV and composition is great, he looks really thoughtful. The colours are excellent with avery complimentry BG.
I have never seen this sort of Puffin before, so thanks for sharing.

Reagrds Hilary

  • Great 
  • Graal Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Silver Note Writer [C: 751 W: 31 N: 20] (5100)
  • [2006-08-09 2:21]

Hi Scott,
beautiful portrait, great colours, interesting note. Unusual bird, I like this puffin. Well done photo.
Rgs, Aleksander

Hello Scott,
pose is excellent, great work. Very good sharpness, details, colours and composition. Thanks for sharing.

  • Great 
  • red45 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2636 W: 74 N: 9091] (31094)
  • [2006-08-09 3:04]

Hi Scott!
These birds are fascinating! I like this picture very much - dark tones, dark BG and orange beak. Bird looks almost wise. Very good portrait my friend!

Hi Scott,
puffins looks always great on picture with the colourful beak.
And you tufted puffin looks great too, the composition and POB are very good. Lovely colours and light. I found it slighly soft but since you used a tripod I think its the model who could not sit still.;-)
Beautiful work, my friend.

Hi Scott,
slightly blurred from apparent forward motion, this is a very dynamic capture of the Puffin, presenting this bird as a real character. Outstandingly well composed, and the dark brown hues of body feathers and background make this image look like a precious old painting from a gallery of noble ancestors. Great!
Thank you! Best regards,

  • Great 
  • ddg Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 867 W: 24 N: 1008] (5507)
  • [2006-08-09 5:18]

Hello Scott, great portrait of this Puffin, beautiful lighting and excellent POV. Colors that harmonious, well done, Didier.

  • Great 
  • RAP Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2524 W: 345 N: 2373] (7405)
  • [2006-08-09 7:51]

Gran primer plano Scott... F4 que deja en foco solo la cabeza del ave con bellos colores y adecuado POV.
El fondo oscuro optimiza la visualización muy bien.
TFS... Ricardo

Great close up Scott... F4 that produces focus alone the head of the bird with beautiful colors and appropriate POV.
The dark backdrop optimizes the visualization very well.
TFS... Ricardo

Interesting animal that I have never seen. You show it very well, with fine details and colours.
Very well done.
Thanks for sharing.
My best regards.

Filipe Caetano.

Hello Scott,
I like the composition and POV very much. The color and light are perfect. I think the birds brown on the brown BG, highlighting the white face/orange beak, works very well also..
I don't know what ISO you used, but in this situation, I might've had to consider a higher ISO...and deal with the noise later :) Excellent note,
Well done!

Hello Scott, excllent colors, Bg, POV DOF perefct details, very crisp, excllent POV nice work with this unique bird, TFS Kyle

  • Great 
  • gelor Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Note Writer [C: 124 W: 3 N: 12] (523)
  • [2006-08-09 8:16]

Bonjour Scott,
Quel beau portrait ! Superbe netteté et restitué du plumage. Un travail superbe. Merci.

  • Great 
  • osse Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 955 W: 0 N: 89] (7805)
  • [2006-08-09 8:23]

Hi Scott
great portrait shot. Great colours, sharpnes, light and POV.
Well done my friend


  • Great 
  • Dando Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor [C: 637 W: 32 N: 792] (3084)
  • [2006-08-09 9:07]

Hi Scott, I think you have done very well with the lighting and composition and the colours are excellent. Although if I am to be honest the image is quite soft, Ithink this has come from your slow shutter speed and the subject moving. Like Howard has suggested increasing your ISO would of helped to overcome this. But everything else is excellent. I have seen so many puffin shots on TN recently that it has gone down on my list of things to shoot, maybe some time next year, watch this space. TFS and take care.

  • PDP Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor [C: 2821 W: 344 N: 3779] (11769)
  • [2006-08-09 10:19]

Hi Scott, yes...I think you had some difficult conditions here. As a result the eye is a little soft. I do like what you were doing composition wise. Very nice work. Well done.

  • Great 
  • dew77 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4432 W: 248 N: 4028] (13270)
  • [2006-08-09 12:04]

Hello Scott,
Wonderful portrait.Colors,dark BG,contrast,POV,clear details,clear eyes,expression on face and composition are excellent.

  • Great 
  • uleko Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3396 W: 172 N: 3310] (10940)
  • [2006-08-09 12:28]

Brilliant close-up with fantastic detail showing up in the perfect lighting. And the look in the eye!!
Regards, Ulla

Hi Scott

A lovely POV for this shot. Looks a little soft on focus maybe caused by some motion. Did he move his head just at the critical time? Anyway, it is a great shot with nice saturation of colour. Thank you! :-)

  • Great 
  • carper Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1973 W: 119 N: 2582] (8439)
  • [2006-08-09 13:52]

Marvelous shot Scott,
the light is marvelous on this one, well composed and fine details, super quality, fine job.
gr. jaap

Hi Scott,
What an effort for this photo. Some of us lucky few, just walk around and shoot them with in a sec. We city slickers need to make much more effort for these kind of shots...you have to go to a zoo for your shot, I have to fly to the US for mine. Anyway, a great result with beautiful details and excellent use of the flash. Colors and details are superb.

  • Great 
  • jmp Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1659 W: 95 N: 2273] (8415)
  • [2006-08-09 16:34]

Hi Scott,
Wow! Wonderful portrait: pose, gesture, color, details, composition,... => favorite.
TFS, José M.

Hi Scott
Encore une fois tu nous envoies enu superbe prise de vue d'un magnifique oiseau avec ce beau portrait,j'apprécie vraiment les belles couleurs et les beaux détails.
Bravo et merci ....JP

Hi Scott,
The details are nice, clear and sharp.
Good colours and exposure. Well composed and excellent notes.
Thanks for posting, enjoy the rest of the week.

Very nice side profile, the eye is a orbital area is a tad soft but the rest is sharp. :)

Hi Scott,
You have made a good composition with a great POV. I like the colours and BG, all this make a nice pic; only I found it a little bit blurred.

  • Great 
  • Janice Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3277 W: 148 N: 6163] (18832)
  • [2006-08-12 6:04]

He does look different from the usual ones I've seen Scott. It is a lovely portrait, such a tender expression. Well captured, TFS

  • Great 
  • sAner Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1455 W: 74 N: 1426] (4750)
  • [2006-08-12 16:01]

Hi Scott,

This is a very nice portrait of a puffin. We have seen many when we were in Alaska. Good colors and well composed. Dof is a little shallow at f4, but otherwise a perfect picture. Well done & TFS!


  • Great 
  • livios Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2150 W: 319 N: 4263] (16942)
  • [2006-08-13 21:37]

Scott, at first, I had the feeling the shot was a little soft, but after finding out the bad conditions you mentioned, and after reading Gert's comment, it became clear things were not easy for you when taking the picture.

I've never seen one of these in person. There's not a zoo around here, and we don't have them in Brazil.

I like composition a lot, as well as pov. The expression is great, as well as colors and bg. Great use of flash and great note.

  • Great 
  • SkyF Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2234 W: 188 N: 1912] (8073)
  • [2006-08-15 17:45]

Hi Scott,
very nice shot of this puffin, I think they are the most photogenic birds I have seen. Very nice POV and good details a well composed portrait.

Hi, Scott.
Very nice portrait of this beautiful bird. Excellent exposure, light and nice BG. Good use of fill flask.

Hello, A Great portret shot , good compositie colours details light his eye pov bg and framing very good job!
Take care Ana:)

This is a really excellent close-up of a beautiful and colorful puffin! The composition and POV are great, colors are brilliant and warm and the details are sharp! Great contrast! The dark BG very nicely compliments the shot and really makes the subject stand out perfectly! Congratulations and TFS!


Hello Scott,
A well framed portrait of this majestic guy!
I notice his great hairdo, and the plumage is captured with great details...
Excellent details and sharpness!
Pablo -

What a beautiful puffin it is!TFS

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