mtraufler PRO+
mtraufler

Elephant



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9623

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Awards

People's Choice in The Zoo Photo Challenge
Contest Finalist in I Love Photography Photo Contest
Featured
Runner Up in Animal Kingdom Photo Contest Vol 1
Contest Finalist in Animal Kingdom Photo Contest Vol 1
Contest Finalist in Large Mammals Photo Contest
Winner in Elephants Photo Challenge
Contest Finalist in Exotic Wildlife Photo Contest
Contest Finalist in Zootography Photo Contest
People's Choice in Majestic Animal(s) Photo Challenge
Contest Finalist in Animals Are Beautiful Photo Contest
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Peer Award
Absolute Masterpiece
Superb Composition
Top Choice
Outstanding Creativity
drazenjojerio BrunoHeeb Paulinus KeithGriffiths RFGArt derekstephenmcphail maggiedavies +54
Magnificent Capture
philden chrisbalicki Julesm2012 jean-pierreCharbonnel jbryanpearson rhondadavis-clark Relaan +49
All Star
Tanners MIsabel majkakmecova embas sjphotocomau mariakeady johannaban +47
Superior Skill
tredyh marymwarnerthomas sacris55 lazanzarapazza ianmerrick Rockgod Kobra79 +22
Genius
mickwass nirjhardey DiversityPictures cuphold DJSMED richardpetersen nicolefrakes +3
Love it
Albert-Serra-Photography

Emotions

Impressed
McCasland

Top ClassTM

At The Zoo Photo ContestTop 20 class
Anything Animals Photo ContestTop 10 class
Anything Animals Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
The Swag ProjectTop 10 class
The Swag ProjectTop 10 class week 1
Big Mammals Photo ContestTop 10 class
Big Mammals Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
The Talent AwardsTop 10 class
Once Upon A Time Photo ContestTop 10 class
Once Upon A Time Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
My Best Shot Photo Contest Vol 3Top 10 class
My Best Shot Photo Contest Vol 3Top 10 class week 2
My Best Shot Photo Contest Vol 3Top 10 class week 1
World Photography Day Photo ContestTop 10 class
World Photography Day Photo ContestTop 10 class week 2
World Photography Day Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
My Best Shot Photo Contest Vol 2Top 10 class
My Best Shot Photo Contest Vol 2Top 10 class week 2
My Best Shot Photo Contest Vol 2Top 10 class week 1
Textures In Animals Photo ContestTop 10 class
Textures In Animals Photo ContestTop 10 class week 2
The Animal Kingdom Photo ContestTop 10 class
Textures In Animals Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
Composing with Textures Photo ContestTop 10 class
I Love Photography Photo ContestTop 10 class
I Love Photography Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
Composing with Textures Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
Happening At The Zoo Photo ContestTop 10 class
Happening At The Zoo Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
The Battle Of Professionals Photo ContestTop 10 class
The Battle Of Professionals Photo ContestTop 10 class week 3
The Battle Of Professionals Photo ContestTop 10 class week 2
The Battle Of Professionals Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
Animal Kingdom Photo Contest Vol 1Top 10 class
Animal Kingdom Photo Contest Vol 1Top 10 class week 2
Animal Kingdom Photo Contest Vol 1Top 10 class week 1
Large Mammals Photo ContestTop 10 class
Large Mammals Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
Image of the Year Photo Contest by SnapfishTop 10 class
Image of the Year Photo Contest by SnapfishTop 10 class week 3
Image of the Year Photo Contest by SnapfishTop 10 class week 2
Image of the Year Photo Contest by SnapfishTop 10 class week 1
Exotic Wildlife Photo ContestTop 10 class
Exotic Wildlife Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
Zootography Photo ContestTop 10 class
Zootography Photo ContestTop 10 class week 2
Zootography Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
Animals Are Beautiful Photo Contest Top 10 class
Animals Are Beautiful Photo Contest Top 10 class week 2
Animals Are Beautiful Photo Contest Top 10 class week 1
Emerging From Shadows Photo ContestTop 10 class
Emerging From Shadows Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
34 Comments | Report
Etna PRO+
 
Etna May 07, 2015
Wow
MarcyK PRO
 
MarcyK May 09, 2015
Wow again! The detail is phenomenal!
KayBrewer PRO+
 
KayBrewer August 27, 2015
Congratulations - finalist Animals Are Beautiful contest!
MyDeerStudio
 
MyDeerStudio August 31, 2015
This photography is just amazing. You should have been the winner of the contest animal are beautiful.
foxx17
 
foxx17 August 31, 2015
Such a wonderful portrait. The lighting and detail are excellent!
Michael_Shake
 
Michael_Shake September 06, 2015
Outstanding photo, really love it.
Roach1969
 
Roach1969 September 15, 2015
Brilliant capture, stunning image. Thank you for entering my challenge :D
nandicmb
 
nandicmb September 18, 2015
Congratulations on your People's Choice category win in Majestic Animal(s) Photo Challenge!
KayBrewer PRO+
 
KayBrewer September 23, 2015
Another one! Congratulations on Zootography finalist!!
nandicmb
 
nandicmb October 10, 2015
Congratulations again----for Zootography Photo Contest!
KayBrewer PRO+
 
KayBrewer November 04, 2015
Congratulations! Finalist Exotic Wildlife contest!
ChelleCreations
 
ChelleCreations February 21, 2016
Congrats my friend .. Beautiful Masterpiece :)
JordanSuter
 
JordanSuter April 26, 2016
Great photo.
KayBrewer PRO+
 
KayBrewer April 27, 2016
Congratulations! finalist in Large Mammals contest!
Lynda701
 
Lynda701 May 27, 2016
wow stunning
KayBrewer PRO+
 
KayBrewer May 27, 2016
Congratulations! Finalist Animal Kingdom contest!
Bazz PRO+
 
Bazz June 16, 2016
Congratulations Mike for Runner Up in Animal Kingdom Photo Contest Vol 1 for June, 2016. Well deserved!
ReneeBlake PRO+
 
ReneeBlake June 16, 2016
Fantastic use of light and texture. Congratulations !!
bjandradeward PRO+
 
bjandradeward June 17, 2016
Breathtaking! I feel the soul of the elephant in this image.
catherinethompson PRO
 
catherinethompson November 17, 2016
Outstanding details.
Treecy
 
Treecy November 17, 2016
I showed this to my whole family and they agreed that is outstanding!!!!!
Neckbone
 
Neckbone February 28, 2017
Awesome shot!
Neckbone
 
Neckbone February 28, 2017
Beautiful detail, nice capture Mark!
Neckbone
 
Neckbone February 28, 2017
Beautiful detail, nice capture Mark!
SoulSunflower
 
SoulSunflower March 23, 2017
Breath taking!!!!
httppluto
 
httppluto April 04, 2017
Amazing shot of a beautiful creature
marilenavaccarini PRO
 
marilenavaccarini July 02, 2017
Amazing
janetgarden
 
janetgarden February 15, 2018
Congratulations. Very very BEAUTIFUL!
p_eileenbaltz PRO
 
p_eileenbaltz February 15, 2018
Amazing image! Congratulations on winning another award for your beautiful work.
Bazz PRO+
 
Bazz February 15, 2018
Congratulations on your People's Choice Win in the Zoo Photo Challenge for February , 2018. Well deserved.
barbarabrock PRO+
 
barbarabrock February 15, 2018
What a wonderful glow this glorious beast has!!
Eduardbetz
 
Eduardbetz February 15, 2018
Truly majestic ! Congratulations !
Cintography
 
Cintography February 16, 2018
Congratulations
jodiehennigar PRO+
 
jodiehennigar July 25, 2019
Absolute masterpiece, i love this!

Behind The Lens

Location
This photo was taken at Riverbanks Zoo and Garden in Columbia, South Carolina
Time
It was Christmas Eve day 2013 and since I was off from work I decided to take a trip to the zoo. It was just after 11:00 a.m. when I walked up to the elephants and started shooting.
Lighting
The sun was shining brightly on this particular morning which allowed me to capture the details in the skin. The elephant was in bright sunshine and the tusk and ear cast very stark, clean shadows. Every fold and crease in the skin was accentuated with shadows. Luckily the elephant was up against a fairly dark background which made processing the image to its finished product much easier.
Equipment
This shot was taken hand held using a Canon T3i with a Canon EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS lens with a UV filter. Focal length was 116mm, 1/2500 sec., f/18 with and ISO of 6400 and no flash.
Inspiration
I have always been drawn to elephants. They seem to possess a wisdom that is beyond our understanding. When I look at them in a zoo I see both intelligence and profound sadness. It is almost as if they realize what it is that man is doing and has done to their species throughout the years. It is that sadness that I see that inspired me to make this photo as dark as it is even though it was shot in broad daylight.
Editing
My post-processing technique is relatively simple. I use a combination of Lightroom and Photoshop to do all of my editing and the process I follow for each picture always begins in Lightroom. I'm a huge fan of both the "dehaze" and "clarity" features in Lightroom and use them a lot. To achieve the desired result I also tweaked the shadows and highlights and applied a small amount of noise reduction. Once I had the elephant looking the way I wanted I applied some vignette using Lightroom to darken the corners. Additionally, there were a few pieces of hay and dirt on the elephant's skin that really showed in the RAW photo so I cleaned those up in Photoshop using the Clone Stamp tool.
In my camera bag
My bag always had my Canon T3i with Canon EF 70-300mm attached in easy reach (the Canon 55-250mm is now my back-up lens), along with two other Canon lenses (EFS 18-55mm & EFS 10-18mm). Additionally I usually carry my Sony ILCE-6000 with a Sony 16-50mm & Sony 55-210mm lens.
Feedback
First and foremost, if you camera has the capability to shoot RAW format use it! ALWAYS!! It allows for so much more flexibility when it comes to post-processing. I look at the RAW file and think of it in much the same way I imagine a sculptor views a piece of marble. The RAW file has all the potential in the world, it's up to me draw it out. Other than that the advice I give most frequently when talking to new photographers is to look at your viewfinder as a picture frame. Try not to have anything in the viewfinder that you wouldn't want to frame and put on your wall. I know that isn't always possible so I always advise making a duplicate copy of the original RAW file. Keep it safe. With the other one, play around. Don't feel as if you have to follow someone else's rules or process. Lightroom is very forgiving software. There isn't an adjustment or change you make that can not be undone so feel free to explore and experiment. In the end, follow what you want, not what you think someone else wants to see. Over time you will perfect a work flow that suits you and your individual style and it will become second nature. Photography is fun so just go shoot and have fun!

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