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  • Red-capped Robin

    Red-capped Robin.   Photographer: Chris Dubar

  • Black-winged Stilt

    Black-winged Stilt.   Photographer: Paul Jensen

  • Crimson Rosella

    Crimson Rosella.   Photographer: Con Boekel

  • Little Egret, Plumed Whistling-Duck

    Little Egret, Plumed Whistling-Duck.   Photographer: Richard Smart

  • Red-necked Stint

    Red-necked Stint.   Photographer: Sandy Castle

Winner: Australian White Ibis - RA35GT (Image ID 21913)

The feeling of awe at watching birds glide high above is wonderfully conveyed here. The light through the bird’s wings highlights the extended wing feathers and tips, allowing the viewer to focus on the form and function of the different feathers and of the bird itself. The mottled blue and white sky provides a background that complements the bird, adding to the dreamy atmosphere. There is little I would change in this photo – its strength is in its ability to take something so simple and everyday and make it into an image that makes the viewer appreciate the beauty of birds.

Australian White Ibis - RA35GT

Highly Commended: Osprey - Cherylin Corker (Image ID 22435)

This photo does well to convey the sheer size of the Osprey. It is sharp, and the fast shutter speed has allowed clarity on individual feathers at the wing tips, creating a dynamic series of lines across the frame - curved wings to straight edges, before becoming curved once more. Compositionally, the photo would benefit from having more room/sky on the right of frame. As the bird is gazing and flying to the right, the viewers’ gaze is led that direction – however, the lack of open space on that side of the frame makes it meet a bit of an abrupt end.

Osprey - Cherylin Corker

Commended: Crested Tern - Richard Smart (Image ID 22278)

A unique image and composition of a bird in flight. The mysterious pose of the bird immediately engages the viewer. In doing so one notices the tiny beak, and then the beautiful curves of the wing isolated against the sky. The curves of the land provide a sense of place for the bird and viewer. The strength of the photograph is its intrigue and simplicity, and a great example of where less detail strengthens an image. A tighter crop – removing some of the sky above the bird and to the right of frame – would also help to ensure the viewer’s eye does not wander unnecessarily.

Crested Tern - Richard Smart

Commended: Black Swan - Christopher Nixon (Image ID 22303)

This photograph has a lovely dreamy, painting-like feel. The wings – one up and one down - conveys a sense of movement and sequence. The tight vertical crop, combined with the outstretched necks emphasize movement from left to right. Some might argue that the photo lacks sharpness and contrast (between the birds and the clouds), however here I think it adds to the atmosphere. Slightly more sky on the right hand side of the frame would be useful, as it would provide more space for the swans to fly into, and this would enhance the directional effect created by the lines.

Black Swan - Christopher Nixon

Commended: Whistling Kite - Cheryl Munzel (Image ID 22371)

A lovely photograph capturing just the right moment in the warm light. The eye contact with the bird engages the viewer immediately. The arched wings, with a hint of motion, give a sense of power and movement. A slightly faster shutter speed would have been ideal, as this would have helped maintain sharpness around the face. Compositionally, placing blank space on the left of frame may have been an option, given the angle of the birds left wing is actually closing off the right side of the frame. There are some unusual lines on the right hand side of the frame which would be best cloned out.

Whistling Kite - Cheryl Munzel

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