Beautiful and delicious - + rework

With some suggested changes -

Unlike yesterday’s mushroom image (are you sick of these yet? LOL), these are tasty and a choice edible. Most of the time they grow in unsightly groups or in thick undergrowth so I don’t have a lot of photos of them. This one was photographed then picked and eaten along with its fellows that were fruiting in abundance. Actually two other choice edibles were found and collected on this day - hedgehogs and lobsters, neither of which I have a photo of because they weren’t pretty either, but maybe one day.

This is a perfect chanterelle - classic golden color, beautiful stipe and cap, gorgeous (false) gills and a sort of regal pose. My mushroom-maniac friend kindly let me shoot it before she picked it. We were lucky to find them at their peak and that nothing else had gotten to them yet. Humans aren’t the only ones who devour them.

Specific Feedback Requested

I feel there is something off about this, but I’ve worked it so much I can’t hardly see it anymore. Ideas for improvement welcome.

Technical Details

Tripod and natural light
Focus bracketing - 0/+ method and 4 or 5 step increments - 21 photos


Lr for wb adjustment and some color correction. Boosted exposure, texture, clarity, whites & shadows. Reduced blacks & highlights. Lowered exposure and added dehaze to just the cap.

Zerene for the stack w/retouching (DMap base, PMax details)

Photoshop for distraction removal and some work to bring the TIF to life a bit.

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Definitely not sick of your mushroom photos, Kris. This one is so unique, I’ve never seen one quite like it. I have always found yellows (and reds) seem hard to get the right exposure, but you have done an outstanding job. Very nicely seen.

I really like the mushroom’s tone and color - seems to have almost an inner glow. The only thing I can think of to change might be to burn some of the needles in the lower left, the lighter ones seem to be a slight distraction. Very nice find. Was there any direct light on the cap?

Thanks @linda_mellor & @LarryR - glad you’re not sick of them. Last year I didn’t do nearly as much mushroom photography so I guess I’m making up for it, lol.

Yellow is a tough one, so is red. I hoped that I could get it sort of right. There wasn’t any direct light on the cap except what sun was filtering through the canopy. I don’t think a shaft of sun or anything like that. Basically a big hemlock grove with some other hardwoods mixed in.

OH, yum!!! I’ve picked (and eaten) Chantarelles in CO. They have such a lovely pepperish flavor! If I remember the ones I’ve seen, the yellow here is perhaps just a bit saturated, but they may be different where you are.

Good idea from @LarryR to do a slight burn in the LL. The BG in the UL draws my attention a bit – maybe lower the contrast there??

Great shot. Again, love that extra foreground DOF but nice background bokeh. Not so sure about ‘delicious’…looks positively toxic to me…but then I’m not a mushroom gourmet and I prefer my risks to be around things other than food.

Thanks @Diane_Miller & @Phil_G - I will look at this again tomorrow.

Not toxic - trust me. Delicious. Wonderful mushrooms that I collect for food all the time. Most chanterelles are yummy, but these are probably the most highly prized. After 7 years living here, I have several spots where they grow in big numbers. Some are easier to get to than others, but this spot had lobsters and hedgehogs, too, which are also really good eating and no risk if you know what to look for. Hedgies are the most unmistakable of the three (nothing else looks like them), but lobsters, too, can’t be mixed up with anything else. The thing to be careful of with them is their heft and density - the heavier and denser the better.

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I got around to reworking this and in addition to darkening the left corners, I upped the orange saturation, warmed the greens and added some contrast in the right side of the shot where the moss is. I think it’s better! Thanks peeps.