There is so much more to living in California than the sun tanned stars everyone sees on TV. We have wonderful animal preserves. A small, virtually unknown one is Oso Flaco. I love hiking this trail and getting to see nature practically un-disturbed. I hope you enjoy these images.
Wow! My initial reaction was very positive when I first looked at these two photographs.
First impressions (which are generally irrational in the sense that they are almost exclusively emotional) mean a lot to photographers because visual story telling is such an emotional art.
Your first image stood out for me due to the unusual color combination. I see color isolation pictures often, but not with the same color palette or compositional attributes as your photograph. I absolutely love the saturation, the contrast the beautiful texture of the flower. The longer I look at the image, the more positive my reaction becomes.
I love the focus on the pink, but the inclusion of noticeably green highlights. I think the helps the image from being too simple.
Your photograph that showcases your ability to show movement goes above and beyond what this assignment asked for. Your composition for this shot is breathtaking. Your positioning is fantastic (I’m sure luck played a bit of a part on this day!), and your background provides a complimentary backdrop with simple, earthy, analogous colors, which provide context, but at the same time help isolate your main area of interest (i.e. the bird).
My recommendation isn’t a criticism, only a suggestion. I like the black and white tonal range in your first shot, but I would be interested to see if crunching the blacks to look deeper using the “curves” tool would give it a more dramatic look. Generally with black and white you’d want darker blacks, but this image might be an exception because it could take focus away from your pinks. Either way, it’s something to consider. Great work!