I made a composite with leaves and a Northern Shoveler. First adjusted basic sliders and, lens correction and detail in Lightroom. Added a graduated filter, erasing where it touched the duck. Then in Photoshop set the blending mode to soft light. Duplicated the duck layer and masked out the duck making it the top layer. The water at the bottom needed a few more ripples. Duplicated the duck layer, stretched it, made it quite transparent and did some light brush work. I brought the raw file into Photoshop. Inserted the leaf image. Moved the duck layer a little. Added vibrance and brightness/contrast adjustment layers clipped to the leaf layer.
Central Park Lake had a flock of Northern Shoverlers swimming in circles – a dance they perform while sifting the water for food. I made a little video, pardon the jerkiness. I was using a long lens without a tripod. Park rules say no tripods. https://youtu.be/VP26MBJvtcU
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