<< Previous Next >>

Blue Palette For Aaltjie

Blue Palette For Aaltjie
Photo Information
Copyright: Loot Eksteen (loot) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5524 W: 722 N: 4163] (11276)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2006-05-06
Categories: Fish
Camera: Canon EOS 350D, Sigma 28-300mm f/3.5-6.3 HZ DG Macro, Digital ISO 100, UV 62mm Kenko
Exposure: f/13.0, 1/200 seconds
Details: (Fill) Flash: Yes
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): Fishes from around the world, Underwater World #2, 60-69 points (Chapter 3), Different Fish, Pretoria Zoo 1, A study in Ichthyology (fish) 1, Dedications at Trek Nature, Underwater Wonder World 1, RARE or SIGNIFICANT contributions to TN 2, My Dedications ;o) [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2007-03-16 0:20
Viewed: 9127
Favorites: 2 [view]
Points: 68
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Palette surgeonfish - Paracanthurus hepatus

I dedicate this photo to my cyber friend Aaltjie van Zevenster. Out of nowhere you appeared and in a relative short space of time became a very good friend. With your continued support and enthusiasm you have given me endless joy and gratitude. Although not being a photographer yourself, your unselfish visits and zealous critiques are most welcome and always appreciated.

This photo was taken during a visit to the amazing aquarium at the Pretoria Zoo, earlier last year and it is the first photo of this species on TrekNature. For more information on this facility you might want to visit the web-page of the National Zoological Gardens of South Africa.

For anyone that might be interested to see some of my other postings that were photographed at this same venue, you can view these:-

1. Amazing Light Fantasy,
2. Blue-ringed Neon Light,
3. Yellow Sailfin Tang, and
4. Pompadour Discus,

Alternatively you can take a look at my Ichthyology theme which contains all my "Aquarium shots".

My next posting will be my 100th which will give me a good opportunity to return to my Kruger Park series

The 6 genera and 72 or so species of surgeonfishes (family Acanthuridae) are classed within the largest Order of true bony fishes, the Perciformes. The suborder that contains them (Acanthuroidei) includes the difficult Moorish idol (Zanclidae), venomous rabbitfishes (Siganidae), the delightful scats (Scatophagidae), the spadefishes (Ephippidae), that currently include the batfishes (Platax), and an obscure foodfish called the louvar (Luvaridae).

Other names
Blue tang, yellow-tailed blue, regal, flagtail surgeonfish, or palette tang.

It has a royal blue body, yellow tail, and black 'palette' design. It grows to a maximum of generally 31cm.

It ranges widely throughout the reefs of central and Indo-Pacific; East Africa, including the Mascarene Islands to Kiribati, north to southern Japan, south to the southern Great Barrier Reef, New Caledonia, and Samoa.

Occurs in clear, current-swept terraces of seaward reefs, 1-2m above the bottom and 10-40m deep. Juveniles typical in groups near isolated Pocillopora eydouxi coral heads and when alarmed hide themselves tightly among the branches.

This fish feeds on zooplankton, algae and other small fish. It grazes algae from rocky areas and browses filamentous algae, thereby avoiding large quantities of calcareous materials. They are important in keeping algae populations under control, preventing algae from overgrowing and suffocating corals.

Source: "Common Sea Fishes of Southern Africa" by Rudy van der Elst, Struik publishers.

Post Processing was done with Adobe Photoshop Elements 2.0.

ellis49, elefantino, dew77, Aaltjie, SkyF, Janice, horia, uleko, thor68, marhowie, Watershed, scottevers7, jcoowanitwong, peter_stoeckl, jeanpaul, Dyker, oscarromulus, saeedabbasi, Debz, wuta, John_F_Kennedy, betsie, Miss_Piggy, Rehanna has marked this note useful
Only registered TrekNature members may rate photo notes.
Add Critique [Critiquing Guidelines] 
Only registered TrekNature members may write critiques.
ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To recepyuksel: Love the blueloot 1 03-29 20:20
To SunnysideSandy: The shame is on you dear Sandyloot 1 03-24 01:26
To Aaltjie: Gelukkige verjaardagloot 4 03-20 04:49
To Aaltjie: Happy BirthdayJanice 3 03-19 11:37
To horia: Questions & answersloot 2 03-18 05:48
To Janice: Nemo had a purposeloot 1 03-18 04:27
To thor68: Bad habitsloot 1 03-18 03:15
You must be logged in to start a discussion.

Critiques [Translate]

These are gorgeous fish and one of my favorites. Over here the aquarium hobbyist call them Blue Tangs. very nice close up showing the cool electric colors this fish has to display. :)

Hi Loot,
now you have played in PS with the saturation tool, shame on you ;-))
This is a great picture with amazing colours even the pattern
is great. The details and exposure are spot on.
Beautiful work, old friend.

the spring is here and it's a very nice time.

  • Great 
  • manyee Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3089 W: 230 N: 6774] (23770)
  • [2007-03-16 1:25]

A gorgeous shot, Loot. : )
The light is just right to bring out those stunning colors.
The irridescence is beautifully rendered.
The details are spot-on, quite an achievement through glass and water.
A perfect POV to show all the amazing markings on this gem of a fish.
TFS. : )

All I can say is Wow!! - Amazing!! - Wonder where she gets het lipstick from? - looks very "permanent" - Well done Loot

Great colors and details,

  • Great 
  • pvs Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1127 W: 254 N: 3161] (14464)
  • [2007-03-16 4:05]

Hi Loot,

Again a colorfull capture from the deep blue,well captured with good colors and detailed,well used fillflash,the only small nit would be that the cropis a bit too tight,anyway a great shot and as always accompagnied with a usefull note,
cannot wait to see your 100th posting,hope you post it in the weekend ,I have to go to sea again and will fly tuesday to malta,will sail for about 8 weeks in the med (mostly italy,aspain,Ageria and Tunesia),


Hi Loot,
Just marking, I'll be back!

  • Great 
  • dew77 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4432 W: 248 N: 4028] (13270)
  • [2007-03-16 8:08]

Hello Loot,
Excellent capture of this charming fish.Vivid colors are very nice.I liked exposure,cross framing and details also a lot.I'm curious about your 100th post:).Have a good weekend!


If I participated in April fools joke day, I would have thought that this was an early joke played on me. But the 1st of April is still far away, so it must be true that this photo of the Palette surgeonfish is dedicated to me.

Vandaag Ik Aaltjie Hartmut van Zevenster bij iemand als Prins Charles of Prins Albert vergelijken. Ik voel als Royalty. Dankuwel mijn vriend. Dit was totaal onverwacht. Ik vind als zij in Afrikaans zeggen "Die witbroodjie".

You have given me a birthday present I’ll always treasure. I was wondering if you were going to post a new photo, and WALA such a big surprise. It is my birthday tomorrow and your "gift" could not come at a better time.

Mijn dochter zal het drukken en ontwerpen. Ik zal deze mooie foto mijn selectie van speciale foto's hangen. Het is inderdaad een grote eer. Ik voel zeer bevoorrecht om u te kennen, hoewel niet persoonlijk. Dank u nogmaals, en van mijn ononderbroken steun verzekerd.

Because I’ll never have the opportunity to dedicate a photo to you, I want to return this dedication in multiple and I want you to know that you deserve it 150%. I want to assent to what oscarromulus have said in his last critique to you "Your notes make ALL the difference; so detailed, so comprehensive. In other words, for TN viewers, in my opinion, they are sufficiently PERFECT".

U bent een charmante persoon, met een prachtige persoonlijkheid. Ik houd van de manier u uw Intro- pagina hebt veranderd. Het geeft een goede beschrijving van zich, en ik kan zien dat u uw mede-mens, in alle aspecten waardeert.

Sorry, I did not even mention anything about the photo itself. This is very beautiful, superbly captured. Great how the blue colour just jumps out of the screen. This is indeed a neat photo. Nicely done. Do I have to say as always?

If I could have, I would have put 3 stars up for a favourite. I tried, but the system would not allow me to, it also did not allow me to change the colour of the star to gold. Sorry!

Heb een prachtig weekend, en ik brand om te weten wat uw het 100ste posten zal zijn.

Vriendelijke groeten

  • Great 
  • SkyF Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2234 W: 188 N: 1912] (8073)
  • [2007-03-16 13:15]

Hello Loot,
fabulous colors and the details on the fish are amazing. Hard to believe that this shot was taken through glass, its so clear and crisp.

Hi Loot, I saw this fellow - or a similar fish, today at an aquarium... Bright colours, great capture my friend. Not always easy thru the glass.
And I see you have the little clown fish (Nemo) in the BG too.

  • Great 
  • horia Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2158 W: 224 N: 4749] (16656)
  • [2007-03-17 6:16]
  • [+]

Hi Loot

Another outstanding capture from your visit to the aquarium from the Pretoria Zoo. Do you use your integrated flash on these shots (doubt it)? I am trying to get some decent newt shots - which are also in an aqarium - and the flash is always a problem for me....that and the reflection of the camera. Any tips?...PLEASE!

This really is another majestic capture of yet another very exotic, vividly colored and simply amazing fish.

The details with which it is presented are terrific and super-sharp everywhere. The fact that the picture had a great illumination gave you an amazing saturation (and i think a bit of reflection) in the colors of its scales. The side POV is great and allows you a very nice angle to present tihs beautiful species from.
Splendid work!

Bravo and TFS

PS: looking forward for what's going to be your next shot :) I'm sure it'll be something special ;)

  • Great 
  • uleko Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3396 W: 172 N: 3310] (10940)
  • [2007-03-17 7:04]

Hello Loot,
Really outstanding capture of this Surgeonfish in gorgeous colours. It looks like the BLue Tang with a spine at the base of the tail fin.
Great sharpness and superb quality considering it is shot through the glass.
TFS and best wishes, Ulla

99 red balloons..blue fish..no, sorry, 99 loot´s terrific shots! :-)
got mixed up already, should stop doing drugs
(just a joke, don´t smoke and never touch alcohol, only bad habits are the internet, Treksites and photographing. *g*)
i see colors everywhere, especially blue, but the black and yellow are great, too.
wonderful fish and it always amazes me how perfectly you capture them underwater through
the glass and with flash - i really have to try this, too.
best wishes & waiting anxiously for no.100, thorsten.

Hello Loot,
Cool iridescent colors (blue = cool) :)
Great detail, DOF, and exposure..
I know from my one attempt at an aquarium just how hard this is to pull-off.
Hats-off to ya!
Nicely done mf.

Hi Loot,
Wow amazing colours! I really like this shot. Excellent details! Well done Loot. TFS

Hi Loot,
WOW! WOW! WOW! Where does he plug in to get those electric colors? He must be running on batteries. That is some vibrant and beautiful colors in that Surgeonfish. Great job with the flash exposure. Amazing detail under the shooting conditions. Great camera work my friend!

Hello Loot,
A beautiful Surgeonfish that shot through glass. The color is fantastic. Also great sharpness and composition. Well done and seen.

Dear Loot,
diving into the phantastic kingdom of tropical reefs you show us a specimen with amazingly strong visual signals, a flashy beauty that brings joy and good spirits into our sometimes less colourful lives. Powerful presentation with excellent contrasts and depth. Thank you for this very pleasant vital contribution!
With best regards,

hi Lott
De très bons details ainsi que de belles couleurs et une jolie présentation de ce beau poisson D'un bleu éclatant.Il ressort bien sur le BG foncé.
Bravo car c'est assez difficile de photographier a travers un aquarium.
Merci et au revoir...JP

  • Great 
  • arfer Gold Star Critiquer [C: 2731 W: 0 N: 0] (0)
  • [2007-03-18 22:29]

Hello Loot

Very eye catching colours Loot.The colours are well saturated and the composition very well done.Good eye contact,with sharp details.This fish has very pronounced fishlips don't you think,it almost looks like a cartoon rendering.Very nicely done.TFS


Hello Loot,
This is beautiful specie. I like those fishes you present us from time to time as I don't have the occasion to see many of them often. I like its colors and this POV, composition and exposure. It is very contrasted and brilliant. This is beautiful with interesting notes too. TFS,

  • Great 
  • Dyker Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 136 W: 0 N: 57] (170)
  • [2007-03-19 23:54]

Hello Loot
Another excellent aquarium shot to grace your lovely portfolio. Slowly but surely the number of fishy photos are growing in your already impressive "Ichthyology" theme. It seems like you really mastered the technique of aquarium photography since there are no evidence of glass distortions, reflections, scratches, or smear marks. The colours of the fish is fabulous and you got perfect focus on the Blue tang. The dark background makes the fish stand out of the frame.

Great capture my friend.
It not always easy thru the glass and moving object like fish.

Although I dot not receive much comments on my photos but your comment is my inspiration.


Loot, my dear friend,
I not only marked it as a Favorite but, again, and with your permission, I'd like to take a copy for my private collection.
How did you do this? Did you go put your lens right
against the aquarium glass?
The very best, THE BEST, in life to you.

Hi dear Loot my friend,
excellent image with amazing colors.
great details and sharpness.
lovely shot.
thanks and regards

  • Great 
  • Debz Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 505 W: 0 N: 847] (3307)
  • [2007-03-20 12:28]

Hello Loot, this is a wonderful colourful shot! Perfectly framed and avery clear and sharp, I can even see the eye. The whole thing has an immediate impact with those strong irridescence tones. Great composition.

Hi Loot
Surely if this was shot in a zoo/Aquarium then its not wild and not part of nature!?

I actually had one myself called a Regal Tang in a 6 foot by 4 foot Aquarium so I know they are domesticated.

Shame on you and your double standards Loot!!

Beautiful fish though tends to catch white spot very easily!

Hello Loot,
As I have already said in my response to your earlier pictures of fishes, marine life is a novelty for me since I am a native of the hills and mountains.
The colours of this fish amaze me. That bold artistic design beginning with the eye and ending at the tail makes me wonder at the creativity of Mother Nature.
A superb capture as usual through the glass, I presume.
Thanks and best regards.

Very very nice composition:
i always love the blue,
orange one at right below is +bonus

  • Great 
  • wuta Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 855 W: 2 N: 617] (2142)
  • [2007-04-01 13:26]

Hallo Loot , Wat een prachtige vis en wat een mooie kleuren en zo'n lief mondje hele mooie compositie ,Fijne Avond Groeten Teunie .

  • Great 
  • Hoos Silver Star Critiquer/Silver Note Writer [C: 19 W: 0 N: 20] (111)
  • [2007-04-02 3:45]

Hi my friend! Do you remember me? nice picture! its seems like dory and nemo!! I miss your photos! you really are a great photographer!! well done! good luck loot!! att Juan Jose

A superb image of a fish. Good colours and sharpness.

bonjour loot
genial vous avec retrouvé nemo et dorice,les deux heros du film d'animation pour enfant!
les couleurs de "dorice" sont superbe,il est assez rare de voir un tel rendu.

Howzit Loot,
Great capture of this surgeon fish with striking blue and yellow around and in the dark areas.Sharpness has pronounced patterns and visible fine details,well done and TFS,

Hallo Loot
EXCELLENT shot!!! Very well captured, clear and sharp. Rich in aquatic colours. You most certainly have some beautiful images in your gallery and this one is no exception. Just perfect! A well worthy dedication at the time and I know Aaltjie was thrilled when he received this image with his name written in the subject line. It is indeed a great loss that he is no longer around with his up building critics and straightforward manners of seeing an image or situation.
A very nice close up showing the cool electrifying colours with great clarity and detail. Your aquarium shots astonish me time and time again, as they are so clear, as if you where in the fish tank taken the shots from so close yourself, with no glass separation between you and the fish. An exceptional image with stunning colours!. Love.

Calibration Check