Images from around DC Yesterday (C&C)

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All,
I just got my first DSLR, Canon 40D, with your basic 3 starter lenses (15-55mm; 55-250mm; and 50mm 1.8). I spent alot of yesterday walking around the DC area playing with it. I obviously have alot to learn, but wanted to post some pictures here for review and critiquing.

Let me know what you think.

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I swapped a couple images out with some stuff I took today...would appreciate any feedback or comments on these! Thanks!
 
Just some knee-jerk reactions:

3: The modern air compressor kinda kills the old-fashioned look.

4. Distracting background elements.

5. Could you have knelt down and moved the location of the branch up in the frame?

6. Too much background, too many subjects. I would have zoomed in on the two on the left.

7. Kitty porn!

The rest I like.
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Thanks. As to addressing the comments..

3. Totally agree. I think its muted some by the B&W, but its still there. I might go back sometime and try to re-capture this image sans the air compressor.

4. I tried this shot several times. It was from the top of the Lincoln Memorial, looking down upon what Used-to-be (and will be someday again) the reflecting pool. Would have made an interesting background, but right now, its a construction scene, so i had to shoot lower and people kept walking by. I couldnt get low enough to get the Washington Monument in the background, which is what I really wanted to do. Try this alternate version, do you like this one better?

5. Dont know. I cant remember where i was when that picture was shot, but I know I didnt consider that branch when shooting, so lesson learned i guess! It was at a zoo (obviously), so sometimes you are limited as to how much you can move around.
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6. I was already getting close to the end of my 55-250 lens on that one. I could have gotten a little closer, but at the time I thought I likes the 3 subjects. I cropped it a little differently, but I think it loses some sharpness.
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7. Ha! Totally did not see that angle in that picture before!
 
Just some knee-jerk reactions:
3: The modern air compressor kinda kills the old-fashioned look.
You got me thinking...I took another shot, but I decided I liked the one I posted better....its less busy...but when I went back to look, the other shot is missing the air compressor! Just an hour later...it was gone. Should have re-taken the earlier picture as well!

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