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on Aug 22, 2016 in Landscape Photography

Pano to Tell Stories

I’ve been shooting panoramas or “panos” since I first picked up a camera. Back in the old days, to share the panoramic views I was so fortunate to witness, I had three Kodak slide projectors aligned so when projecting, the three images of the pano would come together on the screen into one photo. Sharing the wonders our vision brings to us with others is the heart and soul of photography! But carrying around three projectors to share the pano was never practical. Then came digital and the internet making sharing the pano much, much easier. But the taking and assembly of panos up until a year ago was still a challenge. Now, it’s literally a snap but many don’t seem to realize this, at least that’s what the emails I’ve received in the last week indicate. In more than one email came the question, “What gear did you leave at home to take all the gear to shoot your panos?” Actually, I own no pano gear any longer,...

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on Aug 19, 2016 in Wildlife Photography

Ghosting for Effect?

Ghosting is an old term when it comes to wildlife photography. It refers to when there are two “images” of the subject in one frame. It is caused when shooting with flash using an shutter speed too slow so it captures the ambient light exposure of the subject along with the frozen image captured by the flash. The rule of thumb is, a subject has to appear in the frame for 1/4 of the exposure time to register (100% to be captured completely). Now I’ve used ghosting creatively for wildlife for a long time. Prime example is to illustrate the drilling action of a woodpecker. Here’ in the rainforest at O’Reilly’s, I’ve been trying it to communicate the activity of some of the birds, like this Eastern Yellow Robin. They are such a delightful little bird, but all so busy. In this case, shooting with the D5 / 300PF / SB-5000, I used ghosting to show its constant activity as it flits about the forest. Is it perfect? Na,...

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on Aug 16, 2016 in Wildlife Photography

Superb, Simply Superb

Our first twenty-four hours at O’Reilly’s has been simply brilliant! Now part of the giggle is the top photo is of a male Superb Fairy-Wren which is one of my all time favorite birds! And the first day we had a whole bunch of opportunities with them. Why do I like them? Just look at that head! Seriously and that’s not even using a flash, that’s just how they look. Brilliant, simply brilliant! The cool thing about the Superb Fairy-Wren is you can be out chasing some other bird and if you are getting skunked, the Wren appears to save the day. I came to Australia with a list of birds I wanted that, well, I didn’t do so well with on my last visit. The Grey Wagtail is one of those. The one thing that has become so overwhelming obvious to me is the amazing improvement of the gear since my last visit. This is a prime example of how the D5 / 800f5.6 AFS grab focus so...

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on Aug 14, 2016 in Landscape Photography

G’day from Down Under!

After 23hrs of travel, we arrived without a hitch in gorgeous Australia to O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat high up in Lamington Nat’l Park. This was the view off our porch this AM as we headed out to shoot. Eighteen species of birds photographed already, so much...

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on Aug 11, 2016 in Wildlife Photography

Darn That Twig!

You’ve heard me say it many times, backgrounds are everything. In wildlife photography, we should be aware of that background for its pluses and minuses. The background is the stage we create to show off the star, our subject, and use the background to tell its story. That’s a real challenge and a lot to ask from something, show off something and not get in its way in the process. It’s one reason why wildlife photography is so challenging because we can’t control the subject to put it in front of the best background when we want it. This whole issue intensifies when we narrow our subject down to birds. This is when you start hearing, darn that twig! Just like all wildlife photographers, I run into this same issue. When I started out 40yrs ago the only option was to get it right in the camera. I still rise to that same level of perfection which is why I shoot with the D5 / 800f5.6 AFS. Optics to...

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