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on Jan 5, 2017 in Field Reports

“What’s the Best f/stop?”

I am convinced that one of the hardest things for a photographer to grasp is Depth of Field (DoF)! I’m constantly asked via every means possible, “What’s the best f/stop?” Lately, I’ve been flooded with links of articles asking me if they are accurate or not. And while reading is a valid way to learn photography, I’m old school where the best way to learn is by doin. DoF is one of those things you have to learn FOR YOUR photography by doing, YOUR PHOTOGRAPHY! This means taking pictures. There are great article outs there but DoF is all about storytelling and that is very much an individual activity. I want to pass along an old exercise I did long ago that helped me make DoH my friend. The lessons of the Six Pack Exercise is how I knew I wanted to use the 105f1/4 AFS on this photo of a P-40e (on the D5) to make the story the photo contains. DoF is not just about focal length...

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on Dec 28, 2016 in Field Reports

New DLSR, Old DSLR … Play with Features!

So, you know how to use all the features of your camera when you need them? No matter if you just got a new DSLR or have had one for a while, playing with features is the best way to learn what might help your photography. Here’s a quick idea to get you started. Every year with the cold temps and snow, icicles hanging from our roof always grab my attention. I always go for the lazy man’s way of catching that drop as it falls. What’s the lazy man method? Thanks for asking as it pertains to this blog’s topic. I start by using HSC – High Speed Crop. This not only crops the FX sensor of the D5 but more importantly, speeds up the FPS by 1 frame per second. Next, I raised the ISO to 1600 and dialed in -1 exp comp, both giving me a faster shutter speed. I went to Auto Area AF to take advantage of its Closest Subject Priority and of course,...

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on Dec 22, 2016 in Field Reports

Shooting In Snow … How?

How do I shoot in snow? I’ve had that email and phone call a couple of times this week. To be totally up front, understand that I just don’t get cold. Sharon is always telling me to put on a jacket so I don’t make other people feel cold. With that said, my preferred way to work in the snow, is to not be in the snow. Both of these photographs were taken from the comfort of inside my office shooting out an open window. But I have the feeling that’s not really at the heart of the question I’m being asked. The Musk Ox photo I posted yesterday on Instagram, I was standing out in the elements at -30 shooting and that is the most common way we shoot, out in the elements. When it comes to the gear (like gloves), like everything else I do, I use the KISS theorem. Here’s how I apply it. I start by avoiding breathing on the camera’s eyepiece. I gotta think...

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on Dec 15, 2016 in Field Reports

Keep Light in Your Back Pocket!

There’s a running joke amongst my circle of friends that starts with, “Do we need a flash” when originally they really meant to ask, “Should we bring a flash?” It became a running joke because I answered the original question with “I doubt it” not knowing what they were really meant to ask, to which the answer is “ALWAYS!” I always have at least one SB-5000 with me with freshly, fully charged Eneloop Pro AA batteries! The vast majority of the time, it never gets used but I ALWAYS have at least the one SB-5000 with me. Why? Light can be a bastard and there are just too many times an important opportunity instantly appears and flash is required to make the photo. In the old days when flash was a pain, I would do everything possible to avoid its use. That’s not the case anymore, I almost go out looking for the opportunity because of the drama it can create. Here are three instances when flash was a...

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on Nov 16, 2016 in Field Reports

Time To Think Digit Warmth!

This is simply a brilliant product I’m pulling out, it’s that time of year! I learned about the DSLR Parka Cold and Rain Protector last year and it is so simple but sooo effective! It’s real simple, you place your camera / lens inside and place your hands inside and you shoot. You can shoot easily down to zero with no gloves easily with this. You can put a flash through the top slot and see everything through the viewfinder and LCD with clear back panel. It’s real simple to attach or remove and get your hands inside to your gear. The inside lining is soo soft as well, it just screams “come in!” It fits any body, any lens as well as any size of hands. If you’re shooting with a Nikon AFS lens, be sure to have it set to M/A and not A/M. Otherwise, this is the perfect outdoor photographer accessory. I’ll have it the end of the month at Bosque for those cold mornings. Oh,...

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