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on Feb 6, 2017 in WRP Ed Zone

A Stumper of a Question!

“How do I figure out how fast a lens I need to buy for the depth of field I think I want?” Dang, that’s one helluva great question that came in this morning! Back in the day when you bought a camera body it came with a 50f1.4, wasn’t an option. Then they started to offer other slower 50mm lenses to lower the overall price until finally, you could buy the body only. Now a days, you can buy “kits” but fast lenses aren’t part of those kits typically. Determining what a shallow depth of field just isn’t as easy as it use to be when you were forced into it. But shooting with a narrow DoF is a powerful tool and like the writer asked, how does one figure that out prior to buying? Being old, I shot with the 50f1.4 from the start and still do. These days my camera bag has the 24f1.4, 50f1.4 and 105f1.4 and I own those lenses to shoot at just, f1.4....

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on Jan 31, 2017 in WRP Ed Zone

Doing Your Planning for Spring … Now?

Some of the best photography only comes with planning! While we might just be a month into winter, spring is just around the corner. If you’re into wildlife photography, that means it’s baby time. Are you ready? Do you have the gear you think you need for nesting birds or baby mammals. Nesting birds need short lenses like the 70-200f2.8 FL or 300 PF and at least one SB-5000 though two would be better. You need to know and do ratios with those two flashes using a WR-R10. How do you do all of that in the dead of winter, figure out the lenses and flash ratios? Get yourself a old fashion baseball and place it in shade, light it with the flashes until you create the ratios you like and no one can tell you’re using flash. The time to learn this is now, not when you have a nest in your lens. What if you’re into aviation, you ready for the spring airshow season? Unlike wildlife where...

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on Jan 6, 2017 in WRP Ed Zone

“Is There a Best Shutter Speed?”

After yesterday’s post on f/stop, I received this question which I think was meant as tongue in cheek. But it’s really is a darn good question and one more photographers should ask of their photography. Most think of shutter speed only in terms of being really fast for sharp photos, hence all the high ISO photos. When it comes to storytelling though, because we are shooting stills, how do we speak about movement in our photographs if we always have a fast shutter speed? Just like there is NO one f/stop there is NO one shutter speed that is the best. Personally, I tend to work with slower speeds rather than faster because I want the movement in the frame. Like the Griz above, I wanted to speak about the rushing water it’s standing in. I know I couldn’t stand in that rush of water so I wanted to show off its skills. The opposite is true as well, if I want to show how fast something is moving,...

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on Jan 4, 2017 in WRP Ed Zone

MagBeam Kiss of Light is Sweet

We’ve been very fortunate to receive a couple of feet of snow over the last 24hrs, perfect timing to try out MagMod’s MagBeam Wildlife Kit. After I reposted an old video on the BetterBeamer, a fan emailed telling me that it was so “yesterday” and I need to try out the MagBeam so I called up B&H and had one shipped to me. Being pinned to my desk, it was the perfect time to give it a whirl cause when shooting birds in falling snow, you need that kiss of flash light to bring out their colors. So with Sharon keeping warm dressed in her ski clothes while she works at her desk as the office doors are wide open, I shot from desk testing. The basics are pretty simple here, the Wildlife Kit is a new twist to the Projecta / Tele flash extender. There are many applications for this attachment, mine is simple, to increase the effective DoF I can shoot with when using flash fill. I’m...

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on Dec 26, 2016 in WRP Ed Zone

New DLSR – Here’s Some Out of the Box Thoughts

You get a new DSLR yesterday? Congrats .. I personally can’t think of a better present but then, I have issues :-) If that’s the case, I highly recommend you get your settings dialed in from the start. You might not know though what settings to plug in. Here are my settings for a couple of the current Nikon bodies D5 Settings D500 Settings D810 Settings D750 Settings What if you didn’t get one of these bodies? Well, the majority of the settings and how they are set doesn’t change much. Some settings appear or disappear or might change menu, but the setting for Folder or Image Information and many more don’t change. You can use these as a great starting point as you begin you journey into photography. Welcome to the photographic...

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on Dec 19, 2016 in WRP Ed Zone

Which AF Mode Do You Use?

This is a real common question because, well, the answer is not really obvious, and varies from photographer to brand. Here’s what I do with my Nikons FWIW. I’m always in AF-C and either select S = Single, GRP = Group Dynamic or Auto = Auto Area AF (what I call AAA). Auto Area seems to bring the most confusion to folks, here are prime examples of when I use AAA. It’s when I have subjects against a clean background such as bird or aircraft in flight. The one aspect of AAA one must understand is for Nikon, it’s the one focus mode where Closest Subject is used. In the Snow Geese photo, you can see where it locked on the closest goose. On the Wildcat, it locked on the engine cowling. As long as you know this you can use DoF to your advantage to tell your story. Hope this...

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