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on Aug 8, 2019 in Wildlife Photography

The Mid Morning Nap

The ride over was a bit on the bumpy side, but Carl once again worked his magic and put us in a calm bay with a raft of Alaskan Sea Otters. These amazing creatures make their life seem so good as they just float about on the surface, sleeping the day away. But it’s a hard life and they work very hard to maintain their body heat through lots of food and that gorgeous, thick coat. Shooting off the back of Carl’s boat, with the D5 / 180-400VR, he would ever so slowly back us into the raft and give them time to get used to us in order to get the shot. It was once again, an amazing experience with these clowns of the...

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on Aug 7, 2019 in Landscape Photography

Endless Sunset

I’m rarely disappointed by a sunset in Alaska. And, I’ve never missed one. That’s because the sun takes so bloody long to set, you could drive for an hour to the perfect spot and still capture it! So while watching the Sea Otters float by, the gulls and kittiwakes settle in for the night, I sat on the balcony and listened to the crashing waves as the earth slowly spun forcing the sun to once more go below the horizon. Even if for only five hours before popping back up again. I even did time-lapse of the setting and rising sun. Shooting with the Z7 / Z14-30, I gaffer taped my tabletop tripod to the railing to do it. Too lazy to go down to the truck and get my tripod. Too beautiful a scene to...

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on Aug 6, 2019 in Wildlife Photography

A Detail That Makes Me Smile

I have spent a lot of time on Alaska’s coastal waters. They are always new, different and gorgeous each and every trip! Went out to a favorite locale this morning, Gull Island to spend some time with all the nesting birds. The predominant species is the Black-legged Kittiwake. I’ve shot there a lot over the decades so spent most of my time with the Z7 / Z24-70f2.8 shooting. But then we rounded the point and I saw this so had to pull out the D5 / 180-400VR. Now the fact I have to point out this detail tells you that in general, it’s weak. If it were strong, you would see it without my pointing it out but such is not the case. But under the adult in the top left corner is a chick staring back out. And if you look right next to it, an egg. It’s a detail that makes me...

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on Jul 31, 2019 in Wildlife Photography

Hummer 2019 BTS – a Vid

Hummers (my affectionate term for hummingbirds) have been part of my life since I could walk. I would go to my aunt’s house and watch their nests in her yard for weeks on end. That fascination with them hasn’t stopped and greatly influences how I prefer to photograph them today. This short video goes BTS to discuss why I shoot the style I do and then how am I bring that style to my photos. I hope it not only answers your questions but gets you into the amazing world of hummers! Gear pictured in the video Nikon Z6 Nikkor 180-400VR Nikon SB-5000 Nikon WR-R10 Nikon SD-9 PU200 Bracket w/cold shoes Arca Swiss B2 head Robus RC-8860...

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on Jul 25, 2019 in Landscape Photography

Mutual Destruction

While the whole idea behind the Arms Race and Mutual Destruction is over my pay grade, I can get into the engineering and technology it produced. I finally, after decades of saying I need to, toured the Titan II Missle museum in Green Valley AZ. Walking around the exhibit prior to going down into the silo (yes, you walk down in it) is really a bit depressing. Especially when you see the 6300lbs nuclear warhead! Then you dawn your hardhat and head down the stairs into the underground world of the ’60s and Mutual Destruction. You’re allowed to take your camera with you, so I grabbed the Z7 / Z24-70f2.8 and glad I did (though the photos aren’t going on my kitchen wall). You’re down there for an hour learning a whole lot how some really smart people prepared and built for Mutual Destruction. One example I can verbalize is the command room is “hung” on giant springs so even if an atom bomb were dropped on them or...

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on Jul 24, 2019 in Wildlife Photography

The Goal is Slow Going

I’m down in SE Arizona once again in Hummer Heaven, and it’s marvelous! While I love birding, just sitting and watching the comings and goings of the hummers, getting their story told visually is really my goal. If you listened to this weeks podcast, you know I came down prepper and two main goals for my photography. The first, the lightening of my images was pretty simple, the second though, that photo still eludes me after four sessions. These flying jewels are just that, so bringing that to life is paramount. Meeting my first goal of brighter images was easy with the gear I’ve gone with for the week. The Z6 / 180-400VR / SB-5000 permits me to meld the ambient light and two flashes (used to take these photos) seamlessly so you don’t see the flash. The second part of my goal though, now that’s been much more of a challenge. So far, I have only one click and both the birds are a blur. Yeah, these photos...

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