Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART
July 17th, 2018

Sally, Light on Her Feet: A Retrospective

Stuff

Lots of walking. Lots of putting. And on Monday afternoon, I actually played a few holes. Thanks to Amy. Speaking of Amy, she visited a friend in Sarasota recently and shared some really nice sunrise/sunset land-/sea-scape images in her most recent blog post here.

I started this post from scratch early on Tuesday morning. It took a shade under two hours to create. In my last blog post, everyone who commented on what bugged me about the Western Gull in flight image was correct: it was that the bill lined up with the bird’s right leg. Marvin T. Smith was the first to answer correctly. Had the bill been centered between the bird’s legs, the image would have been a lot stronger for me. I hate merges of any kind …

PHOTOEXPO 2018

If you missed the PHOTOEXPO 2018 announcement and live anywhere within driving or flying distance of Memphis, TN, click here for the info. I have rides to Beale Street for both nights. If you are attending, please stop by the BAA table for a handshake and a hug.

BIRDS AS ART

BIRDS AS ART is registered in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.


Selling Your Used Photo Gear Through BIRDS AS ART

Selling your used (or like-new) photo gear through the BAA Blog is a great idea. We charge only a 5% commission. One of the more popular used gear for sale sites charged a minimum of 20%. Plus assorted fees! Yikes. They went out of business. And e-Bay fees are now up to 13%. The minimum item price here is $500 (or less for a $25 fee). If you are interested please scroll down here or shoot us an e-mail with the words Items for Sale Info Request cut and pasted into the Subject line :). Stuff that is priced fairly — I offer pricing advice to those who agree to the terms — usually sells in no time flat. Over the past year, we have sold many dozens of items. Do know that prices on some items like the EOS-1D Mark IV, the old Canon 100-400, the old 500mm, the EOS-7D and 7D Mark II and the original 400mm DO lens have been dropping steadily. You can always see the current listings by clicking on the Used Photo Gear tab on the orange-yellow menu bar near the top of each blog post page.

Recent Sales

Bill Ketterer sold his Canon EF 500mm f/4L IS USM lens in excellent condition for the lowest ever BAA price of $3399.00 in early June.
Jim Keener sold his Canon EOS-1DX Mark II in near-mint condition for $3,999.00 the first day it was listed.
Ray Maynard sold his Canon 1.4X III teleconverter in near-mint condition for the low price of $299.00 in late June, 2018.
Randall Ennis sold his Canon EOS-1D Mark IV in excellent condition for $849.00 in late June.
Joel Williams sold his Sony Vario-Tessar T FE 16-35 f/4 ZA OSS lens in like-new condition for $629 (was $749) in late June, 2018.
Joel Williams also sold his Fujifilm XF 50-140mm f/2.8 R LM OIS WR lens in like-new condition for $749 (was $949) in April 2018.
Pierre Williot sold his Canon EOS 7D Mark II in like-new condition for a very fair $848.00 in late June, 2018.
Top BAA used gear seller Jim Keener sold his Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L IS III USM Lens in like-new condition for the BAA record low price of $1349.00 the first day it was listed in late June.
Jim Keener sold a Canon EOS 5D Mark III body in excellent condition for the BAA record-low price of $999.00 (was $1149.00) in mid-June.
Jim Keener sold a Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM lens in like-new condition for the BAA record low price of $1099.00 in Early June.
Steve Traudt sold an Xtrahand Vest, the Khumbu model, size XL, in very good condition for the BAA record-low price of $179.
Jim Brennan sold a used Canon EF 17-40mm f/4L USM lens in good condition for $249.00 in late May.
Larry Padgett sold his Canon EOS 5D Mark III body in excellent condition for $1160 soon after it was listed in late May.
Charlie Curry sold his Canon 16-35mm f/2.8L II USM lens in mint condition for a BAA record-low price of $750.00 on the first day of listing in late May, 2018.

New Listings

Be sure to check out the two new listings in the main text of today’s blog post.

Money Saving Reminder

If you need a hot photo item that is out of stock at B&H, would enjoy free overnight shipping, and would like a $50 discount on your first purchase, click here to order and enter the coupon code BIRDSASART at checkout. If you are looking to strike a deal on Canon or Nikon gear (including the big telephotos) or on a multiple item order, contact Steve Elkins via e-mail or on his cell at (479) 381-2592 (Eastern time) and be sure to mention your BIRDSASART coupon code and use it for your online order. Patrick Sparkman saved $350 on a recent purchase!

Via e-mail from Gary Meyer

Thanks for posting instructions on where to get the Nikon D850 quickly. Bedford shipped mine the same day. Wow, you sure got good connections!



Booking.Com

Several folks on the UK IPT used the Booking.Com link below for there Edinburgh hotels, got great rates, and saved a handsome $25.00 in the process. If you too would like to give Booking.Com a shot, click here and to earn a $25 reward on your first booking. Thanks to the many who have already tried and used this great service.

Gear Questions and Advice

Too many folks attending BAA IPTs and dozens of photographers whom I see in the field and on BPN, are–out of ignorance–using the wrong gear especially when it comes to tripods and more especially, tripod heads… Please know that I am always glad to answer your gear questions via e-mail. Those questions might deal with systems, camera bodies, accessories, and/or lens choices and decisions.

Sally-Lightfoot-Crab-on-lava-rock-_09U2482--South-Plaza-Island,-Galapagos

This image was created on the 2015 Galapagos Photo-Cruise of a Lifetime IPT with the tripod/Mongoose-mounted Canon 200-400mm f/L IS with Internal 1.4X teleconverter and and external 1.4X teleconverter as well (at 784mm) with the EOS-1D X. ISO 400. Evaluative metering minus 2/3 stop: 1/60 sec. at f/9 in Manual mode.

Image #1: Sally Lightfoot portrait

Sally Lightfoot Crabs

With their bright colors, especially those brilliant sky blues, Sally Lightfoot Crabs are among my very favorite subjects in the Galapagos. I need a minimum of ten folks to run what may very well be my last trip to the bucket list of all archipelagos; two folks are already on board. If you are interested in joining me on the world’s best Galapagos photographic cruise, please shoot me an e-mail. Details here soon.

To learn more about Sally Lightfoot Crabs, click here.

Consider the EXIF …

As you read the image captions, do note the great range of focal lengths used to create images of the same subject. Note that the exposure compensations range from +1 to -2/3. And note that some of the images were made in Av mode and some in Manual mode. Along the way, be sure to ask yourself “Why?”

Sally-Lightfoot-Crab-legs-of-carcass-_Y5O0445-Floreana,-Galapagos,-Ecuador

This image was created on the 2015 Galapagos Photo-Cruise of a Lifetime IPT with the hand held Canon EF 100-400mm L IS II lens (at 230mm) and the EOS-1D X. ISO 400. Evaluative metering plus one stop: 1/80 sec. at f/16 in Av mode.

Image #2: Sally Lightfoot Crab/part of a carcass with legs on sand

Image Questions

Why +1 EC? Why f/16?

Missing the Canon 100-400 II

The thing that I miss the most about leaving the Canon system behind is the remarkable close focus (.98 meters or 3.2 feet) of the Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM lens. I took advantage of this feature almost every day that I took the lens into the field, that being almost every day that I was in the field.

Canon EF Canon 100-400 L IS II USM Lens

I am offering a used Canon 100-400 L IS II in very good plus (almost excellent) condition and in perfect working order — I had to send it to Canon twice to restore smooth zooming — for $1399.00. The sale includes the original product box, the front and rear lens caps, the carrying case and strap, the manual, and insured ground shipping via UPS to US addresses. Your new lens will not ship until your check clears.

Please get in touch with artie via e-mail or on his cell phone at 863-221-2372 (Eastern time). Please leave a message if no answer.

Y’all know how much I loved and now miss this amazingly versatile lens. I expect it to sell very quickly. artie

Sally-Lightfoot-Crab-immature-stage-_Y8A0977-North-Seymour-Island,-Galapagos,-Ecuador

This image was also created on the 2015 Galapagos Photo-Cruise of a Lifetime IPT with the hand held Canon EF 100-400mm L IS II lens (at 312mm) and the EOS-7D Mark II. ISO 400. Evaluative metering minus 2/3 stop: 1/800 sec. at f/6.3 in Av mode.

Image #3: Sally Lightfoot Crab, juvenile

Nikon Extension Tubes …

If you know of any off-brand extension tubes that work with the Nikon system while retaining Autofocus (AF) and metering (AE), please leave a comment below. The crab in the image above was only about 1 1/2 inches across the shell (at most). The magnification of the Canon 100-400 II is an amazing 0.31X. With the Nikon 80-400 VR the magnification is 0.2X; the minimum focusing distance is 5.74 feet, nearly double that of the Canon 100-400 II. Adding a Nikon-compatible 25mm extension tube to my 80-400 would allow me to focus a lot closer.

Sally-Lightfoot-crab-Andy-Rouse-inspired-blur-1-30--_W3C6708--Peurto-Egas,-Santiago,--Galapagos

This image was also created on the 2010 Galapagos Photo-Cruise of a Lifetime IPT. I used the tripod/Mongoose-mounted Canon 800mm f/5.6 L IS II lens and the EOS-1D Mark IV. ISO 50. The exposure was set to yield just a very few blinkies on a breaking wave: 1/30 sec. at f/9 in Av mode.

Image #4: Sally Lightfoot Crab, wave blur

The Canon 800mm

Checking out the EXIF for this image put a smile on my face as it brought back memories of the EF 800mm f/5.6L IS. I used this great lens as my workhorse telephoto for about five years, most often with the 1.4X teleconverter. A great number of images in The Avian Photography of Arthur Morris/The Top 100 were created with the EF 800. This e-book is available either on CD or via download.

Image Question

Why ISO 50?

Sally-Lightfoot-Crab-on-seaweed-_Y9C7919--Punta-Espinoza,-Fernandina,-Galapagos

This image was created on the 2010 Galapagos Photo-Cruise of a Lifetime IPT with the hand held Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS lens and the 2X II teleconverter (at 280mm) with the EOS-1D Mark IV. ISO 400. Evaluative metering -1/3 stop: 1/500 sec. at f/9 in Manual mode.

Image #5: Sally Lightfoot crab on seaweed

Your Favorite?

Which of today’s featured images do you like best? Be sure to let us know why you made your choice.

Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8 L IS II USM Lens

Bill Wingfield is offering a Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8 L IS II USM lens in excellent to near-mint condition for $1049.00. The sale includes the zippered lens case, the front and rear lens caps, and insured ground shipping via major courier to US addresses only. Your item will not ship until your check clears unless other arrangements are made.
Please contact Bill via e-mail or by phone at 1-843-729-6670 (Eastern time zone).

I owned and used this incredibly versatile lens for birds and wildlife and landscapes and Urbex for many years with both the 1.4X and the 2X teleconverters. It was great indoors for events like granddaughter Maya’s dance recitals. artie

Help Support the Blog

Please help support my efforts here on the blog by remembering to click on the logo link above each time that you shop Amazon. That would be greatly appreciated. There is no problem using your Prime account; just click on the link and log into your Prime account. With love, artie

If In Doubt …

If in doubt about using the BAA B&H affiliate link correctly, you can always start your search by clicking here. Please note that the tracking is invisible. Web orders only. Please, however, remember to shoot me your receipt via e-mail.





Please Remember to use my Affiliate Links and to Visit the New BAA Online Store 🙂

To show your appreciation for my continuing efforts here, we ask, as always, that you get in the habit of using my B&H affiliate links on the right side of the blog for all of your photo and electronics purchases. Please check the availability of all photographic accessories in the New BIRDS AS ART Online Store, especially the Mongoose M3.6 tripod head, Wimberley lens plates, Delkin flash cards and accessories, and LensCoat stuff.

As always, we sell only what I have used, have tested, and can depend on. We will not sell you junk. We know what you need to make creating great images easy and fun. And please remember that I am always glad to answer your gear questions via e-mail.

I would of course appreciate your using our B&H affiliate links for all of your major gear, video, and electronic purchases. For the photographic stuff mentioned in the paragraph above, and for everything else in the new store, we, meaning BAA, would of course greatly appreciate your business. Here is a huge thank you to the many who have been using our links on a regular basis and those who will be visiting the New BIRDS AS ART Online Store as well.

Facebook

Be sure to like and follow BAA on Facebook by clicking on the logo link upper right. Tanks a stack.

Typos

In all blog posts and Bulletins, feel free to e-mail or to leave a comment regarding any typos or errors. Just be right :).

July 15th, 2018

Click White Balance. And Gull Feeding Questions -- ethical or not?

Stuff

It’s great to be home and eating well. My jet-lag is abating. Last night I slept from 8pm until 5:45am: 9 hours and 45 minutes. I have spent a good deal of the past few days napping and resting and reading; perhaps I can get some work done today. I will be starting on my 2017 taxes today and need to get to work on my two programs for the Memphis Photo Expo.

PHOTOEXPO 2018

If you missed the PHOTOEXPO 2018 announcement and live anywhere within driving or flying distance of Memphis, TN, click here for the info. I have rides to Beale Street for both nights. If you are attending, please stop by the BAA table for a handshake and a hug.

BIRDS AS ART

BIRDS AS ART is registered in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.


Selling Your Used Photo Gear Through BIRDS AS ART

Selling your used (or like-new) photo gear through the BAA Blog is a great idea. We charge only a 5% commission. One of the more popular used gear for sale sites charged a minimum of 20%. Plus assorted fees! Yikes. They went out of business. And e-Bay fees are now up to 13%. The minimum item price here is $500 (or less for a $25 fee). If you are interested please scroll down here or shoot us an e-mail with the words Items for Sale Info Request cut and pasted into the Subject line :). Stuff that is priced fairly — I offer pricing advice to those who agree to the terms — usually sells in no time flat. Over the past year, we have sold many dozens of items. Do know that prices on some items like the EOS-1D Mark IV, the old Canon 100-400, the old 500mm, the EOS-7D and 7D Mark II and the original 400mm DO lens have been dropping steadily. You can always see the current listings by clicking on the Used Photo Gear tab on the orange-yellow menu bar near the top of each blog post page.

Recent Sales

Bill Ketterer sold his Canon EF 500mm f/4L IS USM lens in excellent condition for the lowest ever BAA price of $3399.00 in early June.
Jim Keener sold his Canon EOS-1DX Mark II in near-mint condition for $3,999.00 the first day it was listed.
Ray Maynard sold his Canon 1.4X III teleconverter in near-mint condition for the low price of $299.00 in late June, 2018.
Randall Ennis sold his Canon EOS-1D Mark IV in excellent condition for $849.00 in late June.
Joel Williams sold his Sony Vario-Tessar T FE 16-35 f/4 ZA OSS lens in like-new condition for $629 (was $749) in late June, 2018.
Joel Williams also sold his Fujifilm XF 50-140mm f/2.8 R LM OIS WR lens in like-new condition for $749 (was $949) in April 2018.
Pierre Williot sold his Canon EOS 7D Mark II in like-new condition for a very fair $848.00 in late June, 2018.
Top BAA used gear seller Jim Keener sold his Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L IS III USM Lens in like-new condition for the BAA record low price of $1349.00 the first day it was listed in late June.
Jim Keener sold a Canon EOS 5D Mark III body in excellent condition for the BAA record-low price of $999.00 (was $1149.00) in mid-June.
Jim Keener sold a Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM lens in like-new condition for the BAA record low price of $1099.00 in Early June.
Steve Traudt sold an Xtrahand Vest, the Khumbu model, size XL, in very good condition for the BAA record-low price of $179.
Jim Brennan sold a used Canon EF 17-40mm f/4L USM lens in good condition for $249.00 in late May.
Larry Padgett sold his Canon EOS 5D Mark III body in excellent condition for $1160 soon after it was listed in late May.
Charlie Curry sold his Canon 16-35mm f/2.8L II USM lens in mint condition for a BAA record-low price of $750.00 on the first day of listing in late May, 2018.

Nikon D750 DSLR Camera

Top Used Gear seller Gary Meyer is offering a Nikon D750 DSLR Camera in like-new condition (less than 100 shutter actuations!) for the low price of $1,375.00. The sale includes the body cap and everything else that came in the box including one battery, the charger, the cables and manuals, and insured ground shipping via major courier to US addresses only. Your item will not ship until your check clears unless other arrangements are made.

Please contact Gary via e-mail or by phone or text at 1-612-221-0150 (Central time).

The D750 is the predecessor to my beloved D850 with a lot lower price tag: $1,696.95 as compared to $3,296.95. Both bodies are full frame just as I like them. Grab Gary’s practically new D750 today and save a cool #321.95. artie

Championing a multimedia approach to photography, Nikon’s D750 DSLR is an FX-format camera well-suited to both still imaging and video recording. Featuring a 24.3MP CMOS sensor, along with the EXPEED 4 image processor, this camera is capable of producing high-resolution imagery with smooth color gradations, low noise, and sensitivity to an expandable ISO 51200, at a continuous shooting rate of up to 6.5 fps. In regard to video recording, Full HD 1080p/60 is supported, along with the ability to record uncompressed video to an optional external recorder. Working from high and low angles is possible due to the tilting 3.2″ 1,229k-dot LCD monitor or, for remote shooting, the D750 also features built-in Wi-Fi connectivity. Designed for the contemporary image-maker, this DSLR is poised to benefit still photographers and videographers alike with the versatility and performance to match any working situation.

Benefitting the imaging capabilities of the D750, an equally apt 51-point AF system, with 15 cross-type points, is available and can be configured to utilize five AF points as a single focusing point in the Group Area AF setting for heightened initial subject recognition. The 3D Color Matrix Metering III system, along with the 91,000-pixel RGB sensor, also benefits the focusing abilities as well as provides accurate exposure metering to suit a vast array of subjects and lighting conditions. Furthermore, benefitting creative applications, the D750 supports in-camera creation of time-lapse movies with automated exposure smoothing, and a range of Picture Control profiles can be applied to refine the color and tonal handling of imagery. B&H

Money Saving Reminder

If you need a hot photo item that is out of stock at B&H, would enjoy free overnight shipping, and would like a $50 discount on your first purchase, click here to order and enter the coupon code BIRDSASART at checkout. If you are looking to strike a deal on Canon or Nikon gear (including the big telephotos) or on a multiple item order, contact Steve Elkins via e-mail or on his cell at (479) 381-2592 (Eastern time) and be sure to mention your BIRDSASART coupon code and use it for your online order. Patrick Sparkman saved $350 on a recent purchase!

Via e-mail from Gary Meyer

Thanks for posting instructions on where to get the Nikon D850 quickly. Bedford shipped mine the same day. Wow, you sure got good connections!



Booking.Com

Several folks on the UK IPT used the Booking.Com link below for there Edinburgh hotels, got great rates, and saved a handsome $25.00 in the process. If you too would like to give Booking.Com a shot, click here and to earn a $25 reward on your first booking. Thanks to the many who have already tried and used this great service.

Gear Questions and Advice

Too many folks attending BAA IPTs and dozens of photographers whom I see in the field and on BPN, are–out of ignorance–using the wrong gear especially when it comes to tripods and more especially, tripod heads… Please know that I am always glad to answer your gear questions via e-mail. Those questions might deal with systems, camera bodies, accessories, and/or lens choices and decisions.

Western-Gull-w-spray-from-wave-_W5A5188-La-Jolla,-CA

This image was created on the 2017 San Diego IPT with the hand held Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM lens (at 340mm) and the Canon EOS 5D Mark IV. ISO 400. Evaluative metering plus +1/3 stop as framed: 1/4000 sec. at f/6.3 as originally framed. AWB at 10:36am on a cloudy but very bright day.

Center (single) AF point/AI Servo/Shutter button AF was active at the moment of exposure. Though the center AF array was on the bird’s tail just to our left of the bird’s head the image was sharp enough to benefit from a Contrast Mask on the face. It is likely that the AF system was tracking properly until the last milli-second.

Image #1: Western Gull in flight with spray from a wave/version I (baited)

The Good and the Bad?

I love the spray from the breaking wave. The bird is looking down for a piece of balled up whole wheat bread that I had just tossed into the Pacific. There is one thing about this image that I do not like. It was a bit of bad luck. What do you think bugs me about this image?

Western-Gull-w-spray-BLUER-_W5A5188-La-Jolla,-CA

This image was created on the 2017 San Diego IPT with the hand held Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM lens (at 340mm) and the Canon EOS 5D Mark IV. ISO 400. Evaluative metering plus +1/3 stop as framed: 1/4000 sec. at f/6.3 as originally framed. AWB at 10:36am on a cloudy but very bright day.

Center (single) AF point/AI Servo/Shutter button AF was active at the moment of exposure. Though the center AF array was on the bird’s tail just to our left of the bird’s head the image was sharp enough to benefit from a Contrast Mask on the face. It is likely that the AF system was tracking properly until the last milli-second.

Image #2: Western Gull in flight with spray from a wave/version II (baited)

Click White Balance

I optimized this image on the plane home from Scotland. I am not sure why, but after I saved and closed the master file I re-opened the RAW file to convert it again in ACR. I clicked on the White Balance Tool (I), the first eyedropper icon and then clicked on the brightest WHITE on the gull’s forehead. The change in the color of the water was dramatic. As I had done with the first version, I cleaned up a large spray drop that merged with the tail and the base of the left wing with a Quick Mask refined by a Regular Layer Mask. I saved the second version with the same file name adding the word BLUER.

Grayer or Bluer?

Which version of today’s featured image do you prefer? Why?

Bread

Would you toss bits of whole wheat bread to a gull to practice flight photography? How about fish? Either way, why or why not?

SD-2019-card

San Diego offers a wealth of very attractive natural history subjects, including and especially the Pacific race of California Brown Pelican. With annual visits spanning more than four decades, I have lots of photographic experience there … Click on the composite to enjoy a larger version.

2019 San Diego 4 1/2-DAY BIRDS AS ART Instructional Photo-Tour (IPT) SUN JAN 20, 2019 thru and including the morning session on THURS JAN 24: 4 1/2 days: $2099.

(Limit: 10/Openings: 8)

Introductory Meet and Greet at 7:00pm on the evening before the IPT begins; SAT JAN 19, 2019.

Please see the Dancing Grebe Morning Add-On Info below

Join me in San Diego to photograph the spectacular breeding plumage Brown Pelicans with their fire-engine red and olive green bill pouches; Brandt’s (nesting with eggs and possibly chicks) and Double-crested Cormorants; breeding plumage Wood and Ring-necked Duck; other duck species possible including Lesser Scaup, Redhead, and Surf Scoter; a variety of gulls including Western, California, and the gorgeous Heermann’s, all in full breeding plumage; shorebirds including Marbled Godwit, Willet, Sanderling and Black-bellied Plover; many others are possible including Least, Western, and Spotted Sandpiper, Whimbrel, Black and Ruddy Turnstone, Semipalmated Plover, and Surfbird; Harbor Seals (depending on the current regulations) and California Sea Lions; and Bird of Paradise flowers. And as you can see by studying the IPT cards, there are some nice bird-scape and landscape opportunities as well. Not to mention a ton of excellent flight photography opportunities and instruction.

Please note: where permitted and on occasion, ducks and gulls will be attracted (or re-located) with offerings of grains and healthy breads.

Learning Exposure, Whether You Like It Or Not

Whether you like it or not, we will be beating the subject of exposure like a dead horse. In every new situation you will hear my thoughts on the exposure situation along with my thoughts on both Nikon and Canon histograms and the subject of blinkies. Whether you like it or not, you will learn to work in manual mode and to get the right exposure every time as long as a bird gives you ten seconds with the light constant.And you will learn what to do when the light is changing constantly. What you learn about exposure will be one of the great take-aways on every IPT.

San-Diego-card-B-2019

Though the pelicans will be the stars of the show on this IPT, there will be many other handsome and captivating subjects in wonderful settings. Click on the composite to enjoy a larger version.

It Ain’t Just Pelicans

With gorgeous subjects just sitting there waiting to have their pictures taken, photographing the pelicans on the cliffs is about as easy as nature photography gets. With the winds from the east almost every morning there is usually some excellent flight photography as well. And the pelicans are almost always doing something interesting: preening, scratching, bill pouch cleaning, or squabbling. And then there are those crazy head throws that are thought to be a form of intra-flock communication. You will be guided as to how to make the best of all of those opportunities. And depending on the weather and local conditions and tides, there are a variety of fabulous photo chances available in and around San Diego.


san-diego-card-neesie

Did I mention that there are wealth of great birds and natural history subjects in San Diego in winter? Click on the composite to enjoy a larger version.

The San Diego Details

This IPT will include five 3 1/2 hour morning photo sessions, four 2 1/2 hour afternoon photo sessions, four lunches, and after-lunch image review and Photoshop sessions. To ensure early starts, breakfasts will be your responsibility. An so that we can get some sleep, dinners will be on your own.

A $599 non-refundable deposit is required to hold your slot for this IPT. You can send a check (made out to “Arthur Morris) to us at BIRDS AS ART, PO Box 7245, Indian Lake Estates, FL, 3385, or call Jim or Jennifer at the office with a credit card at 863-692-0906. Your balance, payable only by check, will be due on 10/11//2018. If we do not receive your check for the balance on or before the due date we will try to fill your spot from the waiting list. Please print, complete, and sign the form that is linked to here and shoot it to us along with your deposit check. If you register by phone, please print, complete and sign the form as noted above and either mail it to us or e-mail the scan. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me via e-mail.


san-diego-card-b

Variety is surely the spice of life in San Diego. Click on the composite to enjoy a larger version.

Getting Up Early and Staying Out Late

On all BIRDS AS ART IPTS including and especially the San Diego IPT, we get into the field early to take advantage of unique and often spectacular lighting conditions and we stay out late to maximize the chances of killer light and glorious sunset silhouette situations. We often arrive at the cliffs a full hour before anyone else shows up to check out the land/sea scape opportunities.


clarkes-x-western-grebe-hybrid-courtship-rush-_r7a3968-lake-hodges-san-deigo-ca

This image was created in San Diego, CA with the Induro GIT 304L/Mongoose M3.6-mounted Canon EF 500mm f/4L IS II USM lens, the Canon Extender EF 1.4X III, and the simply amazing, astounding, mega mega-pixel Canon EOS 5DS R. ISO 500. Evaluative metering -2/3 stop: 1/2500 sec. at f/6.3 in Av mode. AWB.

61-Point (Automatic selection)/AI Servo/Shutter Button AF as originally framed was active at the moment of exposure (as is always best when photographing moving subjects). Though the optimized image above was a healthy crop from the original the result was a high quality 148+ MB 16-bit file. Click on the image to see a larger version. The AF system selected two AF points, one above the other, between the two birds;the eye of the bird on our right is razor sharp.

Clarke’s X Western Grebe courtship rush

The Dancing Grebe Add-On. FRI JAN 25, 2019: $399.

Those registering for the 2019 San Diego IPT might wish to join me for the Dancing Grebe Add-On Morning as above. Please read the details carefully. You will need to wade at least mid-thigh deep with your tripod over an uneven bottom. Lightweight chest waders are advised. Long lenses are needed; a 100-400 will not cut it at this spot, even with a TC. Chances at this location (easily accessible from the IPT hotel), vary from day to day so there will be no guarantees. But when those grebes dance, it can be an amazing rush. We may also enjoy chances to photograph both species, Western and Clarke’s Grebes, at fairly close range.

Help Support the Blog

Please help support my efforts here on the blog by remembering to click on the logo link above each time that you shop Amazon. That would be greatly appreciated. There is no problem using your Prime account; just click on the link and log into your Prime account. With love, artie

If In Doubt …

If in doubt about using the BAA B&H affiliate link correctly, you can always start your search by clicking here. Please note that the tracking is invisible. Web orders only. Please, however, remember to shoot me your receipt via e-mail.





Please Remember to use my Affiliate Links and to Visit the New BAA Online Store 🙂

To show your appreciation for my continuing efforts here, we ask, as always, that you get in the habit of using my B&H affiliate links on the right side of the blog for all of your photo and electronics purchases. Please check the availability of all photographic accessories in the New BIRDS AS ART Online Store, especially the Mongoose M3.6 tripod head, Wimberley lens plates, Delkin flash cards and accessories, and LensCoat stuff.

As always, we sell only what I have used, have tested, and can depend on. We will not sell you junk. We know what you need to make creating great images easy and fun. And please remember that I am always glad to answer your gear questions via e-mail.

I would of course appreciate your using our B&H affiliate links for all of your major gear, video, and electronic purchases. For the photographic stuff mentioned in the paragraph above, and for everything else in the new store, we, meaning BAA, would of course greatly appreciate your business. Here is a huge thank you to the many who have been using our links on a regular basis and those who will be visiting the New BIRDS AS ART Online Store as well.

Facebook

Be sure to like and follow BAA on Facebook by clicking on the logo link upper right. Tanks a stack.

Typos

In all blog posts and Bulletins, feel free to e-mail or to leave a comment regarding any typos or errors. Just be right :).

July 13th, 2018

Short Mid-range Zoom Lenses for Gannets in Flight and Diving? And a Great ACR Tip for Converting Under-exposed RAW Files

Stuff

Amy and I flew from Edinburgh to Orlando on Wednesday with a 4 1/2 hour layover in Toronto. Everything went smoothly. MCO was a zoo; Jim picked us up just before 7pm. We were home at 8:30pm (1:30am Scotland time the next day …) I slept in my own bed for the first time since June 27th.

Lots of jet lag on Thursday but it was good to be home. Aside from walking 6.3 miles in all (and getting on the StairMaster for a bit for the first time in forever), I did not get much accomplished. On the UK portion of our trip WiFi problems led to recent portions of my Inbox disappearing. I will be catching up on e-mails in the next few days. If you sent something important and you do not hear from me on Friday (the 13th!), please re-send.

PHOTOEXPO 2018

If you missed the PHOTOEXPO 2018 announcement and live anywhere within driving or flying distance of Memphis, TN, click here for the info. I have rides to Beale Street for both nights. If you are attending, please stop by the BAA table for a handshake and a hug.

BIRDS AS ART

BIRDS AS ART is registered in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.


Selling Your Used Photo Gear Through BIRDS AS ART

Selling your used (or like-new) photo gear through the BAA Blog is a great idea. We charge only a 5% commission. One of the more popular used gear for sale sites charged a minimum of 20%. Plus assorted fees! Yikes. They went out of business. And e-Bay fees are now up to 13%. The minimum item price here is $500 (or less for a $25 fee). If you are interested please scroll down here or shoot us an e-mail with the words Items for Sale Info Request cut and pasted into the Subject line :). Stuff that is priced fairly — I offer pricing advice to those who agree to the terms — usually sells in no time flat. Over the past year, we have sold many dozens of items. Do know that prices on some items like the EOS-1D Mark IV, the old Canon 100-400, the old 500mm, the EOS-7D and 7D Mark II and the original 400mm DO lens have been dropping steadily. You can always see the current listings by clicking on the Used Photo Gear tab on the orange-yellow menu bar near the top of each blog post page.

Recent Sales

Jim Keener sold his Canon EOS-1DX Mark II in near-mint condition for $3,999.00 the first day it was listed
Ray Maynard sold his Canon 1.4X III teleconverter in near-mint condition for the low price of $299.00 in late June, 2018.
Randall Ennis sold his Canon EOS-1D Mark IV in excellent condition for $849.00 in late June.
Joel Williams sold his Sony Vario-Tessar T FE 16-35 f/4 ZA OSS lens in like-new condition for $629 (was $749) in late June, 2018.
Joel Williams also sold his Fujifilm XF 50-140mm f/2.8 R LM OIS WR lens in like-new condition for $749 (was $949) in April 2018.
Pierre Williot sold his Canon EOS 7D Mark II in like-new condition for a very fair $848.00 in late June, 2018.
Top BAA used gear seller Jim Keener sold his Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L IS III USM Lens in like-new condition for the BAA record low price of $1349.00 the first day it was listed in late June.
Jim Keener sold a Canon EOS 5D Mark III body in excellent condition for the BAA record-low price of $999.00 (was $1149.00) in mid-June.
Jim Keener sold a Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM lens in like-new condition for the BAA record low price of $1099.00 in Early June.
Steve Traudt sold an Xtrahand Vest, the Khumbu model, size XL, in very good condition for the BAA record-low price of $179.
Jim Brennan sold a used Canon EF 17-40mm f/4L USM lens in good condition for $249.00 in late May.
Larry Padgett sold his Canon EOS 5D Mark III body in excellent condition for $1160 soon after it was listed in late May.
Charlie Curry sold his Canon 16-35mm f/2.8L II USM lens in mint condition for a BAA record-low price of $750.00 on the first day of listing in late May, 2018.

Money Saving Reminder

If you need a hot photo item that is out of stock at B&H, would enjoy free overnight shipping, and would like a $50 discount on your first purchase, click here to order and enter the coupon code BIRDSASART at checkout. If you are looking to strike a deal on Canon or Nikon gear (including the big telephotos) or on a multiple item order, contact Steve Elkins via e-mail or on his cell at (479) 381-2592 (Eastern time) and be sure to mention your BIRDSASART coupon code and use it for your online order. Patrick Sparkman saved $350 on a recent purchase!

Via e-mail from Gary Meyer

Thanks for posting instructions on where to get the Nikon D850 quickly. Bedford shipped mine the same day. Wow, you sure got good connections!



Booking.Com

Several folks on the UK IPT used the Booking.Com link below for there Edinburgh hotels, got great rates, and saved a handsome $25.00 in the process. If you too would like to give Booking.Com a shot, click here and to earn a $25 reward on your first booking. Thanks to the many who have already tried and used this great service.

Gear Questions and Advice

Too many folks attending BAA IPTs and dozens of photographers whom I see in the field and on BPN, are–out of ignorance–using the wrong gear especially when it comes to tripods and more especially, tripod heads… Please know that I am always glad to answer your gear questions via e-mail. Those questions might deal with systems, camera bodies, accessories, and/or lens choices and decisions.

Northern-Gannet-braking-to-land-105mm-_MAI2126Bass-Rock,-Scotland,-UK

This image was created on the Fisher Lassie with Captain Gordon near Bass Rock, Scotland on the morning of July 10,, 2018. I used the hand held Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 24-120mm f/4G ED VR lens (at 105mm) with the Nikon D850. ISO 800. Matrix metering plus 1/3 stop as framed: 1/6400 sec. at f/6.3. NATURAL AUTO WB at 9:03am on a mostly sunny day.

Center Group (grp)/Continuous (AI Servo in Canon)/Shutter button AF was active at the moment of exposure. The array was centered on the bird’s wings. Focus peaking AF Fine-tune: +4. See the Nikon AF Fine-tune e-Guide here.

Image #1: Northern Gannet braking in flight

Short Mid-range Zoom Lenses for Gannets in Flight and Diving?

I think that it was IPT veteran Billie Snell, a pediatrician from L.A. (lower Alabama as here husband Brian says), who first began using her Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS II not for wide angles showing lots of birds but to create images of single gannets diving. At first I thought that it was foolish — who ever heard of using a short mid-range zoom lens to photograph single birds in flight? But I and several others followed her lead and it turned out to be a great technique. The short zooms are lighter and smaller even than the 70-200 f/4s that I love for the gannet boat and are thus easier to handle, the birds are often so close that even 120mm is too long (as with the image above), and using a short mid-range zoom makes it far easier to track the birds that dive close to the boat. Thanks Bille for opening my eyes.

Oil Tanker

The smudge on the horizon on the right side of the frame was a distant oil tanker. I decided to leave it. What would you have done? Why?

DivGANNet-under-PhMech-scrn-cap

This image was created on the Fisher Lassie with Captain Gordon near Bass Rock, Scotland on the morning of July 10,, 2018. I used the hand held Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 24-120mm f/4G ED VR lens (at 120mm) with the Nikon D850. ISO 800. Matrix metering plus 1/3 stop as framed: 1/6400 sec. at f/6.3 in Av mode. NATURAL AUTO WB at 9:03am on a mostly sunny day.

Center Group (grp)/Continuous (AI Servo in Canon)/Shutter button AF was active at the moment of exposure. The array was centered on the bird’s wings. Focus peaking AF Fine-tune: +4. See the Nikon AF Fine-tune e-Guide here.

Image #2: the Photo Mechanic screen capture for Image #3/the original

A Small-in-the-frame Underexposure

With the wind against sun conditions and the sun going in and out almost constantly, getting the right exposure exposure was a nightmare. Once I switched to the 24-120mm I decided to shoot everything in Av mode at plus one or two thirds and live with some underexposures and some over-exposures. As you can see above, the original image on this diving shot was well under-exposed (as was the RAW file for Image #1). But …

Norhtern-Gannet-entering-water-on-dive----baited-_MAI2121Bass-Rock,-Scotland,-UK

This image was created on the Fisher Lassie with Captain Gordon near Bass Rock, Scotland on the morning of July 10,, 2018. I used the hand held Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 24-120mm f/4G ED VR lens (at 120mm) with the Nikon D850. ISO 800. Matrix metering plus 1/3 stop as framed: 1/6400 sec. at f/6.3 in Av mode. NATURAL AUTO WB at 9:03am on a mostly sunny day.

Center Group (grp)/Continuous (AI Servo in Canon)/Shutter button AF was active at the moment of exposure. The array was centered on the bird’s wings. Focus peaking AF Fine-tune: +4. See the Nikon AF Fine-tune e-Guide here.

Northern Gannet hitting the water/optimized

D850 Image Quality

The superb quality and dynamic range of D850 image files made opening up this image and executing a relatively large (for me) crop a breeze. I ran Neat Image noise reduction on Image #1 to eliminate the small pixel noise but did not need to do so with Image #3.

A Great ACR Tip for Converting Under-exposed RAW Files

With properly exposed RAW files I advise starting with the White slider when converting images in Adobe Camera RAW. ACR in Photoshop is nearly identical to the RAW converter in Lightroom. But with underexposed RAW files, a much better approach is to begin by moving the Exposure slider to the right to taste. Try it; you will find your results far superior by opening up the image first and then setting the White and Black points as detailed in BIRDS AS ART Current Workflow e-Guide (Digital Basics II).

DBII-cover

The BIRDS AS ART Current Workflow e-Guide (Digital Basics II).

You can order your copy from the BAA Online Store here, by sending a Paypal for $40 here, or by calling Jim or Jennifer weekdays at 863-692-0906 with your credit card in hand.

The BIRDS AS ART Current Workflow e-Guide (Digital Basics II)

The tip above and dozens more are covered in detail in the BIRDS AS ART Current Workflow e-Guide (Digital Basics II), an instructional PDF that is sent via e-mail. This e-Guide details my complete digital workflow and is written in my easy-to-follow, easy-to-understand style. Consider it a cookbook for your images.

Your Favorite?

Which of today’s featured images is your favorite? Why?

Help Support the Blog

Please help support my efforts here on the blog by remembering to click on the logo link above each time that you shop Amazon. That would be greatly appreciated. There is no problem using your Prime account; just click on the link and log into your Prime account. With love, artie

If In Doubt …

If in doubt about using the BAA B&H affiliate link correctly, you can always start your search by clicking here. Please note that the tracking is invisible. Web orders only. Please, however, remember to shoot me your receipt via e-mail.





Please Remember to use my Affiliate Links and to Visit the New BAA Online Store 🙂

To show your appreciation for my continuing efforts here, we ask, as always, that you get in the habit of using my B&H affiliate links on the right side of the blog for all of your photo and electronics purchases. Please check the availability of all photographic accessories in the New BIRDS AS ART Online Store, especially the Mongoose M3.6 tripod head, Wimberley lens plates, Delkin flash cards and accessories, and LensCoat stuff.

As always, we sell only what I have used, have tested, and can depend on. We will not sell you junk. We know what you need to make creating great images easy and fun. And please remember that I am always glad to answer your gear questions via e-mail.

I would of course appreciate your using our B&H affiliate links for all of your major gear, video, and electronic purchases. For the photographic stuff mentioned in the paragraph above, and for everything else in the new store, we, meaning BAA, would of course greatly appreciate your business. Here is a huge thank you to the many who have been using our links on a regular basis and those who will be visiting the New BIRDS AS ART Online Store as well.

Facebook

Be sure to like and follow BAA on Facebook by clicking on the logo link upper right. Tanks a stack.

Typos

In all blog posts and Bulletins, feel free to e-mail or to leave a comment regarding any typos or errors. Just be right :).