Blue-footed Retrospective … « Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

Blue-footed Retrospective ...

Stuff

I spent four hours on the phone yesterday getting our three ATT e-mail addresses to work … I have been averaging walking about 5 1/2 miles a day for the past few days.

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

NANPA President Don Carter sold his Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L IS USM lens in excellent condition for the BAA record-low-by-far price of $525 the first day it was listed. Yours truly sold his like-new Canon 70-200mm f/4L IS lens for $699 in late June.
Ray Maynard sold his Canon 300mm f/2.8 L IS lens (the original version) in near-mint condition for the BIRDS AS ART record-low price of $2349.000 and a Canon 2X III teleconverter in near-mint condition for $285.00 both in mid-July.
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.

New Listing

Canon EF 300mm f/2.8 L IS USM

Julie Brown is offering a Canon 300mm f/2.8 L IS (the original version) in excellent condition for $2099. The sale includes the lens trunk, the front leather cover, the rear lens cap, the lens strap, and insured shipping via major courier to US addresses only. Your lens will not ship until your check clears unless other arrangements are made.

Please contact Julie via e-mail or by phone at 1-317-294-3040 (before 10pm Eastern Time).

The older version of the Canon 300mm f/2.8L IS is a super-sharp lens that is great for hand held flight and action photography and great as well with both teleconverters for portraits and for flight. It has long been the favorite focal length of the world’s best hawk photographers. Julie’s excellent lens is priced to sell. artie

Great Buy!

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

IPT veteran 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. And I used the original version to create several of the images featured in today’s blog post. artie

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.

This image was created on the 2011 Galapagos Photo-Cruise of a Lifetime IPT with the hand held Canon 100-400mm L IS lens (the much-maligned original version) and the EOS-1D Mark IV. ISO 400. Evaluative metering +1/3 stop: 1/3200 sec. at f/5.6 in Av mode on a sunny morning.

Image #1: Blue-footed Booby dancing

Blue-Footed Booby

There are several great bird species to photograph in the Galapagos. Those include Waved Albatross — we visit them twice — Nazca Booby –they occur on several islands, Red-billed Tropicbird — photographable on three of our landings, and the elegant Swallow-tailed Gull. But my favorite species by far is Blue-footed Booby. A glance at today’s featured images will give you a good idea why.

Consider the EXIF …

As you read the image captions, note the great range of focal lengths used to create images of the same subject. Note the range of the exposure compensations (ECs). And note that some of the images were made in Av mode, most in Manual mode, and one in Tv mode. Along the way, for each, be sure to ask yourself “Why?” Note also the fomrats — horizontal or vertical, the image designs and the backgrounds. There is a lot to take in a a lot to learn.

This image was created on the 2005 (yes, 2005!) Galapagos Photo-Cruise of a Lifetime with the hand held Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS lens (the original IS version) at 145mm and the EOS-1D Mark II. ISO 800. Evaluative metering +1 stop: 1/100 sec. at f/8 in Av mode late on a very cloudy morning.

Image #2: Blue-footed Booby eggs in nest

My First!

This, the first image of Blue-footed Booby that I ever made, has long had a special place in my heart.

This image was created on the 2017 Galapagos Photo-Cruise of a Lifetime with the hand held Canon 400mm f/4L IS II DO lens and the EOS-5D Mark IV. ISO 2500. Evaluative metering +1 stop off the gray sky: 1/3200 sec. at f/4.5 in Manual mode.

Image #3: Blue-footed Booby diving

Diving Blue-footed Boobies

Blue-footed Boobies have the unfortunate habit of turing their heads slightly away from the line of their bodies as they dive. I was fortunate to get this one diving at an angle right toward me and fortunate to get a sharp image with the nice mangrove background.

This image was created on the 2011 Galapagos Photo-Cruise of a Lifetime. I used the hand held Canon 70-200mm f/2.8L IS lens with the 1.4X II TC (at 165mm) and the EOS-1D Mark IV. ISO 400. Evaluative metering -1/3 stop: 1/640 sec. at f/4. AWB on a cloudy-bright mid-morning.

Image #4: Blue-footed Booby perched on rock

Zodiac Cruising

We do several sessions from zodiacs with hand held gear. The skilled panga drivers consistently get us in great position to make good photographs. At times the folks on one side of the zodiac can kneel while the rest of the gang photographs over their heads. At times, the zodiac driver turns the boat around to give everyone good chances.

This image was created on the 2013 Galapagos Photo-Cruise of a Lifetime. I used the tripod/Mongoose mounted Canon 200-400mm f/4L IS with Internal TC (at 274mm) and the EOS 5D Mark III. ISO 400. Evaluative metering +2/3 stop: 1/125 sec. at f/6.3. AWB on a cloudy morning.

Image #5: Blue-footed Booby adult brooding two chicks

Isla Lobos

We make an early morning landing at Isla Lobos on each trip. There are always lots of frigatebirds and sea lions and Sally Lightfoot Crabs to photograph. Depending on the availability of fish and other local factors, some years are nesting Blue-footed Booby bonanzas. Others are not. The beauty of my itinerary is that we get to photograph nesting Blue-footed Boobies on many landings.

This image was created on the 2013 Galapagos Photo-Cruise of a Lifetime. I used the tripod/Mongoose mounted Canon 200-400mm f/4L IS with Internal TC (at 540mm) and the EOS 5D Mark III. ISO 400. Evaluative metering +2/3 stop: 1/320 sec. at f/8 as it got a lot brighter.

Image #6: Blue-footed Booby/two chicks in a different nest!

Going Long

Though you can make a zillion great images with only an 80-400, a 100-400 or, even a 70-200 with TCs, I like to have the capability to go to a longer focal length when needed. That is why I will be taking my Nikon 200-500 on this trip. It does well with the TC-E 14. When I used Canon I always brought something long with me: the 800mm f/5.6, the 500 F/4, or at the least, either the 300 f/2.8L IS II or the 400mm f/4IS DO. Always with both teleconverters. I am not even thinking of bring my Nikon 600 on this trip …

This image was created on the 2013 Galapagos Photo-Cruise of a Lifetime. I used the tripod/Mongoose mounted Canon 200-400mm f/4L IS with Internal TC and an external 1.4X TC (at 737mm) and the EOS-1D X. ISO 400. Evaluative metering +2/3 stop: 1/400 sec. at f/9 on a cloudy bright morning.

Image #7: Blue-footed Booby on rock with large chick begging

North Seymour

We visit North Seymour twice. There are always nesting Blue-footed Boobies along lots of nesting frigatebirds. And there is almost always lots of excellent flight photography.

This image was created on the 2008 Galapagos Photo-Cruise of a Lifetime. I used the hand held Canon 100-400mm L IS lens (the much maligned original version) with the 1.4XII TC (at 560mm) and the EOS-40D. ISO 400. Evaluative metering at zero: 1/125 sec. at f/8 on a cloudy morning.

Image #8: Blue-footed Booby feet

Foot Fetish

The birds are so, so tame that thinking “tight feet shots” is an excellent choice. The shade of the blue feet varies tremendously. The feet of the bird in Image #8 are surely at the top end of the range as far as hue and luminosity. They glowed!

This image was created on the 2010 Galapagos Photo-Cruise of a Lifetime. I used the hand held Canon 70-200mm f/2.8L IS lens (at 70mm) with the EOS-1D Mark IV. ISO 500. Evaluative metering +1/3 stop: 1/30 sec. at f/20 in Tv mode. AWB on a cloudy morning.

Image #9: Blue-footed Boobies diving during feeding spree/blur

Blue-footed Booby Feeding Sprees

Most years we encounter several Blue-footed Booby feeding sprees while Zodiac cruising in the mouths of lagoons. We get to photograph single birds diving with the longer focal lengths. Going wider allows you to include larger groups of diving birds. I have never made a wide photograph that captures the frenetic scene with hundreds of birds circling and diving. Video with a short zoom lens like the Canon 24-105 II or the Nikon 24-120 might be the way to go …

What was my big error with Image #9?

Study the EXIF and let us know what you think was the big error in my choice of settings with Image #9.

This image was created on the 2017 Galapagos Photo-Cruise of a Lifetime with the hand held Canon 100-400mm L IS II zoom lens, the 1.4X III TC, and the EOS-5D Mark IV. ISO 800. Evaluative metering +2/3 stop: 1/800 sec. at f/11 in Manual mode on a sunny morning.

Image #10: Blue-footed Booby chick/head portrait

Getting Down on the Ground

At age 72, I do not get down on the ground as often as I used to. Older folks will understand fully. But I made an exception for this image to come up with a pleasing background.

TC Question

Why did I have the TC mounted on the 100-400 II if I wound up at only 358mm?

Bokeh Question

Bokeh refers to the quality of an out-of-focus background. Which of today’s images has the worst Bokeh?

Image Clean-up Question

In which image did I do the most background clean-up? Why did you make your choice?

Your Favorite?

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

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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 :).

17 comments to Blue-footed Retrospective …

  • avatar Lensical

    Very nice photos, Arthur!
    On the photo of the chick, I can see that the tip of the beak is soft – would having a smaller aperture helped ? Was that the mistake you referred to?

  • avatar Kathy Woveris

    amazing pictures as are all of your pics
    thanks for sharing

  • avatar David Policansky

    Hi, Artie, and thanks. Yes, blue-footed boobies (“bloobies”) are stars in the Galapagos; thanks for sharing your fine images. By the way, images #3 and #9 still are identical, as are images #7 and #10, despite having different captions. I think my favorite is #5, because of the quizzical expression on the parent bird’s face and the composition. I’d love to see come of your images of red-footed boobies.

    I can’t resist asking about this from you: “That is why I will be brining my Nikon 200-500 on this trip.” Do you find that brining a lens improves its durability? πŸ™‚ (Obviously you meant “bringing.”)

    • avatar Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

      Thanks David, There should now be ten different photos πŸ™‚ Too much walking …

      As far as brining vs bringing, we were both wrong. “I will be taking …” A nice lady on the blog taught me that one. I had been confusing bring and take for decades. Take the lens on a trip but bring the lens (or the iced tea) to me please …

      with love, artie

      • avatar David Policansky

        Hi, Artie, and thanks. Now I wonder if image #9 is my favorite…In any case, I love it.

        Ah, yes, bring versus take. I know the rule but sometimes it’s not clear how to apply it. For example, “Thanks for the dinner invitation. May I bring my wife with me?” I can’t imagine anyone saying “May I take my wife with me?” My overriding rule with English is to be careful about applying rules.

        • avatar Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

          Agree. But taking a lens to a location is 100% correct and bringing it is 100% wrong πŸ™‚

          with love, a

  • avatar Nate Nguyen

    Hi Artie,

    Image #2, since the image was made in 2005 camera body should be 1D Mark II and not 1DX Mark II?

    Thanks,
    Nate

    • avatar Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

      Correct, thanks, and fixed. You folks are sharp today.

      with love, artie

  • avatar Chuck Carlson

    Artie, the two diving Blue-footed Booby photos, attributed to 2017 and 2010, appear to be the same image. And lens you used in 2017 I think is missing β€œDO”.

  • avatar Barrett Pierce

    Artie,
    Perhaps the error was +2/3 versus -2/3.

    Nope. The error was in a basic setting …

    You may have needed the TC to go tighter to eliminate distracting background if you could not get low enough.

    Yes. I had the TC on just in case I needed to go longer …

    The worst bokeh is in Image # 8 and you did the most clean-up in Image # 8 because the feet needed the clean-up for such a close shot.

    Disagree πŸ™‚

    My favorite is Image # 4 because it belongs in your top 100 collection. Congratulations. My second favorite is Image # 5 because the adult is engaged with you/the viewer.

    Thanks. Not sure that #4 is in the Top 100 though …

    Image # 9 at 1/30 Sec of the diving (or landing) booby proves that advancing age has not affected your ability to pan.

    Or, it proves that I had the wrong image there … My bad.

    This group of photos demonstrates the variety of photo opportunities on this trip and the variety of skills you employed.

    Many thanks, Barrett, for your kind words.

    with love, artie

  • Nice photos, Artie!
    I got a t-shirt from a friend who went to the Galapagos that has two blue things on it and says “I Love Boobies” !! Ha!