Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART
July 11th, 2018

From Dejection to Euphoria in Rough Seas. A Huge, Important and Almost Always Misunderstood Depth of Field Concept. And Depth of Field and Flight Photography. Or Not.

Stuff

From Dejection to Euphoria in Rough Seas …

After being weathered out of two gannet boat trips at Bempton Cliffs, the group was really looking forward to our two trips out of Dunbar, Scotland. Captain Gordon asked us to be at the dock at 7am. We were. He arrived with bad news: the weather forecast was wrong; the trip was cancelled because of the strong east winds. We hung around for a bit photographing the old castle with the kittiwake nests. Gordon hung around as well. When a prawn boat came in to unload its catch, Gordon spoke to the crew and came back smiling; the tide had turned (literally) and he felt that it would be safe to head out to bass rocks for some great flight photography action with the gannets.

It was very choppy and thus photography was difficult. So was standing. But everyone was thrilled to get out and everyone made more than a few very good images despite the tough conditions. Our Tuesday trip went as well. The day began cloudy — great, and then the sun broke through. With the west wind photography was challenging to say the least. But after the first two boxes of fish were thrown the clouds returned and we finished off the 2018 UK Puffins and Gannets IPT with a flourish.

I created 1323 images on the Monday gannet boat trip and kept 110 on the first edit. Today’s featured image is one of my favorites. IPT veteran Paul Reinstein, who said after we got off of the Fisher Lassie on Monday, “That was something special,’ made more than 5,500 images during the two hours of shooting. I thought that that was a lot but I learned that others created more. The winner, first time participant Bun Chan, created more than 6,000 images on Monday and more than 10,000 on Tuesday … I created about 2100 images total on the two trips.

I was glad to learn that Jim Keener sold his 1DX Mark II in near-mint condition for $3,999.00 the first day it was listed.

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 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.

Northern-Gannet-3-year-old-starting-dive-_DSC4864Bass-Rock,-Scotland,-UK

This image was created on a boat with Captain Gordon near Bass Rock, Scotland on the morning of July 9, 2018. I used the hand held Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR lens (at 170mm) and the Nikon D5 (with Dual XQD slots). ISO 800. Matrix metering plus 3 2/3 stops off the grey sky: 1/2500 sec. at f/4.5 was a bit of an underexposure. NATURAL AUTO WB at 9:19am on a cloudy dark day.

Center Group (grp)/Continuous (AI Servo in Canon)/Shutter button AF was active at the moment of exposure. The lower AF point of the array just caught the top of the bird’s head as originally framed. Click on the image to see the spectacular larger version.

Focus peaking AF Fine-tune: +4. See the Nikon AF Fine-tune e-Guide here.

Northern Gannet, top shot, three year old starting dive

Lens Choice

I purchased the Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR lens solely to use on the four gannet boat trips. Longer intermediate telephoto lenses like the Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II and the Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6G VR cover the 150-200mm range very nicely, but they are simply too heavy to use for two hours of non-stop gannet flight photography. George Golumbeski took my advice and purchased my like-new Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L just for the gannet boat. Many folks on the trip actually went to their mid-range intermediate zooms like the Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS II USM and the Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 24-120mm f/4 VR. I though that the latter two were silly choices until I gave my NIKKOR 24-120mm a try on Tuesday in difficult conditions. I will share that educational story with you here in the future. One participant had to miss the second gannet boat trip because of very sore pectoral muscles that prevented her from lifting her arms …

Camera Body Choice

On Monday, day one on the Gannet boat, I went exclusively with the D5 for flight. On Tuesday, day two on the Gannet boat, I went with my souped up D850 for flight. Which performed better? As the conditions were so different I was unable to draw any firm conclusions. I can say that the D5 has a slightly faster frame rate, seems to acquire focus just a bit faster than the D850, and — when I do everything right — that the images are consistently razor sharp on the eye as the images appear on my 15inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display. Lastly, the image image files from the D850 are clearly superior to the image files produced by the D5.

A Huge, Important and Almost Always Misunderstood Depth of Field Concept

This from a comment on The Best Available Subjects … blog post here.

Nikon 600mm lens at f/6.3 gets just the head in focus. The Nikon 80-400mm at f/9 looks like the whole bird is in focus. I love Nikons but I have learned that a long lens at a lower f/stop has a narrower depth of field than a shorter zoom lens at a slightly higher f/stop.

I responded:

You are missing one major point as far as depth of field goes. The greater the distance to the subject, the greater the d-o-f. If you photograph a bird with a 600mm lens and then again with the 80-400 with a 1.4X teleconverter and the bird is the same size in the frame the depth of field will be identical. Only the angle of view will be different .

The whole bird in Image #4 is in sharp focus because I was (effectively) a lot farther from the subject than I was in Image #3.

You did not, therefore, learn what you think that you learned …

with love, artie

Depth of Field and Flight Photography. Or Not …

For a gannet in flight at 35 feet the depth of field at f/4.5 with a focal length of 170mm on a full frame body is almost 3 1/2 feet, more than enough to cover the subject. Many folks like to stop down to f/8 for flight photography. This ofter requires using an ISO of 1600 or greater. I shoot flight with my f/4 lenses at f/4.5. With my effective f/5.6 lenses I also stop down just 1/3 stop to f/6.3, and the same is true when I am working with a maximum aperture of f/8. For an example of the latter, consider the 80-400 VR with the TC-E14; there I work at f/9. Stopping down 1/3 stop eliminates problems with vignetting and adds just a bit of additional sharpness without necessitating the use of the higher ISOs.

When photographing birds in flight with the whole bird in the frame there is no need at all to stop down to f/8.

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 9th, 2018

The Best Available Subjects ...

Stuff

At 3am on Sunday, the sky was clear. At 4am on Sunday, the sky was clear. At 5am on Sunday, the sky was clear. At 6am on Sunday, the sky was clear. At 7am on Sunday the sky was clear. Here we go again I thought. Then some heavy cloud cover moved in over Seahouses and the Farnes from the north. Hooray! Sunday morning on Staple was the best morning of the trip by far with flying puffins and flying guillemots (murres to us in the US).

We head to Dunbar early on Monday morning to do the first of our two gannet boat trips. Everyone is excited. Including and especially me.

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 a ride to Beale Street for one night, but am still looking for a ride on the other night.

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

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 Listing

Canon EOS-1DX Mark II

Top BAA used gear seller Jim Keener is offering a Canon Canon EOS-1DX Mark II in near-mint condition for the great price of $3999.00. The sale includes everything in the original box including the front lens cover and the cables and the manual and the rest. But not the box. Also included is insured ground shipping via to continental US addresses only. The package will not ship until your check clears.

Please contact Jim via e-mail or by phone at 310-741-7435 (9am-9pm Mountain time).

The 1DX Mark II is Canon’s rugged, blazingly fast professional digital camera body. It features a great AF system and high quality image files with great dynamic range. I owned and used two of these for several years. As a new 1DX II currently sells for $5,699.00 you can save $1700 on a practically new body. artie

Price Drop

Canon EOS 5DS R mega mega-pixel dSLR

Price Reduced $200 on July 8, 2018.e-mail or by text message to 1-716-481-7158 (Eastern Time Zone).

Without an anti-aliasing filter, the 5DS R will–for those with good sharpness techniques–produce large high-quality image files that feature hard to believe detail. You have seen the amazing 100% crops showing fine-feather detail in many older blog posts. And it is not bad for flight photography either! artie

Re-run/Great Buy!

Canon EF 600mm f/4L IS USM Lens

Pierre Williot is offering a Canon EF 600mm f/4L IS USM lens (the original 600 IS) in very good to excellent condition in perfect working order with just a few blemishes for the BAA record-low-by-$800 price of $4199.00. The sale includes a LensCoat, the lens trunk, a low foot, the Canon 52mm Drop-In Circular Polarizer Filter (PL-C 52), the leather front lens cover, the rear cap, and insured ground shipping via major courier to US addresses.

Please get in touch with Pierre via e-mail.

The 600 f/4 lenses are ideal for those who do birds and wildlife. This lens is the original (heavier) version of the Canon 600 IS. The lighter 600mm f/4L IS sells new at B&H for $11,499.00. Pierre’s lens is a great buy for a young, eager, relatively strong nature photographer who would like to save $7,300.00. The original 600 IS served as my workhorse super-telephoto lens for more than a decade. artie

Nikon D850s Sold Out! Next shipment in about 10 days. A Nikkor AF-S 180-400mm f/4E TC1.4 FL ED VR Lens! Available Right Now!

E-mail Steve about a special deal on the big Nikon zoom lens that is especially great for a trip to Africa, the Southern Ocean, or the Galapagos.

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!



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.

Herring-Gull-chick-and-Nikon-long-lens-_DSC3024islands-off-Seahouses,-UK

This image was created on July 6, 2018 on Staple Island, one of the Farnes Islands. I used the hand held Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR lens (at 155mm) and the Nikon D5 (with Dual XQD slots). ISO 500. Matrix metering at zero: 1/3200 sec. at f/8. NATURAL AUTO WB at 11:54am on a sunny day.

One array diagonally up from the center array/Group (grp)/Continuous (AI Servo in Canon)/Shutter button AF was active at the moment of exposure. The array right on the chick as originally framed. Click on the image to see a larger version.

Focus peaking AF Fine-tune: +4. See the Nikon AF Fine-tune e-Guide here.

Image #1: Herring Gull, large chick with Induro/Mongoose-mounted Nikon 600mm f/4 VR lens

The Situation

Clear blue skies. North wind. The chances of making a good image of a flying puffin were about zero. The same was true for making a good image of a flying guillemot (murres to us) or a flying Razorbill. The seabirds and gulls perched on the rocks were facing directly away from us when you had the sun behind you. For a change. There were three pretty large Herring Gull chicks on the rocks. They did not care which way the wind was blowing. I spent three hours with them as they were the best available subject … And I made sure that everyone in the group got on them as well.

And oh, by the way, they were pretty tame. 🙂

Working the Subject

As we have seen here several times recently, it pays to work a subject using different lenses and focal lengths, choosing different perspectives, getting closer or moving back, and simply looking for either a neat behavior or some variety.

Herring-Gull-large-chick-begging-_MAI1061islands-off-Seahouses,-UK

This image was also created on July 6, 2018 on Staple Island, one of the Farnes Islands. I used the Induro GIT 304L/Mongoose M3.6-mounted Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 600mm f/4E FL ED VR lens with the Nikon AF-S Teleconverter TC-14E III and the Nikon D850. ISO 400. Matrix metering + 1/3 stop: 1/2000 sec. at f/6.3. NATURAL AUTO WB at 11:13am on a sunny day. 🙂

Three up from the center AF point/d-9/Continuous (AI Servo in Canon)/Shutter button AF was active at the moment of exposure. The selected AF point was on the base of the bird’s upper mandible right on the same beyond the plane of the bird’s eye.

Focus peaking AF Fine-tune: +5. See the Nikon AF Fine-tune e-Guide here.

Image #2:Herring Gull, large, downy chick begging

Beggar!

After creating many dozen vertical head and neck images an adult Herring Gull flew by and my little friend began to beg nonstop. I made lots of images and share my favorite with you immediately above.

One of my tenets: if you point your lens at a gull it usually does not take long for it to do something special.

Herring-Gull-chick-head-portrait-_MAI1091islands-off-Seahouses,-UK

This image was also created on July 6, 2018 at the Staple Island, one of the Farnes Islands. Again, I used the Induro GIT 304L/Mongoose M3.6-mounted Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 600mm f/4E FL ED VR lens with the Nikon AF-S Teleconverter TC-14E III and the Nikon D850. ISO 400. Matrix metering + 1/3 stop: 1/2000 sec. at f/6.3. NATURAL AUTO WB at 11:13am on a sunny day. 🙂

Three up from the center AF point/d-9/Continuous (AI Servo in Canon)/Shutter button AF was active at the moment of exposure. The selected AF point was on the base of the bird’s upper mandible right on the same beyond the plane of the bird’s eye.

Focus peaking AF Fine-tune: +5. See the Nikon AF Fine-tune e-Guide here.

Image #3: Herring Gull, large, downy chick — head portrait

Head Hunter

I love creating tight horizontal head portraits when I can do so without disturbing the subject. With the young gulls, it was easy to get close if you moved slowly and stayed low.

Herring-Gull-large-chick-A-_MAI1007islands-off-Seahouses,-UK

This image was also created on July 6, 2018 on Staple Island, one of the Farnes Islands. For this one I used the hand held Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR lens, the Nikon AF-S Teleconverter TC-14E III (at 410mm), and the Nikon D5 (with Dual XQD slots). ISO 400. Matrix metering +1/3 stop as framed: 1/1000 sec. at f/9. NATURAL AUTO WB at 11:29am on a sunny day.

One up and two to the right of the center AF point/Single Point/Continuous (AI Servo in Canon)/Shutter button AF was active at the moment of exposure. The selected AF point was placed on the bird’s right eye. Click on the image to see a larger version.

Focus peaking AF Fine-tune: +5. See the Nikon AF Fine-tune e-Guide here.

Image #4: An older large Herring Gull chick

One of the Two Older Birds

Images 2 & 3 are of the same bird, a large chick with lots of downy feathers. Image #4 is one of two obvious siblings that were more advanced than the fuzzy chick. Note that the scapulars, coverts, and tertials are all grown in, each with a dark center and buff edgings. It is possible that the fuzzy bird is the runt of a 3-chick litter. Or, it might be a bird from a different nest. I asked the rangers but none of them had been paying attention to the gull chicks. The more developed birds were fast friends, rarely getting too far from each other. I was thrilled to get a classic field guide portrait of one of the twins.

Your Favorite?

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

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 7th, 2018

Finally: Southeast Wind in the Morning ... Flying Puffins Ain't Easy!

Stuff

The unprecedented period of sunny with blue skies weather in the UK has been merciless and has been most often paired with winds from the north. In other words, tough conditions all day … The weather in July on the northeast coast of England is almost always cloudy bright with lots of gray days, some drizzle, and occasional partly cloudy days with mixed sun. The group has been great and everyone has loved being with the puffins. See more on the weather below.

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 a ride to Beale Street for one night, but am still looking for a ride on the other night.

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

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.

Four Nikon D850s and a Nikkor AF-S 180-400mm f/4E TC1.4 FL ED VR Lens! Available Right Now!

Contact Steve below to get your D850 tomorrow. Or e-mail Steve about a special deal on the big Nikon zoom lens that is especially great for a trip to Africa or the Galapagos.

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!



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.

Atlantic-Puffin-flat-incoming-_MAI9790islands-off-Seahouses,-UK

This image was created on July 4, 2018 at Staple Island. I used the Induro GIT 304L/Mongoose M3.6-mounted Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 600mm f/4E FL ED VR lens with the Nikon AF-S Teleconverter TC-14E III and the Nikon D850. ISO 400. Matrix metering at zero off the blue sky: 1/5000 sec. at f/5.6 was a bit of an underexposure. NATURAL AUTO WB at 10:59am on a cloudy day.

Center Group (grp) Continuous (AI Servo in Canon)/Shutter button AF was active at the moment of exposure. Despite the fact that the array was centered on the bird’s right flank this image is super-sharp on the eye.

Focus peaking AF Fine-tune: +5. See the Nikon AF Fine-tune e-Guide here.

Image #1: Atlantic Puffin/incoming flat flight

Southeast Wind in the Morning …

We got lucky in the morning on Thursday, July 4 with a nice southeast wind. This found the birds flying and landing towards us. The folks who stayed by the blue rope did great with flying puffins. The folks who set up on the steps did great with flying puffins. And the folks who photographed from below the bluff did great with flying puffins. (I was in the middle group.)

On most mornings — all sunny — the winds have been from the north or northwest. With the sun at your back the birds are flying and landing either partially or completely away from us in the light. While backlit Arctic Terns can be beautiful with the light coming through their wings — photos and lessons soon — this strategy does not work with puffins and murres …

Atlantic-Puffin-incoming-_MAI9932islands-off-Seahouses,-UK

This image was created on July 4, 2918 at Staple Island. I used the Induro GIT 304L/Mongoose M3.6-mounted Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 600mm f/4E FL ED VR lens with the Nikon AF-S Teleconverter TC-14E III and the Nikon D850. ISO 800. Matrix metering +1/3 stop off the blue sky: 1/4000 sec. at f/5.6. NATURAL AUTO WB at 10:59am on a cloudy 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 lower right flank: this image was more than sharp enough for web presentation but not as sharp as Image #1.

Focus peaking AF Fine-tune: +5. See the Nikon AF Fine-tune e-Guide here.

Image #2: Atlantic Puffin/braking in flight

Not So Easy …

Puffins in flight are incredibly challenging subjects even when they are landing into a stiff breeze. They veer from side to side, drop like rocks at times, and often abort just when they begin to lower their feet and brake for a landing. Using a long lens slows them down a bit (relatively). Using a short lens makes it easier to follow them in flight but when they get closer — within decent photographic range — the relative speed of their movements makes things very difficult. Even on our best day with perfect conditions I had zillions of clipped wings. I had a ton of trouble acquiring AF and then a ton of trouble keeping the array on the bird’s face, head, or upper breast. And at times, I had images with gorgeous flight poses that were razor sharp — on the bird’s feet. With the two images presented here today everything came together.

Do know that when I acquire focus on an incoming puffin with more than a dozen sand eels in its beak, I choke. I get so excited that my muscles tense up and so nervous that my elbows turn to jelly … Incoming puffins are not sitting ducks, especially those with food for the chicks!

Bright Sun Image Processing Difficulties

Processing images of black and white birds made in full sun is problematic, even when you are working right down sun angle, and especially with birds in flight as there are almost always dark shadows that are usually image killers. Perfect image optimizations, NIK detail extractor, reverse S-curves, Linear Burns, and Tim Grey Dodge and Burn all help.

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)

Everything mentioned above and tons more is covered in detail in the BIRDS AS ART Current Workflow e-Guide (Digital Basics II), an instructional PDF that is sent via e-mail.

Your Favorite?

Which of today’s two 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.

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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 :).