Big Lens Tips, Tricks, & Magic « Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

Big Lens Tips, Tricks, & Magic

[Not a valid template]
Handheld Canon 800mm f/5.6L IS lens with the 1.4X II teleconverter and the EOS-1D Mark IV. ISO 400. Evaluative metering +1 stop set manually: 1/1000 sec. at f/8.

Jim Neiger had three Flight School Photography clients on his pontoon boat this morning and asked that I work without my tripod. I did not let that request keep me from making a few of my beloved head portraits.

With the set-up above I was working at approximately 29X maginfication. Even when handholding I felt confident that I could make at least a few sharp images at 1/1000 sec. It is only possible to hold the lens up for 10-20 seconds at a time so I rested it on a deck chair until Jiim had the boat in perfect position.

Many folks do not understand that with the 800 being an f/5.6 lens that once I add the 1.4X TC the central AF sensor is the only one available (and that only with a pro body….) With the wind up a bit the boat was rocking; I knew that keeping the sensor on the bird’s head would be a challenge so I quickly set CFn III-5 ( Lens drive when AF impossible) to “1: Focus search off.” This prevents the system from searching for the background when the sensor momentarily falls off the subject. In addition, I was hoping to make an image that featured the baby bird’s head in the lower right corner of the frame. The last thing that I wanted was to have the AF system search for the distant trees. So setting CFn III-5 to 1 had two probable benefits; my plan worked to perfection and I was able to capture the image that I had visualized 🙂

Both the Mark IV and the 7D Guides are chock full of such tips, tips that will help you to create better images on a consistent basis. You can learn more about these guides as well as the MIII Guide by scrolling down here:

4 comments to Big Lens Tips, Tricks, & Magic

  • avatar Bruce gove

    Artie…Does the Mark III have the same Cfn III-5 setting?


    Bruce Gove

    • avatar Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

      Which of my comments are you referring to?

      I am pretty sure that the MIV and MIII can do the same things with Focus Search Off possibly with different C Fn #s….

  • Artie … I can imagine your joy at executing ” Plan Perfection.” I frequently hear you say you are not good at ” flight ” … but I can honestly say I keep enjoying them more and so many ” Pop ” upon view. I really like the
    ” communication ” in the Image above … as well as the 19 May Large unfledged Osprey chick. What comes to me in both Images is as if they are saying … ” You mean you want me to JUMP ! ” Beautiful, beautiful Osprey’s … a favorite.

  • Artie, very good tip and one that I would never have thought off. I have just ordered your PDF file for the EOS1 Mark 4 for more such tips.