Teleconverter in the Waders Pouch & 7D II/600 II Low Light Spoonbill Reflection Image: Art? Or Not? « Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

Teleconverter in the Waders Pouch & 7D II/600 II Low Light Spoonbill Reflection Image: Art? Or Not?

What’s Up?

I spent most of yesterday hard at work on the 7D Mark II Users Guide that so many are clamoring for. I got a ton done and will continue my efforts today. I did have time for a nice swim and an ice bath.

This blog post, which took about 2 hours to prepare, was published at 7:29am from my home in Indian Lake Estates on yet another foggy morning.

Hooptie Spoonbill Mini-IPT

Not much time left!

The Hooptie Roseate Spoonbill Mini-IPT announced on Wednesday past has two full slots left. Please call us at 863-692-0906 or e-mail with questions or to check on availability. Scroll down here for details and prices and for the skinny on our morning and Saturday-only rates.

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Canon’s Two New 50+ Megapixel Camera Bodies

Many of you have read about the two new Canon 50+ megapixel bodies, the Canon EOS 5DS DSLR and the Canon EOS 5DS R DSLR. The two cameras look, sound, and pretty much are quite similar. I have withheld commenting until now because I did not have a good–heck, I did not have any–understanding of the single difference between the two bodies, that being the Low-Pass Filter Effect Cancellation.

If you missed the hugely popular “Canon’s Two New 50+ Megapixel Camera Bodies/You Must Read This Before You Buy,” you can click here to catch up and learn a ton to boot.


This image was created in cloudy conditions on February 23, 2105 on the Hoopite Deux SPoonbills and More IPT with the tripod-mounted Canon EF 600mm f/4L IS II USM lens and the Canon EOS 7D Mark II. ISO 800. Evaluative metering +2 2/3 stops off the light grey sky worked out to -2 1/3 stops as framed: 1/1250 sec. at f/4. A quick histogram check showed a perfect exposure.

Four AF points above the center AF point/AI Servo Expand/Rear Focus AF as framed was active at the moment of exposure. Click here to see the latest version of the Rear Focus Tutorial. Some who click on the image may enjoy a larger version.

Teleconverter in the Waders Pouch

I had been working with the 600II/1.4X II/7D II rig doing large-in-the-frame verticals of Roseate Spoonbills. But when I saw the long line of pink reflections in the mangrove dark green water I knew that I needed to work wider. So I turned off the camera (to reduce the chance of attracting sensor dust), removed the TC, carefully placed it in the pouch of my neoprene waders, re-mounted the camera, and even remembered to turn the camera back on, something I rarely do…. I metered off the sky as above and was good to go. I had made only a very few frames when the relatively distant bird took flight bound for who-knows-where.

I moved around quite a bit in an effort to find different perspectives on other birds. Note: good photographers are almost constantly moving around in the field. At one point I noticed that I was in water almost to the top of my waders. Ooops. The pouch that the 1.4X III TC was in, along with a 25mm extension tube, was anything but waterproof. I looked down to see the two important items floating in the saltwater that had of course filled the pouch. I went back to the boat, rinsed them both in the fresh water in the cooler, and set them on a towel in the sun to dry. When I got back to the hotel, I placed both items in the far end of a pillowcase placed on a counter, put the hotel hair dryer in the open end of the pillowcase, put it on the low setting, and left it on for 30 minutes.

The end result: the extension tube is fine, the 1.4X III TC is toasted. As TCs are such an important part of what I do, I always travel with three 1.4X III TCs and two 2X III TCs. Thus, I was able to reach into my Think Tank Rolling Bag (click on the link in the right hand column of each blog post for details on those) and grab another 1.4X III. I will be replacing the toasted one today.

Is the Image Above Art? Or Not?

All are invited to share their thoughts either way.


Images courtesy of and copyright Captain James Shadle (aka Froggie). All of the images here were created at Alafia Banks. Card creation and design by Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART.

The Hooptie Deux/Roseate Spoonbill Mini IPT. 1 1/2 DAYs: $1250. SAT MAR 7 (full day) and SUN Morning MAR 8, 2015. Working lunch on Saturday included. Strict Limit: 6 photographers/Openings: 2

Either morning photo session only: $475. Saturday morning photo session plus working lunch: $525. Saturday Full Day: $775.

Two great leaders: Captain James Shadle (Nikon) and Canon Explorer of Light Arthur Morris.

Roseate Spoonbill is one of if not the most sought after avian photographic subjects in Florida. They are generally hard to find and somewhat difficult to approach. They are relatively easy to find at Alafia Banks—heck, you can’t miss seeing them, but even there they can on some days be somewhat difficult to approach. On some days we may be able to get ridiculously close to them. The huge incentive to get out to Alafia Banks in early March is the chance to photograph this species at the height of its spectacular breeding plumage….

Weather permitting there will be three boat trips: 2 mornings and 1 afternoons. Mornings at Alafia Banks for spoonbills and Brown Pelicans (with lots of flight photography with the birds likely carrying nesting material), cormorants, ibises (both Glossy and White in breeding plumage. Many of the White Ibises will be sporting their spectacular, distended, red, naked (un-feathered) throat pouches—typically larger in the females. In addition we will get to photograph egrets including Great and Reddish, both in full breeding plumage, shorebirds, and more. There will be lots of flight photography opportunities. The afternoon trip will be either to Alafia Banks for spoonbills and more or to a more sheltered inland rookery location for a variety of nesting birds. In the event of horrific weather artie will either take the group to Fort DeSoto or will conduct an image review/Photoshop session. This IPT includes one working lunch.

Important Notes

We stay in Brandon, FL for this IPT. From our hotel it is only about 20 minutes to the dock. The plan is for all sessions to be by boat. For the Alafia Banks segments, Captain Shadle provides light weight chest waders as much of the photography will be done while we are standing in fairly shallow water behind our tripods. We help you get in and out of the boat with your gear. This is likely not the best trip for folks with balance problems. Note however that some folks may opt to stay on the boat. They always have lots of good chances for flight photography of spoonbills and other species but are almost always pretty far away from the spoonbills that land.

This mini Hooptie IPT represents an incredible opportunity. It may fill quickly. We hope that you can join us. Scroll down for registration info.


All of the images here were created at Alafia Banks early in the season. Images copyright Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART. Card creation and design by Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART.

Hooptie Mini-IPT Registration Info

Payment in full for this short notice trip is of course due upon registration. Call the office at 863-692-0906 to arrange to send us a check for payment in full (preferred) or to put the whole thing on a credit card. If by check, it should be made out to “Arthur Morris” and be mailed to BIRDS AS ART, PO Box 7245, Indian Lake Estates, FL 33855. If you cancel and the trip fills, we will be glad to apply a credit applicable to a future IPT for the full amount less a $100 processing fee.

However you arrange for payment, please print, complete, and sign the form that is linked to here and shoot it to us along with the paperwork. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me via e-mail.


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37 comments to Teleconverter in the Waders Pouch & 7D II/600 II Low Light Spoonbill Reflection Image: Art? Or Not?

  • avatar Henry

    of course it’s Art.

  • avatar Gordon Lindsay

    Definitely ART how could it not be? beauty is always in the eyes of the beholder and Art you create such beauty in composition and colour.

  • avatar Gary Axten

    Shame about the TC but it seems a worthwhile exchange. 🙂

  • avatar David Policansky

    Hi, Artie. In what universe would this image NOT be art? It’s wonderful. Thanks for sharing it.

  • avatar Colin Gilyeat

    Definitely art, the reflection is perfect. I really like the way the dark background brings out the colors of the spoonbill.. Great shot.

  • Top stuff Arty…… I am big fan of yours and this image is a great example of why.. Definitely a piece of beaut artwork by a talented artist.

  • avatar James Saxon

    Definitely art. The composition, dark background, reflection in the water, etc. All the elements of great art. It is a photo I would be proud to have taken, printed and hung. Love that color combination and the expression of the Spoonbill. Wow again.

  • avatar Mark W

    Of course this is art. Framed and captured by an artist, well, who happens to be named Art. Seems pretty clear to me:) Thank you Mr. Morris for your knowledge and inspiring images. They continue to make me a better photographer.

    • avatar Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

      Thanks for your more than kind words Mark. Do you play golf? a

      • avatar Mark Washburn

        You’re welcome Art. I do play golf a bit. I used to teach, then went to work for some club manufacturers. I left the business in 2008 to build our own internet based business that ended up totally unrelated to golf. But I still enjoy being out there, regardless of what the score turns out to be:) However no golf in Iowa right now, just a bit of Bald Eagle photography on the Mississippi. Warmer days are coming though!

        • avatar Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

          Hey Mark, Thanks for getting back to me. Funny how things work out. I was a four handicap at one time, hit the ball a mile, could chip and putt, but could not hit the green with a wedge in my hand! Played a lot with a Black paratrooper with a fused right knee, played cross-handed, got his tour card, won a few satellite events but never won on the PGA Tour. He hit it a ton and putted lights out. Charlie Owens. Super nice guy with a great smile.

          See here.

          And a great short bio here.

          • avatar Mark Washburn

            Haha…Art with golf it’s always something! If I had putted half as good as my brother I would have been dangerous! I’ve heard of Charlie. A neat story and it goes to show, kind of like Moe Norman and others, you don’t need a perfect grip, or text book swing to get the job done! I think I could have helped you with your wedges but maybe it’s better for all of us that you focused on photography instead:)

            :). I was BAD with a wedge in my hands. Never could find one that felt right. Charlie did actually win twice on the PGA Tour and twice on the Senior Tour. I am trying to get in touch with him. artie

  • avatar Kathy Graff

    Definitely art. Beautiful portrait of this particular bird.

  • avatar Cheryl Sewell

    Art, I love the photo, reflections are some of my favorite things. It does my heart good when you share how things don’t always go well for you. On my bad days when I lose stuff or fall in a hole (don’t ask) I don’t feel so bad because I know the photography gods pick on everyone, not just me. I’m practicing everyday to get ready for our trip to the Palouse in May! Can’t wait.

    • avatar Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

      Hi Cheryl, As a lover of what is (Byron Kaytie–, I can honestly say that the saltwater swim for the 1.4X TC was the best thing that could have happened. It was old and needed to be replaced. Lots of art in the Palouse. See you there. a

  • avatar Art Buesing

    How did you achieve the squared off edges of the reflection? It appears as a smear of color bands. Not a natural look, compared to other reflection photos on your blog. I do like it.
    Regarding your saltwater soaked extender; my experience has been seawater means instant death to electronics. I lost a MacBook Pro to a Nor’easter in a NJ parking lot. The only thing I saved was the hard drive which was sealed. The water got into my Ford Explorer about 5 inches on the floor.
    Art B

    • avatar Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

      Hi Art,

      I achieved the squared off edges of the REFL by pushing the shutter button…. They were most likely the result of small ripples in the water.

      I once had a guy drop a 40D into a foot of saltwater f0r 30 seconds. It worked for 3 more years and then he sold it, still working…. My Toyota Corolla was once in saltwater to above the top of the steering wheel. After about $3k worth of repairs it worked for another decade until I sold it for $150. a

  • avatar Jack Goodman

    Artie, it is an incredibly artistic photograph. But it is not art in the museum sense of the word. The Museum of Modern Art and the Metropolitan Museum in New York have both Photography collections and curators of photography. This photograph of a spoonbill would be collected and hung by the photography curator of either museum.


    • avatar Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I guess that that is the museum-goers loss 🙂 a

  • avatar Ted Willcox

    Beautiful Image!! and very much an art form.

  • avatar Tim Harding

    It has colour, composition, tells a story, is beautiful to look at. If that ain’t art….

    • avatar Herman Hiel

      Print it on canvas and you’ll see how quick it will sell 🙂
      I’d hang it on my wall.

      • avatar Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

        Ted, Tim, and Herman, Thanks for your kind words. All BAA images are available as signed photographic prints 🙂 artie

  • avatar Bill Richardson

    Looks like art to me Art. 😉 But I am a sucker for black backgrounds. My wife is the opposite and dislikes black backgrounds.

  • avatar Joe Subolefsky

    It’s aboslutly art , a pen,brush,camera,pencil etc are nothing but different tools of creative people. None of them have a mind of their own and can do a damn thing by themselves Unfortunately some of those people as in all walks of life are very narrow minded.

  • avatar Doug

    Interesting question, not so much for the question by why is there a question.

    • avatar Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

      Hey Doug, There are more than a few folks whose stance is that photography cannot be art…. What do you think? a

      • avatar Scott B


        Art is a diverse range of human activities and the products of those activities, usually involving imaginative or technical skill. (Wikipedia)

        Something that is created with imagination and skill and that is beautiful or that expresses important ideas or feelings. (Merrian-Webster)

        The technical skill alone qualifies these as art. Some say that music is a form of art, probably with less debate, and that has no visual output.

        If processes can be an art form, such as the art of photography or the art of conversation, the output of those processes should follow suit.

        Under the right circumstances of personal appreciation, anything can be art if you want it to be.


      • avatar Doug

        Photography certainly can be art. Anyone that says otherwise would have to provide their definition of art. I have to think they are under informed or elitist.

        Personally I believe that any creative activity is part art and part craftsmanship. I love the architecture of some buildings around town and the interiors of some homes. To me it is art. The art in photography is like any visual art: understanding color, light and the perception of these. How people interpret shapes: the power of the triangle, the peace in a long slow curve, the rigidity of the square. How numbers can influence feeling: one is a lonely number, evens tend to push the viewer out, odds leave a place for the human mind to insert itself into the image. The art is in understanding these things and being able to create something that conveys a message or feeling.

        The craftsmanship is in knowing how to handle the chosen equipment to create something that tells the story or creates the feeling.

        You Art, are a master artist and a master craftsman.
        I am a growing artist and a struggling craftsman (largly due to lack of time).