Japan Selfie … « Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

Japan Selfie ...

What’s Up?

I woke early to finish packing for my Tuesday morning flight to LAX to attend The School for the Work in Ojai, CA. My plan at present is to be back on the morning of 17 MAR but I may stop by San Diego on the way home for a short visit. We — Jim and I –left at exactly 6:30am. Eleven minutes later I realized that I had left my wallet on the counter so back we went.

Then horrible traffic on 27 North and I-4. Made the flight easily. It was delayed 24 minutes anyway.

I am at LAX now waiting for the shuttle to the School for the Work venue.


I have decided to stop by San Diego on my way home to visit Patrick and Robin Sparkman and Dr. Cliff Oliver. Be sure to check out tomorrow’s short blog post for a truly unbelievable announcement.

Gear Questions and Advice

Too many folks attending BAA IPTs and dozens of folks 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.

The Streak: 480!

Today’s blog post marks a totally insane, irrational, illogical, preposterous, absurd, completely ridiculous, unfathomable, silly, incomprehensible, what’s wrong with this guy?, makes-no-sense, 480 days in a row with a new educational blog post. As always–and folks have been doing a really great for a long time now–please remember to use our B&H links for your major gear purchases. For best results use one of our many product-specific links; after clicking on one of those you can continue shopping with all subsequent purchases invisibly tracked to BAA. Your doing so is always greatly appreciated. Please remember: web orders only. And please remember also that if you are shopping for items that we carry in the BAA Online Store (as noted in red at the close of this post below) we would of course appreciate your business.

Michael Dobes selfie with yours truly

Japan Selfie …

If I told you that it is not fun to be asked to do a selfie with photographers I meet while traveling I’d be lying. Michael Dobes, a very nice young photographer from the Czech Republic, approached me and asked if he could take a selfie with me. I smiled and agreed. Michael as traveling around Hokkaido with four friends, Ondra Prosickým, Vladimir Soltys and Vladimir Jurek. We had chatted briefly with them at two of the great crane sanctuaries. I asked Michael to send me the selfie and he kindly did so.

Eurasian Bullfinch. Image courtesy of and copyright 2017: Michael Dobes

Michael Dobes’ Photography

I visited Michael’s website here and enjoyed seeing some really good photography. Of the birds in his portfolio, the one above was my favorite. I saw this species in Japan but did not have a chance to photograph it. BTW, you can hit the Translate button to read the website in (somewhat) broken English.

I surfed around a bit and found some really neat stuff on his News tab. First was a video of a joint photography exhibit featuring the work of several Czech photographers. Mazel tov to all. You can see that feature here. Next was a collection of some of the best fox in the snow images that you have ever seen. You can access them here.

For the eagle-eyed …

Eagle-eyed readers might note the large tripod and the even heavier tripod head atop it in the background between Michael and me. Many Japanese photographers use these huge video type heads for their telephoto lenses. They look like they weigh at least 7 pounds and are totally inefficient. Score another one for the Mongoose M3.6. Note: we are currently out of stock but are expecting more soon. The best way to assure that you will get one from our next shipment is to call Jim at 863-692-0906 asap and order one. We will not bill your credit card until we ship your unit.

I will share my observations of the many Japanese photographers whom I encountered on the trip in a future blog post.

The Last Digital Basics Update

I began working on a Digital Basics Update in 2015 but never got around to finishing or publishing it. Working from that, I added a few more new Photoshop tips and just last week finished what will be the very last update. Future Photoshop discoveries will be shared in the new BAA Current Workflow Guide that will be coming out this spring. To receive your free March 2017 Digital Basics Update, please contact Jim via email. To receive your update you must click on the preceding link and you must cut and paste some sort of proof of purchase. The latter might be a cut and paste of any of the text in your current copy of Digital Basics or your receipt of purchase. E-mails that ware received without proof of purchase will be deleted.


Palouse 2016 Horizontals Card

Why Different?

Announcing the 2017 BIRDS AS ART Palouse Instructional Photo-Tour

In what ways will the 2017 BIRDS AS ART Palouse Instructional Photo-Tour be different from the most other Palouse workshops?

There are so many great locations that a seven-day IPT (as opposed to the typical three- or five-day workshops) will give the group time to visit (and revisit) many of the best spots while allowing you to maximize your air travel dollars. In addition, it will allow us to enjoy a slightly more relaxed pace.

You will be assured of being in the right location for the given weather and sky conditions.

You will learn and hone both basic and advanced compositional and image design skills.

You will learn to design powerful, graphic images.

You will visit all of the iconic locations and a few spectacular ones that are much less frequently visited.

You will learn long lens landscape techniques.

You will learn to master any exposure situation in one minute or less.

You will learn the fine points of Canon in-camera (5D Mark III, 5DS R, and 7D II) HDR techniques.

You will learn to create this look in Photoshop from a single image while winding up with a higher quality image file.

You will be able to share a variety of my exotic Canon lenses including the Canon EF 11-24mm f/4L USM lens and the Canon EF 8-15mm f/4L Fisheye USM lens, aka the “circle lens.”

You will learn to use your longest focal lengths to create rolling field and Urbex abstracts.

You will learn when and how to use a variety of neutral density filters to create pleasing blurs of the Palouse’s gorgeous rolling farmlands.

As always, you will learn to see like a pro. You will learn what makes one situation prime and another seemingly similar one a waste of your time.

You will learn to see the situation and to create a variety of top-notch images.

You will learn to use super-wide lenses both for big skies and building interiors.

You will learn when, why, and how to use infrared capture; if you do not own an infrared body, you will get to borrow mine.

You will learn to use both backlight and side-light to create powerful and dramatic landscape images.

You will learn to create the very popular detailed, slightly grungy, slightly over-saturated look in Photoshop.


Palouse 2016 Verticals Card

The 2017 BIRDS AS ART Palouse Instructional Photo-Tour
June 8-14, 2017. Seven full days of photography. Meet and greet at 7:30pm on Wednesday, June 7: $2,499. Limit 10/Openings: 7.

Rolling farmlands provide a magical patchwork of textures and colors, especially when viewed from the top of Steptoe Butte where we will enjoy spectacular sunrises and at least one nice sunset. We will photograph grand landscapes and mini-scenics of the rolling hills and farm fields. I will bring you to more than a few really neat old abandoned barns and farmhouses in idyllic settings. There is no better way to improve your compositional and image design skills and to develop your creativity than to join me for this trip. Photoshop and image sharing sessions when we have the time and energy…. We get up early and stay out late and the days are long.

Over the past three years, with the help of a friend, we found all the iconic locations and, in addition, lots of spectacular new old barns and breath-taking landforms and vistas. What’s included: In-the-field instruction, guidance, lessons, and inspiration, my extensive knowledge of the area, all lunches, motel lobby grab and go breakfasts, and Photoshop and image sharing sessions. As above, there will be a meet and greet at 7:30pm on the evening before the workshop begins.

To Sign Up

Your non-refundable deposit of $500 is required to hold your spot. Please let me know via e-mail that you will be joining this IPT. Then you can either call Jim or Jennifer at 863-692-0906 during business hours to arrange for the payment of your deposit; if by check, please make out to “BIRDS AS ART” and mail it to: Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART, PO Box 7245, Indian Lake Estates, FL, 33855. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me via e-mail: artie.

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.


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


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

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