Four Basic But Oft-Ignored Lessons. R5 Versatility Shines. And New BAA Record-low Used Canon Gear Price Listings « Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

Four Basic But Oft-Ignored Lessons. R5 Versatility Shines. And New BAA Record-low Used Canon Gear Price Listings

Your Favorite?

All are invited to leave a comment and let us know which of today’s three featured Canon R5 images is their favorite, along with the reason they made their choice. It is very clear that for Canon shooters, the RF is the best overall body when it comes to creating sharp images of birds in flight and in action. The AF system on the ES-1DX III is superb but that body is much heavier and much more expensive.

What’s Up?

Joe Usewicz and I absolutely killed at Stick Marsh on Wednesday. The action was so good that we did not head home until 1:00pm! Clemens Van der Werf was there and joined Jim and me for dinner on the pool deck and a night’s lodging.

Today is Thursday 25 March 2021. The forecast for this morning is for gentle south winds at sunrise increasing to southeast at 10mph. That is close to dead solid perfect for bird photography. Wherever you are and whatever you are doing, I hope that you have a great day. Jim and Clemens and I are leaving for Stick Marsh at 5:50am.

As we have had several new sign-ups for the Alpha a1 group in recent days, I have created three Sony Alpha a1 Info and Set-up Group e-mails that summarize everything that we have come up with so far and clarifying some of the stuff we had been unsure of. Right now we are trying to solve a very large a1 problem … See yesterday’s blog post here for details on joining the group.

I finished sending the links for the complete R5 Camera User’s e-guide to all who earned a free copy or purchased it at 4:04am this morning. If you should have, but did not receive this e-mail, please check your Spam or Junk folder. If it is still MIA, please let me know via e-mail.

If you paid $25.00 for the R5/R6 AF Guide, you are entitled to a $10.00 discount on the Camera User’s e-Guide. To pay the $65.00, you can call Jim at 1-863-692-0906 weekday afternoons or send a Paypal to birdsasart@verizon.net for the $65.00. Be sure to include the words R5 Camera User’s Guide with your PayPal.

If you earned a free copy of the guide by purchasing your Canon mirrorless gear using a B&H affiliate link or by saving 3% at Bedfords, you are entitled to a $65.00 discount on the complete guide. You can call Jim as above, or shoot us a Paypal to birdsasart@verizon.net for $10.00. Again, be sure to include the words R5 Camera User’s Guide with your PayPal.

This blog post took about an hour to prepare and makes ninety-three days in a row with a new one. Please remember to use my B&H affiliate links or to save money at Bedfords by using the BIRDSASART discount code at checkout. Doing either often earns you free guides or discounts.

Comments and Responses on Donna Bourdon’s Fine Osprey Image

From the blog post here.

Guido Bee: March 23, 2021 at 11:58 am

Not sure about the 1-5, but many lenses are sharper just short of the max focal length, so just short may be better. Also, less danger of clipping a wing. Great exposure.

Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART: March 25, 2021 at 4:19 am

Hey Guy, One out of two ainโ€™t bad :). The old “zoom out to increase sharpness” adage does not apply to modern telephoto zooms. Most all of them are razor-sharp at the long end. with love, a
ps: the brightness of the jpeg as presented does looks perfect. But the only way to know about the exposure of the CR.3 file is to bring the images into RawDigger.

KEN PRIDE: March 24, 2021 at 11:35 pm

I love this photo; 472mm fits the entire Osprey with itโ€™s building materials into the frame; any longer focal length and the wingtip and the stick would have been clipped.

Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART: March 25, 2021 at 4:14 am

Good work Ken. You should be proud 🙂 Sometimes the very simplest answer is the best one. with love, artie

Cover Image courtesy of and Copyright 2021 Brian Sump (Sump scores!)

The BIRDS AS ART Canon EOS R5 Camera User’s e-Guide

The BIRDS AS ART Canon EOS R5 Camera User’s e-Guide: $75.00

The guide is 82 pages long: 21,458 words. More than 50 DPP 4 Autofocus-depicting screen captures. And a 31 minute 44 second educational video. This guide took three and a half months of hard work and a ton of help from at least seventeen very helpful and generous folks.

The guide covers — in great detail — all Menu Items that are relevant to bird, nature, and wildlife photography. It does not cover video. The section on AF methods and the AF Gallery has been expanded from the R5/R6 AF e-guide. It remains the one of the great strengths of this guide. I share my thoughts on what I am sure is the single best AF Method for photographing birds in flight. As most of you know, the guide includes a simple and easy way to change AF Methods that was introduced to me by Geoff Newhouse. In the AF Gallery you will see exactly how Face Detection plus Tracking AF works. In the Educational R5 Gallery video, I share my favorite R5 images along with dozens of bird photography tips and techniques.

In addition, I teach you how to get the best exposures with your R5. Detailed instructions on using the great In-camera HDR and Multiple Exposure features will be appreciated by creative folks who like to have fun. The three shutter modes are explained in detail as well. Bruce Dudek solved the can’t-get-to-Auto ISO problem that had stumped everyone at Canon. This information is of course shared in the guide. You will learn how to set up your EVF (Electronic Viewfinder) and Screen toggle options. Not to mention that the mysterious performance of the Q Button is revealed and simplified. Brian Sump’s images reveal how well you can do when using the R5 with EF lenses using one of the three Canon EF-EOS R Mount Adapters (as Donna did with Image #1 below). You will learn how I use Customize Dials to put either ISO or EC on the Thumb Dial and how to set up and save Custom Shooting Modes (C1-C3) that can remember both your Customize Dial and Customize Button settings! That is something that none of the SONY bodies do. ๐Ÿ™ Near the end of the guide I share my all-important MY MENU items with you.

Like all BAA educational materials, the R5 guide is written in my informal, easy-to-follow style. I am quite proud of this guide and look forward to hearing your thoughts on our hard work.

You can purchase your copy of the BIRDS AS ART Canon EOS R5 Camera User’s e-Guide for $75.00 here in the BAA Online Store or by calling Jim in the office weekday afternoons at 863-692-0906 with your credit card in hand.

The BAA Used Gear Page

The Used Gear page continues to be very active. The BAA Used Gear Page is the place to sell your used photographic equipment. We will help you to get your gear sold quickly for 30 to 70% or more than what the big guys are offering … Doubt me? Check out the Recent Sales list at the bottom of the page.

Via e-mail from Kirk Stitt

I recently had my first experience as a seller on your site. I had been very happy with several earlier purchases. I am very impressed with the services you provided with regards to listing my Canon EF 500 f/4L IS II USM lens. Your suggestions for pricing were very valuable along with the great reach the Used Gear page provides. I was not interested a fire sale, but rather in a fair price for me as the seller and in an attractive price for a potential buyer. Your pricing suggestions were right on and your fees are very fair. Thanks again. Sincerely, Kirk

Canon EOS-1DX Professional Digital Camera Body

BAA Record-low Price!

Accomplished photographer and BAA-friend Jim Burns is offering a Canon EOS-1DX camera body in like-new condition for a BAA record-low $949.00. The sale includes an extra LP-E4N batteries, the dual battery charger, the front body cap, and insured ground shipping via major courier to lower-48 addresses. Your item will not ship until your check clears unless other arrangements are made.

Please contact Jim via e-mail or by phone or text: 1-602-616-9431, Mountain standard time (Arizona is not on DST).

Two fast, rugged 1D X bodies served as my workhorse cameras for more than four years. I used them to create hundreds of family-jewels-type images. I actually like the 1D X more than I liked my 1D X IIs. artie

Canon BG-E20 battery grip for the EOS 5D Mark IV dSLR

Accomplished photographer and BAA-friend Jim Burns is offering a new-in-the-box Canon BG-E20 battery grip for the EOS 5D Mark IV for a very low $179.00. The sale includes the original box and insured ground shipping via major courier to lower-48 addresses. Your item will not ship until your check clears unless other arrangements are made.

Please contact Jim via e-mail or by phone or text: 1-602-616-9431, Mountain standard time (Arizona is not on DST).

Enjoy longer shooting times and improved control in portrait orientation with the Canon BG-E20 Battery Grip for your EOS 5D Mark IV. Able to hold up to two LP-E6/LP-E6N Li-ion battery packs, this grip will effectively double your shooting time. It features vertically-positioned controls, including a shutter release button, a multi-controller, and an AF area selection button. The battery grip is constructed from magnesium alloy to match that of the 5D Mark IV and is both dust- and water-resistant. I used this grip with all of my 5D IV bodies to give them a pro-body feel. The grip sells new for $299.00 so if you are in the market for one, grab Jim’s ASAP. MFR and artie

Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II zoom lens

BAA Record-low Price!

Accomplished photographer and BAA-friend Jim Burns is offering a Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II zoom lens in like-new condition for BAA record-low $749.00. The sale includes the rear lens cap, a generic front cap, the tough fabric lens case, and insured ground shipping via major courier to lower-48 addresses. Your item will not ship until your check clears unless other arrangements are made.

Please contact Jim via e-mail or by phone or text: 1-602-616-9431, Mountain standard time (Arizona is not on DST).

The 70-200mm f/2.8 lenses in all systems are huge favorites with nature and wildlife photographers. They are fast, very sharp, and extremely versatile. All pair well with a 1.4X teleconverter. They are great for bird-scapes, wildlife, large mammals, scenics, sports, low light situations, and lots more. I used mine often to photograph granddaughter Maya’s dance recitals. And for birds in flight at close range they are unbeatable. artie

New and Better Bedfords Discount Policy!

You can now save 3% on all of your Bedfords photo gear purchases by entering the BIRDSASART coupon code at checkout. Your discount will be applied to your pre-tax total. In addition, by using the code you will get 2nd day air shipping via Fed Ex.

Grab a Nikon AF-S Teleconverter TC-14E III and save $14.99. Purchase a Canon EOS R5 and your discount will be $116.97. Purchase a Sony FE 600mm f/4 GM OSS lens and save a remarkable $389.94! Your Bedford’s purchase no longer needs to be greater than $1,000.00 for you to receive a discount. The more you spend, the more you save.

Money Saving Reminder

Many have learned that if you need a hot photo item that is out of stock at B&H and would enjoy free second-day air shipping, your best bet is to click here, place an order with Bedfords, and enter the coupon code BIRDSASART at checkout. If an item is out of stock, contact Steve Elkins via e-mail or on his cell phone at (479) 381-2592 (Central time). Be sure to mention the BIRDSASART coupon code and use it for your online order to save 3% and enjoy free 2nd-day air shipping. Steve has been great at getting folks the hot items that are out of stock at B&H and everywhere else. The wait lists at the big stores can be a year or longer for the hard to get items. Steve will surely get you your gear long before that. For the past year, he has been helping BAA Blog folks get their hands on items like the SONY a9 ii, the SONY 200-600 G OSS lens, the Canon EOS R5, the Canon RF 100-500mm lens, and the Nikon 500mm PF. Steve is personable, helpful, and eager to please.



Gear Questions and Advice

Too many folks attending BAA IPTs (remember those?) 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 26 February 2021 at Fort DeSoto Park, Tierra Verde, FL. I used the handheld Canon RF 100-500mm f/4.5-7.1L IS USM lens, with the Canon Extender RF 1.4x (at 508mm) and the highly touted 45MP Canon EOS R5 Mirrorless Digital camera body. ISO 400. Exposure determined via test image and blinkies evaluation: 1/1250 sec. at f/10 (wide open!) in Manual mode. AWB at 8:58m on sunny morning.

Face detection + Tracking/AI Servo AF was active at the moment of exposure and performed perfectly.

Click the image to see a larger version.

Image #1: Great Blue Heron scratching

Basic Lesson #1

When photographing a scratching bird at close (or really, at any) range, head angle is of utmost importance. If the bird’s head if angled away from you — even ever-so-slightly, the image will be an insta-delete.

R5 Versatility

By adding the RF 1.4X teleconverter you have a 420-700mm f/10 zoom lens that focuses down to inside of four feet. Like all zoom lenses, this combo allows many framing options. A key to the success of Image #1 was zooming out wide enough to avoid clipping the right ankle. (Yes, what we think of as a bird’s knee is actually the ankle.) Note: when you add either RF TC to the 100-500 it is not possible to zoom out wider then the 300mm mark. If you try to mount the TC to the lens you must be zoomed in past the 300mm mark or it will not fit into the back of the lens.

Blog Post Question

This is the same very cooperative GBH that was featured in a fairly recent (R5) blog post. It was posing atop Battery Bigelow. If you can find that post, please leave a comment with the link. I searched for a while this morning and came up empty …

This image was created on 28 February 2021 at Fort DeSoto Park, Tierra Verde, FL.I used the hand held Canon RF 100-500mm f/4.5-7.1L IS USM lens (at 135m) and the highly touted 45MP Canon EOS R5 Mirrorless Digital camera body. ISO 800. Exposure determined via test image and blinkies evaluation:1/ 1250 sec. at f/8 in Manual (M) mode. AWB at 7:30am on a partly sunny morning. Face detection + Tracking/AI Servo AF was active at the moment of exposure and performed just fine.

Click on the image to enjoy a larger version.

Image #2: Great Blue Heron body flight shot

Basic Lesson #2

When unexpected action occurs, push the shutter button. You never know what you’re gonna get.

R5 Versatility

Here I zoomed out ASAP AWAP but it was not enough. But I listened to my own oft-given advice and came up with something interesting.

This image was created on 26 February 2021 at Fort DeSoto Park, Tierra Verde, FL. I used the handheld Canon RF 100-500mm f/4.5-7.1L IS USM lens (at 428mm) and the highly touted 45MP Canon EOS R5 Mirrorless Digital camera body. ISO 640. Exposure determined via test image and blinkies evaluation: 1/3200 sec. at f/7.1 in Manual (M) mode. AWB at 8:04am on a party sunny morning. Please see the BIRDS AS ART Canon EOS R5 Camera User’s e-Guide to learn the best R5 AF Method for flight and action.

Click on the image to enjoy a larger version.

Image #3: Laughing Gull headed for shore after bath

Basic Lesson #3

With the wind and the light behind you, watch for birds dipping their breasts in the water. Nine times out of ten they will flap in place, jump up, and fly toward shore.

Basic Lesson #4

When photographing birds in flight and in action, keep the shutter button pressed down hard until after the action is over. With the 20fps frame rate of the R5, you will have many nice wing positions and poses to choose from.

R5 Versatility

The R5/RF 100-500 is a superb birds in flight and in action rig. Especially if you know the best AF Method to use. Yes, the BIRDS AS ART Canon EOS R5 Camera User’s e-Guide to learn the best R5 AF Method for flight and action.

Typos

With all blog posts, feel free to e-mail or to leave a comment regarding any typos or errors.

8 comments to Four Basic But Oft-Ignored Lessons. R5 Versatility Shines. And New BAA Record-low Used Canon Gear Price Listings

  • avatar Ken R Pride

    GBH image #1; “head scratch”. Wonderful pose, beautiful lighting and eye-bleeding sharp.

  • Arthur, I always like looking at these photos and reading information tips but mostly they are Canon and I have Nikon. So I read info and test suggestions on my Nikon when I am practicing it in the back yard before I go on a trip to shoot wildlife and birds! Thanks for help and nice photos!!!

  • avatar David J Policansky

    Face scratch is my favorite by far. Wonderful action and perfect pose.

  • avatar Adam

    Agree, face scratch is my favorite as well and is a wonderful capture. Usually, when I am fortunate to see the “scratch” it’s on the side of the face (either near or far) resulting in poor composition. It appears you had some great light that day. Out of curiosity, at approximately what time does the light become too harsh to shoot in your location?

    • avatar Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

      Thanks, Adam.

      Agree — all birds habitually scratch on the side away from us ๐Ÿ™ Well, not always.

      What time is the light too harsh? Pretty much never. As have written often, “When the light is bright think clean, tight, and graphic and stay precisely on sun angle. Most of the time all of the harsh shadows are pretty much eliminated. The results might surprise you.

      That said Jim and I left Stick Marsh this morning at 9:30am ๐Ÿ™‚

      with love, a

  • avatar Jordan Cait

    Face scratch is my favorite – the eyes make the difference.
    Typo – which of todayโ€™s three featured Canon R5 images is their favorite. s/b is your favorite.

    • avatar Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

      Thanks, Jordan. I think that I fixed that typo on the way over. s/b was supposed to be R5 ๐Ÿ™‚

      with love, a

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