112 millimeters? Surely You Jest ! Depth-of-Field Question « Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

112 millimeters? Surely You Jest ! Depth-of-Field Question

What’s Up?

Rajat Kapoor and his son Phillip drove over from Melbourne early on Monday morning. The baby cranes were right where they were supposed to be and continued to be amazingly cooperative. I took them on a grand photo tour of ILE. Working from my SUV, we got to photograph the surviving crane colt, now half as large as its parents. Next was a Great Egret and then a handsome perched Turkey Vulture that graced us with an elegant wing stretch. The large flock of Cattle Egrets that we had seen earlier dispersed, but we did get to photograph a single bird foraging. Last up on the list of new subjects was a preening adult Sandhill Crane. We paid the baby cranes a final visit and headed back to my place for some quick scrambled eggs.

After striking out on spoonbills on Friday morning past, I was thrilled that Rajat was able to make it to ILE.

I am staying over for a second night at Vero Beach to ensure a decent internet connection for the Wednesday evening webinar. Aside from tying up a few loose ends, my work on that program is done.

Today is Tuesday 5 April 2021. I will be leaving ILE at 5:25am to meet up with IPT veterans Morris Herstein and Mike Gotthelf for three sessions of In-the-Field Instruction at Stick Marsh. Wherever you are and whatever you are doing, I hope that you have a great day.

This blog post took less than an hour to prepare and makes 105 consecutive days 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. And doing so always earns my great appreciation.

This image was created in Katchemak Bay, Homer, AK. I used the hand held Sony FE 70-200mm f/2.8 GM OSS lens (at 112mm!) and the AF King, the Sony Alpha a9 II Mirrorless Digital Camera body.. ISO 1000. Exposure determined via blinkies with ISO on the Thumb Dial: 1/2000 sec. at f/3.2 in Manual mode.

Center Zone AF-C performed perfectly. Click on the image to view a larger version

Sub-adult Bald Eagle in flight on snowy day

Not Jesting!

If you make it to Homer in winter to photograph Bald Eagles, you will surely want to have a short, fast, zoom lens in your kit. Both the 70-200 f/4s and the 70-200 f/2.8 lenses are very valuable on this trip. Next February, I will try to create a few different images with my Sony FE 24-105mm f/4 lens.

With some dark feathers on the head and the dark tail-tips, this bird is about six years old. I will be announcing two Homer Bald Eagle IPTs here very soon. If you are serious about joining me, stay tuned. If you would like advance info, please shoot me an e-mail. In the meantime, check out the BAA Bald Eagle Gallery here.

Depth-of-Field Question

Would stopping down one full stop here to f/4.5 have been a good idea? Why are why not?


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

8 comments to 112 millimeters? Surely You Jest ! Depth-of-Field Question

  • avatar Warren Hatch

    If you went to f/4.5 (and kept the same ISO), your shutter speed would have been 1/1000 for the equivalent exposure. You had plenty of depth of field. No reason so sacrifice the extra sharpness you achieved at 1/2000.

  • I like the grasses and trees just the way they are. However stopping down may have made the tip of the beak sharp. It seems a little softer than the rest of the bird which looks tack sharp. Beautiful fanned tail and wing tips.

  • avatar Guido Bee

    Using 4.5 might have made more (what look to be) snowflakes more sharp and possibly distracting, in addition to showing the grasses and trees somewhat more pronounced / sharper.
    Be well.

  • avatar Warren Howe

    No, I don’t think stopping down would have been a good idea. At that focal range, you already had plenty of depth of field. The entire eagle is sharp and even the tall grass behind the subject is fairly sharp. Even the distant trees are fairly sharp. Stopping down would have made them more in focus and therefore, more distracting. Also, and importantly, it would have increased iso or given a slower shutter, which would not have helped….

  • avatar Adam

    If the Eagle was filling the frame at 112 mm you must have been quite close. Stopping down a stop would have increased your DoF yielding increased focus on the rest of the body. Would the grasses been more acute and therefore more distracting? I can’t say definitively.

  • avatar Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

    Typo fixed.

  • avatar Jordan Cait

    Hi Artie, Typo – on early on Monday morning

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