Oldies But Goodies #1 « Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

Oldies But Goodies #1

Image #1 was created with the tripod-mounted Canon 800mm f/5.6L IS lens and the Canon EOS-1D MIII (since replaced by the Canon EOS-1D Mark IV). ISO 400. Evaluative metering at +1 stop: 1/6 sec. at f/5.6 in Av Mode.

One Shot shutter button AF, turn off AF, and recompose. The old days for sure. Click on the image to enjoy a larger, more spectacular version.

Morro Bay Photo Expo

My two program yesterday at the Morro Bay Photo Expo were exceedingly well received. There were 208 folks at the morning seminar which included Choosing and Using Lenses for Nature Photography, Composition and Image Design, and Getting Close. About 60 folks attended the Photoshop for Nature Photographers program that afternoon. My stand-up schtick was very sharp in the morning and the folks responded quite well to pretty much every joke with several attendees actually rolling in the aisles laughing. “Liar!” The afternoon session was much more informal and folks were so into learning that I did not even consider taking the scheduled break.

If you are involved with a photography group or club that has an annual event that could attract 150 or so folks and would love a great keynote presenter please shoot me an and we can see if Canon would be willing to sponsor my appearance as they did so generously both for the F3C event in Naples last weekend and for this weekend’s gig as well. Aside from the humor folks will learn a ton :).

Oldies But Goodies #1

Here are two from January 25, 2009. Image #1 above was created at 6:46 am, image #2 below at 6:41 am, and image #3 at the bottom at 6:47 am. You can learn a ton by studying the exposure data for each image. Questions are welcome.

Image #2 was created with the tripod-mounted Canon 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II lens (at 120mm) and the Canon EOS-1D MIII (since replaced by the Canon EOS-1D Mark IV). ISO 200. Evaluative metering +1/3 stop: 1.3 seconds at f/6.3 in Av mode.

One Shot shutter button AF, turn off AF, and recompose. The old days for sure. Click on the image to enjoy a larger, more spectacular version.

Please take a moment and let us know which of the three images you like best, and why.

Image #1 was created with the tripod-mounted Canon 800mm f/5.6L IS lens and the Canon EOS-1D MIII (since replaced by the Canon EOS-1D Mark IV). ISO 1600. Evaluative metering at +1 stop: 1/30 sec. at f/5.6 in Av Mode.

One Shot shutter button AF, turn off AF, and recompose. The old days for sure. Click on the image to enjoy a larger, more spectacular version.

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Shopper’s Guide

Below is a list of gear that I used to create the image in this blog post. Thanks a stack to all who have used the Shopper’s Guide links to purchase their gear as a thank you for all the free information that we bring you on the Blog and in the Bulletins. Before you purchase anything be sure to check out the advice in our Shopper’s Guide.

Canon 800mm f/5.L IS lens. Right now this is my all time favorite super-telephoto lens.
Canon 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II lens. Man, I am loving this lens on my shoulder with the Canon EF 1.4X III TC. This new TC is designed to work best with the new Series II super-telephoto lenses.
Canon EOS-1D Mark IV professional digital camera body. My two Mark IVs are my workhorse digital camera bodies.

And from the BAA On-line Store:

LensCoats. I have a LensCoat on each of my big lenses to protect them from nicks and thus increase their re-sales value. All my big lens LensCoat stuff is in Hardwood Snow pattern.
LegCoat Tripod Leg Covers. I have four tripods active and each has a Hardwood Snow LegCoat on it to help prevent further damage to my tender shoulders 🙂 And you will love them in mega-cold weather….
Gitzo GT3530LS Tripod. This one will last you a lifetime.
Mongoose M3.6 Tripod Head. Right now this is the best tripod head around for use with lenses that weigh less than 9 pounds. For heavier lenses, check out the Wimberley V2 head.
CR-80 Replacement Foot for Canon 800. When using the 800 on a Mongoose as I do, replacing the lens foot with this accessory lets the lens sit like a dog whether pointed up or down and prevents wind-blown spinning of your lens on breezy days by centering the lens directly over the tripod.
Double Bubble Level. You will find one in my camera’s hot shoe whenever I am not using flash.
The Lens Align Mark II. I use the Lens Align Mark II pretty much religiously to micro-adjust all of my gear an average of once a month and always before a major trip. Enjoy our free comprehensive tutorial here.
Canon EOS-1D Mark IV User’s Guide. Learn to use your Mark IV the way that I use mine. Also available for the 7D and the Mark III here.
BreezeBrowser. I do not see how any digital photographer can exist without this program.

17 comments to Oldies But Goodies #1

  • Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

    I like all three of them for the same reasons that you guys like one or the other of them! I like the first one for its simplicity and its sharpness at 1/6 sec. I like the second one for its design and the mood it sets though I wish I could have gotten on top of my vehicle for some more separation between the tops of the mangroves and the bottom of the embankment. And I like the third one for the bit of moving water though I see now that it needs some CCW rotation. Thanks to all who shared their thoughts with us here 🙂

  • cheapo

    Woah! Stunning colour and natural history together, you don’t need us to tell you that they are all sellers Artie. If you forced me to choose between the two cropped shots, I would select the one with ripples. But as art, #1 works so well! And the sunrise full shot is just so nice, make it wall sized and give me a deck chair! Antonio mentioned ambiance. In spades! :¬)

    • Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

      Thanks Cheapo but I do not thing that we have ever sold one of them 🙂

  • Jamie Medford

    All three are beautiful images, my favourite is #1 for the fact there is no ripple, as I like cleaness of the background. I also prefer the the pose in this one as I portrays the heron being inactive and waiting patiently for his breakfast which suits the calm atmosphere all three photos show.

  • I have a question…

    In #1 your iso was 400. In #3 you increased it to 1600. I guess I’m wondering why the big increase?


    • Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

      Hey Doug, I was not confident in making a second sharp image at 1/6 second; thank God for 4-stop IS.

  • Col Seller

    I was so pleased to see image#2 as it answered all the questions that image #1 provoked. To me images #1 and #3 are the more powerful and I personally prefer the composition and pose in #1. “If only” #1 had the ripple as well.
    Certainly are goodies.

  • Loren Charif

    Artie –

    At the exact date and time you made these images, Dr Beggs was sawing open my ribcage to perform my quad bypass. Since I obviously missed the sunrise that day, you have now completed the circle! I’m glad one of us was out shooting that day!

    As to which one I like best…any one of them would be better than what I saw that day!

    Thanks, Artie!

  • Art,

    I like #2 the best. In addition to providing the overall ambience, I like the morning drama and the melancholic scenario, with the bird playing a crucial part in it. It is also an example where the placement of the horizon, almost smack in the middle of the photo, works. Great shot.

  • Charles Scheffold

    #3 is my favorite. The clean background is beautiful and the slight ripples in the water provide context. #1 would be my 2nd choice because of the background and composition. I like #2 but the horizon is just a bit more central than I usually prefer.


    • Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

      Mr. Lepp says that 50/50 horizons are OK if the top and bottom of the image are equally dramatic; that is pretty much the case here so I agree with him :). See you at Bosque and in the Galapagos. Did we ever cash your check???

  • Howard Rivers

    I think image #2 has the best comp balance. Image #1 has a little too much free space on the left. I also like #3 the water ripple adds a lot to the balance.

  • Jim Kranick


    How about the Space Coast Birding and Wildlife Festival over here on the East Coast? Jan. 23-28, 2013. Canon could just send a limo for you rather than flying over. It’s been a long time since you were over here in 2009. There had to be 150 folks for each of your two talks. Perhaps I should drop a note to Neta and see if she would write to Canon.

    • Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

      Hey Jim, I did the Space Coast thing for many years. They need a bigger room for the keynote so that I can get Canon to sponsor my appearance. I would love to go back again. Let Lorilee and Neta know and maybe we can work it out.!

  • I like #3 over #1 because you can see some movement in the water, on the other hand #1 is totally abstract, so perhaps I like that best. Decisions, decisions!