Wednesday, December 12, 2012
Tuesday, December 4, 2012
The background of the original photo was mostly sky and totally uncluttered. However, the upper part of the boat really pops out of this pseudo night scene much more than on the original. We have added this treatment to several of our sports images, too, with very favorable results.
Tuesday, November 27, 2012
Wednesday, November 14, 2012
200mm lens, 1/1250 second at f/2.8, ISO 250. We could have used a lower ISO but a few minutes earlier we had been getting some photos of does before the sun popped out. The buck appeared suddenly and there was no time to change.
Friday, October 26, 2012
70-200 lens at 200mm, 1/400 second at f/2.8, ISO 250. We reduced the exposure slightly when processing the raw file.
Wednesday, October 17, 2012
The first rays of sun are visible on the trees in the background but this meadow was still in shade. Not much light to work with so we had to use a wide aperture. Not enough depth of field to keep both animals in focus so we kept the focus on the big buck. Also, we adjusted the color temperature later to warm up the image.
70-200 lens at 135mm, 1/320 second at f/3.2, ISO 800.
Wednesday, October 3, 2012
400mm lens, 1/800 second at f/5.6, ISO 250.
Thursday, September 20, 2012
This photo was taken in the middle of the day with the harsh sun high overhead. But the bull had just stepped clear of the brush and much of the surrounding area is nicely out of focus. The head and horns stand out quite well.
400mm lens, 1/1600 second at f/5.6, ISO 250.
Wednesday, August 29, 2012
The background is busy, unfortunately, but almost the entire ring was surrounded by tents and people so there really wasn't a better location to shoot from. The background is out of focus and that helps a little.
250mm lens, 1/1000 sec at f/5.6, ISO 320.
Wednesday, July 11, 2012
The harsh overhead sunlight is unfortunate. We chose our position at the show ring so that the sun would be coming from a rear quarter. For this shot, though, we had to turn more toward the sun and adjust the exposure to compensate for the shadows on the faces.
100-400 lens at 260mm, 1/250 second at f/5.6, ISO 160.
Monday, July 2, 2012
Once in position we took a few frames but the fawn was in deep shade and the light was not interesting. We noticed a small sunbeam tracking toward it, though, and waited until the head was lit to take this image.
100-400 lens at 190mm, 1/125 second at f/5.6, ISO 3200.
Thursday, June 21, 2012
1/100 second at f/5.6, 100-400 lens at 380mm, ISO 2000.
Wednesday, June 13, 2012
100-400 lens at 400mm, 1/500 second at f/5.6, ISO 500.
Wednesday, June 6, 2012
Getting close to a buck is pretty exciting by itself but the photo is special for a couple other reasons. One, the deer is laying down. Not as many photos taken of that. Second, the buck is engaging in self-grooming. He is not merely standing and looking at the camera but instead is actually doing something. Wildlife images showing "behavior" are much more interesting.
The light was tricky and hard to work with. Direct sunlight coming through holes in the overhead canopy made for extremely bright spots amid the deep shade. The bright spots in the background of this image are objectionable but we couldn't alter our position because this was the only clear view of the deer through the trees. Also, the shade was so deep that we needed a high ISO to get adequate shutter speed and this resulted in some loss of detail and contrast.
400mm IS lens, 1/250 second at f/5.6, ISO 3200.
Wednesday, May 16, 2012
Most of our images taken that day suffered from the high, mid-afternoon sun which gave us harsh light. This image is an exception as the dog was standing in an area partially shaded by trees. The dog is slightly backlit and there is a rim of light along her back that separates her from the out-of-focus, green background. No harsh shadows anywhere. Also, the dog was standing on a slight rise above us and this allowed for the low camera angle. We got three quick shots before the dog took off hunting again. This one had the most pleasant head angle of the three photographs. The right place at the right time!
35-350 lens at 200mm, 1/500 second at f/5.0, ISO 400.
Thursday, May 10, 2012
35-350 lens at 300mm, 1/800 second at f/5.6, ISO 250.
Thursday, May 3, 2012
Here is another view of the 2010 Chevrolet Camaro SS. This photo was taken shortly before sunset and the background is quite dark. We added two off-camera speedlights that were triggered with wireless controls. Both lights were set on the ground and aimed slightly upward so they wouldn't put too much light on the pavement. Certainly, more light could have been put on the top of the car if the lights were mounted higher but that was not our intent. We wanted this dramatic effect that is only achieved with low lights. Notice how the rear wheel catches some of the flash but there is minimal effect on the rest of the body along the driver's side. The timing was important, though, to get this effect. We needed some ambient light because otherwise the car would disappear into blackness. This shot seemed to have the right balance since we can still see the entire outline of the car.
70-200 lens at 105mm, exposure set manually, 1/250 sec at f/6.3, ISO 100.
Wednesday, April 25, 2012
The sun was to the camera's right and very low, partially hidden by light clouds. This gave us soft lighting with no harsh reflections. We tried turning on the headlights but at this low angle the the lights were too intense. The parking lights were left on and they add a subtle accent.
We chose the 400mm lens to give us some compression of the car and to blur the background. 1/400 second at f/5.6, ISO 320.
Friday, April 13, 2012
A drake Northern Pintail duck flying over a bluebill decoy. We put out a couple dozen bluebill decoys in hopes of getting some action photos of bluebill ducks (scaup), as well as other diving ducks such as canvasbacks and redheads during the spring migration through the St. Clair Flats. The northerly wind was about 20 knots steady, gusting to 30 knots. This single pintail flew downwind from behind us, banked and pitched in to the decoys. It happened too quickly to get the focus locked on him before he landed. This shot was taken right after he took off into the wind and drops of water can be seen under his feet.
This is quite a nice image and the decoy adds some interest. It would have been nice to have some morning sunlight highlighting the plumage, though. The forecast called for a sunny morning but it turned out mostly cloudy. Shocking; the forecasting is always so reliable.
100-400 lens at 400mm, 1/1250 sec at f/5.6, ISO 640.
Friday, March 30, 2012
A Canada goose swimming among some duck decoys. I was recently on the St. Clair Flats hoping to get photos of ducks during the spring migration. The mallard decoys were put out to attract flights within camera range. This goose swam over to investigate and never realized I was hidden nearby.
It's a peaceful scene with the calm water and low, morning light. Most important, though, is the clean background. The camera was about two feet above water level but the goose was so close that I was actually aiming slightly downward. Hence, not even the horizon is visible. 400mm lens, 1/1600 second at f/5.6, ISO 320.
Friday, March 16, 2012
An alpine skier rounding a gate on the giant slalom race course. My position was chosen so that the skier would be facing me while racing to the next gate. This allows us to see the extreme body angle and that body angle contributes a strong diagonal line to the composition. Also, the background is relatively clean and the skier stands out nicely. Unfortunately, the sky was heavily overcast so the light was flat, and there was no detail in the snow.
This was shot at 1/1000 sec. at f/5.6, ISO 800, 100-400 lens at 400mm.
Thursday, February 23, 2012
This downhill snow skier is racing on the slalom course. My location was carefully chosen so that the skier would be heading for me after rounding the red gate and coming toward the blue gate. I like how this position can show the athlete's extreme body angle and I also like to see the face. The shot immediately before this one showed the skier contacting the red gate but the body angle wasn't so extreme.
The position was also chosen because the background was less cluttered than other places on the hill. The chairlift apparatus is present, as well as a gatekeeper, but those couldn't be avoided. Fortunately, they are slightly out of focus and the attention is squarely on the skier.
Thursday, February 2, 2012
Here is another sports image lit with an off-camera flash. The alpine skier is rounding a gate during an evening giant slalom race. I placed a light opposite the gate to the skier's right. This allows me to get a frontal shot without putting the light into the athlete's face.
This photo was taken about 6 pm and there wasn't much ambient light. Even so, there was a chance to get some ghosting so I opted for a fast shutter speed. This was shot at 1/1250 at f/3.5, ISO 2000, 70-200 lens at 180mm. Speedlight on auto.
Friday, January 20, 2012
This is a photograph of an alpine skier racing on the giant slalom course. The race started in the late afternoon and lasted after sundown. I decided to get some action shots using an off-camera flash at one of the gates. Most of the high school races are on weekday afternoons/evenings and there usually isn't enough available light for the whole race. An on-camera flash will work but it isn't acceptable to blast the athletes head-on.
I positioned a speedlight so that it was facing a gate and would light a skier from his side. This allowed me to position myself downhill from the gate and photograph the skiers from the front. The speedlight was mounted on a monopod that was stuck into the snow and it was fired with a wireless trigger. 70-200 lens at 145mm. 1/800 at f/4 set manually, ISO 500. The speedlight was on ETTL (auto).