Saturday, July 25, 2009
Low light and Long Lens Shooting
Recently, I have been captivated by a Green Heron in a swamp near St. Catharines Ontario, Canada. Up here we call the little buggers "Greenies!" and they are not an easy shoot!
They hang around in swampy areas, along the edges and overhanging trees., looking for an easy grab as many fish feed near the surface, along with frogs and tadpoles. I think they are hard to find and shoot, because the food is abundant, and they spend a lot of their time during the day sleeping. What a life!
No bills, no TV to watch, they do not have sports, or vehicles to fix! I have never seen a nest, but that would be something!
For this shooting a tripod is a must., and also, I found that setting the tripod up at its lowest settings provided a more solid base, as I was sitting down low on the path. Using the 200-400 with teleconverters.. the 1.4 tc, and 1.7tc gives this lens some strong magnification. the slightest vibration and your cooked!
I was using higher f-stops to keep a good depth-of-field, and this helps with keeping the images sharp with tc's. With the D300, you can use "mirror lock up", and with the 10 pin remote, you can fire the frame without touching the camera., minimizing vibration.
A green heron is a fantastic bird to practice with... it sits very still, and provides some awesome poses while it hunts. Unfortunately, this bird has been found about 1 in 6 trips to this location... so it is really a matter of luck.
Thanks for reading, the images may be viewed by clicking on them, and using your back button to return.
take care, Ray Barlow.