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PostPosted: Thu Sep 08, 2011 11:32 pm 
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Location: Kanduhar, Afghanistan
Below are a few of my pics from my camping trip in Seward Alaska and Resurrection Bay cruse. I'm still learning the photo end and Post Production, still have a long way to go. Most were taken at 125mm with my Sigma 18-125. Too many of these were outside of a good range for the lens plus the boat had a lot of motion, not to mention the nasty pissy rain :cry: I love comments, Thanks guys!

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Crazy Sea Otter :) Saw 2 of them, just having fun. Let the boat get pretty close.

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This and the next are the same Bald Eagle. At this point I went to AP mode so the camera caught the sky and left the eagle too dark

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This was my best Bald Eagle shot. I tried some sharpening and some color correct, let me know if the color is right :?

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Fox Island. This was actually done with my 75-300. except for that tuft of grass in the front I think it turned out pretty good

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Another Fox Island with my 75-300. A little dark but I like it.

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Got a lot of these Sea Lions but this one the Sea Lions and the water look pretty good together. Most pics where a little lighter on the Seal Lions but the white caps washed out

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This one was a LONG stretch for my 125mm. Later I will post a wide angle of the distance I was trying to shoot this mom and baby

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Mike "The Squirrel"
Canon 550D | Canon EF 35mm 1:2 | Canon 50 f/1.8 II | Sigma 18-125mm DC OS | Tamron SP 70-300mm Di VC USD | Canon 430EX II
Military Issued Canon 40D | Canon 55-250mm IS


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 09, 2011 1:59 pm 
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Joined: Sun Feb 22, 2009 5:06 am
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Hi Mike... looks like a great trip... couple of comments if I may and plz.. these are just my observations seeing the pics as they show on my comp...

1) You mentioned boat motion... very important to keep boat motion in mind and not many do... when on a boat u r actually dealing with 4 motions.. wave, boat motion, boat motor vibration and yourself and any 1 of the 4 can multiply the effects of any of the other 3. The motor vibration can play havoc if u r using a tripod on the deck the same way the vibration of a car motor can play havoc on pics if u rest ur camera on the window frame while shooting through the car window with the motor still running. So try not to use a tripod on a boat deck and also try not to stablize your camera by resting it on a railing or any part of the boat directly connected to the hull if the motor is running. The best way to shoot on a boat is to stablize yourself as best u can with proper foot positioning and leaning your body against a piece of the structure if needed. A beanbag can also help in reducing boat vibrations if shooting out of a smaller craft.

With all this in mind its best to try for shutter speeds in exccess of 800 no matter what u r shooting on water including animals like whales which one would consider extremely slow moving. All these motions will cause blur and may well play havoc on your photography if not kept in mind...

I know it sounds complicated but once it becomes second nature you wont have to think about it again :)

2) your eagle pics where obviously taken on cloudy days... do what u can to increase your shutter speeds to avoid motion blur as much as possible. For me ISO is the easiest way to do this. 1600 or even higher might be needed. Im gonna post a few bear pics later which were taken in a down pour where I used a setting of 1600 and still only managed a shutter speed of 80.... should have gone to 3200 looking back.

3) for post processing learn the program u r using as best u can. Learn its abilities.. its strengths and weaknesses.

4) make sure u r using the proper light setting. Its something some ppl forget to change as conditions change but can make a huge difference in the end result of the pics.

5) with high contrst pics try and choose the object u want properly exposed to focus on.

6) as u mentioned.. u were pushing your lenses to the limit. Sometimes it is fun to rent a longer lens when on outings like this if u do not own such a lens. It allows u to play with gear and get better results while also giving u an idea whether or not a purchase like that may be needed in the future.

hope this all helps :)

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 09, 2011 5:26 pm 
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Location: Kanduhar, Afghanistan
Thanks, I really appreciate the comments! I knew not to use a tripod, I had read that on another post somewhere here so I tried to use my hip on the railing as much as possible but we had bad seas that day. One of the smaller boat cruses were actually cancelled (my wife suffered a little :shock: )

You're right about the iso, I will have to look at my EXIF but I may have only had it on 800 maybe 1600, I was affraid to go to 3200 but I should have sucked it up.

I REALLY REALLY wanted to rent a 100-400 but that concept freeked my wife out and so I did not pressure her on it. She's already worried enough about the camera since we haven't updated our insuarance to include it on the policy.

Speaking of dark bear shots I just missed a Black Bear that was only 20-feet from me. I was shooting the horizon on full manual and when I saw the bear cross I swung down but did not adjust any settings and the pics are so dark you can just barely see the bear :cry:

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Mike "The Squirrel"
Canon 550D | Canon EF 35mm 1:2 | Canon 50 f/1.8 II | Sigma 18-125mm DC OS | Tamron SP 70-300mm Di VC USD | Canon 430EX II
Military Issued Canon 40D | Canon 55-250mm IS


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 09, 2011 6:08 pm 
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Joined: Sun Feb 22, 2009 5:06 am
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havent seen kpr on since I have been back.. he would prob have some more thoughts on shooting on the water in rough weather as he spends so much time on the water in his line of work.

It took me a long time to figure out the mechanics of shooting on the water and getting consistant results... the biggest thing for me is trying for shutter speeds of at least 800.... I actually prefer over 1000 no matter what I am shooting.

My biggest frustrartion these days in rough weather is getting set... taking the shot... then looking at the pic and realising that you hit a wave at the exact moment and shot nothing but water LMAO.... makes for fun photography :P

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Canon 7D + 50D + EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS USM + EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM + EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM
Pelican // Black Rapid // Think Tank // Manfrotto // Garmin

Reflections On Canadian Wildlife
My Flickr


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 10, 2011 2:10 am 
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Location: Gold Coast Australia
Mike, Guess you have a great deal of confidence in shooting manual, I park my camera at 1/800 and f8 in app mode for unexpected shots in general use. Don't forget the camera figures out setting pretty quick and reasonable accurate for you.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 10, 2011 7:20 am 
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I guess these are the last to add:

Here is a fluke shot of the hump back we saw, I got some good pics of his hump but that's not as interesting as a luke shot :)
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And here is a squadron of Puffins :D
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Canon 550D | Canon EF 35mm 1:2 | Canon 50 f/1.8 II | Sigma 18-125mm DC OS | Tamron SP 70-300mm Di VC USD | Canon 430EX II
Military Issued Canon 40D | Canon 55-250mm IS


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 10, 2011 1:34 pm 
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Joined: Sun Feb 22, 2009 5:06 am
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love puffins... never gotten close enough the the pacific species to get a shot of one

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Pelican // Black Rapid // Think Tank // Manfrotto // Garmin

Reflections On Canadian Wildlife
My Flickr


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