Sunday, July 18, 2010

Road trip to Yellowstone National Park

I am currently making preparations to travel to Yellowstone National Park for the first time. Wishing I had a full frame camera. Ultimately I'd like the D3x and ensuring that the lens I have acquired over time are full frame capable. The D3s is a tempting alternative especially with its low light capabilities and its ability to take 720p HD video. Being predominately a landscape photographer with an interest in macro I tend to lean towards the D3x.

I have considered the D700 which would nicely complement my D300 with interchangeable hand grip and batteries.

I just wish I had a full frame camera for this trip especially to make use of the full range of the 14-24mm Nikon f2.8 lens. This only means I will have to return to Yellowstone when I eventually own a full frame camera.

On the plus side my D300 will be perfect with its cropped sensor to capture any wildlife that may be found in the Lamar valley. I recently acquired the TC-20E III 2x teleconverter to use with my 70-200mm Nikon f2.8 lens. Effective focal length will be 210-600mm with the teleconverter attached. With a higher pixel density of the D300 sensor it should make for sharp wildlife pictures.

With that focal range there is no question that I will have my camera resting on either a tripod or monopod to increase the stability of the shots. With the teleconverter attached I will also loose a few stops on exposure.

I am hoping to have access to the internet so I can post pictures while I'm away if not stay tuned for pictures on my Flickr page.

A bientot!

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Your own low cost "Photo Safari"

For those photographers who dream going on a photo safari or those who are fortunate enough to afford the high cost of a photo safari nothing better than the local Zoo to practice some of your photo techniques.

Yesterday I went to the local Zoo in Calgary, Alberta and took some shots of the exhibit and the animals. The greatest hindrance to doing photography in a Zoo environment is dealing with 2 kinds of human elements. One being the people frequenting the zoo. However small children's interaction with some of the animals can provide some unforeseen photographic opportunities. Usually with patience you can wait long enough for crowds to clear so that you have the ability to get the POV (point of view) that you require to take the shot. The other element a photographer has to do deal with are man made objects such as structures like buildings and fences that limit your compositions and interfere with the content of "the frame".

Usually you can move around to change your POV to enable you to get the "shot". But with chicken wire fences this is impossible. Don't fear there is a workaround for those pesky chicken wire fences its call depth of field. If you have a high quality "fast" telephoto lens with an F-stop in the range of F2.8 to F4.0 the smaller the number the better you ability to blur out those lines between your subject and the fence. This work around is only effective when the distance between the lens and the fence is fairly close and the subject of the photograph is some distance from the fence. Experiment with this technique and you'll be surprised by the results.

Some of the animals are allowed to roam around the Zoo boundaries which makes for fantastic opportunities. The Calgary Zoo allows Peacocks to roam around the Zoo and allowed to strut their stuff.

I knew I would enjoy the experience so much that I paid for an annual membership and I plan to return throughout the year. Especially in September as one of the Zoo employees mentioned that there are a lot of offspring in September and that the baby Peacocks are allowed to roam as well.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Spring in the Mountains

Here is a photo taken in February in the National Park in Southern Alberta.

Opening Comments

Hello all. This is my first foray into blogging. I will periodically post entries to my blog on the subject of photography, predominately landscape photography and the various formats and techniques that are available to the amateur, and professional. Mostly amateur and novice as I am still discovering techniques and improving my skills and repertoire.

I will be concentrating mostly on black and white photography, and HDR (High Dynamic Range), I also like to experiment in other forms of photography but being close to the mountains and nature I predominantly prefer landscape photography.

Go to my Flickr page to view some of my shots.

From time to time I will also post links to upcoming photographers and seasoned ones as well to bring attention to their style.

First photographer that has been developing a style that I admire is Tracy Somerville.

Website: Be Beautiful Photography
linkedin: Be Beautiful Photography
Flickr: Be Beautiful Photographer on Flickr
Facebook: Be Beautiful Photography

If you are in the area of Lethbridge Alberta I would definitely look her up if you require any portrait photography.

This sums it up for my first post. Its a gorgeous day outside and I'm going for a bike ride. Oh did I forget to mention I am also an avid mountain biker and road cyclist. How do you think I get to scope out shooting locations? I'm packing my camera and I'm going "hunting" for some shots.