Truland Photography

Monday, May 25, 2015

A Day For The Birds

I've been trying to stay away from simply photographing objects with longer lenses in an attempt to vary the types of images I'm producing. But sometimes it's just fun to go out with a longer telephoto lens and look for wildlife.

It doesn't usually work out that I find good subjects when I'm carrying a wildlife setup. The other day, for instance, I had only a 7D and 24mm lens and got to watch a Bald Eagle catch a fish at the mouth of the Mohawk River.

Yesterday morning, however, was an exception. I carried a 7D body, with battery grip, attached to an EF 70-200mm f/2.8L lens with 2XIII extender. This setup weighs in at 6.5 pounds although I have a ThinkTank Photo holster shoulder bag that carries it nicely.

I walked up along the old Champlain Canal, an area with marshes that I  know are frequented by a variety of birds. Over an hour and a half I viewed Red-winged Blackbirds, Mourning Doves, Yellow Warblers, a Green Heron, Mallards, Herring Gulls, Cardinals, Tree Swallows, Crows, a Mockingbird, Turkey Vultures and a Red Tailed Hawk.

Here are some of the nicer results:

Yellow Warbler

Yellow Warbler

Mating Tree Swallows

These two Mallard shots were made seconds apart and I moved only a few feet from one to the other yet the differing background reflection in the water totally changes the resulting image.

Mallard Pair

Mallard Pair

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Wild Iris, Not Cattails

I was walking up along the old Champlain Canal again this morning and noticed a lot of yellow blossoms in an abandoned portion of the canal that I know is filled with Cattails. I kind of knew that cattails didn't have these kind of blossoms but they were spread out over the area so it looked like they really did.

While Iris and Cattail foliage do look quite similar, the Cattail plants were almost twice as tall as the similar looking plants that sported the yellow blossoms. So I concluded that there were numerous wild Iris plants interspersed with the Cattails in this bog like area.

I brought along an EOS 70D body with an EF-S 60mm f/2.8 macro USM lens together with a light tripod and remote release. This first shot shows the Iris blossoms in and among the taller Cattails.

I'm using this as a background for my MacBook.

Canon EOS 70D, EF-S 60mm f/2.8 macro USM, f/6.7, 1/60 sec., ISO 400

This shot is of the same blossom from a closer and different angle.

Canon EOS 70D, EF-S 60mm f/2.8 macro USM, f/6.7, 1/60 sec., ISO 400

I bracketed this particular shot with five exposures +/- 1 EV. As it turned out, processing all five files resulted in too much background detail for my liking. So I processed only the normally exposed file, shown above, and the -2 and -1 EV files. Here is the result.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Eastern Tent Caterpillar Day

It's been a long time since I've done blog posts two days in a row. But it's been great weather and I've been out and around. This morning on Peebles Island it seemed like today is National Tent Caterpillar Day. The last time I was on the island, ten days ago, there were no noticeable nests. Today they were all over the place.

Luckily, I had decided to carry a 7D body with the EF-S 60mm f/2.8 macro lens. This setup was perfect for documenting the very reachable nests. You can read about the Eastern Tent Caterpillar here.

f/6.7, 1/500 sec., ISO 200

f/6.7, 1/350 sec., ISO 200

f/6.7, 1/500 sec., ISO 200

Saturday, May 9, 2015

An Alternative Walking Route

I occasionally get tired of the usual walking route and choose one of several alternates that I can still access without driving anywhere first. Today's route was up along the old Champlain Canal North of Waterford.

I brought along a 7D body and an EF 28mm f/1.8 USM lens that I traded a couple of other lenses for but haven't really used much yet. All but the first of these shots are three file HDR images +/- 1 1/2 EV.

Finally, we're getting some real growth started around here. It's been extremely dry, however, and the young cattails seem a bit water deprived. In fact, it's been about two weeks without measurable rain. Not usual for this time of year.

I'm going to assume that the grooves in the stone of the old lock are from ropes towing or securing barges as they traversed the old canal. Or maybe ropes that pulled the gates open or shut since that indentation is where the gates were. The final shot is of the abode of an enterprising Beaver although I'm not sure how he/she copes during the Winter when there is no water in this now overflow portion of the canal system.

Saturday, May 2, 2015

A Calm, Sunny Morning Walk

It was a nice quiet morning for my three mile walk through two Cities, one Village and a State Park on the territory of three different Counties. I brought along one of my bodies with my EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM lens. This lens only fits Canon crop sensor bodies and has the field of view of a 16-35mm lens on a full frame camera. A very nice walking around lens for capturing scenics and 35mm is a classic street photography focal length if the situation presents itself.

These first two shots are to show the extremes of this lens. Both are 5 file HDR processed images. As usual, exposure information for HDR files are for the normally exposed shot.

EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM at 22mm, f/5.6, 1/350 sec., ISO 100

EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM at 10mm, f/5.6, 1/500 sec., ISO 100
At Waterford Harbor, some barges and tugs were resting for the weekend and I liked the mix of colors. I also shot five exposures here but for for some reason the camera was set for spot metering and the center of the frame is much brighter than the scene as a whole so the normal exposure was underexposed. I used the normally exposed file and the two that were +1 and +2 over exposed (although in reality were not) for three image HDR processing.

EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM at 22mm, f/4.5, 1/2000 sec., ISO 100

EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM at 20mm, f/4.5, 1/2000 sec., ISO 100