Sunday, August 3, 2014

Focus practice and 8 fps

Swinging a camera lens around accurately can take practice. Doing it while trying to focus on a fast moving bird takes even more practice. 

This tern was shot at Bolsa Chica reserve in Huntington Beach, a very nice tidal marsh that used to be an oil drilling field. There are a couple of things I do to shoot this type of shot:

1 - autofocus is set by the back button only, not the main shutter button
2 - exposure was set manually, and dropped 1/2 stop because of the white
3 - 8 frames per second

I know that some people manually focus this type of shot, my eyes are not that good anymore. I am impressed they can, but I like to live in my limits. If you have a hummingbird feeder, you can practice on them, and get some good shots.  But don't cheat by just waiting for them to return to their favorite spot. 

ISO 640, 1/2000 f 6.4. Canon 7d  100-400 

Friday, January 24, 2014

Solar eclipses

A fair number people look at photos like this one and ask why the rays of the sun are at an angle. Their not actually, they rays of the sun are very parallel this far away from the sun.

The reason for the angles is due to the angle we see, not the angle of the light rays. Draw a bunch of parallel lines on paper, and then in between two of the lines, draw an angle of about 90 degrees.  That's roughly what we see.  I know we can see more than 90 degrees, that has more to do with the curved nature of our retina.

Understanding light and how it looks allows me to get better photographs. That and pure chance.

Trees eclipsing the sun at Lake Merced.