Sunday, April 25, 2010

Succesful hunting.

A good morning's hunting today. All pictures are clickable for the big version.

First of all a woodpecker, great spotted woodpecker if I am not mistaken.

Normally these birds are difficult to approach and almost impossible to get on eye level. Today I was lucky. It spotted me, flew a circle and decided to inspect this young tree, something I've never seen one do. I approached slowly with the camera on my eye and took care to gently "roll the shutter.
Exposure: 0.001 sec (1/800)
Aperture: f/5.6
Focal Length: 300 mm
Focal Length: 302.0 mm
ISO Speed: 720

Next a blue tit. Common as muck but still a nice bird.

I should have taken a bit more care with my settings.
Exposure: 0.003 sec (1/400)
Aperture: f/13.0
Focal Length: 300 mm
Focal Length: 302.0 mm
ISO Speed: 640
If I'd gone down a bit on iso, up a touch on shutter speed I could have ended around f8-f11 and would have gotten something just a bit sharper. The 70-300VR is reaching the diffraction limit at this aperture and the D300 has already passed that.

Last shot, a mute swan.

I noticed two serious photographers working on something near the water. Big lenses,lens coats, tripods, camouflage gear and taking their time. So I walked up slowly as not to disturb whatever they were shooting. Mute swans are not easily scared, you see this species in parks even. This one swam up to see if I was going to offer any food but was distracted by some water plants.

Exposure: 1/2500 sec
Aperture: f/9.0
Focal Length: 270 mm
Focal Length: 277.0 mm
ISO Speed: 640

Now why is the shutterspeed so high? Simple, I metered on the swan and by this time the sun was out already. I did pull a bit in processing but not too much. If I'd used matrix metering here I would have ended up with proper exposed water and a fuzzy, somewhat overexposed swan.

Sharpness is as good as it is going to get with my gear.

All in all a good day. I was glad I was wearing my hat. We are approaching the time of the year now where half a liter water for a 90 minutes, 7.3km walk is not enough anymore.

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