Tag Archives: Nature Photography

There Can Be Only One

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As I’ve mentioned many times, I’m trying to become a more ruthless editor. I got many well exposed, sharp images of bees in my backyard last week, but this one stood out as my favorite. I shared some of the others on Facebook, but I should not have done so. Others have said it: if you only show your best work, people come to believe you are a good photographer. So do you, and so you do. This will be my new editing mantra: There can be only one.

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Filed under Motivation, Nature Photography

Finding What Works for Me

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I may have found a focusing system that really works for me. More info to come…

DSC_0188 (1) DSC_0171 (1) DSC_0153 (1) DSC_0140 DSC_0109 (1)

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Filed under Camera Gear, Nature Photography

What I See Versus What I Read


All of the images in this post were shot with the Nikon D7000 and 70-200 f/2.8, as I try to decide whether to keep the DX camera.

Thom Hogan, whom I trust completely, asks, “Are you FX or DX?” It’s a tough question, and I suspect many Nikon shooters end up with both sensor sizes (if not more). I’ve owned several great DX Nikons: D70, D200, D300, and, currently, D7000. I bought my first FX camera last December; a Nikon D610.

Thom and others point out that the superb image quality of the DX cameras, which feature a smaller sensor than their FX counterparts, should be enough for most users. I’ve certainly been happy with mine. At least, until I got the FX camera. I keep reading that there is not much difference anymore, but my images tell a different story. Continue reading

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Filed under Camera Gear, Nature Photography


I don't think about the future much. When I do, I think about learning when to sacrifice precision for moment.

When to sacrifice precision for moment? How much technical quality is necessary?  Fujifilm X100s

By southern California standards, it is cold today. The grove fans thrummed all night like Colonel Kilgore’s Air Cavalry, with just a hint of Flight of the Valkyries playing in my imagination. Some rain showers this morning. Some snow on the ridge.

Some leaves hang on to a very bitter end.

Some leaves hang on to a very bitter end. Fujifilm X100s

As I walked home from St. Joseph’s, gusts of wind surrounded me with flittering, flickering orange leaves, many sparkly with raindrops catching the afternoon sun. I photographed none of this. Didn’t even raise the camera to my eye. I just stopped walking each time it happened, and watched.

Love is everywhere I go, but so is Love's shadow: Loss.

Love is everywhere I go, but so is Love’s shadow: Loss. Nikon D7000

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Filed under Nature Photography, Personal

Special Effects Via Physics

No post-processing except for the usual levels, white balance, and sharpness adjustments.

Nowadays, people look at this photo and assume the background was manipulated in Photoshop, which sadly has now become the generic name for photographic post-processing.

In fact, the strange, painterly look of non-centered items is the result of shooting with a very long lens at a very wide aperture through a mess of plants.  The center of the lens had a clear view to the head of the quail, which looks off center here because I cropped the image. The twigs and leaves between the quail and the rest of the lens interrupt light transmission and act like a diffusion filter, and shallow depth of field from the wide aperture blurs the background. Might make a mess of a landscape, but I like the way it works for this portrait.

Physics also played a role here, but let us never speak of it.

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Filed under Composition, Nature Photography, Post Processing