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Messages - Mr Bean

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Animal Kingdom / Re: Show your Bird Portraits
« on: December 07, 2013, 04:47:24 PM »
Totally amazing shots everyone. I am blown away. Thanks for posting. :)
I agree. Now I am wondering how to save money for the 600mm! May be I'll hit on a bank. ;)
+1. I have to restrict my viewing of this thread, knowing my bank balance is in jeopardy, every time I view so many great images ;)

Animal Kingdom / Re: Show your Bird Portraits
« on: December 07, 2013, 04:43:12 PM »
Red-breasted Merganser drake...

Exceptional BIF image Harv!  Beautiful. What shutter speed, lens, etc?

Australia / Re: Need some advice from Aussie CR Members
« on: December 07, 2013, 04:39:33 PM »
One more query:
We recently bought an apartment in India and the wife wants to know where to get good shopping done in Melbourne, for:
1. Home deco (e.g. lamp shades)
2. Kitchen utensils (apparently she likes the Horwood make)
3. Christmas deco (reusable stuff)
OK, that's 3 queries  ;D
Regarding #2, there's a catering equipment supply company called "Chefs Hat", in South Melbourne (its opposite the South Melbourne Market). I'm not sure if they have the Horwood brand, but you could contact them....

Regarding #1, I'm not sure. I've been told I spend too much on camera gear and not on house deco ;)

Landscape / Re: Deep Sky Astrophotography
« on: December 05, 2013, 07:38:15 AM »
Nice pic's folks.

jrista, regarding your technique, I like the simpleness of it (not using any tracking), to achieve a great result. The last time I took a picture of M42, I had gas sensitized film, and the exposure was 1.5hrs ;)

I'll give this approach a go in the next month, as Orion steadily rises.

Lenses / Re: Birding 11 Days with the 600mm
« on: December 04, 2013, 12:18:55 AM »
Mr.'ll have a blast with it.  A few other things I think I failed to mention:  unless you are in the sheer solitude-wilderness, walking around in public will cause lots of attention.
Yeah, I can imagine the comments. It's bad enough with the 5D3 + 300mm f4 (a white lens) with the monopod :)

I have a 20+ acre bush reserve behind my place, where it's just me, the camera and the birds, kangaroos, wallabies, etc. :)

Lenses / Re: Birding 11 Days with the 600mm
« on: December 03, 2013, 09:39:00 PM »
Thanks for the report. I have the 5D3 with grip, and, sometime mid next year, will get the 600mm series II. My primary use will be for birding and wildlife. I like the idea of the handle. As you have suggested, I'll hire one early next year, to get a better idea of what I'm taking on :)

Australia / Re: Need some advice from Aussie CR Members
« on: December 03, 2013, 04:32:50 PM »
Nick, thank you very much.
I'll be staying in Clarinda (so its not exactly in Melbourne, I'm told) ... how far would it be to Mornington Peninsula or Bellarine Peninsula?
Re: Night shots.
Clarinda is SE of Melbourne, so, from there I'd head to the Mornington Peninsula (the Monash freeway is nearby). You could make an afternoon or a day of it. Head down (with the family) to the Portsea area. You can visit Point Nepean (a National Park at the head of Port Phillip bay). Have dinner at the Portsea pub as the sun sets over the bay (some beaut sunset pic's perhaps?), then when dark, head over to the back beaches for some night shots (they are only 15min away). But, mid December means its light until 9:30 or so, and night shots won't happen until after 10pm. But, something to think about :)

Oh, and its probably 1.25-1.5hrs drive from Clarinda.

Australia / Re: Need some advice from Aussie CR Members
« on: December 03, 2013, 05:57:11 AM »
DAY 1 - Melbourne Zoo
DAY 2 & 3 - Lorne , Great Ocean Road, Apollo Bay & Twelve Apostles
DAY 4 - Aquarium
DAY 5 - Dandenongs Ranges & Puffing Billy.
DAY 6 - City, Museum & a 1 hour sightseeing trip of the city on Harley Davidson
DAY 7 - 
DAY 8 -
Springvale & Chadstone - Shopping Centre
DAY 9 - Werribee Zoo - open range zoo
DAY 10 - San Remos & Nobies (philip Island)
DAY 11 -
DAY 12 -
Healesville Wildlife Sanctuary
DAY 13 -
DAY 14 -
DAY 15 -

Hi Rienzphotoz,

I am from Melbourne, and I have to say, you have a packed itinerary :)

One more question: 
I have the CamRanger which is capable of Intervelometer capability, but I want a cheap back-up timer remote, just in case the battery in CamRanger runs out of juice ... Does anyone know a good camera store in Melbourne where they sell cheap remote timers for 5D MK III?
There is a congregation of camera stores in Elizabeth Street in the Melbourne CBD, between Bourke and Lonsdale Streets. Compare prices and then make them do you a deal, they are reasonably competitive. Always helps if you are purchasing more than one item. Ted's is probably the cheapest overall. Enjoy your trip.
There's one up Little Bourke with good prices (Camera Lane). The bigger ones in Elizabeth St can be a little more expensive, as they have the better locations. Worth checking out.

For night pic's either the Mornington Peninsula or Bellarine Peninsula (down near Geelong). Either way, it's about 1.5hrs drive, mostly on freeways. Just bear in mind that it's summer holiday season, and those 2 locations are jam packed. Ocean Grove or Barwon Heads would probably be the pick for me. As it is, I'm about an hours drive NE of Melbourne and I get pretty clear skies. From my backyard....

Trams are handy, if you are staying in the City. Just be aware of the ticketing system, Myki, which almost works ;)

Lygon Street (Carlton), is a good place to eat. Lots of choice in many different styles of food. Easy to get to by tram from the City.

I'll try to think of other things, as they pop into my head. Have a great time :)



Lenses / Re: Best lens for night time lapse
« on: December 03, 2013, 05:23:46 AM »
RokSamBow 14.......the newer version (AS ED UMC).  I used the Tokina 11-16 on crop, sold it and am getting the 14 My bigger problem at night is dew, but I've finally solved it...........
Could you please share how you solved it?
This will work....

Or just search for Dew Heaters.

Canon EF Prime Lenses / Re: Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM
« on: November 30, 2013, 04:39:36 AM »
Duck Orchid finally makes its appearance. It's taken 2 months, from one small leaf, to a stem, and finally a flower :)
A bit of a rare one around here. Only 3 plants in usual little plot I find them in (last year, they didn't even appear).
5D3 with 100mm L Macro IS.....and a lot of patience :)

Animal Kingdom / Re: Show your Bird Portraits
« on: November 26, 2013, 07:17:03 AM »
Yeah a step up in imaging tools really does make a difference and there are a lot of great tools on the market. Once you get a bit more into editing I found it helps with photography because you learn more about the data capturing and what you can accomplish in post.

Snagged this egret shot today, pretty pleased as this iso 3200 and this is more than sharp enough for anything i use these pictures for.

Great-Egret by Synkka~, on Flickr
Nice pic. I find the 5D3 works well at ISO 1600-3200 when I use uncropped images. Even at ISO 1600 I can crop, but turn the NR up to +20 or so in LR, and the noise smooths out nicely. The thing I'm learning in LR is the subtle changes that you can make, just to tweak the image. The "highlight" slider is one that I've recently discovered, and how it brings out the detail that I thought was blown out :)

Animal Kingdom / Re: Show your Bird Portraits
« on: November 26, 2013, 07:02:33 AM »
So, best tools? Lightroom, without question, to start. Photoshop, once you gain enough skill to understand why you need it. ;)
And a +1 again. I have PS, but since buying LR earlier in the year, I've used PS maybe twice. LR does everything I need in subtle changes to an image, plus, the cataloging/tagging and searching ability is by far, one of the best features.

Animal Kingdom / Re: Show your Bird Portraits
« on: November 25, 2013, 05:59:44 PM »
Apologies for the picture quality.. these are VERY heavily cropped images taken in poor light, handheld, from a long distance away. I did not have a decent lens with me when this happened....

For the last week or so there has been a huge flock of geese behind my house. The bay froze completely over last night (-18C) and in the morning the geese were standing on the ice. As I was looking at them a Bald Eagle swooped down and landed on one of the geese. They all took to the air, this one tried, but with an eagle on it's back it did not get far.

I did not know that eagles hunted geese, and would not have believed it without seeing it.... has anyone else seen this behaviour or heard of it before?
Wow, nice capture Don!  Our Wedge Tail Eagles down here tend to feast on carrion, so, I've not see this behavior down under.

Animal Kingdom / Re: Show your Bird Portraits
« on: November 25, 2013, 05:57:36 PM »
Fascinating insight into how different people approach birding. I prefer to just wander and see what I find, I think working with a shorter lens you learn to get closer where possible. I have considered setting up a feeder but the local miners and parrots are so close anyway it hasn't seemed worthwhile.
Can't remember if I posted this but I was at a stream waiting for fairy wrens to calm down and this lorikeet landed about 2m from me. I think it highlights what I enjoy about birding, that you don't know what you will see.
Nice pic Synkka. The "wandering" approach is similar to my experiences. These days, I tend to put the 300mm on the camera, with monopod, and wander through 20+ acres of bush behind my place. In some of the thicket areas, near a stream, if I wait for 10-15min, the smaller birds, like the wrens and spine bills start to come closer. It can be a most relaxing time, that 15min wait :)

Animal Kingdom / Re: Show your Bird Portraits
« on: November 24, 2013, 08:20:25 PM » how to be positioned so stuff isn't in the road and the lighting is favorable.  I then sit and wait and observe what's going on with anticipation.
When I first started bird photography, at the beginning of the year, I got rather frustrated with the number of "in focus twigs" and "out of focus birds" pic's ;)  Plus, the number of pic's where I had blurry twigs / branches / leaves across the subject. But, like any apprenticeship, if you persist, and take lots of mental notes, you do improve. I'm far better these days of anticipating the setup of the shot and how the subject will move. It is digital after all, so, crank away, it won't cost you :)

With my camera setup (a 5D3), one of the best things I did was to setup a couple of custom settings. They are both similar in settings (AI servo, spot metering, Av, ISO 400, etc), with the only big difference being the focus points. One is setup for a single, center point, the other, a 9 point focus group. The single point is for birds in a bushy / treed environment, the other for more open spaces, where I can use a larger focus area. Plus, I've tweaked the sensitivity of the focus points, to react a little quicker. I think I've set these 2 to C3 and C2 on the dial. The reason being, is that, without looking at the dial, I can turn it all the way and know that the setting is for single point. If I need the group focus setting, I turn it all the way, then come back one notch, if that makes sense :)

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