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Author Topic: Advice for shooting pictures of eagles  (Read 5871 times)

Quasimodo

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Re: Advice for shooting pictures of eagles
« Reply #15 on: February 12, 2013, 05:29:56 PM »
Thanks East Wind. I will if I have to.. I have a request out now for maybe borrowing a 5 III as a second camera.
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Re: Advice for shooting pictures of eagles
« Reply #15 on: February 12, 2013, 05:29:56 PM »

wle

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Re: Advice for shooting pictures of eagles
« Reply #16 on: February 12, 2013, 06:50:46 PM »
Whoa, I'd make sure the 5D II goes along... because you know how to operate that camera. You can probably run it in your sleep. Guessing not so with a MK IV, or 1DX, or ...

Northstar

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Re: Advice for shooting pictures of eagles
« Reply #17 on: February 12, 2013, 10:13:26 PM »
This one was taken with the 500 f4 IS USM

Bill has a good point about dof on the super long tele's, you've got to have a 70-200 nearby for closer subjects, but this pic emphasizes my point about go big or go home....fill the frame unless there is a "story to tell" in a wider shot
« Last Edit: February 12, 2013, 10:15:19 PM by Northstar »
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Quasimodo

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Re: Advice for shooting pictures of eagles
« Reply #18 on: February 13, 2013, 01:51:54 PM »
I have finally gotten confirmation on the gear I going to use (picking it up tomorrow): a 1Dx and a 1D IV, plus a 500 F4.0 II, and a 70-200 II plus a 2xIII TC.

I have two questions if someone have time:

Am I right in assuming that the case six is right for shooting eagles, and if so, which sensitivity should it be set to?

I have not used a 1D IV before. Does anyone have a quick tip on how I can program it to have centerpoint with a few surrounding AF points?

And lastly a quick question on the 500. Is it correct when mounted on a ballhead to have it set for IS III?

Thank you in advance,

G.

PS. I bought a extra card today with 64GB, in addition to two 32GB CF, and an additional 32SD for the 1D IV. And I am also bringing a spare battery from the 1Ds III which I have been told will work on both the 1Dx and and the 1D IV. Overkill probably, but my thinking on this trip that I have anticipated for so long is to be prepared. I would rather be overprepared as far as gear is concerned, rather than being there and miss opportunities given the lack of... The scary thing now is that if the eagles show up (which I believe they will as this is close to their nesting area), and the gear is right, I have no other excuse than myself if the pictures turn out bad... :)
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Re: Advice for shooting pictures of eagles
« Reply #19 on: February 13, 2013, 02:14:33 PM »
Try  f/5.6 - f/8.0 range  to get dof  no more iso then you need. but keep the speed up high 1/3000 1/4000 thats what gets the sharp shots   the more the better !! shooting with a shorter len a little less   !! good luck !

AprilForever

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Re: Advice for shooting pictures of eagles
« Reply #20 on: February 13, 2013, 02:24:33 PM »
1. Totally bring the 2x TC. I use the tc 2x mk III, and it is sharp and quite good.

2. Up close, to get the entire bird in focus, you will need f18 or more...

3. Shooting wide open will carry the serious risk of getting the wing in focus and the eyes out of focus, or even the eye in focus but much of the body out of focus.

Most of what I shoot is birds, so, this comes from personal experience. For the best bird advice in the world, visit birdsasart-blog.com !
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Jackson_Bill

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Re: Advice for shooting pictures of eagles
« Reply #21 on: February 13, 2013, 03:07:55 PM »
1. Totally bring the 2x TC. I use the tc 2x mk III, and it is sharp and quite good.

2. Up close, to get the entire bird in focus, you will need f18 or more...

3. Shooting wide open will carry the serious risk of getting the wing in focus and the eyes out of focus, or even the eye in focus but much of the body out of focus.

Most of what I shoot is birds, so, this comes from personal experience. For the best bird advice in the world, visit birdsasart-blog.com !

I'm not so sure about the 2x. Of course, if you've got it, bring it, it doesn't take much room but the MTF charts Canon publishes do indicate you lose some sharpness with the 2X. Also, he's bringing the 500 and a 70-200. With the 500 on the 1Dx (a FF) and the 70-200 on the APS-H, (effectively 88-250) he ought to have most of the range he needs covered. Given he's shooting from a blind, I wouldn't think he'd need (or want) the 500 and a 2x.

and a question for you - wouldn't an f18 aperture be diffraction limited?

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Re: Advice for shooting pictures of eagles
« Reply #21 on: February 13, 2013, 03:07:55 PM »

neuroanatomist

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Re: Advice for shooting pictures of eagles
« Reply #22 on: February 13, 2013, 03:12:55 PM »
I'm not so sure about the 2x. Of course, if you've got it, bring it, it doesn't take much room but the MTF charts Canon publishes do indicate you lose some sharpness with the 2X.

I would not worry about the sharpness hit with the 2x TC.  Yes, it's there on the MTF curves and ISO 12233 shots, but in real world use the images you get with a MkII supertele paired with a 2x will be better than with a 1.4x and the necessary cropping.  At least, that's been my experience with both MkIII TCs on the 600 II.
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East Wind Photography

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Re: Advice for shooting pictures of eagles
« Reply #23 on: February 13, 2013, 03:20:09 PM »
Use case 1 or 2 for Eagles.  Case 6 is great for birds like kingfishers and gulls.  Eagles are slow and graceful.

Onto another thing you will figure out soon enough but hopefully will save you some time.  Unless you are shooting eagles up against a blue sky you should use single point or spot focus.  If you use any of the other modes up against trees or water, AF will pick up on the background.  An exception to that is if the eagle fills the frame pretty fully.  If the subject is too small, 61pt, zone or expanded will pick up the background.

So if using center or spot AF, the case mode wont matter.  You will find though that your best success will be with spot AF and trying to target and track the head.




I have finally gotten confirmation on the gear I going to use (picking it up tomorrow): a 1Dx and a 1D IV, plus a 500 F4.0 II, and a 70-200 II plus a 2xIII TC.

I have two questions if someone have time:

Am I right in assuming that the case six is right for shooting eagles, and if so, which sensitivity should it be set to?

I have not used a 1D IV before. Does anyone have a quick tip on how I can program it to have centerpoint with a few surrounding AF points?

And lastly a quick question on the 500. Is it correct when mounted on a ballhead to have it set for IS III?

Thank you in advance,

G.

PS. I bought a extra card today with 64GB, in addition to two 32GB CF, and an additional 32SD for the 1D IV. And I am also bringing a spare battery from the 1Ds III which I have been told will work on both the 1Dx and and the 1D IV. Overkill probably, but my thinking on this trip that I have anticipated for so long is to be prepared. I would rather be overprepared as far as gear is concerned, rather than being there and miss opportunities given the lack of... The scary thing now is that if the eagles show up (which I believe they will as this is close to their nesting area), and the gear is right, I have no other excuse than myself if the pictures turn out bad... :)

Quasimodo

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Re: Advice for shooting pictures of eagles
« Reply #24 on: February 13, 2013, 03:21:01 PM »
Thank you all for your valuable comments, and Gary Samples, I have been admiring your shot on the thread anything shot with a 1Dx. Not only do you have a great camera and a plethora of good lenses, it is obvious that you have the chance to shoot pictures of a wide range of animals that I can only dream of :)

How about the settings. Is IS III on the 500 still right to use on a ballhead, and the case 6 for the 1Dx right for this type of shooting, and if anyone knows a quick way to programme the 1D IV for the type of shots I am facing ?:)
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AprilForever

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Re: Advice for shooting pictures of eagles
« Reply #25 on: February 13, 2013, 05:25:23 PM »
1. Totally bring the 2x TC. I use the tc 2x mk III, and it is sharp and quite good.

2. Up close, to get the entire bird in focus, you will need f18 or more...

3. Shooting wide open will carry the serious risk of getting the wing in focus and the eyes out of focus, or even the eye in focus but much of the body out of focus.

Most of what I shoot is birds, so, this comes from personal experience. For the best bird advice in the world, visit birdsasart-blog.com !

I'm not so sure about the 2x. Of course, if you've got it, bring it, it doesn't take much room but the MTF charts Canon publishes do indicate you lose some sharpness with the 2X. Also, he's bringing the 500 and a 70-200. With the 500 on the 1Dx (a FF) and the 70-200 on the APS-H, (effectively 88-250) he ought to have most of the range he needs covered. Given he's shooting from a blind, I wouldn't think he'd need (or want) the 500 and a 2x.

and a question for you - wouldn't an f18 aperture be diffraction limited?

On full frame? Not terribly. On a 7D, when the bird is close, I usually need to stop down to f11 or great. F11 is f18 on a 1dx. And, he most likely will totally need the TC 2x. A 500 mm lens is not that long, most of the time, especially not on a 1dx.
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Quasimodo

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Re: Advice for shooting pictures of eagles
« Reply #26 on: February 18, 2013, 01:47:52 PM »
Thanks a lot for great advice, and as always I was not able to utilize it all :) My fault. It was a great experience, and one I will opt for again when I get the chance. Next time I will try to go there for the Hawk season. I learned a lot about sitting quiet for 12 hours in a blind, how I have to learn the 1Dx and its infinite possibilities, and I experienced the immense pleasure of shooting with a lens like the 500 F4.0L II! - I wish I had a lot of money....

Here is one of the pictures (and I know that I used the wrong shutter speed....) It was the only chance we got to shoot pictures of eagles during the whole day (we saw three, but I only managed to capture one).  Hope you like it.

G.
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Don Haines

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Re: Advice for shooting pictures of eagles
« Reply #27 on: February 18, 2013, 04:44:52 PM »
I am thinking that if the time is there, and I have secured some shots that I like, I would like to try the multiple exposure shot feature on the 1Dx, ... Could be cool :)

I'd shoot a lot on multiple exposure mode.... Even though they are a big bird, things happen fast... wings beat faster than you can time, and you get just the right moment as it lands, etc etc. You can always delete shots you don't like.

And bring a spare battery and a spare memory card.....
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Re: Advice for shooting pictures of eagles
« Reply #27 on: February 18, 2013, 04:44:52 PM »