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Author Topic: Wildlife Tips?  (Read 7266 times)

Cory

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Wildlife Tips?
« on: June 22, 2013, 02:40:14 PM »
     Any tips for a new wildlife photographer about to hit his first big excursion?  Do you use Spot and Partial Metering often as well as Center-Point Focus?  Av or Tv; generally?  AI Servo usually?
     Thanks for any guidance although I'm sure I'll have to learn a lot just by doing.
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Wildlife Tips?
« on: June 22, 2013, 02:40:14 PM »

rpt

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Re: Wildlife Tips?
« Reply #1 on: June 23, 2013, 01:18:32 AM »
     Any tips for a new wildlife photographer about to hit his first big excursion?  Do you use Spot and Partial Metering often as well as Center-Point Focus?  Av or Tv; generally?  AI Servo usually?
     Thanks for any guidance although I'm sure I'll have to learn a lot just by doing.
What kind of wild life?

Menace

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Re: Wildlife Tips?
« Reply #2 on: June 23, 2013, 02:47:17 AM »
One needs a lot of patience when shooting wildlife - but as rpt asked, what type of wildlife?
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Sporgon

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Re: Wildlife Tips?
« Reply #3 on: June 23, 2013, 02:53:35 AM »
My tip on wildlife photography would be: get a longer lens.

Whatever lens you use, it never seems to be long enough !

Cory

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Re: Wildlife Tips?
« Reply #4 on: June 23, 2013, 08:50:53 AM »
Thanks.  Bear, whales, birds (espcially eagles), people at the buffet, etc.
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RGF

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Re: Wildlife Tips?
« Reply #5 on: June 23, 2013, 10:01:08 AM »
     Any tips for a new wildlife photographer about to hit his first big excursion?  Do you use Spot and Partial Metering often as well as Center-Point Focus?  Av or Tv; generally?  AI Servo usually?
     Thanks for any guidance although I'm sure I'll have to learn a lot just by doing.

mostly matrix unless I am shooting very light or dark subjects.  In africa a lion in the tall grass is perfect middle tone.  So is ..

I mostly shoot AV (though occasionally M when the exposure is tricky).  AI Servo - yes.

I just got a 1Dx and I will try auto ISO but not sure this will work on other canon cameras.  I think Nikon has figure it out.

rpt

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Re: Wildlife Tips?
« Reply #6 on: June 23, 2013, 02:03:06 PM »
Thanks.  Bear, whales, birds (espcially eagles), people at the buffet, etc.
For birds I usually set AI Servo AF case 1, M with auto ISO or Tv and center focus. Shutter speed for birds and whales should at least be twice the focal length; never shot a bear so cant say - and I am basing this from my experience with my 100-400L @400. People at a buffet I guess you will need to change the AF mode for the AI servo if the person you are tracking is ducking in and out of the crowd...

You know, Gary, eml58 and a couple of others would be the goto people for this. They shoot wildlife. Take a look at this link for a bird shot by Gary. Some of your answers are there.
http://www.canonrumors.com/forum/index.php?topic=8079.msg282972#msg282972
« Last Edit: June 23, 2013, 02:06:07 PM by rpt »

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Re: Wildlife Tips?
« Reply #6 on: June 23, 2013, 02:03:06 PM »

neuroanatomist

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Re: Wildlife Tips?
« Reply #7 on: June 23, 2013, 02:36:39 PM »
For flying/moving birds/wildlife, I generally use M mode, 1/1600 s, f/6.3, Auto ISO, AI Servo with the center point selected with 8-pt expansion, and evaluative metering.  For perched/static birds/wildlife, I use Av mode with Auto ISO and a minimum shutter speed of 1/500 s (I sometimes dial that back to 1/250 s in low light), One Shot with Spot AF, and spot metering.

Having said that, IIRC you are using a T1i/500D so several of those options aren't available to you. In particular, in M mode, Auto ISO will be fixed at 400 so that's not a good idea - you'd be better off with Tv mode, 1/1600 s and auto ISO, although that will mean your lens will often be wide open (I like f/6.3 or f/7.1 for a little more sharpness from the 100-400 and a bit more DoF).

Have a great trip!
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Re: Wildlife Tips?
« Reply #8 on: June 23, 2013, 04:03:42 PM »
Do you use Spot and Partial Metering often as well as Center-Point Focus?  Av or Tv; generally?

* Mode: For wildlife (I've been shooting (semi-)wild horses during the last months a lot) I'm using Av to pre-set the desired depth of field. With the 6d/5d3/1dx or Magic Lantern's auto iso you can then set a lowest shutter speed so you don't get motion blur, and let the camera set the iso. If you use flash remember that beyond x-sync the flash power drops a lot, so you might want to lock the shutter speed at x-sync.

* Metering: For servo af I use spot (center point af, only the 1d can link it to other af points), otherwise eval with a little ec correction which is a matter of experience.

AI Servo usually? Thanks for any guidance although I'm sure I'll have to learn a lot just by doing.

* AF: Everyone raves about how important ai servo is, an this is certainly true for sports & action. But for non-moving wildlife you'll usually want the eyes in focus and if the animal isn't at 90 degrees angle servo will focus on the front, i.e. with a thinner depth of field the eyes will be out of focus. So use one-shot af and either focus the eyes & recompose, or with a 1d/5d3 af select the correct af point, plus don't be too shy to re-af and re-shoot a couple of times because getting the eyes in focus is a lot of hit & miss really.

Don Haines

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Re: Wildlife Tips?
« Reply #9 on: June 23, 2013, 04:43:53 PM »
Thanks.  Bear, whales, birds (espcially eagles), people at the buffet, etc.

I'd be looking for an 800mm lens... people at buffets can be dangerous and you don't want to get real close.

Seriously though, I'd read up on the habits of the intended target.... it can help you to anticipate what they will do next.... and never underestimate the value of food... it works like a charm with small animals and birds. Caution: do not try this with polar bears... they see you as food....
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rpt

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Re: Wildlife Tips?
« Reply #10 on: June 23, 2013, 05:12:47 PM »
Thanks.  Bear, whales, birds (espcially eagles), people at the buffet, etc.

I'd be looking for an 800mm lens... people at buffets can be dangerous and you don't want to get real close.
Ha ha ha! So true - you don't want to mess with that lot - they are an "endangering" species. They'll run you over if you come in between them and the buffet table. I would even add a 1.4x multiplier to the 800mm ;)

neuroanatomist

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Re: Wildlife Tips?
« Reply #11 on: June 23, 2013, 05:50:05 PM »
Thanks.  Bear, whales, birds (espcially eagles), people at the buffet, etc.

I'd be looking for an 800mm lens... people at buffets can be dangerous and you don't want to get real close.
Ha ha ha! So true - you don't want to mess with that lot - they are an "endangering" species. They'll run you over if you come in between them and the buffet table. I would even add a 1.4x multiplier to the 800mm ;)

I'm surprised you both neglected to recommend a weather sealed body/lens for the inevitable cruise ship buffet line food fights.  ;)
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rpt

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Re: Wildlife Tips?
« Reply #12 on: June 23, 2013, 05:58:02 PM »
Thanks.  Bear, whales, birds (espcially eagles), people at the buffet, etc.

I'd be looking for an 800mm lens... people at buffets can be dangerous and you don't want to get real close.
Ha ha ha! So true - you don't want to mess with that lot - they are an "endangering" species. They'll run you over if you come in between them and the buffet table. I would even add a 1.4x multiplier to the 800mm ;)

I'm surprised you both neglected to recommend a weather sealed body/lens for the inevitable cruise ship buffet line food fights.  ;)
I figured a 800mm coupled with a 1.4x would help him get shots from the crows nest. ;)

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Re: Wildlife Tips?
« Reply #12 on: June 23, 2013, 05:58:02 PM »

Mick

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Re: Wildlife Tips?
« Reply #13 on: June 24, 2013, 05:46:32 PM »
I wont advise on the technical stuff, ill let others more qualified than me. Gear wise, depends on what you want to shoot and your budget. Best advice I can give is practice a lot. Try differant things, ways to shoot etc. Think of the angle at which your shooting, percieve what you will see in your head and give it a go. Always look behind the subject. Dont want stuff poking out the birds head or a horizon through the horses body. Check your histogram and avoid blown pixels. Lots of exp comp. No photoshop in wildlife shots, leave that to the graphic artists. Above all, enjoy yourself and just keep trying new things.
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Re: Wildlife Tips?
« Reply #14 on: June 26, 2013, 10:28:12 AM »
Thanks.  Bear, whales, birds (espcially eagles), people at the buffet, etc.

I'd be looking for an 800mm lens... people at buffets can be dangerous and you don't want to get real close.


Most definitely! Might want to wear gloves, too...sometimes buffet people can be rabid...you don't want to get bit when one of 'em goes crazy!

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Re: Wildlife Tips?
« Reply #14 on: June 26, 2013, 10:28:12 AM »