Photo Tip: Reverse Stacked Lens Macro ____ 2011/08

With the prolonged gray-sky (Seattle) weather stretching into July, I started looking for subjects and techniques to get some sort of advantage: subjects I could pursue regardless of the gloom; techniques that eliminate a gray sky. Shooting under a gray sky is like photography in a studio moved outdoors—you just don’t want to point your […]

Expedition Critique

“Old wisdom says, ‘Find out what you did wrong and never do it again.‘  New wisdom says, ‘Find out what you did right, so you can be sure to do it again.‘  The old way suggests moving ahead while looking back over your shoulder. The new way suggests moving forward by finding safe footholds and […]

Expedition Trip Photography Plan, Part II—the Photo Plan ___ 2011/04

Some photographers travel to shoots without researching the site. The idea is to have “no preconceptions”, I suppose, or to look at scenes as they unfold with “fresh eyes”. I like the idea of “no preconceptions”, but I think the more you know about a place the better prepared you are, and the better you […]

Expedition Trip Photography Plan, Part I—the Gear ___ 2011/03

Two years ago, I wrote about photography on a longish kayak trip (Ten-day Power Trip, 06/2009) in Baja, a trip without the ability to charge batteries. My solution then was extra batteries and plenty of flash memory, coupled with judicious use of those resources. A solar charger didn’t make sense—the trip wasn’t long enough—and a […]

More 2010 Favorite Images Critique ___ 2011/01

Five more favorite images from 2010. It bares repeating: keep that viewfinder glued to your eyeball and look, look, look . . . Mazama Ridge after Sunset: 2010 wasn’t a good year for Northwest wildflower photography. The mountain meadow flowers were late; many never made it. I made numerous visits to Mt. Rainier, but I […]

Photo Tip: Tripod Tricks ___ 2010/09

Last month I arrived in evening light at the Mirror Lakes reflection pond at Mt. Rainer National Park. True to its name, the quiet little tarn was a mirror, but instead of the Mountain it reflected clouds that surrounded Rainier’s massive girth. I looked about for an alternate photo to salvage the shoot. August is […]

Tilt and Telephoto: Tools for Summer Wildflowers ___ 2010/06

Mt. Rainier National Park. A conventional 24mm could capture this shot (maybe), but seeing it is far easier with the TS-E. With the conventional 24mm, the depth-of-field preview button darkens the viewfinder too much; an alternative, an in-camera (digital) test shot evaluation, is time consuming. Near-to-far focus that’s not attainable with a conventional short telephoto […]

Canon 7D: AI Servo Set-up for BIF (Bird in Flight) _ 03/2010

I bought a Canon 7D in December, and have used it for some tough bird in flight (BIF) shooting, as well as for perched but flighty songbirds. My hope for the 7D was that I finally had a camera that could nail a high percentage of BIF shots, images that my primary camera, the Canon […]

Lightroom 2 Spot Removal (on steroids) ___ 02/2010

Finished image after clone and cropping is much stronger than original.

The Spot Removal tool introduced in Lightroom 2 was a nice feature, part of set of tools that allowed manipulation of individual pixels on RAW files. Almost coincidently, though, manufacturers introduced dSLR cameras with self-cleaning sensors that worked so well Spot Removal was rarely needed for dust touch-up. I nonetheless use the tool frequently—for wildlife […]

Photo Tip: Frame It! ___ 01/2010

Camera and tripod instinctively pop out when we view a mountain sunset or ocean seascape. The tripod legs spread; we mount the camera, plug in the cable release and fire away. Later we inspect the photo and discover that it doesn’t match our memory. An elementary problem in photography is translating a dynamic 3D world […]