Posted on October 17, 2020
I was cleaning up old backup hard drives and found this series of images of a Cedar Waxwing dining on insects caught in a web under a branch. This was many, many years ago early in the morning. I was using a Canon 1D mkIII with a 400mm Canon DO lens and a flash with a Better Beamer Flash Extender to fill in the dark areas. I was on an observation platform and the Cedar Waxwing was almost level with me as I was photographing the waxwing. It is amazing how much better our digital cameras are now compared to the early days!
Posted on June 21, 2020
This is a series of Blue Dasher Dragonfly images taken with a 400mm DO lens, but I also used an on camera flash with a Better Beamer Flash extender to help fill in the shadow details on the dragonflies. Also for some I set the flash so I was slightly overexposing on the subject dragonfly. This way when I compensated for the correct exposure on the dragonfly, the background would be darker and a little more dramatic.
Category: Blog, Dragonflies, In Camera Photo Effects, Nature Still Lifes, Photo Tips, Tips & Techniques, yard & pond Tagged: Better Beamer Flash Extender, blue Dasher Dragonflies, Blue Dasher Dragonfly, camera techniques, Canon 400mm f/4 DO lens, canon on camera flash, Dragonflies, dragonfly, on Camera flash
Posted on May 28, 2020
This is a series of some Blue Dasher & other Dragonfly images I shot over a few years using a technique for getting softer smoother backgrounds for dragonflies that you can not get close to photograph. Depth of field is limited with this technique, but I like the softer backgrounds which makes the detail in the dragonfly stand out. The subject Dragonflies are about about 5 to 9 feet away. Usually they are on a plant or branch in or over the water. Plus I get closer up images not needing a large or any cropping. I was using a Canon 400mm DO lens with a 1.4x teleconverter(s) and extension tubes to get closer focus on the small (about 1.5 inches long) Dragonflies. Basically converting the lens to only closer focusing capability. Sometimes I would setup the equipment with the lens, then extension tubes, the teleconverter and then camera. Or have the lens, teleconverter, extension tubes, then camera body. Different arrangements of extension tube(s) & teleconverters gives different “focus zones”. Depending on the width & position of the extension tubes used is how close you can focus on your subject. With all the added converter(s) & extension tubes you may loose autoexposure so I mainly set exposure by looking at a preview shot or histogram and adjust exposure from there. It takes a while to get consistent results because there are so many variables. But it works well once you get used to it. Many times I use fill flash to help light the subject because I loose so much light with certain combinations of teleconverter(s) and extension tubes.
Category: Blackwater NWR, Cambridge MD, Blog, Brigantine NWR, Oceanville NJ, Dragonflies, Equipment, Favorite Locations, Insects, Tips & Techniques, yard & pond Tagged: Better Beamer Flash Extender, Blue Dasher, Blue Dasher Dragonfly, Canon Teleconverters Canon Extension Tubes, closeup photography, extension tubes, fill flash, Male Blue Dasher Dragonfly
Posted on May 14, 2020
One of my favorite subjects are Dragonflies & Damselflies. The trouble is l have a wide variety of favorite subjects! This series was shot a few years ago at a somewhat local tree covered stream in Mahwah NJ. I could not get real close because of the stream they were over so I used a Canon 400mm DO lens with extension tubes. This enabled me to get somewhat frame filling images with a very smooth background. With the extension tubes I lost quite a bit of light so I used a Canon flash for filling in the shadows somewhat. Also because of the extension tubes, I had a limited depth of field that gave me extremely soft smooth backgrounds.
The Featured image was shot at f/8, 1/200th second @ ISO 1250, 2 images for a focus stack to get detail in the left wing, with an exposure compensation of -1.33 because of the fill flash. This also made the background a little darker
Posted on July 25, 2016
Dragonflies are one of my favorite subjects. I usually use a Canon 400mm f/4 DO lens with an extension tube, a 1.4X Series III teleconverter, and then another extension tube. This combination, with the extension tubes actually magnifies the image on the sensor. These were probably 8 to 10 ft away, but still filled the frame. I also use a flash with a Better Beamer flash extender to light them. The combination of the extension tubes and teleconverter totally confuses the metering, so I manually figure out an f/stop by trial and error. But it works for these kind of shots and I am not right in their “faces”.