Great Egret Flying In

The featured image is a Great Egret flying in and landing on the branches that were in the water at a small nature area in Northern NJ. I used to photograph there years ago and since have moved from that area. I was going through images and decided to use these in my blog. As I was working on these images, I liked the reflections in the very still, calm water, giving a smooth mirror image without any small ripples or waves. All images were with a Canon 400mm DO lens.

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Later that morning the water started to have a few waves. The Egret stayed for quite a while and seemed content to stay on the branches.

Hoar Frost With iPhone 11 Pro

I went out in the yard early yesterday and noticed a few leaves with frost. As I looked further I saw most of the leaves in the shade and grasses were covered with heavy Hoar Frost and looked interesting. Since I am still getting used to the iPhone 11 Pro, for the multi-image pano series,  I shot a few more images than usual to help prevent some distortion. But the sun was starting to melt some as it was rising, so I worked quickly to get some of the more interesting subjects. The featured image is 5 overlapping images (2 top, 2 bottom & 1 center) with the 4.3mm lens on my iPhone 11 Pro, then assembled and blended them in Photoshop. For the featured image, I overlapped more than usual since I am still getting use to the iPhone 11 Pro for panos since the lenses are so small. (Sometimes in using the iPhone pano feature, you get distortion or a “warping” look in the panorama). So most times I shoot a series of images to assemble myself in Photoshop. The lenses in the 11 Pro are 1.5mm ( 13mm, Full Frame Digital Equivalent is 13mm), 4.3mm ( 26mm equivalent, Full Frame Digital), and 6mm ( 52mm equivalent, Full Frame Digital).

Frost B_2img iP11_6mm_16x9_pano v1

2 image panorama, iPhone 11 Pro, 4.3mm lens, iPhone set to 16 x 9 format.

The following images are just single shots (except where noted) with the iPhone set to 16×9 capture format.

Hoar_Frost 3img IP_11_Pro_4_3 set 16x9_v1Hoar_Frost_v1_4_3_mm_v1_IMG_1269Hoar_Frost_IP_11_16x9_ v1IMG_1280Hoar_Frost_v1_IP_11_4_3mm_v1_IMG_1327

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2 Image panorama 4.3mm lens, to show more of the leaf and surrounding area with Hoar Frost.

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Hoar Frost on Leaves, 4.3 mm lens, 16×9 iPhone format, single image of above image.

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Hoar Frost on Dandelion, 4.3 mm, iPhone 11 Pro, 16×9 format. (It was quite warm one day last week and a dandelion popped up.)

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Hoar Frost on Leaf, 4.3mm, iPhone 11 Pro, 16×9 format

Blackwater NWR Snow Geese Sunset Fly By

As we were starting to go towards the end of the Wildlife Drive at the Blackwater NWR to wait to photograph some sunset images, we noticed a flock of Snow Geese flying through the colorful sky. I shot a few shots as they flew off and then moved on to setup for the end of the Wildlife Drive colorful sunset.

Plant Panorama

I liked the shape and curves of this plant. But I wanted a clean background, so I used a long lens but shot wide open so I had a soft clean green background. Also 3 overlapping images which I then assembled in Photoshop. I did not want to back up and get it in one shot because then I would also have more depth of field which means more background detail which I did not want. The closer you get with a long lens, the smoother the background when you shoot with the aperture wide open. I liked the curves and details on the plant and the arched shape. Shot with a close focusing 300mm lens @ f/4.

Davidson’s Mill Pond Park HDR Vertical Panorama

We were going to go to a National Wildlife Refuge today but were not sure if it would be open because of the Government Shutdown. So we went to a local County Park to take a walk. It got up to 55 degrees here in NJ after weeks of very very cold weather, sometimes in single digits.

I did not find a lot of photo subjects, but by a smaller pond, the sun was high in the sky reflecting in the ice covering the pond. I thought it would be fun to try an HDR bracketed series of both exposures and images for the pano. I liked the reflections on the ice in the pond and stopped down to f/16 to get a nice starburst on the sun. Shooting multiple images vertically and horizontally with overlaps for both the panorama and Shutter speeds for the HDR effect.

Images shot @ 24mm, f/16, bracketed series of different shutter speeds for the HDR effect and series of compositions for the panorama.

Day Lily Stamen Image Stack

The Day Lily’s were blooming in our garden, so I wanted to do some closeup image stacks for practice. Usually I use a 50mm or 100mm macro lens, but I wanted a little more distance to concentrate on the stamens. It was a cloudy day so it was as if I was using a giant soft box so there were no harsh shadows to deal with. I used a 150mm macro to help concentrate on the stamens and still give me the working distance I wanted. This was a 6 image stack, focused pretty much just on the stamens. I did not want the whole flower in sharp focus, so I concentrated my focus stack only anthers on the end of the stamens. Again combined and assembled in Photoshop. Each Lily has 6 stamens attached at the base of the petals, and each stamen has a stalk called the filament that ends with a two-lobbed anther filled with yellow dust like yellow pollen.

Rain Drop Image Stacking

Over the Weekend we had multiple series of rain storms, some with heavy rain. It would rain, then the sun would come out, then it would rain again, multiple times over. I went out in the yard during a sunny session in between, to look for rain drops. I was using a Sigma 150mm f/2.8 macro but did not have a tripod at home. So I tried multiple series of images, for handheld image stacking.  Trying to be as steady as possible, I shot multiple series on a variety of groupings of water drops. These range from 3 image stacks up to 19 image stacks per image. Being hand held, it was hard to focus in a series of focus points without moving the frame somewhat. Actually, some I moved quite a bit. The newer versions of Photoshop CC seem to do a really great job of aligning and assembling images. And then filling some areas with content-aware fill to give a finished image. They would have been better if I used a tripod, but overall I am pleased with what I did get.

The Featured Image is a 10 shot handheld image stack.

 

Raindrop stk 1

7 image stack

Rain dropstack 3_10img

10 image stack

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10 image stack

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8 image stack

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7 image stack

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18 image stack

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3 image stack

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11 image stack

RainDrops 19_img

19 image stack

Raindrops 21 3img

3 image stack

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3 image stack

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