Blackwater NWR Clouds At Sunset

I was working on files from previous photo trips. Now that I am retired I can go through my backup drives to post images that I did not have time to post before. This is a Sunset taken at the Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge in Maryland a few years ago. Dramatic or interesting sunsets are quite often seen at Blackwater NWR. Some have told me that dramatic sunsets at Blackwater are because it is somewhat close to the coast. I am not sure on that, but Blackwater NWR does deliver on interesting sunrises & sunsets! Image taken with a 14-140mm lens @ 48mm on an Olympus body. I was going retouch out the aircraft contrails, but decided to leave them in.

Davidsons Mill Pond park Panoramas

We went to Davidsons Mill Pond Park to take a walk and see if there were any interesting photo subjects. I was traveling light & was just using my iPhone 11 Pro and an Olympus OM-D M1 with a 7.5mm Fisheye Lens. The landscape panoramas in this post were all taken with the OM-D with the 7.5mm Fisheye lens. The 7 Artisans 7.5mm Fisheye lens on a m43 camera supposedly has a Field of View of 190 degrees, but on the Olympus m43 I think it is a little less than that. Before assembling my multi-image panoramas in Photoshop, I used Photoshop’s Adaptive Wide Angle Filter to de-fisheye the images used in all the panoramas. The Featured Image is made from 4 Horizontal images of the front view of the Small Pond along the roadway. Because I was using a Fisheye lens I also overlapped the images more than usual to have a better chance of them aligning for the final image.

Small Pond, Images shot from the back of small pond, 4 Horizontal images, Stacked Vertically, 7.5mm, OMD-1
Fields of Milkweed Plants, 3 Horizontal image Panorama, 7.5mm, OMD-1
Large Lake, 3 Image stacked Vertically, Image Pano, 7.5mm, OMD-1

Brigantine Cloudscapes & Landscapes

The cloudscapes were Great on our visit to the Brigantine Division of the Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge in Oceanville New Jersey. For the Landscapes I was using 3 different setups depending on what I was trying to show in my images. For really wide views of clouds & landscapes I used an Olympus OMD-1 with a 7.5mm Fisheye lens (180 Degree FOV) or my iPhone 11 Pr0 with the 1.5mm (Full Frame Equivalent Field of view ~13mm) or the 4.3mm lens (Full Frame Equivalent ~26mm). I corrected the Fisheye lens Distortion of the 7.5mm Fisheye lens on the Olympus in Photoshop using the Adaptive Wide Angle Filter that is accessed under the main “Filter” listing on the top menu Pull Downs. For the far out or distant landscapes with flocks of birds I was using a Tamron 150-600mm lens on a Canon R (Some with a 2X Teleconverter giving me a 300mm to 1200mm).

The Featured Image is a 3 image panorama taken with a 7.5mm Fisheye Lens on an Olympus OMD Camera.

Brigantine Landscape Panorama, 8 images, iP11 using 6mm lens (Full Frame Equivalent FOV ~ 52mm)
Brigantine 4 image Panorama, iP11 Pro, 1.5mm lens (Full Frame Equivalent FOV ~ 13mm) Assembled in Photoshop
Early Morning Skyscape , iP11 Pro, 1.5mm lens, (Full Frame Equiv. FOV ~ 13mm) 3 Horizontal Images, Stacked Vertically, Pano Assembled in Photoshop
Brigantine Landscape, 3 Image Panorama, 7.5mm Fisheye Lens, OMD-1
Brigantine Landscape, iP11 Pro 1.5mm lens (Full Frame Equivalent ~13mm)
Brigantine Cloudscape, 7.5mm Fisheye, Olympus OM-D, De-Fisheyed in Photoshop
Brigantine Landscape Panorama, 6 images @ 150mm, Canon R, 150-600mm Tamron

Female Eastern Forktail Damselflies After A Rainstorm

We had a storm with heavy rain a few days ago so after it stopped raining we went to Davidsons Mill Pond Park to look for interesting raindrops to photograph. Here are some raindrops with Female Eastern Forktail Damselflies. I was using an Olympus OMD-1 with a 100-300mm Panasonic lens @ 300mm (Full Frame Camera FOV Equivalant ~600mm).

Female Eastern Forktail Damselfly #1, OMD-1, 100-300mm lens @ 300mm (Full Frame Equivalent Field of View ~600mm)
2nd Female Eastern Forktail Damselfly, OMD-1, 100-300mm lens @ 300mm (Full Frame Equivalent FOV ~600m)

Cedar Waxwings From The Audubon Plainsboro Preserve

We went for a walk at the Audubon Plainsboro Preserve near our home looking for dragonflies. As we were walking down the path that extends out into Lake McCormick we were surprised to see a pair of Cedar Waxwings. One flew off to a higher branch behind the leaves but the other posed for us giving me an opportunity to get a few fairly close images. I shot a few images than moved a little closer hoping to get some closer shots before it flew off. I was using an Olympus OM-D -Mk1 camera with a Panasonic 100-300mm lens @300mm (Full Frame Camera Equivalent ~ 600mm.)

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Multi-Image Fisheye Images

Here are some more Fisheye images taken with the 7.5mm 7 Artisans Fisheye lens on a m43 format camera. The featured image is one of my first multi-image Fisheye Panoramas. This is a 2 image Fisheye Pano taken on a gray day & light rain. With the 7.5mm Fisheye lens it seems that manually “blending” the images with a “soft” edge mask works best for assembling the panoramas in Photoshop. I then used the Adaptive Wide Angle Filter under “Filters” in Photoshop. I used the 15mm setting because the “Filter” is set up for Full Frame Digital Cameras. So the 7.5mm m43 lens would be an approximate 15mm field of view equivalent. If I ran it at 7.5mm I would get a jagged circular image in the middle of a white empty background. After you use the Adaptive Wide Angle Filter you can then fine tune your images using the “Warp” feature in Photoshop for even more fine tuning. Once you get used to using a Fisheye lens your results are more predictable and they are fun to use.

3 image Fisheye Panorama, 7.5mm, Olympus OM-D, assembled in Photoshop, Fisheye distortion somewhat corrected with Photoshop Adaptive Wide Angle Filter, than tweaked with “Warp” Filter
7.5mm Fisheye Image, OMD m43, straight out of camera. Notice “Warping” of image because of lower “Horizon Line”
Image after using Adobe Filter “Adaptive Wide Angle” Filter. Using “Adaptive Wide Angle Filter” seems to lessen the height of the image which seems to shorten the height of the image. But it seems to look more Natural than the Height in the “Fisheye” image.
7.5mm, 2 Image Panorama, OM-D, Assembled in Photoshop, then used Adobe Filter “Adaptive Wide Angle” Filter.
7.5mm, Olympus OM-D, Single Image, Adobe Filter “Adaptive Wide Angle” Adobe Filter
2 Image Panorama, 7.5mm m43 OM-D, “Fisheye” effect removed with Adobe “Adaptive Wide Angle” Filter. Shooting with Horizon somewhat centered in middle height of image lessens the weird “Fisheye Look” and then there is less fixing of “FishEye” Look of Image.

Something Fishy & DeWarping Fisheye Images

I used to use 15mm fisheye lenses on film cameras for interesting images back in the film days before digital. I usually used them for an interesting & different look here & there in multi-projector slide shows I used to produce for our Corporate clients. When Microsoft Powerpoint presentations came out, multi-projector Corporate slide shows died a quick death. With digital imaging starting to be more affordable in the early days, Fisheye lenses were not as popular in my Commercial work. When we needed one we would just borrow one from where we bought our supplies & equipment. But being retired now it is an interesting way to get very wide views and then in post processing to De-Fish them. I was looking for a used Canon 15mm Fisheye lens for landscapes, but they seemed to be going for extremely high prices. Canon discontinued the 15mm Fisheye lens (FOV 180°) replacing it with the 8-15mm Fisheye zoom. I did not want a zoom fisheye but noticed that 7 Artisans had a 7.5mm Fisheye lens for m43 cameras with a FOV of 180°. Looking online at where I usually buy my equipment lately I noticed a version 2 was about to come out in 2 -3 weeks with a 190° Field of View and with better optics. So I was going to order one, but my wife looked on Amazon and it was available now. So I had it in a couple of days. The featured image is 6 m43 images shot @ 7.5mm with an Olympus OM-D 1 with the 4:3 format. This was assembled in Photoshop using the images as they were taken. I also overlapped the images more than usual because of the smaller camera sensor as I was taking the images. After blending the images I used the Edit “Warp” feature in Photoshop to remove most of the fisheye effect. Depending on the image you can also get good results using Photoshop’s Adaptive Wide Angle feature under the “Filter setting”. Then use the “Edit” Transform -“Warp” feature to adjust the corners to where it diminishes most of the “Curving” in the corners. It also helps when using a Fisheye lens to have the main horizon line somewhat centered in the image to avoid the “bowing arc” of the horizon, Makes it easier to just have to deal then with the “Corners”.

6 Fisheye Images Panorama, 7 Artisans 7.5mm Lens, Olympus OMd-1, Showing Fisheye Distortion on the ends of image before using “Warp”
Single Image, 7 Artisans 7.5mm Fisheye, Olympus OM-D 1, 16 x 9 Format, Corners adjusted in Photoshop
Try to have “Horizon Line” somewhat centered in image. Otherwise it is hard to correct the “Bowing” of the”Horizon Line” without distorting more of the image.
7 artisans 7.5mm Lens on Olympus OM-D 1

131 Egrets In Trees

I am still working on images from past trips. Gives me something to do during these Covid times. This is a 3 image handheld panorama shot with a m43 Olympus OM D-1 with a 14-140mm lens @ 41mm (Full Frame equivalent ~82mm). Then aligned & blended in Photoshop. Just for fun or maybe boredom, I counted about 131 Egrets plus 5 Roseate Spoonbills & 6 Wood Storks. I probably missed a few and could not see what was on the reverse side of the trees. Below are a few cropped in sections.

Cropped in section from main Panorama
Another cropped in section from main Panorama

Magnolia Plantation Swamp Garden Landscapes

As you are entering Magnolia Gardens Audubon Swamp Garden you are walking along the Ashley River. The featured landscape is a 4 image panorama taken @ 14mm with a 14-140mm on an Olympus OM-D-E m1. As you are walking here you can see a lot of birds and some alligators on the other side of the path. It is a large open area so some of the Wildlife is far off in the distance, but you can see some birds & alligators close up if you are patient. Sometimes the Alligators are too close-up!

Fallen Tree with clouds, 14-140mm lens @14mm, OM-D E-M1
Swamp Garden views from Boardwalk, Magnolia Swamp Garden, 14-140mm, m43 lens @ 14mm, OM-D E-M1
Magnolia Swamp Garden view, 14-140mm, m43 lens @ 14mm, OM-D E-M1
Swamp Garden views along Boardwalk, Magnolia Swamp Garden, 14-140mm, m43 lens @ 14mm, OM-D E-M1
Swamp Garden views along Boardwalk, Magnolia Swamp Garden, 14-140mm, m43 lens @ 14mm, OM-D E-M1
Trees Along Boardwalk, Magnolia Swamp Garden, 14-140mm, m43 lens @ 14mm, OM-D E-M1
Magnolia Swamp Garden View, 14-140mm m43 lens @ 14mm, OM-D E-M1
View of Swamp & Boardwalk, 14-140mm m43 lens @ 14mm, OM-D E-M1
Alligator with baby Alligator, 150-600mm Tamron lens @ 182mm, Canon R
Swamp Garden Path, 14-140mm m43 lens @ 14mm, OM-D E-M1
Immature Little Blue Heron, Magnolia Swamp Garden, Near the beginning of the Waterfowl Refuge and Swamp, Tamron 150-600mm @ 600mm , Canon R.
This was taken in the large open area before the boardwalk through the Swamp Garden.

Assorted Birds From Magnolia Plantation Audubon Swamp

The Audubon Swamp Garden on the grounds of Magnolia Plantation near Charleston, South Carolina is a 60 acre cypress and tupelo swamp. In the past the swamp served as a reservoir for the plantation’s rice cultivation. Now it is an interesting and easy Swamp to walk through on the trails and raised boardwalks to get some interesting images. For Wildlife we mostly saw a variety of birds and quite a few alligators on this visit. Most of the birds we saw were quite far out so even shooting @ 600mm I had to crop the images some. But it was still a Great area to photograph and to just see as we were walking through the Swamp Garden. The landscapes & cloudscapes in the swamp were very interesting also, but that will be a different post.

Immature Little Blue Heron, 150-600mm Tamron lens @ 600mm, Canon R, cropped image
Little Green Heron, 150-600mm Tamron lens @ 600mm, Canon R, cropped image
Immature Little Blue Heron, 150-600mm Tamron lens @ 600mm, Canon R, cropped image
Great Blue Heron that was close by the trail, 2 horizontal stacked images panorama, @140mm, Olympus OMD
Immature Little Blue Heron, 150-600mm Tamron lens @ 600mm, Canon R, cropped image
Little Green Heron, 150-600mm Tamron lens @ 600mm, Canon R, cropped image
Little Green Heron, 150-600mm Tamron lens @ 600mm, Canon R, cropped image

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