Archive for Lightroom CC

One lesson…”stop taking pictures”!

Posted in Equipment I Use, Favorite Places, Photography Workshops, Random Thoughts, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 25, 2018 by lilybug1960

One lesson…”stop taking pictures”!
For many years I have been asked to speak to groups in clubs, at conferences and during workshops, and I am asked for that one piece of advice that will help them with their photography. My answer is this, stop taking pictures, start creating images. These 6 words can improve your photography more than anything else. Why? A picture is nothing more than a moment in time, meaning the shutter speed simply captures that moment in our life. It is a snapshot of an event or a place, where an image is a memory of that moment in time. When I go out to create an image, I slow down, choose a place, a lens, an angle of view, shutter speed, filters, in other words, there are lots of decisions that I make. I arrange the elements within the frame to visually lead the viewer through the frame. I want the viewer to be there with me, to feel what I felt as I stood in that spot. Every image I have ever made, I can remember vividly the circumstances of that moment.
So if you could ever learn anything from me or my images, I hope it is to stop taking pictures and start creating images. Your love for photography and the World around us will simply get better.
Tamron SP 24-70mm f2.8 Di VC USD lens on a Nikon D-700, Aperture Priority mode, f8, ISO 200, resulting in a shutter speed of 1/13th of a second, processed in Lightroom CC. #WithMyTamron, #TamronUSA, #TamronLensesUSA, #TamronImageMaster

Nature’s Insecticide

Posted in Bird Photography, Equipment I Use, Favorite Places, Random Thoughts, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 8, 2018 by lilybug1960

Nature’s Insecticide.
My post yesterday touched on our approach to insect control. Each and every insect has a role in nature’s decomposition of things. From mites, to beetles and other insects to earthworms. Through my studies, I learned how important it was to leave dead flowers standing so insects can start the breakdown process. Eventually the insects are large enough to support the predators that feed on them, in this case the Worm-eating Warbler. Prior to this past year I had only seen a Worm-eating Warbler a handful of times. This past year though, I spent many mornings photographing this spectacular bird. Hundreds if not thousands of frames. They became one of my favorites with their nearly daily visits. If you are wanting to increase the number and variety of birds you see and photograph, plant some tall flowers, like sunflowers and let them die off and dry out after blooming. The variety of Warblers gleaning the foliage for insects alone is worth it!
Tamron SP 150-600mm Di VC USD G2 lens on a Nikon D-500, Manual Exposure mode, f8, ISO 6400, shutter speed of 1/125th of a second, Sirui P424S monopod and L10 head, processed in Lightroom CC. #WithMyTamron, #TamronUSA, #TamronLensesUSA, #TamronImageMaster, #Sirui, #SiruiUSA, #SiruiProfessional

Why being a Birder will improve your Nature Photography

Posted in Bird Photography, Equipment I Use, Favorite Places, Random Thoughts, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 7, 2018 by lilybug1960

Why Being a Birder will improve your Nature Photography.
Before I start I should also say it will improve your life as well. I was always interested in nature as a kid. I had field guides and spent every free minute wandering in the woods. My greater appreciation for birding took hold when I became a professional Nature Photographer. My mentor, John Shaw, didn’t accept my identification of a Herring Gull as a Seagull. He pushed me to learn the identifications of birds and their habits as well. In 1995 a trip to the Galapagos Islands for a workshop was a check mark off of my bucket list. Then later that month I attended the first NANPA Nature Photography Forum held in Ft. Myers, FL. During that event I was a co-leader on a trip to J. Ding Darling NWR and was lucky enough to be joined by Roger Tory Peterson. My birding took off like wildfire from that point. A few years later my wife Evelyn registered me for continuing education classes at Cornell Lab of Ornithology for a Christmas gift. During that time I found how much more I wanted to spend outside learning and observing birds and nature. In doing so, my exposure to sunrises and sunsets took new meanings in the respect that it became more than just light, it became an event to observe and learn. The more time I spent outside, the more I photographed, and my craft improved. It has changed how I do yard work even. Instead of pesticides, I let the Scarlet Tanagers glean Japanese Beetles from the trees and shrubs. In turn, I watch and photograph.
I will always consider myself a photography teacher, but it is such a great feeling when one of my fellow photographers express how my passion for birding has influenced them as well. It is a great feeling when someone captures an image of a bird and they want to learn what the bird is and ask questions of its behavior as well. Nothing bad comes of educating someone about the natural world. We all become better photographers, and better people as well. Learn that “bird” isn’t just a noun, it can be a verb as well.
Tamron SP 150-600mm Di VC USD G2 lens on a Nikon D-500, Manual Exposure mode, f8, ISO 1000, shutter speed of 1/125th of a second, Sirui P424S carbon fiber monopod and L10 head, processed in Lightroom CC. #WithMyTamron, #TamronUSA, #TamronLensesUSA, #TamronImageMaster, #Sirui, #SiruiUSA, #SiruiProfessional, #BirdNirdvana

Get Ready for Night Skies!

Posted in Equipment I Use, Favorite Places, Random Thoughts, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 6, 2018 by lilybug1960

Get Ready for Night Skies!
Obviously we can photograph night skies and the Milky Way at any time during the year, but the peak of the season is considered from mid-April to the end of July. That is when the galactic core is visible the longer during the night. It is when I like to photograph it to be able to place an object into the bottom of the frame and improve the composition. A few settings I use for my starting point are: Manual Exposure, 30 seconds, f2.8, ISO 3200, and infinity focus on my lens set to manual focus as well. I prefer the Tamron SP 15-30mm f2.8 Di VC USD lens. A good sturdy tripod, like my Sirui N3204X tripod, is a necessity. These settings are a starting point and some adjustments will be made to optimize your image exposure. All you need to do is get to a really dark place and then check Apps like Photopills to see where the core will align and the optimum time to shoot and then have fun! The lighting in the image on the rock and tree was done by a passing car as it rounded the curves in the road.
Tamron SP 15-30mm f2.8 Di VC USD lens on a Canon 5Diii, Manual Exposure mode, f2.8, ISO 3200, shutter speed of 30 seconds, manual focus set to infinity, Sirui N3204X tripod and K30X ballhead, processed in Lightroom CC. #WithMyTamron, #TamronUSA, #TamronLensesUSA, #TamronImageMaster, #TamronUSAMagazine, #Sirui, #SiruiUSA, #SiruiProfessional

My Fascination with Bald Eagles

Posted in Bird Photography, Equipment I Use, Favorite Places, Random Thoughts, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 5, 2018 by lilybug1960

My Fascination with Bald Eagles.
It may be hard for some folks to understand why I have this fascination with Bald Eagles. It started in my youth. I never saw one until 1976. It wasn’t until my first trip to the Grand Tetons that I saw our Nation’s symbol. It is why I read and thing everyone should read “Silent Spring” by Rachel Carson. One of the first studies of the numbers of Bald Eagles showed that there were only 487 nesting pairs in the lower 48 States in 1963! Because of the widespread use of herbicides and pesticides, primarily DDT, Eagles and other Birds of Prey, were almost eliminated. Rachel’s book helped to bring attention to how DDT effected the birds. It was prohibited to use and as of 2006 our nesting population was up to 9789 pairs. We have a long way to go to reach the numbers of the 1700s and 1800s. I am fascinated with them because I never thought or dreamed they would survive. I find them so majestic in flight. I only hope that people who are growing up seeing so many never take them for granted and will always appreciate their comeback.
Tamron SP 150-600mm Di VC USD G2 lens on a Canon 7Dii, Manual Exposure mode, f16, ISO 200, 1/200th of a second (Sunny 16 Rule), Sirui N3204X tripod and PH20 Gimbal Head, processed in Lightroom CC. #WithMyTamron, #TamronUSA, #TamronLenseUSA, #TamronImageMaster, #Sirui, #SiruiUSA, #SiruiProfessional

Gibbs Gardens Opens Today!!!

Posted in Equipment I Use, Favorite Places, Random Thoughts, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 1, 2018 by lilybug1960

Gibbs Gardens Opens Today!
Today is a great day for garden lovers in the Atlanta area as Gibbs Gardens opens to the public for their Daffodil Festival. It runs until mid-April. This image was from a couple years ago and I have been super busy so I haven’t had an opportunity to get a sneak peek at the flowers this year. I think it is going to be a great year to see their over 20 million daffodils. The weather is a little iffy today, but this weekend and next week should be incredible!
Tamron 17-35mm lens on a Sony A7R via adapter, Aperture Priority mode, f11, ISO 100, Shutter Speed 1/30th of a second, processed in Lightroom CC. #WithMyTamron, #TamronUSA, #TamronLensesUSA, #TamronImageMaster, #GibbsGardens

Disclosing a Location continuation

Posted in Equipment I Use, Favorite Places, Random Thoughts, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 20, 2018 by lilybug1960

Disclosing a Location continuation.
I was impressed with some of the discussion yesterday when I brought up the reasons some photographers will give for not disclosing a location vs. not posting it or going there at all. Honestly though, no one could present a decent reason for just not posting it in the first place. I get it, you go to a great location, you get a great image, you are proud of your image, you want to share it, but you feel by simply removing the location information you are saving that location from exploitation. The problem is this, in this day of the selfie, there are those in this world that feel one way to improve a beautiful scene is to put their face in front of it. Then others feel the challenge and have to do it as well. As an experiment I simply looked at a few images that the locations were withheld and did a few things. First I simply Googled a key word (like slot canyon) near a location like “Northern Arizona” and more than 75 percent of the time just a description got me the information I needed. Then using Google images I tried to closely match the image. There were no locations that I couldn’t find. Time to go do a selfie! Guess what though? When I had no image to work off of, I had no way to find something I didn’t know was there! Hmmm… My point is this, posting a great image is an ego boost and you want to share your skills, but don’t try and fool yourself into thinking that you can feel better about being a good steward by simply adding the phrase “I’m not going to disclose the location” because it doesn’t work. Be a good steward, don’t post the image.
This is a “Secret Canyon”, no really it is. The name of the Canyon is Secret Canyon and is only accessible by a guide service who has an agreement with the Navajo tribe who owns it.
Tamron SP 15-30mm f2.8 Di VC USD lens on a Canon 5Diii, Manual Exposure mode, f11, ISO 100, shutter speed of 5 seconds, Sirui N3204X tripod and K30x ballhead, processed in Lightroom CC. #WithMyTamron, #TamronUSA, #TamronLensesUSA, #TamronImageMaster, #Sirui, #SiruiUSA, #SiruiProfessional