Monday, November 27, 2006

Weekend update

...and the hawk is back. Definitely confirmed as a female Northern Harrier. I even managed to grab the camera and shoot some pictures this time. And, along with the last batch of hawk photos that were shot on the film camera (which I haven't bothered to post - see below), I've managed to learn some things about nature photography. Namely:

1. A 120 mm zoom lens is not long enough, even for large-ish birds in very small back yards.

2. Do not leave the camera on 'portrait' setting while shooting small objects far away. It will auto-focus on something you don't want it to (see the crab-apple tree in the photo below? Nicely in-focus.)

3. Shooting in overcast, outdoor lighting with white balance set to 'indoor/fluorescent' results in stupidly blue-coloured photos. Colour balancing never fixes this adequately.

4. You can't focus on anything while shooting through Venetian blinds (remember what I said above about not showing you the film pics?).

5. It's hard to get things in focus while shooting rapidly with a 300 mm lens (film camera again I'm afraid).

So now you know. Apologies for the horrific quality of these. I suggest looking at the original shot, which is much, much better.

A couple of very suspicious-looking piles of feathers in the back yard make me suspect that the score is now, conservatively, hawks 2, doves 0.


In other news, apparently sports car season is not quite over yet. Either that, or nobody told the person who drove by me in a bright red Ferrari 512 Testarossa on Saturday. And my fingers hurt from putting up the Christmas lights. Just thought you'd like to know.


The Wrath of Dawn said...

That 2nd pic has an interesting quality to it, nonetheless.

One of these days I'll remember all those settings, too.

Sorry about the fingers.

Misty said...

Ricardipus, me darlin'.

Firstly, apologies for being away so long, but sadly life has been getting in the way of important stuff.

Secondly, those are both lovely piccies. At least you remembered to take the cap off the lens before shooting*

*Has no desire to show anybody the out-takes of the great parrot swarm in Hanwell, ever**.

**One of the best evah photo opportunities, and result? 176 photos of black. w00t.

Rik said...

putting the christmas lights up where?

#Debi said...

I was thinking, before you denigrated it, that the 2nd photo would go over quite well in my photo class. The teacher seems to like both the shallow depth of field (as do I) and focusing on unexpected parts of the compostition. 'Course, she likes it better when it's done on purpose...

In other news, I managed to pick up two 1GB SD cards for my digital at WallyWorld in the after-Thanksgiving(US) sales for $13(US) each. Think I can fill them both up during two weeks in London? :^)

wv: epbjgnuy That's the holiday when you take down the XMas decorations, innit?

Ricardipus said...

'Allo Misty, I've seen you over at Flickr but you're always welcome here, you know.

As for bad photos, there's also a reason I haven't posted any Hallowe'en Jack-o-lantern pics this year either. Wretched. Absolutely wretched.

Rik - nowhere anatomically interesting.

Debi - [jealous noises] $13??????? Well done! Fill 'em up, lots to see in London...

'kptvk' - noise Ricardipus makes when Debi tells him about $13 1Gb cards.

The Wrath of Dawn said...


Ricardipus said...

Oh, poodles, I've done it again haven't I?

What I meant was, "Thanks O Dawn without whom there is no light, no cheerful crowds of children singing, and no meaning to all of these blog-related activities, and who has a blog that I am hardly worthy of reading, for those kind words which I am most clearly not deserving of in any way, shape or form."

/grovel mode

'rwdoki' - Ricardipus' way of saying "okey-dokey".

Anonymous said...

That's wicked!