May 21st, 2010

Birds As Art Notes, May 21st 2010

FEATURES

  • SOUTH TEXAS PHOTO CONTEST/SHORT NOTICE
  • OSPREY HEAVEN RIGHT NOW
  • ALAFIA BANKS RIGHT NOW
  • LITTLE ROCK SEMINAR
  • TIM GREY CO-LEADING THE SAN DIEGO IPT!
  • THE CANON EOS-7D USER’S GUIDE
  • THE CANON EOS-1D MARK IV USER’S GUIDE INFO
  • IPT DATE UPDATES

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Golden-fronted Woodpecker pair, Cozad Ranch, Linn, TX
Image copyright 2010/Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART
Canon 800mm f/5.6L IS lens with a 25mm Extension tube and the EOS-1D Mark IV. ISO 400. Evaluative metering +2/3 stop: 1/125 sec. at f/5.6. Fill flash with Better Beamer at -2 2/3 stops.

I love the view of the near foot and the perfect head angle in this image. And the background 🙂 Golden-fronted Woodpecker is a Rio Grande Valley specialty species; see the contest details below. Perhaps this image could use a small crop on the right….

SOUTH TEXAS PHOTO CONTEST/SHORT NOTICE

Ruth Hoyt, President of Photo Bound Tours, LLC, has been awarded a grant to create, organize and conduct a summer 2010 professional wildlife photo contest based in the Rio Grande Valley of South Texas. (Note: there are six skill levels to choose from: full-time professional, part-time Professional, professional level work, but does not attempt to sell, serious amateur striving to become a professional, serious amateur, simply enjoying photography as a hobby, and amateur learning photography.) See the registration form for complete details.

The entry fee of $300 allows full participation in both divisions of the contest. The South Texas Pro Classic is the main contest; it runs from June 1, 2010 through July 31, 2010. A smaller division, the South Texas Open, allows you to enter older photographs that have not been published or won an award or prize of any kind. Photos for the Open division must have been taken in the contest region between the dates January 1, 2008, through July 31, 2010.

For more information about the contest or to register, please visit: http://photoboundtours.com/contest/. Funding for this photo contest was made possible by a grant from the Valley Land Fund through the Robert L. Townsend Endowment. For more information about the Valley Land Fund, please visit: http://valleylandfund.com/.

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Common Ground-Dove, Santa Clara Ranch, Starr County, TX
Image copyright 2010/Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART
Canon 800mm f/5.6L IS lens with the 1.4X II TC and the EOS-1D Mark IV. ISO 250. Evaluative metering +1/3 stop: 1/400 sec. at f/8. Fill flash at -2 stops with the Better Beamer.

Though this species is common in Florida, I have never made a decent image of one :). At Beto’s ranch, they come to water regularly. If you missed the feature on the Santa Clara Ranch see Bulletin 327 in the Bulletin Archives.

OSPREY HEAVEN RIGHT NOW

My right-hand man, Jim Litzenberg, and I spent Thursday morning with Jim Neiger on his pontoon boat on Lake Blue Cypress in Indian River County with several hundred Osprey….. The boat ramp is fifteen minutes from Yeehaw Junction where SR 60 crosses the Florida Turnpike. We enjoyed non-stop action with both birds in flight and with perched birds. And there are lots of both fledged and unfledged birds many in low nests. And to make matters worse :), Lake Blue Cypress is one of the most beautiful, unspoiled areas in the state. To see more of the images that I made that day–I kept 189 photos on the first edit!–check out the May 19th Blog post: http://www.birdsasart-blog.com/.

Jim has room for two photographer on Saturday, and for one person on Sunday–I will be aboard that morning. The daily rate is $350. If you can make it, contact Jim Neiger on his cell phone at 407-247-5200. If he does not pick up, leave a message and keep trying as reception in the area is spotty at best. If you would like to contact Jim Neiger through BAA please try us at 863-692-0906 or 863-221-2372.

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Osprey, large chick in the nest, Lake Blue Cypress, Indian River County, FL
Image copyright 2010/Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART
Canon 800mm f/5.6L IS lens with the 1.4X II TC and the EOS-1D Mark IV. ISO 400. Evaluative metering +2/3 stop: 1/200 sec. at f/9.

Jim Neiger is expert at positioning his custom-built pontoon boat for photography.

ALAFIA BANKS RIGHT NOW

Young wading birds including White Ibis and Reddish Egrets are out of the nests and romping around on the sand spit at the Alafia Banks rookery. Baby spoonbills will be joining them any day now. I will be joining James Shadle aboard the Hooptie Deux on Saturday morning along with crack BPN Avian moderator Axel Hildebrandt and BPN member Arash Hazegi. Jim has room for two folks on Saturday and four on Sunday. I will be there on Saturday morning. The cost of a full say is $350. Mornings only are $250. (Afternoons are spent with guaranteed Magnificent Frigatebirds in flight.)

Contact James on his cell phone at 813-363-2854 or by e-mail to james@wildflorida.net. Rather than leaving a phone message for Jim it is best to keep trying him every 30 minutes or so 🙂 Or, call us here at BAA at either 863-692-0906 or 863-221-2372.

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Roseate Spoonbill, fledged chick, Alafia Banks, Tampa Bay, FL
Image copyright 2009/Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART
Canon 800mm f/5.6L IS lens with the 1.4X II TC and the EOS-1D Mark III. ISO 400. Evaluative metering +1/3 stop: 1/400 sec. at f/10 set manually.

Though it is a bit early for fledged spoonbills right now there will be variety of young wading bird species to photograph this weekend. I love the young birds because of their pristine feathering.

LITTLE ROCK SEMINAR

I will be presenting a full day seminar for Bedford’s Camera on Saturday June 5th from 9am till 5pm in Little Rock, Arkansas. For additional details or to register, click here:
http://www.bedfords.com/adaywitharthurmorris.html.

Here is the schedule:

9:00 – 10:15am: Choosing and Using Lenses for Bird and Nature Photography
10:15 – 10:30am: Break
10:30 – 11:30am: Composition and Image Design
11:30 – 11:45am: Break
11:45 – 12:15pm: Understanding Digital Exposure and Histograms
12:15 – 1:45pm: Lunch
1:45 – 2:30pm: Tips on Getting Close to Free and Wild Subjects
2:30 – 3:15pm: Recent Work and Travels
3:15 – 3:30pm: Break
3:30 – 5:00pm: Digital Workflow and Photoshop

The event is being sponsored by Canon USA/Explorers of Light.

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Brown Pelican, California race, LaJolla, CA
Image copyright 2010/Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART
Canon 600mm f/4L IS lens with the 1.4X II TC and the EOS-1Ds Mark II. ISO 250. Evaluative metering at zero: 1/640 sec. at f/8.

California Brown Pelican in breeding plumage is one of my very favorite avian subjects. I have been photographing them for almost three decades and will likely be doing so for as long as I am breathing….

TIM GREY CO-LEADING THE SAN DIEGO IPT!

I was thrilled to learn yesterday that nature photography digital guru Tim Grey will be co-leading the 2011 BAA San Diego Instructional Photo-Tour with me. Tim joined us last year on the SW FLA IPT and was a huge hit. In-the-field his dry, low key sense of humor left everyone in stitches and all appreciated his help with histograms and digital exposure. In the classroom, his Photoshop brilliance was obvious to all.

He did several sessions. In one, he taught the group his simple Tim grey, Non-destructive Dodge and Burn technique. I have adapted it for my workflow and use it on about half of my images. In some cases I use it for Eye Doctor work. Tim’s technique is described in detail in his Photoshop Hands-On: Adjustments DVD. It can found in his on-line store here: http://www.timgrey.com/store/index.php?app=ecom&ns=prodshow&ref=DVDAdjustments.

SAN DIEGO IPT JAN 19-23, 2011. Slide program on the evening of JAN 18. 5 Full Days: $2399 (Limit 8/Opening 7) Co-leader: Tim Grey

Brown Pelicans in spectacular breeding plumage with their bright red bill pouches, Wood and Ring-necked Ducks, Lesser Scaup, Western, California, and Heerman’s Gulls, Marbled Godwit, and lots, lots more. Please see terms and deposit info below.

See IPT DATE UPDATES below for registration, terms, and deposit info.

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Osprey, adult leaving the nest, Lake Blue Cypress, Indian River County, FL
Image copyright 2010 and courtesy of Jim Litzenberg
Canon 100-400mm IS L lens (handheld at 400mm) with the EOS-7D. ISO 800. Manual mode: 1/1000 sec. at f/5.6.

Jim used my the AF Area Mode that I recommend in the 7D Guide. It enabled him to hold focus on this departing Osprey even though the bird was nowhere near the central AF sensor at the moment of exposure.

THE CANON EOS-7D USER’S GUIDE

I can honestly say that the 7D guide is amazing. Pretty much everything on the 7D is brand new and many folks have been seen shaking their heads in confusion. Learn everything that you need to know about setting up and operating your camera so that you are able to consistently produce the images that you want. This all new guide will open your eyes as to the possibilities. I share all of my Menu and Custom Function settings along with the reasons for each choice. I describe each of the five AF Area Selection Modes in detail and let you know which ones I use for what and why! And I have written a totally new section on making micro-adjustments. There is a ton of stuff in this guide that you will never see or hear anywhere else. You will, for example, learn how I create, save and use three different personalized Camera User Settings. Or how to set up and use Live View for a variety of nature photography applications. The stuff on AF with Live View with lens/TC combinations that should not autofocus will blow you away…. The entire guide is of course written in my easy to read, easy to follow, designed for dunces how-to style So easy that even a child could follow along. Do note that 7D UG does not cover the creation of video.

The Canon EOS-7D Users Guide PDF is available now. Updates–there will be at least one–will always be free.

The 7D User’s Guide (7D UG) sells for $30 if you send a check or a PayPal or call with a credit card in hand. If you purchase the 7D UG through the BAA On-line store, a $2.00 discount will be applied. Order your copy today for only $28 through the store by clicking here: https://store.birdsasart.com/shop/item.aspx?itemid=285. You will receive your PDF via e-mail so be sure to check your spam folder and security settings if you do not receive yours in a timely fashion. Do get in touch if you do not get the e-mail in a day or two (except when ordering from late Friday through Sunday :))

THE CANON EOS-1D MARK IV USER’S GUIDE INFO

Hi Arthur, I purchased your Mark IV guide the day I got the camera, and I must say, it has really helped me. Your settings were right on the “Mark” so to speak! I have found it to be immensely helpful. Thanks! Julie Arismendi

….
The Canon EOS-1D Mark IV Users Guide PDF is available now. Updates–there will be at least one–will always be free.

As the MIV is in many ways similar to the Canon EOS-1D MIII camera body, folks moving to the Mark IV from the Mark III will not be as challenged as those who have used any other Canon professional or pro-sumer digital camera bodies. That said there are enough new bells and whistles on the Mark IV to make the guide valuable even for experienced Mark III folks. The MIV UG is fairly comprehensive; it covers all of the camera controls including buttons, dials, and wheels and most of the menu items and Custom Functions except those dealing with video. There is a great section on how to set up and use Live View for a variety of nature photography applications. The stuff on AF with Live View with lens/TC combinations that should not autofocus will blow you away…. As always, the Mark IV UG is written in my easy to read, easy to understand style.

After following my own directions and doing the micro-adjustment on my Mark IV/800 combo I wound up setting +4 for that combo alone and +6 for when I added the 1.4X II TC. My already sharp images got just a bit sharper!

The Mark IV User’s Guide PDF sells for $25 if you send a check or a PayPal or call with a credit card in hand. If you order through the through the BAA On-line store, a $2.00 discount will apply. To order your copy now and save $2.00, click here: https://store.birdsasart.com/shop/item.aspx?itemid=286. You will receive your PDF via e-mail so be sure to check your spam folder and security settings if you do not receive yours in a timely fashion. Do get in touch if you do not get the e-mail in a day or two (except when ordering from late Friday through Sunday :)).

IPT DATE UPDATES

BOSQUE del APACHE 2010 IPT: The Complete Bosque Experience.NOV 20-26, 2010

Slide program on the evening of Friday, NOV 19. 7-FULL DAYS: $3199. (Non-refundable deposit: $500; see details below.) Limit: 10/Openings: 5. Co-leaders: Robert OToole, Jim Heupel, and multiple BBC Wildlife Photographer of the Year honoree Chris Van Rooyen of South Africa (www.wildlifephotography.co.za/). Live, eat, and breathe photography with one of (if not the) world’s premier photographic educators at one of his very favorite locations on the planet. Plus great co-leaders and top-notch Photoshop instruction. Please see terms and deposit info below.

SAN DIEGO IPT JAN 19-23, 2011. Slide program on the evening of JAN 18. 5 Full Days: $2399 (Limit 8/Opening 7)

Brown Pelicans in spectacular breeding plumage with their bright red bill pouches, Wood and Ring-necked Ducks, Lesser Scaup, Western, California, and Heerman’s Gulls, Marbled Godwit, and lots, lots more. Please see terms and deposit info below.

SW FLA PRESIDENT’S WEEK IPT: FEB 18-23, 2011. Slide program on the evening of FEB 17. 6 Full Days: 2899. (Limit 10/Openings 8)

Escape winter’s icy grip to enjoy a wide array of Florida’s tame birds: herons, egrets, Wood Stork, shorebirds, gulls, terns, skimmers, raptors, and more. Please see terms and deposit info immediately below:

Terms and deposit info

A non-refundable deposit of $500 is required to hold a spot fn the above IPTs. Deposits may be paid by check, PayPal, or credit card. Payment in full (by check or money order only) is due four months before the start of each trip and is non-refundable unless the IPT sells out. You will be required to sign a statement of understanding to this effect. Travel insurance is of course highly recommended. Travel Insurance Services offers a variety of plans and options. Included with the Elite Option or available as an upgrade to the Basic & Plus Options is Cancel for Any Reason Coverage that expands the list of reasons for your canceling to an infinite list from a sudden work or family obligation to a simple change of mind. My family and I use and depend on the great policies offered by TIS whenever we travel. You can learn more here: http://www.travelinsure.com/what/selecthigh.asp?32940. Do note that many plans require that you purchase your travel insurance within 14 days of our cashing your deposit check or running your credit card. Travel insurance protects you against unexpected developments, injuries, or illnesses. We regret that we must implement this new policy but we have been plagued by last minute cancellations that make it impossible for others to participate and deprive us of essential income.

Important note: please print, fill out, and sign the registration and release forms and include them with your deposit check (made out to “Arthur Morris.” ) If you use a credit card to register, please fill out, sign, and mail the forms asap. Your registration will not be complete until we receive your paper work. You can find the forms here: Registration and Release Form.

2010 & 2011 Galapagos Photo Cruise of a Lifetime IPTs/The Complete Galapagos Photographic Experience: July 2010 & July 2011: two weeks on the boat (Limits: 12/Sold out).

If you are a happy camper and would like to have your name(s) placed on a waiting list or either the 2010 or 2011 trip or on the the seriously interested list for the 2012 trip, please e-mail us at birdsasart@att.net.

ROBERT O’TOOLE PHOTOGRAPHY HOMER BALD EAGLE INSTRUCTIONAL PHOTO-TOUR WITH ARTHUR MORRIS/BIRDS AS ART. March 18-22, 2011 & March 24-28. 5-FULL DAYS: $3249. Limit: 12 (including the leaders/sold out).

Both of these trips sold out with long waiting lists within hours after being announced to the BAA Friends List. The Friends List consists of IPT veterans who fit in the happy camper category. If you have been on an IPT and would like your name added to the BAA Friends List, please e-mail me at birdsasart@att.net and include a short note.

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