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Bulletins and Notes Archive

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BIRDS AS ART ON-LINE BULLETIN #51 July 19, 2001

St. Augustine IPT Tales                                              More on the flash disaster                                           Lens Cleaning Solution
 
 
On the first morning of the recent St. Augustine Alligator Farm Instructional Photo-Tour, I leaned over the edge of the boardwalk to photograph a dying Tricolored Heron fledgling. 
 
The was a loud "kerplunk."  Minutes before, I had placed my brand new Canon EF 1.4X II Teleconverter in an unzipped blouse pocket...  I took it well, saying simply to Joe Peters, "My 1.4X just joined the alligators...  Hey, stuff happens."
 
IPT participant Linda Robbins graciously tried to extricate the TC with a clamp on a pole that the staff provided.  As the pole was not very long, she stuck her arm between the bottom of the fence and the boardwalk.  A 12 foot gator promptly tried to remove her arm a la the famous scene from Crocodile Dundee.
 
She valiantly kept up her efforts until finally she snared the very wet TC.  As she slowly lifted it from the water, another gator chomped on the wayward teleconverter....  He spit it right out, but at this point we canceled any further salvage operations. 
 
Here is the TC's "last picture":

Four minutes after I dropped the TC in the drink, Derrick MacDonald, who had traveled from British Columbia to attend the IPT, let out a scream, 'The gator's got one!"  An eight foot gator had snagged a fledgling Tricolored Heron.  Several gators were chasing him along the bank as he ran behind some small trees.  I grabbed the tripod-mounted 500mm IS lens and followed, praying that when he stopped to swallow his breakfast that he would stop in a clearing.  He did. Here is my favorite image:

Photography for the rest of the three days was excellent.  Johan Greyvensteyn, a South African native (Hi Cyril!), traveled all the way from Korea where he lives and works to attend the IPT. All in all, it was a really fun group.
 
There were many Snowy and Cattle Egret nests with all stages of young.  Here is a Cattle Egret chick that is about three weeks old:

More on the Flash Disaster
 
After consulting with several Canon tech reps and receiving a detailed e-mail from Bulletin subscriber Edward Agnew, I have just about concluded that the flash overexposure problem that I encountered was NOT caused by damage to either of the flash sensors on the front of the flash head.  I shall share more of this information with you in a future Bulletin and will continue to try and figure out what went wrong.  I used my new flash with one of my two EOS 1vs this past weekend and will keep all advised when I see the film.   In any case, Better Beamer users are urged to take great care when using the beamer in sunny conditions. 
 
Ellen Anon, who will be assisting me on the upcoming Bosque and Florida IPTs, wrote to remind me that during the field workshops this past April at the National Zoo in Washington, DC, we nicknamed the flash extender "The Better Burner."   
 
From Chile, IPT participant Alejandro Furman put a big smile on my face when he wrote:
 
Hi Arthur:
 
Why could I never figure out where the charred and warped black plastic on the front of my flash came from?
 
Why could I never see those strange Florida bugs that kept biting my forearms but caused no after-itch?
 
Why could I never find any dead bees when slapping my forehead after feeling the powerful sting when looking through the viewfinder?
 
Why didn't I use my gray matter?  Why did it take a city-smart Jewish kid from N.Y. to put it all together for me?
 
Best,
Alex
 
Lens Cleaning Solution
 
I recently had the opportunity to try Eclipse Optical Cleaning Solution and PEC*PADs. In a word, they worked superbly, leaving the front elements of all my lenses sparkling clean and lint- and streak-free. 
 
To use, dispense several drops of the Eclipse Cleaning solution onto a clean, folded Pec*Pad.  Wipe the surface of the lens until all (dirty) areas have been cleaned, then slide the pad off of the glass from the center of the lens' surface.  Refold the pad to expose a clean side and re-wipe as necessary.  If streaks remain, use a clean, fresh, dry Pec*Pad.
 
Distributor David M. Stone cautions:
 
The Eclipse is especially good at dissolving oily residues, especially skin oils. No matter how clean or dry you think your hands are, they ARE NOT ! Do not get the oils from your hands all over a clean PEC*PAD. Take one out of the bag by a corner only and be extra careful not to touch the center area, especially when folding the pad. If you are not careful, the Eclipse will dissolve the oils nice and evenly on the pad and you will leave a hazy, oily film on the front element of your lens. 
 
For prices and details, contact:
 
David M. Stone  
PHOTOGRAPHIC SOLUTIONS, INC.
http://www.photosol.com
(800) 637-3212 all US, all US territories & Canada
(508) 759-2322 phone  (508) 759-9699 FAX
7 Granston Way   Buzzards Bay, MA 02532
 

 



 

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