Whale watching with an OMD

Started Feb 26, 2013 | Discussions
kevinparis
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Whale watching with an OMD
Feb 26, 2013

had the wonderful opportunity to go whale watching in Maui... an amazing experience.... and tricky to capture with the camera... but here are some of my efforts.
OMD with pana 45-200, oly 75 and maybe the 12-60 kit zoom.
It is tricky shooting on a moving boat...and actually I think i would recommend not shooting at the longest focal length ... as it is tricky to frame at that magnification... and if the wales are 100 yards away they end up at featureless black lumps any way. If they get close you will want something wider!
Hats off to the Nation Geographical guys who do this stuff for a living



more and larger images here... I will add a few more tomorrow...just back in LA from Maui

http://www.flickr.com/photos/kevinparis2007/sets/72157632853652427/

K

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texinwien
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Re: Whale watching with an OMD
In reply to kevinparis, Feb 26, 2013

I'm envious - that's something I haven't done yet, and it looks like you were really close for some of those photos. The photos look great - looking forward to seeing more on your flickr stream.

A couple of notes / questions:

Did you shoot JPEG only here, or RAW + JPEG? Whatever the case, I'd suggest shooting RAW + JPEG in a 'once in a lifetime' situation like whale-watching in the Pacific might be for some, so you have the most leeway to adjust the photos and get the absolute most quality out of them.

It looks like you have a tendency to tilt the left side of the camera up just a bit, causing the horizons to slant slightly from upper-right to lower-left. It's more noticeable on ocean pictures like these, especially the ones with such a clear and mostly unobstructed view of the horizon. This is something that's easy to fix in post processing. I have a tendency to tilt my OM-D the other direction - it's something I'm aware of and continually trying to improve.

On the very first shot in your flickr stream, there's some pretty angry purple fringing that could be fixed in post. That's an excellent photo, and I think it would really help to clean that fringing up.

Hope the C&C is OK. I really enjoyed the photos. I hope to have the chance to do something like this one of these days, and hope I do as good a job capturing the experience as you have.

Thanks for sharing!

tex

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Aleo Veuliah
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Re: Whale watching with an OMD
In reply to kevinparis, Feb 26, 2013

Nice to see, good pictures. Must be fantastic to see wales so near.


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somersetlad
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Re: Whale watching with an OMD
In reply to Aleo Veuliah, Feb 26, 2013

If I had taken those I would be like a dog with 2 tails, much better than my efforts 15 years ago in NZ with a Bronica MF. Spine tingling experience too. J

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Nikcan
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Re: Whale watching with an OMD
In reply to kevinparis, Feb 26, 2013

Great shots, love the second one, great work.

Best Regards Mike.
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reygon
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Re: Whale watching with an OMD
In reply to kevinparis, Feb 26, 2013

kevinparis wrote:

had the wonderful opportunity to go whale watching in Maui... an amazing experience.... and tricky to capture with the camera... but here are some of my efforts.
OMD with pana 45-200, oly 75 and maybe the 12-60 kit zoom.
It is tricky shooting on a moving boat...and actually I think i would recommend not shooting at the longest focal length ... as it is tricky to frame at that magnification... and if the wales are 100 yards away they end up at featureless black lumps any way. If they get close you will want something wider!
Hats off to the Nation Geographical guys who do this stuff for a living



more and larger images here... I will add a few more tomorrow...just back in LA from Maui

http://www.flickr.com/photos/kevinparis2007/sets/72157632853652427/

K

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if you really must see my photos then try
http://www.flickr.com/photos/kevinparis2007/

Yeah, wonderful experience indeed. The photos are too blue in tone. Even the white clouds & white skin of the whale were washed out with blue.  I suggest you revisit your pp. a bit of sharpening too.

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rrr_hhh
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Re: Whale watching with an OMD
In reply to kevinparis, Feb 26, 2013

Impressive, I'd be afraid to go that near !

I visited your website; of the few available, my favorite is this one  :

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dave rogers
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Re: Whale watching with an OMD
In reply to texinwien, Feb 26, 2013

It looks like you have a tendency to tilt the left side of the camera up just a bit, causing the horizons to slant slightly from upper-right to lower-left. It's more noticeable on ocean pictures like these, especially the ones with such a clear and mostly unobstructed view of the horizon.

He's on a moving platform, so it's likely not his tendency. Just a fact of life. If straight horizons are important, yeah, fix in post.

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dave rogers
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Re: Whale watching with an OMD
In reply to kevinparis, Feb 26, 2013

Nice shots! I'd say you're a pretty brave man taking the 75mm out on a boat! I'd have left that one at home. Boats move, cameras swing from straps. Hands are busy holding onto things other than the camera - there's a good chance of a bump here and there! All's well that ends well, and that's why God made insurance, right?

Might be a good idea to wipe down all your gear. You likely have salt deposits everywhere, even if you can't see them. So a good thorough wipe down is probably a good idea, especially on the mounts for the body and the lenses. Someone probably has a better way of doing it, but a clean lint-free cloth and some isopropyl alcohol (though I'd probably not use that on the touch screen), should do the truck. Pull the rubber pad and do the grip contacts too. That stuff gets everywhere.

You may never have a problem, but this is 22 years of Navy experience. Salt will kill electronics.

Nice shots though. Must have been a unique experience.

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19andrew47
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Re: Whale watching with an OMD
In reply to kevinparis, Feb 26, 2013

Two nice but small images.

Andrew

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texinwien
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Re: Whale watching with an OMD
In reply to dave rogers, Feb 26, 2013

dave rogers wrote:

It looks like you have a tendency to tilt the left side of the camera up just a bit, causing the horizons to slant slightly from upper-right to lower-left. It's more noticeable on ocean pictures like these, especially the ones with such a clear and mostly unobstructed view of the horizon.

He's on a moving platform, so it's likely not his tendency. Just a fact of life. If straight horizons are important, yeah, fix in post.

The photos in the linked flickr set had a tendency to be tilted as I described. Interesting that none seem to be tilted the other way. Maybe it's a coincidence.

The important part, of course, is that it's probably a good idea to correct tilting in images that contain long, practically unbroken shots of the horizon, stretching from one side of the image to the other.

tex

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markymark101
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Re: Whale watching with an OMD
In reply to kevinparis, Feb 26, 2013

Nice captures.  I was in Boston several years ago on a fairly large ship.  We had one whale that was breaching over and over - probably more than a dozen times, which we were told is somewhat rare.  When he was breaching he was a fair distances away and I just pointed my camera at a spot and hoped that's where he would breach.   Got lucky a couple of times, but the pics were pretty poor, but still a lot of fun.   My old camera then didn't have video, but that's one time where I would have liked to have had the video option.

http://m9.i.pbase.com/g5/40/697240/2/119431279.1MnkKLLU.jpg

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kevinparis
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Re: Whale watching with an OMD
In reply to markymark101, Feb 26, 2013

Thanks for all the kind comments...and the crits :-)....much of which I would have normally corrected fully....but was in a rush to get the shots out to share with family and freinds and thought I would share them here.

They were all shot with RAW... I only shoot raw and were processed in Aperture 3 on a 11 inch macbook air in sunshine

The shots with CA were probably with the 45-200 and I havent looked at correcting that yet. I will look again at the horizons. I was very careful about spray, but will give the camera a good once over.

all in all a big fun experience

K

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kevinparis
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Re: Whale watching with an OMD
In reply to 19andrew47, Feb 26, 2013

19andrew47 wrote:

Two nice but small images.

Andrew

there are larger versions on the flickr page.....and I still have the full res images on my computer

K

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coffeeaddiction2012
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Re: Whale watching with an OMD
In reply to kevinparis, Feb 26, 2013

Cool shots

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DLBlack
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Re: Whale watching with an OMD
In reply to kevinparis, Feb 26, 2013

Very nice shots!!

Dave

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Aleo Veuliah
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Re: Whale watching with an OMD
In reply to somersetlad, Feb 27, 2013

somersetlad wrote:

If I had taken those I would be like a dog with 2 tails, much better than my efforts 15 years ago in NZ with a Bronica MF. Spine tingling experience too. J


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God is the tangential point between zero and infinity.
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pegasus1457
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Your flickr set is magnificent.
In reply to kevinparis, Feb 27, 2013

I don't know whether you did this, but a Nat Geo photographer taught me to use rapid-fire (multiple exposures) when trying to capture something as unpredictable a marine mammal breaching.

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kevinparis
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Re: Your flickr set is magnificent.
In reply to pegasus1457, Feb 27, 2013

pegasus1457 wrote:

I don't know whether you did this, but a Nat Geo photographer taught me to use rapid-fire (multiple exposures) when trying to capture something as unpredictable a marine mammal breaching.

tried a mixture of continuos and single shot... actually did 4 trips on the boat... the last trip was the best... problem with continuous on the OMD that the evf never keeps up with the action well and not sure the focus constantly recalibrates. So I resorted to more controlled stabbing of the shutter, which seemed to produce better results

as you will see from my other flickr images, this kind of photography is not my normal genre

I saw breachings at a distance but never as a photo opportunity ... to get one of those you have to have a lot of patience, time and oodles of luck.... still it is a magnificent sight!!!

My partner was shooting with a Leica rangefinder... and that has the advantage that you see beyond what the lens sees... disadvantage is that they dont really make long lenses for that camera..that and the price

K

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