GX8 + 100-400mm Boston Birds, Boats, and Boarders (10 picts)

Started 5 months ago | Discussions thread
OP mrxak Regular Member • Posts: 218
Re: GX8 + 100-400mm Boston Birds, Boats, and Boarders (10 picts)

Adrian Harris wrote:

mrxak wrote:

Adrian Harris wrote:

mrxak wrote:

Adrian Harris wrote:

These seagul shots have plenty of detail retained in the highlights.

Yeah I'm pretty happy with the lens. I could have gotten a bit more detail out if I had just stopped down, but I wasn't thinking. Next time I'll have to think more technically, but I was just loving the reach of the lens, and with the sun glare (and I don't yet have the eye-cup, it's been on back order until recently), I had a hard time looking at my photos on the camera to see any technical flaws until I got home.

Those are Ring-billed Gulls, by the way. Larus delawarensis. Pretty common around here in winter, on both coasts really. They go further north to breed in the summer.

It does take a while to learn the best way to use the 100-400, I have had mine for over 6 months and am still improving my technique.

A lot of people complained the F6.3 was to slow for birds, but as you have found, when they are close stopping down to f7.1 or even F8 is frequently needed. However for the skateboard shots I would keep it as wide open as possible to make the background as soft as possible.

Ring-billed Gulls eh! I have to confess my birding knowledge is not at all great, but it is very-very slowly improving

Yeah, I think keeping it wide open for the skateboarder was best. Helps draw the eye to the action.

I was raised by some pretty hardcore birdwatchers, and all my vacations as a kid were going to various national parks and making lists of birds we saw, so I sort of picked up the hobby. In adulthood I gravitated more towards photographing birds rather than simply watching them through binoculars. My parents had their lists as trophies, I have my photographs. Maybe I heard one too many arguments about an identification of a bird only one person saw, and now I have proof . I do a bit of macro, landscapes, cityscapes, even the odd bit of street photography when I'm eager for a challenge, but I imagine the 100-400mm will become my most frequently used lens.

Seagulls can be pretty annoying to identify. Most of them look very similar and you're trying to make judgement calls about minor details and their size. Ring-billed Gulls are easy, however, because they're the only ones with that black ring on their bills. Others have similar wing patterns and stuff like that, but the bill's the key.

It was when I realised that they all start to look different upon the arrival of summer plumage that I decided to give up ID and settle for photographing and watching.

Keep it up, I look forward to seeing your results.

Clearly the solution is to move to the tropics. There's no seasons and the birds are all so brightly colored and different  . Of course there are so many of them you'll never learn them all.

Gulls don't really change in the summer, but they do all pretty much look alike when they're juveniles, which is a whole other can of worms.

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