From LEE Filters:
Two years in the making, the ProGlass IRND range from LEE Filters sets a new standard in neutral-density filters. ProGlass IRND filters were originally designed for the film industry, to meet the exacting needs of the world’s leading cinematographers, and have already been hailed as the best neutral-density filters on the market. Now, they are available to the stills photographer, in sizes to fit the LEE Filters Seven5, 100mm and SW150 systems.
Advances in coating technology mean that the filters, which are manufactured from 2mm-thick, optically flat glass, are available not only in strengths of two (0.6ND), three (0.9ND), four (1.2ND) and six (1.8ND) stops, but also in ultra-long 10 (3ND) and 15-stop (4.5ND) versions. Not only this, but all filters in the range – whatever their strength – are designed to be free of color casts, with extremely accurate stop values, ensuring consistency in all shooting conditions and allowing for absolute precision when exposing images. Their neutrality also means less time spent tweaking color balances in postproduction.
In addition, filters in the ProGlass IRND range are designed to block both infrared and ultraviolet pollution. As a result, blacks are rendered truly black, whites are clean, and results reveal a crispness that is second to none. The 6, 10 and 15-stop versions of the ProGlass IRND filters come with a foam seal to prevent light leaks during long exposures, and should be placed into the filter slot closest to the lens. While the 2, 3, 4 and 6-stop versions do not feature a foam seal, it is still recommended also to place them into the slot closest to the lens.
All filters in the ProGlass IRND range can be used in conjunction with other filters, including neutral-density grads and the polarizer.
ProGlass IRND Filter (Seven5 System) – $200.00
ProGlass IRND Filter (100mm System) – $230.00
ProGlass IRND Filter (SW150 System) – $450.00
If you are considering the purchase of a Canon EOS 6D Mark II, you may also be considering the EOS 5D Mark III as they are similarly priced with an also-attractive, mid level feature set within the confines of today's camera market.
Make no mistake, these bodies are similarly versatile and capable cameras, but depending on the intended use and/or photographic challenges being pursued, either one may be a better choice compared to the other. With that said, let's look at how these full frame contenders differ.
Advantages of the EOS 6D Mark II over the 5D Mark III:
Advantages of the EOS 5D Mark III over the 6D Mark II:
As is evident above, the 6D Mark II has more advantage bullet points compared to the 5D Mark III. However, the importance of some of the 5D III bullet points could easily sway one's decision in favor of the older, economical 5-series body.
Who should opt for the EOS 6D Mark II?
First of all, anyone wanting to quickly create high quality videos with their DSLR will likely prefer the 6D's Movie Servo AF – thanks to its Dual Pixel CMOS AF sensor – as well as its vari-angle LCD. Another nice feature that DSLR filmmakers are likely to appreciate is the 6D II's ability to create 4K UHD time-lapses in-camera, though many filmmakers will prefer to compile their time-lapses in post-processing for more control over the final video (essentially making this feature a less compelling advantage compared to the 5D III).
From a video perspective, one drawback could be the 6D II's .MP4 recording format if someone instead preferred using the .MOV format featured in the 5D III. Another drawback is the 6D II's lack of a headphone jack.
Even though it features fewer overall points, those shooting wildlife will likely prefer the 6D II's slightly faster burst rate and AF system capable of up-to 27 active phase-detect AF points when using lens+extender combinations resulting in an f/8 effective maximum aperture. And on top of that, Live View with subject tracking can be utilized with lens+extender combinations through f/11.
In comparison, only the center AF point (with 4 assist points) is enabled on the 5D III with f/8 maximum apertures and subject tracking is unavailable in Live View. For wildlife photographers who never plan on using lens+extender combinations, the 5D III may be the better choice thanks to its 61 point AF system. But considering how often wildlife photographers utilize extenders, they will likely accept the 6D II's 45 point AF system to gain significantly more AF functionality at f/8.
Those carrying their cameras long distances and/or for long periods of time will of course appreciate the 6D II's smaller design and lighter weight, including (but not limited to) those who are hiking to remote locations or traveling on domestic/international flights.
All photographers will appreciate 6D II's higher resolution and longer battery life, and many will enjoy using its GPS, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and NFC features which are all absent on the 5D III. Any photographers photographing under stadium lights will be thankful for the 6D II's Flicker Detection and corrective shutter timing for avoiding color balancing problems.
Who should opt for the EOS 5D Mark III?
Even though the 5D III seems to have few benefits over the 6D II, the value of some of those benefits can be huge. For instance, anyone photographing once-in-a-lifetime events such as weddings should likely choose the 5D Mark III for its dual memory card feature alone. While card corruption is relatively rare, dual memory card slots provide a vital layer of protection to keep your (or your client's) images safe. Having images backed up in-camera can help you avoid tarnishing your reputation due to a faulty memory card.
Many photographers will appreciate the 5D III's viewfinder with 100% coverage and faster maximum shutter speed.
If you already own a 7D Mark II, you will likely appreciate the very similar controls featured in the 5D III, including (but not limited to) the multi-controller joystick. If keeping the 7D II as a secondary camera, you should be able to switch between bodies without missing a beat.
Released in 2012, the 5D Mark III still remains relevant in today's camera landscape, although its target market has surely shifted from those needing cutting-edge technology (without stepping up to a 1-series camera) to an enthusiast group wanting full-frame image quality and a more-than-reasonable feature set at an attractive price. And, coincidentally enough, that's a good description of the 6D Mark II as well, although its overall feature set is certainly more contemporary.
As illustrated above, each of these cameras will serve specific photographers' needs better than the other. If you or your business can't afford the ill-effects of a memory card failure, or if the 5D III's controls make it a better fit for your photography, the 6D II's advantages will mean little when adding the 5D III to your shopping cart.
However, with its higher resolution, Dual Pixal CMOS AF sensor, more than sufficient AF system, GPS/wireless features and smaller design/lighter weight, the 6D II will likely be the preferred choice for a large number of photographers.
SANTA ROSA, CALIF – Adventure photographers need a camera bag that’s as tough as they are. With its rugged materials and faceted design, MindShift Gear’s new PhotoCross sling bags protect a photographer’s gear from punishing trips into the wild. The PhotoCross is built to withstand the elements, yet comfortable enough to wear on long days in the field. These sling bags stay out of the way when scrambling but offer quick camera access when ready to take the shot. They feature weatherproof zippers and abrasion-resistant materials, plus a carrying system for tripods or jackets.
The PhotoCross comes in two sizes and colors, Orange Ember and Carbon Grey. The PhotoCross 10 fits an ungripped DSLR and one to two lenses, plus a 10” tablet, or a Mirrorless body and three to five lenses, plus a 10” tablet. The PhotoCross 13 fits an ungripped DSLR, two to four lenses, including a 70–200mm f/2.8, and some 13” laptops.
“The PhotoCross sling bags are significant because they meld two concepts that are often in conflict in outdoor gear design: protection and comfort. An example is how we’ve integrated the waterproof Tarpaulin bottom panel with a body-conforming design, wide shoulder strap, and stability wing for superior comfort,” said Doug Murdoch, MindShift Gear’s CEO and Lead Designer.
ADDITIONAL FEATURES AND BENEFITS
Exterior: All fabric exterior is treated with a durable water resistant coating while fabric underside is coated with polyurethane for superior water resistance, YKK weather resistant zippers, 420D high-density nylon, heavy-duty nylon Tarpaulin, 350g air mesh, nylon webbing, 3-ply bonded nylon thread.
Interior: Removable closed-cell foam dividers, P210D liner, polyurethane backed velex liner, 2x polyurethane coated 210T seam-sealed taffeta rain cover, nylon binding tape, 3-ply bonded nylon thread.
The Sigma Corporation would like to announce the development of the rear filter holder for the SIGMA 14mm F1.8 DG HSM | Art for Canon.
* Only available for the Canon mount lens. There are no plans for the development in SIGMA and Nikon mounts.
As more details of this rear filter holder become available, a further announcement will be made.
From Tamron USA:
June 30, 2017, Commack, New York- Tamron Co., Ltd., a leading manufacturer of optics for diverse applications, announces the launch of a new high-speed zoom lens, SP 24-70mm F/2.8 Di VC USD G2 (Model A032), for full-frame DSLR cameras. Model A032 is a fast F/2.8 zoom that achieves top-level image quality. The new Dual MPU (Micro Processing Units) provides rapid autofocusing with improved accuracy and the highest vibration compensation performance of any lens in its class (CIPA level of 5 stops). The use of specialized, high quality glass materials (offering greater optical transmittance) for the lens elements assures superior color reproduction and greater sharpness, while the application of Tamron's exclusive nanotechnology-based eBAND Coating substantially curbs the ghosting and flare that are prone to occur in backlit photography, successfully improving the overall. optical performance of the lens. Additionally, model A032 provides the added conveniences of protective Fluorine Coating,Moisture-Resistant Construction and a locking lens hood. Photographers can use this new high-speed zoom lens for wide-ranging purposes, including landscape, portrait, news, travel and many others. The Tamron SP 24-70mm G2 in Nikon mount will be available in August and the Canon mount in September at $1199.
1. Sophisticated design delivers superb performance and ultra-high image quality
The use of specialized, high quality glass materials assures accurate color reproduction and superior sharpness, perfect for today's high-pixel-density cameras. The optical construction (17 elements in 12 groups) uses 2 XR (Extra Refractive Index) elements, 3 LD (Low Dispersion) elements, 3 GM (Glass-Molded aspherical) and one hybrid aspherical lens element. Together they minimize axial chromatic aberrations, transverse chromatic aberrations, spherical aberrations and distortion, and allow a compact design that achieves superior image quality.
2. eBAND Coating provides superior anti-reflection properties and reduces ghosting and flare
The new A032 features Tamron's original eBAND (Extended Bandwidth & Angular-Dependency) Coating, a technology combining a nano-structured layer that has an extremely low refractive index with conventional multiple-layer coatings to provide superior anti-reflection performance. The optimal application of this eBAND Coating in combination with Tamron's BBAR (Broad-Band Anti-Reflection) Coating successfully and substantially curbs the ghosting and flare that can occur when photographing backlit subjects.
3. New Dual MPU (Micro-Processing Unit) control system provides faster and more precise autofocus and improved Vibration Compensation
This innovative control system uses a Dual MPU design with enhanced computing capacity. The MPUs have powerful, built-in DSP (Digital Signal Processor) blocks that achieve quicker and more precise AF performance, and more consistently powerful Vibration Compensation. The features combine to provide outstanding performance at night and in low light. High performance MPU for AF dramatically improves autofocusing accuracy and speed The A032 is equipped with its own MPU (micro-processor unit), with embedded DSP (Digital Signal Processor) blocks that enable high-speed digital signal processing, achieving both excellent responsiveness to signals from the camera and high-precision AF performance.
Dedicated MPU delivers the highest vibration compensation ability in class (CIPA level of 5 stops).
The new A032 is equipped with Tamron's proprietary VC (Vibration Compensation) system. Adding an MPU dedicated to VC processing unleashes a new-generation algorithm, ensuring the highest vibration compensation abilityin the class (CIPA level of 5 stops). Even in low light or with slow shutter speeds, photographers can enjoy shake-free handheld shooting with ease and comfort.
4. Fluorine Coating and Moisture-Resistant Construction
The Fluorine Coating applied on the front element surface is water-and oil-repellant and allows safe and easy removal of fingerprints, dirt and smudges. The coating also provides an enhanced level of durability, and will sustain its effectiveness for years. In addition, seals are located at the lens mount area and other critical locations to prevent infiltration of moisture and/or rain drops to provide Moisture-Resistant Construction. This feature provides an additional layer of protection when shooting outdoors under adverse weather conditions.
5. Lens hood equipped with a new, convenient locking mechanism
The lens hood is equipped with a locking mechanism that prevents detachment due to unintentional contact during use.
6. Compatible with TAMRON TAP-in ConsoleTM, an optional accessory
The new A032 is compatible with the optional TAMRON TAP-in ConsoleTM, an optional accessory product that provides a USB connection to a personal computer, enabling users to easily update the lens firmware as well as customize features including fine adjustments to the AF and VC.
7. Electromagnetic diaphragm system now used also for Nikon-mount lenses
An electromagnetic diaphragm system, which has been a standard feature for Canon-mount lenses, is now employed in Nikon-mount lenses. More precise diaphragm and aperture control is possible because the diaphragm blades are driven and controlled by a built-in motor through electronic pulse signals.
8. Manufacturing innovation with thorough attention to details based on the rigorous quality standards worthy of the SP series
Tamron has enhanced the SP series lenses to fulfill high-level photographic requirements and provide the pleasure of ownership. While introducing a new exterior design, Tamron reviewed the SP series standards. The new SP series has been developed by setting rigorous standards for design, manufacturing and quality that apply to the optical design and mechanical design as well as such wide-ranging areas as the product's robustness and improvements in a variety of individual functions. For this model, Tamron has introduced a unique MTF (Modulation Transfer Function) tester, which was developed exclusively for Model A032, and reviewed the management method. This has helped to achieve a more consistently superb optical performance, making it a lens that fulfills the demand for higher image quality that is compatible with the latest high-pixel cameras. To maximize the optical performance of the SP series, Tamron will continue to enhance the accuracy of the component parts of each lens element unit and improve the mechanical precision of the entire lens, thereby achieving a high overall performance.
With the introduction of the Canon EOS 6D Mark II, you may be wondering whether it's an adequate camera for your needs or if the higher end EOS 5D Mark IV is a better fit. Compared to the original 6D, the 6D II goes a long way in closing the feature gap with its 5-series full frame brethren.
Before we analyze the differences between the two bodies, let's first take a look at some of the primary features they have in common:
Now let's take a look at how these DSLR bodies differ.
6D Mark II Advantages over the 5D Mark IV:
5D IV Advantages over the 6D Mark II
Note: The advantages listed above should not be considered an exhaustive list, but instead represent some primary differences between the cameras.
Who should opt for the EOS 6D Mark II?
If you are stepping up from an entry level EOS Rebel/****D/***D/**D/7-series camera, the 6D Mark II will offer at least one big feature you didn't have in your previous camera – a full frame sensor. But depending on the model being displaced in your kit, the 6D Mark II may offer a wide variety of feature upgrades that make it an attractive primary camera for your needs, especially for the price.
If you already own a recent 1-series or 5-series DSLR, the 6D Mark II should prove to be a great backup camera that's more compact and easier on the budget compared to a new/retail duplicate of your existing camera.
And while we're on the subject of the camera's size and weight, anyone who is traveling to remote locations with the responsibility of carrying their camera kit on their backs for long distances and/or long periods of time will certainly appreciate the 6D II's smaller dimensions and lighter weight.
Who should opt for the 5D Mark IV?
While the 6D Mark II can easily produce professional-looking results from an image quality and AF perspective, its lack of dual memory card slots may make it a less ideal choice for those who are shooting once-in-a-lifetime imagery (think, weddings). And with a more advanced AF system (with more points and more coverage), you can expect the 5D IV to perform a little better in challenging AF conditions or when framing subjects closer to the edges of the viewfinder.
If you are primarily interested in video filming with your DSLR, the 5D IV offers more video features – including 4K recording – that will make it a much better option compared to the 6D Mark II.
The 6D Mark II represents a huge step up from its predecessor, and its upgraded features along with a budget-friendly price make the 6D II an incredible value in Canon's DSLR lineup. For those that don't require the extra features found in the 5D IV, the 6D II should prove proficient at tackling most photographic challenges with ease.
But for those who need an edge in AF performance, dual memory card slots and 4K recording, the 5D Mark IV is your camera.
New CDLC Articles
Preorders: You can find the latest preorder retailers here.
Firmware Version 2.5.2 incorporates the following fix:
Cautions Regarding Use of the CS100
Movies larger than 4GB captured with the EOS-1D X Mark II cannot be imported to the CS100 using a wired connection. Please use a memory card to transfer such movies.
The Canon USA YouTube channel saw a flury of activity after last night's midnight announcement of the EOS 6D Mark II and Rebel SL2 / 200D.
So sit back, grab some popcorn (or more likely for those in North America right now, your breakfast), and enjoy the show.
Canon USA YouTube Videos
Want even more info? Check out the links below.
Preorders: You can find the latest preorder retailers here.
The Canon EOS 6D Mark II DSLR camera page has been loaded with information, expectations and images.
This is one of the more-exciting Canon camera releases we've seen recently. I expect this model to become a very popular one.
The Canon EOS Rebel SL2 / 200D DSLR camera page has been loaded with information, expectations and images. Also, learn what "SL" stands for.
I liked the SL1 a lot and a new iteration of this model with some of Canon's latest DSLR technologies included is great to see.
The following retailers have the Canon EOS 6D Mark II & Rebel SL2 / 200D available for preorder.
From Canon USA:
EOS 6D Mark II and EOS Rebel SL2 DSLR Cameras Provide Photographers with Improved Features over Predecessors
MELVILLE, N.Y., June 29, 2017 – In celebration of the innovation behind today’s generation of high-quality digital SLR cameras on National Camera Day, Canon U.S.A. Inc., a leader in digital imaging solutions, is excited to announce the new EOS 6D Mark II and EOS Rebel SL2 DSLR cameras designed for advanced-amateur and entry-level photographers, respectively. The EOS 6D Mark II camera is ideal for budding photographers looking to take their creative DSLR photography skills to the next level by shooting with a Full-frame CMOS sensor DSLR camera to capture beautiful high-quality portraits and striking landscapes, even in low-light situations. The EOS Rebel SL2 is a small, light, and compact camera with high-performance capability that allows users to get creative when capturing their special family moments or travel experiences.
“It seems fitting that today, a day set aside to commemorate the invention of a tool that forever changed how we view the world, we introduce two new DSLR cameras to the Canon family,” said Yuichi Ishizuka, president and COO, Canon U.S.A. “In an industry where choices are abundant, providing consumers with the photographic tools that match their developing skill levels as they continue to embrace their passion for photography is a long-standing goal of Canon and stands at the core of our research and development. The new EOS 6D Mark II and EOS Rebel SL2 DSLR cameras are the result of Canon’s dedication to providing a wide range of camera choices for photographers of all skill levels, whether it’s someone taking their first picture or video with a DSLR camera or those looking to make the jump to a Full-Frame sensor camera.”
“After just one day in Yellowstone National Park with the EOS 6D Mark II DSLR Camera, it was clear that the camera is greatly improved over its predecessor,” said acclaimed nature photographer and Canon Explorer of Light Adam Jones “ Landscape and nature photographers will be very happy. The new and improved autofocus is way ahead of the previous generation and performed extremely well, even in very low-light situations.”
EOS 6D Mark II DSLR Camera
Designed with enthusiast photographers in mind, Canon’s popular and versatile EOS 6D DLSR camera historically served as the gateway for enthusiasts to step-up to Full-Frame DSLR cameras. The EOS 6D Mark II DSLR camera features several enhancements over its predecessor model, and its benefits include:
EOS Rebel SL2 DSLR Camera
Stepping up from a smartphone or point-and-shoot camera for photography can be intimidating. With the introduction of the new EOS Rebel SL2, a powerful, small, and lightweight DSLR camera, Canon hopes to alleviate some of those concerns for first-time DSLR users.
This small yet powerful camera features the world’s fastest AF speed* at 0.03 seconds, allowing for quick focusing on subjects in the frame. When designing the new EOS Rebel SL2 camera, Canon took into consideration feedback from entry-level photographers who expressed interest in learning how to go beyond a camera’s program mode. The result was the creation of a convenient new user interface called Feature Assistant. With the EOS Rebel SL2 camera, users will be able to see on the camera’s Vari-angle Touch Screen how switching modes on the mode dial or tweaking camera settings like aperture and exposure compensation can alter the image they are about to capture, thus guiding photographers on their way to capturing more compelling images, such as ones with a shallow depth-of-field or being able to give moving subjects a frozen or flowing look.
The EOS Rebel SL2 DSLR camera features several other enhancements over its predecessor model, the EOS Rebel SL1, including:
Pricing and Availability
The EOS 6D Mark II DSLR camera is scheduled to be available in late July 2017 for an estimated retail price of $1,999.00 for body only, $3,099.00 with the Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM II lens and $2,599.00 with the Canon EF 24-105mm f/3.5-5.6 STM lens. In addition the EOS Rebel SL2 is scheduled to be available in late July 2017 for a retail price of $549.99 for body only and $699.99 with the Canon EF-S 18-55m f/4-5.6 IS STM lens. For more information please visit usa.canon.com.
From the Canon Digital Learning Center:
Written by Dave Henry and Ken Sklute A total solar eclipse is truly amazing and is absolutely the most majestic natural phenomenon for earth! That’s right… for earth! It’s nature’s gift to earth. Nothing beats it. Nothing! The thrill, however, began months ago when you decided that you weren’t going to let this eclipse pass you by. After all, it’s the kind of challenge all photographers live for. The challenge that expands our photography skill sets and allows us to photograph something new.See the entire article on the Canon Digital Learning Center.
Afterwards you’ll sit back and reflect on what it was exactly that enabled you to get such great images and you’ll soon come to the realization that it was all in the planning.
That’s usually the case in almost everything we do.
It was over a hundred years ago that Louis Pasteur said, “Chance favors only the prepared mind.” What he meant is that a prepared person, with the right skills at the right place at the right time, can take advantage of an opportunity and create something.
From The Film Look YouTube Channel:
Here is a cool trick to store light stands if you don't have a lot of room in your studio!
It appears that a major player in the memory card market is about to go the way of the woolly mammoth. Jay Hawkins, Micron's consumer products group vice president announced on the company's blog yesterday that it would be discontinuing the Lexar brand.
I have many Lexar compactflash memory cards and they've always served me well. In fact, I have a Lexar Professional CF card installed in both my 5D III & 7D II right now. [Sean]
From the Micron.com Blog:
Micron Technology today announced that it is discontinuing its Lexar retail removable media storage business. The decision was made as part of the company’s ongoing efforts to focus on its increasing opportunities in higher value markets and channels.If you'd like to purchase a Lexar memory card while you can, B&H has several in stock.
The Lexar portfolio includes memory cards, USB flash drives, readers, and storage drives for retail and OEM customers.
Micron is exploring opportunities to sell all or part of the Lexar business.
The company will continue to provide support to existing customers through this transition period. Customers should contact their Lexar sales representative to discuss specific requirements.
I’d like to thank our team members and partners for their contributions to the Lexar business. As difficult as this decision is, the company is making this adjustment in its business to ensure it continues to be well-positioned for the future.
Create soulful, striking portraits with our Velvet 85 art lens. Compose impressionistic masterpieces with a soft overlay at bright apertures, straight out of camera. Use darker apertures to bypass glow and make images with a crisp, film-like aesthetic.
Building on the strengths of our bestselling Velvet 56 lens, Velvet 85 combines lustrous skin tones with the added compression and sublime bokeh of high-quality 85mm portrait lenses. Use its macro capability to capture the most compelling details.
Velvet 85 is currently available for pre-order and will begin shipping July 11th in the order in which they are received.
In this video, Scott Kelby shares how Photoshop's script Image Processor works to convert a folder full of images into JPEGs, TIFFs, PSDs (or all three at once) while also applying any Photoshop Action during the process.
Note: Scott Kelby forgot to cut the video so as not to include the batch image processing in real time. Once he stops talking at 2:56, just fast forward to the 4:00 mark to see the rest of his commentary.
If you have been following our news page/feed, you know that a solar eclipse is coming to the USA on August 21st, just under 2 months away. While nearly 2 months may seem like a long time, solar filters have been in high demand and you can't count on the ones you want being in stock at the last minute. Retailers have purchased a finite amount of stock in anticipation of the demand, but as solar eclipses are so rare, you likely shouldn't assume retailers will refresh inventory of the otherwise-relatively-low-demand items once they run out.
In addition to simply acquiring your solar filter, you should be practicing with your camera, lens, tripod and filter setup well in advance of the big day. That will give you time to determine if your gear and techniques are adequate.
And keep in mind, even if you aren't located in an area allowing for a view of the total eclipse, much of the US will be able to enjoy a strong partial eclipse that's worth viewing and/or photographing.
Solar Eclipse Photography Articles
In this presentation, Chris Nicholson delves into what the park system offers to the photographer, and how to best research and prepare for a trip to explore the artistic opportunities within. Learn how to travel safely and photograph in the various environments found in the parks, including desert, alpine, forest and coastline. Many locations will be discussed.
Discover where to find valuable information about iconic and secret photo locations, how to stay powered up in the outdoors, and ideas for supplementary gear that will make a photo project more productive and enjoyable.
While the Amazon Echo may not be necessarily photography related, I imagine there are quite a few photographers on the site who enjoy useful gadgets such as this one. The current $50.00 discount on the device is the best I've seen. [Sean]
Catchlights in a subject's eyes are usually desirable in a photograph. A bright reflection in the eye creates a sparkle that brings the subject to life. While this applies to human subjects, it also applies to wildlife subjects.
This mother black bear (I know that she is a mother because she stashed her 2 cubs high up in a huge hemlock tree 100 yards/m or so behind her) was hunting for food in the woods in Shenandoah National Park. The woods were quite dark due to a heavy tree canopy, but there was a small clearing in the direction the bear was headed. I moved ahead of her and positioned for what I envisioned being the ideal situation that could develop ... and the bear was unusually cooperative.
The clearing of course had an opening with sky visible. Sky, especially the sun if the sky is clear, is bright and can create the desired catchlights. However, the angle on the eyes still must be correct to get that reflection.
A key point here is that bears generally walk with their head hanging down low and a downward viewing angle on animals' eyes seldom results in a catchlight. This is another good reason to get level with (or even below) your animal subjects, increasing the likelihood of catchlight reflections being created.
The other issue created by the head-down walking is the that bear's head falls below most of the beautifully-rich-green plant life in this area. While a bear back showing above the green plants may be interesting, visible eyes are usually required to pass for a keeper image for most serious bear photographers.
So, in order to see the eyes in this location, I needed the bear to look up. In a case where I couldn't have planned things any better, this bear hit the clearing, stopped and looked around.
This was a randomly moving animal. Though it was not moving fast, it was moving most of the time and its was a bit unpredictable, including making 180° direction changes at times. I had the camera in M (Manual) mode, but was using the camera's autoexposure system via the Auto ISO setting. With these settings, I could simply roll the top dial to get the shutter speed I thought I needed at any moment.
If the bear stopped walking (though even then it was always moving its head from side to side), I immediately took insurance shots at confidently-fast shutter speeds and then quickly began shooting bursts at longer exposures in attempt to get some even higher-grade images without motion blur (the longer shutter speeds resulted in lower ISO settings for lower noise). The 1/250 setting used for this image is not close to stressing the capabilities of this image stabilized lens at 560mm on a monopod (used over a tripod for setup speed), but the bear was still moving some. Fortunately, the 1D X II image quality is extremely good at the auto-selected ISO setting of 2500 used here. When the bear began moving, I quickly rolled the top dial to get an action-stopping shutter speed again.
The vibrant green foliage in Shenandoah National Park works very well for wildlife images. The wet bear hints at the recent weather conditions. There had been dense fog and a considerable amount of rain and as the 1/250, f/5.6, ISO 2500 camera settings hint, this image was captured under heavy cloud cover.
Though this bear appears to be lit by flash, no flash was used. The lighting is all natural ambient light. The bear's position in the opening meant that just enough cloudy sky was visible to brighten the scene and create a nice sparkle in the bear's eyes.
So, those are some lessons from a momma black bear. Hopefully you found something said here to be applicable to your own photography!
Yesterday we reported that the 24-70mm f/2.8 OS Art and Sigma 14mm f/1.8 Art lenses were scheduled to begin shipping today based on information posted by B&H on the items' product pages. However, B&H has changed the availability expectations on their website as follows:
However, Sigma posted press releases today which state that both lenses are scheduled to begin shipping in "July 2017."
So... it looks like preorder customers will be waiting a little longer to receive their new lenses.
Thank you for purchasing and using our products.
Sigma Corporation would like to announce a firmware update for the SIGMA 100-400mm F5-6.3 DG OS HSM | Contemporary for Nikon is now available. By updating the firmware, the lens will offer improved AF performance.
For customers who own the SIGMA USB DOCK, please update the firmware via SIGMA Optimization Pro.
Benefits of this firmware update