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pierces

Picture-A-Week 2019 - Week 01

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Pictures taken between Monday, December 31 and Sunday, January 6.

 

Happy new year everyone! Welcome to Year eight of the Picture-A-Week project.

 

Last year saw a lot of regulars and quite a few new folks. I know from the number of views that there are a lot of people looking but not posting. Don't be shy! Join the fun! That has always been the goal of the PAW project. Fun. Take your camera off the shelf, out of the bag or wherever you stash it between cruises and take it for a walk, a drive or just sit and wait for the dog/cat/kids/grandkids to do something cute. Take a break from the day-to-day and take time to really see the world around you. Photography helps you do that and you may find yourself a little happier because you did. 



Again, Happy New Year!

 

Rules: See above

That's it. This isn't a contest.

All photos taken this week are welcome (not just cruising).

Prizes will not be awarded. Discovering the joy of photography is the prize.

The idea is to get folks out using their cameras for more than vacations and toddler birthdays.

Post one. Post many. Up to you.

Have fun with your camera and share your fun with others!

Edited December 24 by pierces

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First smoke of the year... 

 

Happy New Year everyone. 

 

IMG_20190101_151801-01-01.jpeg

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That's a lot of meat.  Either you have a big family or you are getting yourself in shape for eating on a cruise.  :classic_biggrin:

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9 hours ago, Oakman58 said:

That's a lot of meat.  Either you have a big family or you are getting yourself in shape for eating on a cruise.  :classic_biggrin:

One is for my son to take back to college, the other is for all of us this week. Go big or go home, amiright!?! 

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I took a drive along the river road in Alton IL hoping to see some of the wintering Bald Eagles that congregate in the area but alas, no eagles today.  I did take a few shots of other birds.

33xy0ra.jpg

 

sownm8.jpg

 

e16gwm.jpg

 

OK, I lied, I did see an eagle.

 

2qw25ol.jpg

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I got a rare chance to take photos in the actual beginning of a weekly thread...but I didn't get around to offloading it from my card until a few days ago, so I'm posting it when I usually do, after the thread's week is up!

Here are some of the bird and bird-in-flight action on New Year's Day here in Florida:

 

A prairie warbler, looking up:

original.jpg

 

Great egret, flying past the fall-color trees - we don't really get 'winter' trees here - in winter, our trees do what other people's trees do in early fall:

original.jpg

 

Smiling happy alligator?  Actually, just lying on the bank to get some heat, and using the mouth as an exhaust to let out excess heat:

original.jpg

 

The elusive and fairly rare American bittern, who doesn't often like to stand out in the open:

original.jpg

 

The very colorful and lovely purple gallinule, using those huge yellow feet to walk the reeds over the water:

original.jpg

 

Getting a closeup look at a green heron, while he's on the fishing hunt:

original.jpg

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During our Christmas visit to the Houston branch of our family, we had rain. Lots of rain. Not nearly as much as the flooding events that plagued them for the last two years, but the creeks, drainage gullies and catchment ponds were very well hydrated. How hydrated, you ask? On our last day there I took the granddaughters to a local park for a little walk under the clearing skies and maybe to snap a few photos along the park path. I liked the way the drops had gathered on the glossy leaves of the plant in the water but didn’t realize until I got home that the plant was the same as the ones lining the bank but submerged under four feet of extra water.

 

After the Storm

 

p3259509126-5.jpg

 

 

 

Dave

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Because week 1 included a mid-week holiday for me, I had shots to share from Jan 1, and then I was out again on the weekend and had my usual Saturday birding action.  The wetlands are really becoming quite busy, with lots of mating birds gathering, building nests, pairing off, and flying all around for supplies.  In just an hour, I can stand in one spot and photograph 2 dozen species and hundreds of birds, all within 40 feet of me.  Saturday's weather was also cooperative - sunny, 80 degrees, mostly clear skies with little cottonball cloud ribbons:

 

A pair of great blue herons 'kissing' as they chose eachother to mate and were standing on their nesting spot:

original.jpg

 

After I loaded this photo from my card, I actually looked at it and thought 'wow, it looks like I photoshopped the bird against that sky!'  I promise I didn't - this is just what it looked like as this great blue heron flew past those little puffy clouds:

original.jpg

 

Here's an ibis flying past the same clouds a bit later:

original.jpg

 

A great egret catching the full sunset colors as he flies past:

original.jpg

 

After the sun was mostly behind the treeline, the wetlands were growing dark, but the birds higher up in the sky were still catching the warm yellow/orange light, like this cattle egret:

original.jpg

 

A giant wood stork also flying past at the last wisps of sunset light catch him:

original.jpg

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2 hours ago, zackiedawg said:

Because week 1 included a mid-week holiday for me, I had shots to share from Jan 1, and then I was out again on the weekend and had my usual Saturday birding action.  The wetlands are really becoming quite busy, with lots of mating birds gathering, building nests, pairing off, and flying all around for supplies.  In just an hour, I can stand in one spot and photograph 2 dozen species and hundreds of birds, all within 40 feet of me.  Saturday's weather was also cooperative - sunny, 80 degrees, mostly clear skies with little cottonball cloud ribbons:

 

A pair of great blue herons 'kissing' as they chose eachother to mate and were standing on their nesting spot:

original.jpg

 

After I loaded this photo from my card, I actually looked at it and thought 'wow, it looks like I photoshopped the bird against that sky!'  I promise I didn't - this is just what it looked like as this great blue heron flew past those little puffy clouds:

original.jpg

 

Here's an ibis flying past the same clouds a bit later:

original.jpg

 

A great egret catching the full sunset colors as he flies past:

original.jpg

 

After the sun was mostly behind the treeline, the wetlands were growing dark, but the birds higher up in the sky were still catching the warm yellow/orange light, like this cattle egret:

original.jpg

 

A giant wood stork also flying past at the last wisps of sunset light catch him:

original.jpg

Sometime when you take photos of the birds flying could you please share your camera settings? I really love your photos!

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12 hours ago, cruises42 said:

Sometime when you take photos of the birds flying could you please share your camera settings? I really love your photos!

 

I forget to think of it as I always leave the EXIF intact on my photos - and some other forums show the EXIF shot info when you hover over the shot...or if you have an EXIF viewer installed you can right-click to get it.  My galleries at PBase show all the settings too.

In general with non-flying birds, I've got a memory bank set up with these defaults: A priority, AF-S focus, flex spot focus point, 3fps drive mode, Auto ISO 100-6400 with a min. shutter speed of 1/500, center-weighted metering.  I usually set aperture and adjust EV primarily, and don't change much else unless I really have to.

With birds in flight, my memory bank 2 is set up with:  S priority, 1/1000 shutter default, AF-C focus, wide focus area, 8fps drive mode, Auto ISO 100-3200, center weighted metering, -.3 EV.  I generally adjust only the shutter and EV as needed - though when shooting in low light, I'll bump auto ISO up to 6400, and on occasion I may adjust the drive speed to 11fps or 5fps.

In both cases, I like to set up the defaults in the two memory banks so I don't have much to have to think about or adjust on the fly - having to really only worry about two primary controls - Aperture & EV, or Shutter & EV, lets me pan, track, shoot fast, etc.

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11 hours ago, zackiedawg said:

 

I forget to think of it as I always leave the EXIF intact on my photos - and some other forums show the EXIF shot info when you hover over the shot...or if you have an EXIF viewer installed you can right-click to get it.  My galleries at PBase show all the settings too.

In general with non-flying birds, I've got a memory bank set up with these defaults: A priority, AF-S focus, flex spot focus point, 3fps drive mode, Auto ISO 100-6400 with a min. shutter speed of 1/500, center-weighted metering.  I usually set aperture and adjust EV primarily, and don't change much else unless I really have to.

With birds in flight, my memory bank 2 is set up with:  S priority, 1/1000 shutter default, AF-C focus, wide focus area, 8fps drive mode, Auto ISO 100-3200, center weighted metering, -.3 EV.  I generally adjust only the shutter and EV as needed - though when shooting in low light, I'll bump auto ISO up to 6400, and on occasion I may adjust the drive speed to 11fps or 5fps.

In both cases, I like to set up the defaults in the two memory banks so I don't have much to have to think about or adjust on the fly - having to really only worry about two primary controls - Aperture & EV, or Shutter & EV, lets me pan, track, shoot fast, etc.

Thanks! What type of lens do you use and do you crop the photo at all?

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Since I picked up my FE100-400mm GM lens, that's been the primary shooter for wildlife and birds.  I also have a matched 1.4x TC for that lens, for when I need more reach.  I also have a Tamron 150-600mm lens, and an FE70-300mm G lens - the Tamron I don't use as much as I used to because it's a DSLR-mount lens that I adapted to my Sony A6300 mirrorless when there were no other long-lens solutions...so when the 100-400mm came out, that made the Tamron unnecessary for the most part.  The 70-300mm is still my primary wildlife and bird lens when I travel, and can't spare the room to pack the bigger 100-400mm.  I like that the 70-300mm is small enough to fit in a normal shoulder bag with a few other lenses and camera body - the 100-400mm is just a little too big for that, and generally requires either a backpack or sling, or dedicated bag.

Crop-wise, I generally only need to crop for composition with most of my bird photography - though for smaller birds, more rare ones that might have been at a distance, or occasionally at a newer place where the birds aren't as accustomed to people, I will crop more.  Probably 90% of the time, my photos at 6000x4000 pixels would range from no crop, to a maximum of 4,000 x 2667 pixels.  On the more rare occasion that I really need to crop for something more distant or rare, I'll crop to as much as 3,200 x 2,133 - that's around 7MP and would be about as small as I'd like to go and still have a decent sized print with good detail, or ability to share on a large 4k screen.

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On 1/7/2019 at 9:38 AM, zackiedawg said:

I got a rare chance to take photos in the actual beginning of a weekly thread...but I didn't get around to offloading it from my card until a few days ago, so I'm posting it when I usually do, after the thread's week is up!

Here are some of the bird and bird-in-flight action on New Year's Day here in Florida:

 

A prairie warbler, looking up:

original.jpg

 

I just love your work but was wondering if that could be a Pine Warbler. I was not able to private message you.

 

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It may well be - admittedly we have both this time of year..the early season ones can look quite similar as we don't get them in their full adult colors yet.  Appreciate the suggestion and I'll definitely look into it to get a firm ID!

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