Technical photography challenge

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  • Technical photography challenge
  • 5thElefant
    Member

    You did well to get that. Must be a heavy crop to be that noisy though.

    Premier Icon GrahamS
    Subscriber

    Give me a minute.

    Premier Icon GrahamS
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    Okay, how’s this?

    πŸ˜‰

    ski
    Member
    Premier Icon molgrips
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    It’s a heavy crop – I could hardly see the thing, and it was moving very fast obviously, so I had to use a fairly wide angle to get it at all.

    It was flying a fairly regular loop up and down behind the houses, so I had to pre-focus to roughly where it was going to be and use a small aperture to hedge my bets. That’s why it’s so blurry really.

    Flash was FP mode, so it was only just within range at high ISO.

    grum
    Member

    Okay, how’s this?

    Well done Graham Carsten.

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    I reckon I’ll be able to refine my technique and have another go next nice evening we get πŸ™‚

    zokes
    Member
    Premier Icon GrahamS
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    Well done Graham Carsten.

    That’s not a watermark – the bat was towing an advertising banner. πŸ˜€

    5thElefant
    Member

    Next time I have one doing laps around my bedroom I’ll get my camera πŸ™‚

    Happens weekly in the summer.

    slugwash
    Member

    Pretty good subject capture…


    338/365 – Long Eared Bat (Dead) by Slugwash, on Flickr

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    Slugwash – cheating.

    I may try getting out as early as possible next time, and maybe zoom in with some natural light.

    ski
    Member

    In my student photography days, I did manage to get 36 exposure of bats entering through a barn window using a borrowed Mazof ir trigger, they were all badly overexposed. I was gutted as I was trying to capture a Barn owl at the time.

    Premier Icon molgrips
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    Can any of you do better than this:


    bat by molgrips, on Flickr

    sharki
    Member

    Very good all things considered.
    My only bat image is this hibernating Noctual which was moving considerably slower.

    mamadirt
    Member

    Aww bats rock!

    CountZero
    Member

    Mol, that’s pretty damned cool, I’m really impressed! I like the grainy, fuzzy nature of the pic, looks more ‘real’, somehow. πŸ˜€

    TuckerUK
    Member

    I’ve got some clear shots of bats in Italy. On 35mm slide or neg (forget which), they came out very clearly.

    Every evening the bats would come out whilst it was still light so I just used my flash and motordrive to shoot a whole roll of film pointed roughly in their direction. Got one or two keepers.

    But I think you beat me skill wise, yours was at night!

    Dave
    Member

    Hey Sharki,

    That’s not a Noctule, looks more like a Daubenton’s.

    Premier Icon molgrips
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    Mol, that’s pretty damned cool, I’m really impressed!

    Ta πŸ™‚

    I had another go again tonight with a longer lens, but it was even harder to get the things in the frame. I got a reasonable image of half a bat. I might try again from the ground next time as I kept metering on the houses behind.

    The biggest issue is focus. Impossible to autofocus on them, and because they are flying around quasi-randomly you’ve got no reference point.

    I think there may be two species out here though – one of them seemed sodding huge, body the size of a small rat.

    Premier Icon GrahamS
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    I might try again from the ground next time as I kept metering on the houses behind.

    Manual Mode time!

    marsdenman
    Member

    Opens manual for D700.
    Finds no trace of auto setting for ‘bats at night’.
    Decides to not compete in the challenge.
    πŸ˜‰

    Agree with comment above – think the grain & movement add to the shot.

    GrahamS – did you run molgrips’ shot through Portrait Professional to get such an amazing result πŸ˜‰

    Edit – should add – agree with GrahamS – you’re already pre-focussing, add manual exposure and you’ll be giving yourself a much better chance IMO.
    Would also add, despite ‘auto’ comment above, I do spend around 99% of my time in manual exposure mode… Getting it right in camera saves so much time putting it right in the edit!

    Premier Icon molgrips
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    Manual Mode time!

    Yeah, it’s hard enough guessing where the thing’s going to be without having to guess the exposure settings too. You don’t get much chance to assess a black thing flying really fast against a black background.

    Premier Icon GrahamS
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    GrahamS – did you run molgrips’ shot through Portrait Professional to get such an amazing result

    Nah I just bunged it into the Picasa editor and hit Auto-Fix πŸ˜€

    mol: I wonder if there is a way to get a more predictable flight pattern?

    Can’t think of any way to (ethically) lure them but maybe aim under lamposts where they will catching moths drawn to the light? That should also give you a bit of additional lighting for your shot (though you’ll probably have to adjust colour temperature to get rid of the yellow)

    Premier Icon GrahamS
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    Yeah, it’s hard enough guessing where the thing’s going to be without having to guess the exposure settings too.

    Well you’re never going to successfully spot meter off a fast moving bat at night anyway so there is no point in trying. Just slows your shutter speed and makes the results unpredictable.

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    mol: I wonder if there is a way to get a more predictable flight pattern?

    Ideally you’d find a choke point on their flight paths, or a spot where they are emerging from their roost or something, I suppose. Then you can focus on that and be quick with the shutter button.

    I did think of using some kind of lamp, but that’s getting serious πŸ™‚

    Well you’re never going to successfully spot meter off a fast moving bat at night anyway

    TTL metering works ok, as long as the bat’s in the frame it seems to get the bat ok. I would just rather a black background I suppose.

    grum
    Member

    I’d be trying manual exposure and have the flash in manual too. TTL type metering can be pretty unreliable, especially in ‘extreme’ scenarios.

    If the bat is being exposed by the flash you don’t actually need to use a fast shutter speed, as the very quick blast of light from the flash will freeze the action just fine – therefore you don’t need to be in FP mode (if FP mode is what I think it is).

    PeterPoddy
    Member

    Two from 2008. Canon 400d, Sigma 17-70 f2.8 lens. Right place, right time……


    IMG_6562 by PeterPoddy, on Flickr


    Bird by PeterPoddy, on Flickr

    Premier Icon molgrips
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    Good point.. also had someone suggest leaving the camera on a long exposure and triggering the flash by hand.

    Poddy, nice pictures of bats.

    Premier Icon GrahamS
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    I did think of using some kind of lamp, but that’s getting serious

    Bike light?

    TTL metering works ok, as long as the bat’s in the frame it seems to get the bat ok. I would just rather a black background I suppose.

    Well take the meter readings from a “good” TTL shot and then dial them in as the manual settings. Then the rest of your shots will look the same and you won’t accidentally meter off something else or end up with a mid-grey night sky.

    grum
    Member

    Ummm….. PeterPoddy – pictures in good light is a completely different scenario and not anywhere near as challenging.

    Premier Icon molgrips
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    Bike light?

    Hmm.. I was thinking of a long pole with a camping lantern on the end to attract the insects.. the obstacle might be enough to get the bats to fly up and check or turn, which could get some good shots.

    Graham.. I think I minced my words there. I set manual exposure for the camera, 1/320 and F11 (to try and maximise my chance of getting focus). The amount of flash was set by ttl.

    I’m going to try the long exposure idea next I think, with cam on a tripod

    Premier Icon GrahamS
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    Graham.. I think I minced my words there. I set manual exposure for the camera, 1/320 and F11

    Aah right gotcha. Carry on then.

    F11 seems a little extreme though. Can’t remember what camera you are using but it’s a four-thirds jobby isn’t it?

    Quick plug on my Depth-of-Field calculator app suggests that on a four-thirds camera like a Lumix GF1 pointing an f11 at a target 10 metres away gives you a depth of field that is over 8 metres deep (7.37m to 15.5m)

    That’s a pretty big margin for error. I’d try opening up a bit so you have the option of dropping the ISO a little and increasing the shutter speed a bit.

    Premier Icon molgrips
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    Hmm.. well I put a high ISO in, but last night I had some setting different I suppoes because the flash seemed confident it could illuminate stuff 10m away. I could’ve lowered the ISO a fair bit.

    The bat run is about 2-3m away from me, so DoF is still smaller. But maybe it’s the high ISO that’s making the blurry images more than missed focus.

    With higher ISO I could crop more and then use a wider angle to get more ‘hits’.

    Premier Icon GrahamS
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    The bat run is about 2-3m away from me, so DoF is still smaller.

    Oooh didn’t realise you could get that close – okay then. At 2 metres the DoF of a 70mm lens goes from 187cm to 214.9cm not sure what lens size you are using)

    (PhotoBuddy is a useful little phone app for working these things out)

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    Ta. I’ve got *cough* a wide choice of lens πŸ™‚ 70mm was a bit too long, couldn’t get the things in the frame. Might try my 40-150 next.

    brakes
    Member

    I’ve got a few shots somewhere of a million bats leaving the underside of a bridge at dusk in Texas.
    I just about managed to capture a couple of them.

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    I’ve got a few shots somewhere of a million bats leaving the underside of a bridge at dusk in Texas.
    I just about managed to capture a couple of them

    I think I’ve been to that bridge and waited for the bats to appear – they didn’t!

Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 45 total)

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