Skip to Content

Photography Tips

Discuss and share your wildlife photography, filming and equipment
User avatar
DuQues
Honorary Virtual Ranger
Honorary Virtual Ranger
Posts: 14520
Joined: Fri Jan 14, 2005 5:42 pm
Location: Red sand, why do I keep thinking of red sand?

Re: What are your top 5 tips for a first time Kruger shooter

Unread post by DuQues » Mon Jul 18, 2011 11:51 am

:lol:

Yep. It is a simple little rule which allows you to shoot handheld without introducing user jitter.
If you use a 200 mm lens and you want to have a clear sharp photo you will need a shuttertime faster than (in this case) 1/200, so on most cameras 1/250.

Now you should remember that on a cropcamera, which most of us have, the actual length of the lens will be longer. On my cameras that 200 mm lens would be 200 x 1.6 (cropfactor) = 320 mm. So a shuttertime of 1/500 is the best choice.
Not posting much here anymore, but the photo's you can follow here There is plenty there.

Feel free to use any of these additional letters to correct the spelling of words found in the above post: a-e-t-n-d-i-o-s-m-l-u-y-h-c

User avatar
Flutterby
Virtual Ranger
Virtual Ranger
Posts: 1075
Joined: Fri Sep 19, 2008 3:42 pm
Location: Paulshof, Gauteng

Re: What are your top 5 tips for a first time Kruger shooter

Unread post by Flutterby » Mon Jul 18, 2011 12:02 pm

So a 300mm would be 300 x 1.6 = 480mm...am I right? And the best shutterttime? Also 1/500 or more?
"I think the environment should be put in the category of our national security. Defense of our resources is just as important as defense abroad. Otherwise what is there to defend?"

SAY NO TO HOTEL DEVELOPMENTS IN KRUGER

User avatar
DuQues
Honorary Virtual Ranger
Honorary Virtual Ranger
Posts: 14520
Joined: Fri Jan 14, 2005 5:42 pm
Location: Red sand, why do I keep thinking of red sand?

Re: What are your top 5 tips for a first time Kruger shooter

Unread post by DuQues » Mon Jul 18, 2011 12:03 pm

Yep! :thumbs_up:
Not posting much here anymore, but the photo's you can follow here There is plenty there.

Feel free to use any of these additional letters to correct the spelling of words found in the above post: a-e-t-n-d-i-o-s-m-l-u-y-h-c

vanderw
Posts: 21
Joined: Fri Sep 10, 2010 9:45 am

Re: What are your top 5 tips for a first time Kruger shooter

Unread post by vanderw » Thu Jul 21, 2011 2:49 pm

Hi DuQues

How does the f-stop influence this rule regarding the 1.6?

If I have a 300mm and I use 1.6 = 480mm so my shutter speed is 1/500 yes? What is the best f-stop for this setting or does it depend on the light conditions etc?

Dare I bring ISO into this?

lma1016
Posts: 3
Joined: Sun Jul 17, 2011 2:11 pm

Re: What are your top 5 tips for a first time Kruger shooter

Unread post by lma1016 » Thu Jul 21, 2011 4:33 pm

Thanks for all the input everyone. Now I am wondering if a 70-200 f2.8 IS L with a 2X extender would be better... That way, I can go to 400 mm with f4. I know if is a bigger and heavier lens - what do you think? Remember, I am renting and the price is about the same either way (this option or the 100-400).

User avatar
saraf
Distinguished Virtual Ranger
Distinguished Virtual Ranger
Posts: 7504
Joined: Sun Jan 16, 2005 3:19 pm
Location: Portsmouth, England

Re: What are your top 5 tips for a first time Kruger shooter

Unread post by saraf » Thu Jul 21, 2011 4:35 pm

Doesn't a 2x extender take off 2 stops, so you'd get 5.6?
Want to say Thank You or Well Done to a fellow 'mite? Why not nominate them for a Kudu?

boogels
Posts: 31
Joined: Sat May 09, 2009 9:52 am

Re: What are your top 5 tips for a first time Kruger shooter

Unread post by boogels » Thu Jul 21, 2011 7:10 pm

1. A crop camera is a better choice for wildlife than full frame.

2. Buy a zoom lens. Much more versetile than a fixed

3. Shoot in AV mode. F5.6 for a 1.6 crop. Set it and foreget it. You should develop a feeling for the depth of field. Almost alwys good enough depth of field in any situation.

4. ISO 320 will do for most situations but the most dimmest light with F5.6 You will develop a feeling when to up the iso. I seldomly need an ISO higher than 640 @ F5.6 or a F lower than 5.6 but this will happen. Your camera should be set on 320. Use the ISO to up the Tv. I dont go higher than 800. After that I lower the F stop.

5. A 70-200 mm is good for most close encounters in the Kruger but it is not for birds and further distances.

6. Buy the sharpest lens you can put your hands on. Its worth it. Currently the kings of sharpness 70-200mm zooms of canon are the 70-200mm F4 IS USM (R12000) and the 70-200 F2.8 IS USM MKII (R23000). Im exteamly happy with my F4IS USM. Lightweight and it perform flawlesly in any situation with fantastic sharpness. Can do with bigger but currently no sharp enough zoom from Canon for me. (I admit I am a bit strict on this)

7. Tv = focal length is a bit wanting even for a 10mp 1.6 crop camera. Even more so for a 20mp full frame camera. I need at least 2x that. The more the better. Im starting to feel happy with a Tv of 1/600sec with my 200mm zoom

User avatar
AndyM
Posts: 11
Joined: Mon Apr 13, 2009 9:26 am
Location: FNQ Australia

Re: What are your top 5 tips for a first time Kruger shooter

Unread post by AndyM » Thu Jul 21, 2011 11:22 pm

Hi vanderw,

I almost always shoot via Aperture Priority, which basic means your shutter speed is controlled by available light and/or ISO, so if theres plenty of light available you can shoot with low ISO, if the lights poor then you need to maintain your shutter speed by increasing ISO. You're better off having a slightly more noisy image (which can usually be improved later) that is usable, than a noise free image that has motion blur which would have to be deleted...

Thats my way of taking photos, others may have different methods....

Regards....Andy
Counting the days down....KTP and KNP: 1 Aug to 4 Sept 2011 !

JimS
Posts: 92
Joined: Wed Dec 14, 2005 10:21 am
Location: johannesburg

Re: What are your top 5 tips for a first time Kruger shooter

Unread post by JimS » Fri Jul 22, 2011 4:44 pm

For what it's worth here are my top tips,

Pick your location to match the light. I love Sunset Dam (Lower Sabie) early in the morning, Lake Panic in the afternoon, Ngirivana Dam (near Satara) in the afternoon. I feel no matter how good the subject the high contrast lighting on a sunny day in Kruger can ruin any pic. I only tend to drive around on overcast days when the light is much kinder, sunny days finds me where the light is right and I stay there.

Watch the background, bright backgrounds can fool the camera exposure, try and position the subject against a dark background, easier said than done.

Long lenses, 400/500mm, have very small depth of field when the subject is close so adjust the f stop accordingly. Google depth of field for some DOF calculators. There are several DOF apps for iPod.

I try and fill at least 50% of the pic with the subject. Kingfishers at 20 metres are fun to photograph but don't make for good pics.

Shoot RAW for more options when post processing, and keep an eye on the camera histogram to make sure that highlights are not being clipped.

I made a very simple wooden platform that fits over the car window and gives me a 35 x 35 cm platform for my over size bean bag. A very solid platform for a big lens with a remote release.

That's six tips, I never could count.

Jim

User avatar
UKbadger
Posts: 214
Joined: Wed May 23, 2007 5:06 pm
Location: London UK

Re: What are your top 5 tips for a first time Kruger shooter

Unread post by UKbadger » Wed Jul 27, 2011 2:10 pm

1st tip is so important that it gets 1st 2nd and 3rd place!!!!! :rtm:

My 1st----3rd ~ tips, get a big double been bag, one with 2 separate liners inside that fits over the car window when raised 4-5cm. It will even work with the window raised half way or more though not quite so steady.

wildlifewatchingsupplies make one that’s just right and not too heavy to pull into the car when speeders make dust!

4th tip ~ 24-105 is perfect for those “Battling Lions with Lebombo Mountains in the background” shots. :wink: The wider view including the animal’s surroundings is often more interesting than the sooper-close-up!!

5th tip ~ 100-400 is the best lens for you given your starting point. To do better you would need to start again with the classic 17-40ish + 70-200 + a big prime 300, up to 800 depending on which bank you rob! You find that a lot of people who start out with a 100-400, just can’t bring themselves to sell it, even when they have a big prime.

It’s just too versatile.

Have a great time, :thumbs_up:

UKB

User avatar
DuQues
Honorary Virtual Ranger
Honorary Virtual Ranger
Posts: 14520
Joined: Fri Jan 14, 2005 5:42 pm
Location: Red sand, why do I keep thinking of red sand?

Re: What are your top 5 tips for a first time Kruger shooter

Unread post by DuQues » Wed Jul 27, 2011 4:01 pm

vanderw wrote:Hi DuQues

How does the f-stop influence this rule regarding the 1.6?

If I have a 300mm and I use 1.6 = 480mm so my shutter speed is 1/500 yes? What is the best f-stop for this setting or does it depend on the light conditions etc?

Dare I bring ISO into this?

Whoops, missed that question. :redface:
Yes, 1/500 would be the one to go for then. Or faster of course, depending on the light.

The best f-stop depends on what you photograph. If it's an animal you want without background you open up the lens (f/4 if you can) but if it's a landscape it'll be f/16 so the background is sharp all the way.

You can up the ISO to get the speed you need (don't forget to switch it down later!) but first see reviews of your camera. If it can go up to say 3200 ISO I'm betting that at 800 ISO you'll already get grainy photos. Just read the review about high ISO, and do a few test shots. Then memorise what the max will be in the field.
But... Better a grainy photo of an Aardvark on a nightdrive than none at all. ;)
Not posting much here anymore, but the photo's you can follow here There is plenty there.

Feel free to use any of these additional letters to correct the spelling of words found in the above post: a-e-t-n-d-i-o-s-m-l-u-y-h-c

User avatar
Panekoek
Posts: 176
Joined: Sun May 02, 2010 11:30 am

Some advice needed for a Beginner Photographer

Unread post by Panekoek » Mon Nov 26, 2012 3:17 pm

Hi Guys.

This year I saved up a lot and after consulting many forums and experts, I acquired my first DSLR Camera and Lenses.

My kit consists of: Nikon D3100 Body (Entry level body I know)
Nikon 18:55mm
Nikon 55:300mm
Sigma 150-500mm
32GB memory card
8GB memory card
2 Batteries.
Car charger for batteries.
Bag of rice(wrapped in a pillow case) for window support.
Pool noodle :D

I am going on 3 big trips to SANparks in the next 2 months starting from next sunday. Do I have all the equipment that I need? I also want to take pictures of bugs and of landscapes. Which lenses should I use for those?

Also, any other advice would be greatly appreciated.

EOS_User
Posts: 85
Joined: Thu Jan 27, 2011 4:30 pm
Location: A grey UK ! Longing to be in SA !

Re: Some advice needed for a Beginner Photographer

Unread post by EOS_User » Tue Nov 27, 2012 10:51 am

Looks like you've got the fundamentals all there. The lens kit you've aquired will see you through most scenarios.

For wider landscape shots you'll probably want the 18-55 or the wider end of the 55-300...

For 'bug' shots you'll need to use the long end of the 55-300 or the 150-500 and zoom right in...

For general animal & bird shots you'll probably use the 150-500 in preference to the 55-300...

Try not to swap lenses too much while you're moving around; and if you do need to, make sure you keep the camera body out of the wind to minimise the risk of dust getting in!

If you'll be doing early morning and/or sunset drives, the only other thing you might want to consider is a dedicated flash unit; combined with a 'Better-Beamer' 'flash-extender' ideally. The on-board pop-up flash just won't have enough power to light anything up at any distance. If you either can't do that, or don't want to, then you'll need to ramp up the ISO to compensate for the low-light levels...

Have a great time.

User avatar
Kaapsedraai
Legendary Virtual Ranger
Legendary Virtual Ranger
Award: Small Parks Promoter of the Year (2015)
Posts: 3717
Joined: Tue Jan 26, 2010 7:02 pm
Location: Bellville, Cape Town

Re: Some advice needed for a Beginner Photographer

Unread post by Kaapsedraai » Tue Nov 27, 2012 1:09 pm

EOS_User, thank ou for the tip to use flash during early morning and late afternoon drives when light becomes problematic. I got a 600Speedlite this weekend and will come handy with upcomig trip. I know, you can up the ISO, but good tip, anyway.

By the way, Canon is having an expo in Johannesburg this coming weekend and was let to believe there will very good specials and discount on purchase. I got a pro-forma discount already this past weekend here in Cape Town on the flash... so good opportunity. :thumbs_up:
Current: Table Mountain's mood today; Jul'16 Storms river & Wildernis NP
Finalised: Jun'16 MZNP, ADDO NP; Dec'15 Mokala ; Kruger; Golden Gate; Karoo; Sep'15 Bontebok; Jul'15 Agulhas; Aug'15 West Coast; Dec'14 Kruger

User avatar
Panekoek
Posts: 176
Joined: Sun May 02, 2010 11:30 am

Re: Some advice needed for a Beginner Photographer

Unread post by Panekoek » Tue Nov 27, 2012 1:37 pm

Thanks for all the replies.

I have heard that a macro lens is more ideal for close ups of bugs and smaller things. Is this true? Would you advice to rent or buy one or is what I have sufficient?

Fee, I have a 55-300mm and I found that it sometimes did not get the length that I wanted. That is why I got the sigma 150-500. It was a lot cheaper than its Nikon counterpart and Im sure thee cannon as well. It produces very sharp images and is very well built. It does get a bit heavy when walking with it for long times but if you are mainly using it from your car with a pool noodle or bean bag then it is not problem. It really is a fantastic lens.


Return to “Wildlife Photography Enthusiasts”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests

Webcam Highlights

Addo
Submitted by Oumie at 12:14:25
orpen
Submitted by Ton&Herma at 20:36:27
satara
Submitted by Karin Mitton at 21:22:03
nossob
Submitted by Trrp-trrrrrrrr at 10:37:21