Accidental Catch

About two weeks ago, I had some accidental catch. It was Sunday morning, and I went out to take my regular dose of shutter therapy. Every photographer has to keep their skills fresh every now and then, don’t we? We don’t wanna be rusty when it comes to an actual assignment. :)

To my surprise, I managed to get myself some accidental catches that day. I somehow had a chance to shoot bird. Yes, bird photography!

I’ve read so much about how to shoot bird, and what not. I have never tried hands on shooting bird in flight until that day.

First location, was at Lake Park. This blue creature in flight distracted me a while. I then turned my attention to the bird and started observing the bird. Without much hesitation, I quickly switched my lens to the 70-200mm lens. (70-200mm isn’t long enough for shooting bird, it’s still short, even on a APS-C sensor.) The bird was resting on top of a tree.

As soon as the bird took flight again, I panned my lens towards the bird, and hunting it through my view finder. It was tough. I only managed to get a few shot, they were not great shots, but I’m still sharing my experience here in this entry.

I’ve selected a few shots here, and will explain it image by image.

Allen Ang © 2010 www.allenang.com

Allen Ang © 2010 www.allenang.com

The image above is of a uncropped image, that’s what you see on the original shot at 200mm on EOS 50D (which is of a 1.6x crop). The bird appears too small in this frame. So, in order to make the bird filling the frame more, I had not choice but to crop it. And, My shooting mode was on Av, and on One Shot AF. My aperture was set as f/4 which is too shallow for this shoot. If you miss the bird, you’ll get the subject all blur. I reckon you to shoot it on smaller aperture. The reason why I shot at f/4 was because I was doing a portrait shooting that morning. And I didn’t further adjust the setting accordingly.

Allen Ang © 2010 www.allenang.com

Allen Ang © 2010 www.allenang.com

EOS 50D has only 9 AF points, and I find it rather difficult to track such a small object through my view finder. It would have been better if it’s tracked through a more advanced AF-points.

Allen Ang © 2010 www.allenang.com

Allen Ang © 2010 www.allenang.com

As I said before, tracking through 9 points AF system is tough. Therefore, using AI Servo is pretty challenging here as well. If you are a bird shooter out there, please share your experience on how to shoot better bird images, especially when they’re in flight.

Again, the image above is without crop, and below is the cropped one.

Allen Ang © 2010 www.allenang.com

Allen Ang © 2010 www.allenang.com

Then, the next catch was caught on my way home.

Allen Ang © 2010 www.allenang.com

Allen Ang © 2010 www.allenang.com

The bird in the drainage doesn’t seem to know how to fly. It just ran away when it felt my presence. While it ran off, in attempt to ensure its own safety, its companion/friend, took off and flew away.

Allen Ang © 2010 www.allenang.com

Allen Ang © 2010 www.allenang.com

Again, I’m not familiar with bird species, but this white bird, coupled with the clear blue sky would definitely make a good combination. However, due to my lack of experience, and gears’ limitation, those are the best images I could get from that day.

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