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Photography Workshops by Canon Northern Explorer of Light Christopher Dodds

 

Christopher Dodds Nature Photographer | Promote Your Page Too

Thursday
Jun302016

Bald Eagle The SCREAMIN' EAGLE

Bald Eagle The SCREAMIN' EAGLE (Hailiaeetus leucocephalus, Pygarge a tete blanche, BAEA) Kachemak Bay (near Homer), Alaska ©Christopher Dodds All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1DXS Mark III, 500mm f/4 L IS USM and Canon 2X and 1.4X Tele-converters II. ISO 400, f/13 @ 1/400s Manual. PURCHASE A PRINT or LICENSE IMAGE FOR PUBLICATION HERE.

Here's an old favorite from my 2009 Eagles Galore Photo Tour. Posting today, as I prepare for my back-to-back Saint Paul Island and Coastal Brown Bear Boat charter in Alaska.

To me, apart from the incredible detail in this image, I really like the way we can see all of that detail in the mouth. I avoided the deep shadows of harsh light by working on an overcast day (with snow changing to rain and sleet), and avoided using a flash (which would have also created some pretty strong and distracting shadows). My collapsible 22" white reflector did a fantastic job of illuminating the inside of the Eagle's mouth (I won't mention the brand, just get the cheapest one available; the bigger it is, the softer the light).

Wednesday
Jun292016

Bald Eagle STARE

Immature American Bald Eagle STARE (Hailiaeetus leucocephalus, Pygarge a tete blanche, BAEA) Kachemak Bay (near Homer), Alaska ©Christopher Dodds All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1DX, 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 L IS II USM @400mm and Canon EF 25mm Extension tube II. ISO 400, f/13 @ 1/400s Manual. PURCHASE A PRINT or LICENSE IMAGE FOR PUBLICATION HERE.

I always carry extension tubes so I can physically connect both my Canon Extender EF 1.4X and 2X (Version III) when I want a really close image, they also reduce the minimum focusing distance when I get really close. During my Bald Eagles Galore Photo Tour in March, I used the new Canon 100-400mm II lens for most of the trip. When this immature Bald Eagle landed right beside me, I instinctively crouched-down, and attempted a really close portrait, but realized that the bird had landed slightly within the minimum focusing distance of the lens; it was closer than 38.4" or 980mm (do note this is the distance from the sensor, not the front element of the lens). I quickly added my Canon  EF 25mm Extension Tube to be able to focus without moving away from the inquisitive Eagle.

Tuesday
Jun282016

Bald Eagle TOP OF THE DIVE

American Bald Eagle TOP OF THE DIVE (Hailiaeetus leucocephalus, Pygarge a tete blanche, BAEA) Kachemak Bay (near Homer), Alaska ©Christopher Dodds All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1DX, 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 L IS II USM @400mm. ISO 400, f/5.6 @ 1/3,200s Manual. Full Frame. PURCHASE A PRINT or LICENSE IMAGE FOR PUBLICATION HERE.

Here's another image from my Bald Eagles Galore Photo Tour in March. If you want to come home with a portfolio full of Bald Eagle images, then this is the trip of a lifetime for you. I have guided more photographers in Kachemak Bay than anyone else and know where to be in any given weather, wind and light conditions. I know where to find flat dark water when it's snowing, and I work very hard at getting us the very best opportunities. No matter if you are a beginner, or seasoned professional, this is the right trip for you.

Be sure to book your EPIC Bald Eagles Galore Photo Tour spot before it's too late; March 2017 dates are live. Get more information HERE.

Monday
Jun272016

Bald Eagle FREE SPIRIT

American Bald Eagle FREE SPIRIT (Hailiaeetus leucocephalus, Pygarge a tete blanche, BAEA) Kachemak Bay (near Homer), Alaska ©Christopher Dodds All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1DX, 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 L IS II USM @312mm. ISO 320, f/5.6 @ 1/3,200s Manual. Full Frame. PURCHASE A PRINT or LICENSE IMAGE FOR PUBLICATION HERE.

Yet another Bald Eagle from my Bald Eagles Galore Photo Tour in March. Having so many Eagles fising so close to us provides some great opportunities to photograph them during their acrobatic approaches. Here's the top of a cartwheel dive in nice light.

Do notice the exposure is an equivalent to Sunny 16, less a third of a stop to preserve all of the details in the white feathers. Read more about the Sunny 16 rule HERE.

Be sure to book your EPIC Bald Eagles Galore Photo Tour spot before it's too late; March 2017 dates are live. Get more information HERE.

Thursday
Jun232016

Bald Eagle APPROACH

American Bald Eagle APPROACH (Hailiaeetus leucocephalus, Pygarge a tete blanche, BAEA) Kachemak Bay (near Homer), Alaska ©Christopher Dodds All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1DX, 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 L IS II USM @400mm. ISO 5,000, f/5.6 @ 1/2,000s Manual. Full Frame. PURCHASE A PRINT or LICENSE IMAGE FOR PUBLICATION HERE.

Here's another image from that same EPIC morning of my Bald Eagles Galore Photo Tour in March (March 15), this time only 30 minutes later. The dramatic dark sky gave way to subtle pastel colors.

Be sure to book your EPIC Bald Eagles Galore Photo Tour spot before it's too late; March 2017 dates are live. Get more information HERE.

Wednesday
Jun222016

Bald Eagle EPIC HAPPENS

 American Bald Eagle GOLDEN MOMENT (Hailiaeetus leucocephalus, Pygarge a tete blanche, BAEA) Kachemak Bay (near Homer), Alaska ©Christopher Dodds All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1DX, 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 L IS II USM @263mm. ISO 800, f/5.6 @ 1/3,200s Manual. Full Frame. PURCHASE A PRINT or LICENSE IMAGE FOR PUBLICATION HERE.

Epic Happens!

Here's another Bald Eagle from my Bald Eagles Galore Photo Tour in March. We got out to the dock early on a dark and gloomy heavily overcast morning, and it really was a little disappointing just how dark it was. After crossing Kachemak Bay, the light didn't improve for some time, but the water was the calmest, and flattest, I have seen in the bay. There were a few minutes when the golden early morning sun shone through an opening in the dark cloud cover. The Eagle, wind direction, water and light all came together for a few minutes of EPIC! Being out in the field at the ready paid off big time. 

Tuesday
Jun212016

Bald Eagle ALOFT

American Bald Eagle ALOFT (Hailiaeetus leucocephalus, Pygarge a tete blanche, BAEA) Kachemak Bay (near Homer), Alaska ©Christopher Dodds All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1DX, 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 L IS II USM @300mm. ISO 1600, f/5.6 @ 1/2,500s Manual. Full Frame. PURCHASE A PRINT or LICENSE IMAGE FOR PUBLICATION HERE.

Here's an immature Bald Eagle from my Bald Eagles Galore Photo Tour in March. Although I was making portraits of this first year Eagle, I was ready for any action by using a higher ISO and the resulting higher shutter speed; being prepared for the extra-ordinary while photographing the ordinary!

 

Thursday
Jun162016

Northern Gannet THE BOUQUET

Northern Gannet THE BOUQUET (Morus Bassanus, Fou de Bassan, NOGA) Parc national de l'Île-Bonaventure-et-du-Rocher-Percé, Bonaventure Island, Quebec Image Copyright ©Christopher Dodds www.chrisdoddsphoto.com All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1DX Mark II, 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 L IS II USM @400mm. ISO 1600, f/8 @ 1/3,200s Manual. Full Frame. PURCHASE A PRINT or LICENSE IMAGE FOR PUBLICATION HERE.

Here's another Gannet from the first day of my Gannets Galore workshop. This one in heavy fog. Foggy images lack contrast, and look washed-out when exposed properly.

You can adjust the contrast several ways, to reflect how much fog you would like in the image; I used the levels tool (in Photoshop), and adjusted the darks by grabbing the left slider and dragging it to the right. Hold down the "ALT" Key while moving the slider, and you will see when the darks start to clip. If you move the slider far enough to clip the darks, you loose details in the darkest parts of the image. Be aware that this might increase any noise in the image; An effect that is amplified if you start with a poorly exposed image.

 

Wednesday
Jun152016

Northern Gannet The Return

Northern Gannet THE RETURN (Morus Bassanus, Fou de Bassan, NOGA) Parc national de l'Île-Bonaventure-et-du-Rocher-Percé, Bonaventure Island, Quebec Image Copyright ©Christopher Dodds www.chrisdoddsphoto.com All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1DX Mark II, 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 L IS II USM @263mm. ISO 1250, f/8 1/5,000s Manual. Full Frame. PURCHASE A PRINT or LICENSE IMAGE FOR PUBLICATION HERE.

Here's a simple image from the first day of my Gannets Galore trip to Bonaventure Island. The Gannets continue to do well and the colony continues to grow, offering truly spectacular sights and images; The photographic opportunities are endless. The 1DX Mark II and 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 L IS II USM proved to be a killer combination; easy to manage all day with amazing AF and high ISO performance. Do join me for the ultimate Bonaventure Island experience next June 5-7, 2017. Find more details HERE.

Thursday
Mar032016

Gura Gear Good News Bad News

 

I have just received two back-up copies of my favorite and go-to camera bag. The Gura Gear Bataflae 32L easily fits my Canon 600mm II, two Canon 1DX pro bodies, Canon 24-70/2.8 II, both my 1.4 and 2X Extenders and both extension tubes with extra room of flash and accessories and my Canon 70-200/2.8 II or my Canon 100-400 II. It is well made, light and easy to get through airports and onto aircraft. Even as Air Canada cracks down on carry-on baggage, I have brought my Gura Gear bag everywhere I have traveled over the last few years.

Good news first: Chris from Outdoor Photo Gear has secured all remaining stock of Gura Gear bags. He has slashed prices and is now offering readers of my blog an exclusive additional 10% savings! Be sure to follow the links below, and use the coupon code "NATURE" while at the check-out:

USE CUPON CODE NATURE to save an additional 10% and get free shipping anywhere in the continental US

Bad News: In a "case" of David buying Goliath, Gura Gear has purchased the Tamrac brand of camera bags. As part of their restructuring, the Gura Gear line of boutique camera bags will be re-named, redesigned and re-branded. From what I have heard, they have made a new version, with some "mass market" components to fit the Tamrac brand placement. What does this mean? We will see a mass produced version (with no-name zippers) hitting camera store shelves at some point in the future. Only time will tell what will come of the Gura Gear bags, but I'm not taking any chances am thrilled to have saved some cash on my back-up copies.