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Photography Workshops by Christopher Dodds

 

Nature Photography Blog Journal Index

Entries in Great Gray Owl (11)

Saturday
Nov242018

Great Gray Owl a la Sony a9 and 400mm f/2.8 G Master lens with 2X teleconverter

Great Grey Owl (Strix nebulosa, Chouette Lapone, GGOW) ©Christopher Dodds  Sony Alpha a9 Mirrorless Camera & Sony FE 400 f/2.8 GM OSS with Sony FE 2X Teleconverter ISO 2,000, F5.6 @ 1/5,000s Manual Exposure mode. Join me for my winter owl workshops this January/February to learn More CLICK HERE.

In case you missed it, I wrote a mini-review of the new Sony FE 400 f/2.8 GM OSS in my last blog post HERE. Here's an image of a Great Grey Owl with the Sony Alpha a9 Mirrorless Camera & Sony FE 400 f/2.8 GM OSS with Sony FE 2X Teleconverter.

I continue to be amazed by the speed and accuracy of the Sony auto-focus. It truly is unbelievable!

Join me for my winter owl workshops this January/February to learn More CLICK HERE.

Wednesday
Nov212018

Sony 400mm f/2.8 GM Mini Review

Great Grey Owl (Strix nebulosa, Chouette Lapone, GGOW) ©Christopher Dodds  Sony Alpha a9 Mirrorless Camera & Sony FE 400 f/2.8 GM OSS  ISO 1,250, F2.8 @ 1/5,000s Manual Exposure mode. Join me for my winter owl workshops this January/February to learn More CLICK HERE.

Sony FE 400 f/2.8 GM OSS Mini Review

I am just back from a cross Canada road trip that took just over six weeks and covered more than 17,500km. I was honoured to stop and present at various camera stores across the country, then ended the trip with presentations at ProFusion (Canada's largest camera show); all sponsored by Sony of Canada. Thank you Sony. I got to meet so many great photographers along the way; it was a blast!

I have received a lot of email asking about my thoughts on the new Sony FE 400 f/2.8 GM OSS lens; if I had one, and if I thought it was worth the price tag. Yes, I do own one and YES, it is worth the price! When paired with the Sony Alpha a9 Mirrorless Camera, the Sony FE 400 f/2.8 GM OSS is the fastest, most reactive with the most accurate auto focus lens that I have ever used. It is light and very well balanced (there was a lot of engineering involved to carefully design the lens with most of it's optics toward the back to make it really easy to hand-hold; a real win for birds-in-flight photographers). Add the Sony 2X Tele-extender, and you end up with a prime killing 800mm f/5.6 that is sharper and more capable than the Canon or Nikon prime lenses that I have used.

Sony took a huge step when thy developed the hybrid AF system that the Sony a9 uses; they have leapt forward with the XD Linear focus. There is no camera and lens that can focus as fast!

From the Sony website: "The XD Linear Motors have been newly developed to deliver higher thrust and efficiency than conventional types in order to make the most of the rapidly evolving speed performance of current and future camera bodies. Linear motor design and component layout have been thoroughly revised to achieve significantly higher thrust. Two of these new motors are used in the SEL400F28GM, achieving up to a 5x improvement* in moving-subject tracking performance. This means that the full speed performance of advanced camera bodies can be applied to capturing perfect images of the most dynamic sports or wildlife subjects. The XD Linear motors are further supported by new algorithms developed specifically for them, notably improving the motors’ response to control signals and minimizing lag and instability that can occur when driving a large aperture focus lens group for quiet, low-vibration operation. "

In summary, XD Linear focus is so much faster than the conventional rotational focus because it quickly and efficiently "thrusts" forward and backward to achieve tack sharp focus. Since conventional lens elements rotate like a nut on a bolt, they have to travel about five times further (think how little a nut moves in relation to how many times it must be turned). There is a limit as to how fast a lens (or lens group) can safely move in a rotational manner. 

Saturday
Nov122016

Great Gray Owl OLD MAN WINTER

Great Grey Owl OLD MAN WINTER (Strix nebulosa, Chouette Lapone, GGOW) Ontario, Canada. Image Copyright ©Christopher Dodds. All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1D Mark II, 400mm f/4L Is USM. ISO 640, F9 1/1,000s Manual Exposure. Full Frame. CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE A PRINT or LICENSE AN IMAGE FOR PUBLICATION.

KUDOS:

I was impressed on how much Chris cared about making sure everyone was learning, engaged, and getting the most out of the trip. I look forward to my next workshop with Chris!

Michael Lyncheski Gladstone, New Jersey, USA

Learn more about my Snowy Winter Owl Workshops HERE.

Friday
Nov112016

Great Gray Owl BLIZZARD of WHITE

Great Grey Owl Blizzard in White (Strix nebulosa, Chouette Lapone, GGOW) Bracebridge, Ontario, Canada. Image Copyright ©Christopher Dodds. All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1D Mark II, 100-400mm @ 105mm. ISO 800, F8 1/640s Manual Exposure. Full Frame. CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE A PRINT or LICENSE AN IMAGE FOR PUBLICATION.

More Kudos:

I found Chris via the strong images on his web site.
 
Having now taken two of his photo workshops, I have seen a significant improvement in my images due to improved capture and post processing techniques.  Having taken many other wildlife photo workshops, Chris stands out for his top notch instruction. His workshops provide many excellent photo opportunities.
 
If you are serious about your photography and want to get better, Chris can help you in many ways.  He is willing and able to explain what he is doing and why he is doing it.  He emphasizes not only the vision but also the execution in the field and the post processing.  
 
It was fun shooting with and learning from Chris.  I give a hearty recommendation to anyone considering a photo workshop with Chris, a recommendation I plan to follow.

Carl Zanoni Connecticut, USA

Learn more about my Snowy Winter Owl Workshops HERE.

Thursday
Nov102016

Great Gray Owl WINTERWINGS

Great Gray Owl WINTERWINGS (Strix Nebulosa, Chouette Lapone, GGOW) Quebec, Canada. Image Copyright ©Christopher Dodds All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1DX, 500mm F4 L IS USM. ISO 2,500, F5.5 @ 1/2,500s Manual mode. CLICK HERE TO ORDER A PRINT OR LICENSE IMAGE FOR PUBLICATION.

Kudos:

My criteria for signing up for a photo workshop are:  the opportunity to get some very strong images, to learn new things related to capture, post processing, & animal behavior and to have an enjoyable experience.
Your recent owl workshop met these criteria in spades thanks to your expertise, knowledge, & leadership. You did everything humanly possible to make the workshop as successful as possible for your clients.

I have been on many photo workshops.  Yours are now on my short "A" list which means i shall be a repeat client beyond the puffin photo workshop this July. Thank you again for the outstanding owl workshop.

Carl Zanoni Connecticut, USA

Learn more about my Snowy Winter Owl Workshops HERE.

Saturday
Nov052016

Great Grey Owl THE HUNTRESS

Great Gray Owl THE HUNTRESS (Strix nebulosa, Chouette Lapone, GGOW) Ontario, Canada ©Christopher Dodds All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1DX, 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM. ISO 640, f/2.8 @ 1/3,200s Manual mode. Click HERE to order a print or license image for publication.

KUDOS:

I wanted to thank you for a wonderful winter owling workshop last week.  It was great to be in the field with you and I learned a great deal about the birds, environment and my camera.  Thanks so much for being such a great naturalist, photographer and trip leader.  I will go on another trip with you in the future.

Lynda Goff
(Professor Emeritus Ecology & Evolutionary Biology UC Santa Cruz) Santa Cruz, California, USA

Learn more about my Snowy Winter Owl Workshops HERE.

Sunday
Oct302016

Great Gray Owl Phantom of the North

Great Gray Owl Phantom of the North (Strix nebulosa, Chouette Lapone, GGOW) Gatineau, Quebec ©Christopher Dodds All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1DX, 500mm f/4 L IS USM. ISO 2,500, f/5.6 @ 1/2,000s Manual mode. Click HERE to order a print or license image for publication.

The winter owl workshop was excellent. From the pre-planning through the last spectacular day with the snowy owls.  In addition to the skills and nature experience Chris brings to the workshop, he also brings his passion of nature photography as well as a genuine focus on the safety of the owls and wildlife.  The group size was great and the team composition was excellent, travel was pleasant, safe and comfortable.   It was great to be able to peak into Chris's personal life, spending time with Chris opened up a new world for me that I want to explore.  I learned value insights and lessons related to exposure, histograms and the habitats and behaviours of owls.  It was great being out in the nature and cold, learning not only to capture razor sharp images, but how to do so in extreme weather.  Most americans will not know the excitement of seeing a Tim Horton's in the distance or the comfort of fresh Poutine, I can say I am now a fan.


Kim Ringeisen Flying Monkey Photography North Carolina | USA

Wednesday
Nov042015

Carl from Survivor Africa survives my winter owl prowl

Great Gray Owl SYMETRY  (Strix nebulosa, Chouette Lapone, GGOW) Gatineau, Quebec ©Christopher Dodds All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1DX, 300mm f/2.8 L IS USM. ISO 1,250, f/3.5 @ 1/4,000s Manual mode. Click HERE to order a print or license image for publication.

Here's a note I received from Carl Bilancione, or "Dr. B" from Survivor: Africa television fame, after he attended (survived) my Snowy Winter Owl Workshop. It's not too late for you to get in on the action this winter; there are just a few spots left. Read more HERE.

KUDOS:

I'm happy to say I survived  Africa and now I survived the bitter cold and wind of Ontario. Once I saw the movie the "Big Year"  the Snowy Owl went to the top of my bucket list. There was only one photographer who combined excellence and instruction that I wanted to help me achieve capturing the Snowy Owl; Chris Dodds. Chris is an amazing photographer who taught our group to use manual setting and fully explain the technical aspects of our cameras(we were all Nikon users & Chris is a Canon guy). Chris made sure we were all in the position to capture a great image and he constantly was helping us and reviewing our skill set and lack of skill set. I was able to get a lot of great images and fully understand photography at a professional level. I am now a better photographer.. His preparation for his workshop was the best I have been part of. The small group workshop allowed Chris to spend individual time with each of us and that was the real bonus. If you want to capture great images and learn from a master photographer there is no one better in my opinion. The workshop and the accommodations were great. I look forward to my next outing with Chris.


Carl Bilancione (Survivor Africa contestant) Winter Park, Florida

Wednesday
Jan012014

Happy New Year

Great Grey Owl WINTERWINGS  (Strix nebulosa, Chouette Lapone, GGOW) Gatineau, Quebec ©Christopher Dodds All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1DX, 500mm f/4 L IS USM. ISO 2,500 f/5.6 @ 1/2,000s Manual mode. Click HERE to order a print or license image for publication.

HAPPY NEW YEAR

Here's to a phenomenal 2014 filled with much health, love, joy, light, adventure and tons of awesome images! 2013 was like a dream for me, and I thank you all for making my dreams come true!

Facebook Fan Page

If you like the images presented here, do stop-by and "LIKE" my Facebook fan page to see more content: https://www.facebook.com/chrisdoddsphoto

Friday
Dec242010

Thank you - Merry Christmas

Great Gray Owl (Strix nebulosa, Chouette Lapone) Bracebridge, Ontario, Canada. Image Copyright ©Christopher Dodds All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1D Mark II, 500mm F4 IS. ISO 800, F8 1/800s Manual Exposure. CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE A PRINT or LICENSE AN IMAGE FOR PUBLICATION. Image presented with both a visible, and invisible digital watermark by Digimarc.

Many thanks for your loyal following and encouragement here at www.NaturePhotographyBlog.com 2010 has been a great year in so many ways, and I look forward to 2011 being even better. Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and may 2011 bring you much health, happiness and sweet photo opportunities.

PHOTO GEEK CHRISTMAS PARTY Wrap-up

I hosted my first annual PHOTO GEEK CHRISTMAS PARTY at the ROCKBURN PUB in Hinchinbrook, Quebec on December 15th. We had a great turn-out despite the heavy snowstorm and resulting bad roads. Everyone eagerly shared a couple of their favorite images and the food was fantastic as expected. John Zimmerman (President, Montreal Camera Club) passed the hat for Missing Children's Network / Enfant-Retour Québec; and we raised a total of $445.03.  Special thanks to Joann for opening the pub just for us!

AND THE WINNERS ARE....

Special thanks to a special visitor at the Christmas party: 9 year old aspiring photographer and fan Andrea Beauchemin brought a few wonderful images to share and did a great job of drawing the winners for the Great Gear Giveaway. Thanks you Andrea! The winners are:

  • WH-200 Wimberley Head version II (retail value of US$595.00) Diane Moon - QC
  • Think-Tank Photo Urban Disguise 50 (retail value US$169.00) Randy Williams - MT
  • Nik Software Viveza 2 (retail value US$199.95) Carole Croke - ON
  • Digimarc for Images Professional Edition 1 year subscription (US$99.00) Richard Gale - UK
  • Eight Canon Long Lens Rain Covers (US$125.00 each) Wendy Altona - QC, Guy Cote - QC, Helmut Mohelsky - QC, Ann Pearson - QC, Jim Hasapis, Naomi Bissell, Alain Charette - QC, Larry Goldman - NY.

Many thanks to my sponsors: Wimberley Inc., Think-Tank Photo, Nik Software and Canon Canada.