Saturday, May 11, 2013

Trying New Things

Last weekend I splurged on myself and bought a new lens.  I found a good deal on a refurbished Canon 300mm f/4 L telephoto.   This is the same model I rented when I went to Reelfoot Lake back in February.  I really liked that lens and have become tired of carrying around my heavy Sigma 80-400 zoom.  This is the lens I plan on taking with me when looking for wildlife shots.

Today was the first chance I had to try it out.  I went out exploring the yard planning to use it to get some bird shots.  I filled the feeders and waited.  While I was waiting I noticed our recent rainstorms had knocked the dogwood flowers down and there were several on a shrub in the back yard.  What the heck, I had my camera and 300 lens so I decided to see what I could get.   Now this is not how I would have taken this shot if I had planned it.  I would have had my tripod, macro lens, and cable release to get as sharp a picture as possible.   Being too lazy to go back in the house I shot the flower petals handheld about 9 feet away with a 300mm lens.

1/400 second, f/5.6, ISO 640 using Canon 7D

I'm pretty excited about the way this came out.  The best part is I tried something new.  

I've traveled great distances to many interesting places to photograph.  I've attended workshops and learned a great deal at each one.  One thing I have learned is you don't have to go to a workshop or travel to exotic places to improve your photography.  One of the best exercises is to limit yourself to a small area and only one lens.  It forces you to use your eye to look for interesting subjects and compositions right under your nose and to think differently when composing a shot.  It makes you move past the obvious and easy shots.   As with anything else, the only way to improve is to practice.  

It's starting to look like rain again.  I may be back out taking this shot again shortly with rain drops of the leaves and petal.

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