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3 hours ago, NYCat said:

When I was doing my wildlife trips we were all photographers and that was one of the benefits. Joe VanOs always got vehicles big enough that we weren't fighting for access to the windows. Very few conflicts and lots of help available. In theory I could continue by taking money out of savings but I don't have the strength and energy anymore. Love my naps now and hate the idea of packing and air travel.

 

Paulette

 

I once did a bird photography 4 day tour in Extremadura, Spain, to photograph Great Bustards. A tour is needed for this kind of photography to have access to bird hides and locations. 

It was good. We were led in the dark before sunrise to individual hides and were being picked up in the evening after sunset. 

It was exciting to share results at the end of the day. It could bring disappointment too as some hides were more successful that others.

We amicably agreed on who was using which hide the next day.

The professional British wildlife photographer Mark Hamblin was one of us.

 

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Posted (edited)
56 minutes ago, gvallee said:

I once did a bird photography 4 day tour in Extremadura, Spain, to photograph Great Bustards. A tour is needed for this kind of photography to have access to bird hides and locations. 

I have never done any paid photo tour/workshop to date. Although we sometimes did hire field guides/escorts for site access, drivers, etc (sometimes even local police and militaries)... But not for photography. I guess am too greedy, let alone an idea to be in a group of "mates" doing the same, as to me the process is very personal.

Edited by IKuzmin
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50 minutes ago, MDM said:

I don't do wildlife photography and I'm exclusively Nikon so I'll take your word for it (your bird photography is really excellent by the way). I'm more than happy with my Nikon system

Thank you. I shifted to Nikon last year because Canon delayed the R5ii which I was waiting for (still not announced), and then had to equip my new Z8 with a couple of lenses (yet, Canon lenses via adapter work well, too), flashes+trigger, some cords and other little items. No regrets, sometimes just a frustration when it does not focus where I expect based on Canon experience. But sensor is good, shutter is good so in general it is a great camera.

Of course, no expectations [any more] that stock sales will ever cover these expenses.

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10 minutes ago, IKuzmin said:

I have never done any paid photo tour/workshop to date. I guess am too greedy, let alone an idea to be in a group of "mates" doing the same. Although we sometimes did hire field guides/escorts for site access, drivers, etc (sometimes even local police and militaries)... But not for photography.

 

Although I spend many many hours in the Bush in Oz and elsewhere to photograph wildlife, there are situations when, if you want a certain animal or species, there is simply no alternative but joining one of these 'tours' for access.

 

This particular trip to Extremadura was not really what I would call a 'tour or workshop' in itself, we were just dropped in the dark in individual hides. Any species could and did land around the hides. At the end of the day, we did not all have the same results at all. 

 

If you want to photograph a jaguar in the Pantanal, how are you going to do it on your own? Buy/hire a boat and drive it as well? You would know where to go? Pygmy elephants in the rainforest in Borneo? Locations in the rainforest (Papua New Guinea, Costa Rica, Brazil). Some towers have been built for photography purpose in the canopy. How would you do it on your own? 

 

Between compromise and nothing, I usually choose compromise. Sometimes I accept that I cannot get some shots.

 

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Posted (edited)
26 minutes ago, IKuzmin said:

Thank you. I shifted to Nikon last year because Canon delayed the R5ii which I was waiting for (still not announced), and then had to equip my new Z8 with a couple of lenses (yet, Canon lenses via adapter work well, too), flashes+trigger, some cords and other little items. No regrets, sometimes just a frustration when it does not focus where I expect based on Canon experience. But sensor is good, shutter is good so in general it is a great camera.

Of course, no expectations [any more] that stock sales will ever cover these expenses.

 

I wonder would the AF be better with native Nikon lenses (edit: I think I might not read your post properly, I presume you are using native lenses). I've been very happy with the AF tracking for both stills and video, even for close-ups of moving flowers but I'm not shooting small fast-moving creatures with big telephoto lenses. I agree about photography being very personal. I work best alone as well. It's a whole process that I immerse myself in and I need to be in control. 

Edited by MDM
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I did appreciate having my lodging arranged by others and Joe VanOs got drivers in Africa who knew photography and could get a position with the light coming form the right direction. They also knew the behavior of the animals and where we were likely to find them. One of our drivers noticed a female lion leaving a feed and figured she must have cubs. He found them and notified the rest of us. It was definitely a group endeavor with safari drivers communicating all the time. In India we had special permission on some days to go off the usual route. Some wildlife photographers live in the parts of Africa they photograph. Dereck and Beverly Joubert come to mind. We ran into Anup Shah in his RV in the Masai Mara. A lot of the wildlife photographers know each other, of course.

 

Paulette

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4 minutes ago, NYCat said:

I did appreciate having my lodging arranged by others and Joe VanOs got drivers in Africa who knew photography and could get a position with the light coming form the right direction. They also knew the behavior of the animals and where we were likely to find them. One of our drivers noticed a female lion leaving a feed and figured she must have cubs. He found them and notified the rest of us. It was definitely a group endeavor with safari drivers communicating all the time. In India we had special permission on some days to go off the usual route. Some wildlife photographers live in the parts of Africa they photograph. Dereck and Beverly Joubert come to mind. We ran into Anup Shah in his RV in the Masai Mara. A lot of the wildlife photographers know each other, of course.

 

Paulette

 

Anup Shah was a regular winner of the Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition. Terrific images!

And there's also Jonathan and Angela Scott in the Masai Mara. Their son also won an award in the competition. 

All inspiring people.

 

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Posted (edited)
26 minutes ago, NYCat said:

It was definitely a group endeavor with safari drivers communicating all the time

Yeah... I went for 2 days safari in Masai Mara. Nightmare. Did not even bother to take my camera out (so it was not a photo trip at all). A lion surrounded by 5 cars full of tourists? Is this a photography? Thank you, and best of luck. Those photographers you mentioned do not go to shoot in touristic groups.

Edited by IKuzmin
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37 minutes ago, gvallee said:

If you want to photograph a jaguar in the Pantanal, how are you going to do it on your own? Buy/hire a boat and drive it as well? You would know where to go? Pygmy elephants in the rainforest in Borneo? Locations in the rainforest (Papua New Guinea, Costa Rica, Brazil). Some towers have been built for photography purpose in the canopy. How would you do it on your own? 

I am sorry if I did not express clearly that I did pay, and will pay guides for site access as well as other escorting purposes (once in Bangladesh I paid every day to a driver, a translator, and a local guide) but not to someone who would help me to photograph something over there.

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I’m very much a solitary shooter. Yes, Bob & I traveled together & both of us were into photography. I wasn’t into both of us taking similar images, I wasn’t trying to compete.

We would pull into a Pacific Ocean overlook, for instance, & I’d find a path down the coast & would disappear like Houdini. Drove Bob nuts, he thought we should be joined at the hip. Not my style! He’d get all the window shades adjusted just so in the van, (yes he was so finicky) get out & find me gone!

 

He tended to see a scene & take pictures that were way too busy with nothing that was really the center of attention, maybe a lot of foreground weeds, where I searched out a scene that had a strong interest with simple surroundings & would either step past the weeds or zoom in.

I painted before I got deep into photography, so I had developed how to compose a picture. In fact I got into photography to take pictures to paint from. I did my best to teach him composition & his photos got better.

 

After getting into stock photography, I found what sold wasn’t necessarily what I loved to photograph.

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I can understand being a solo shooter. I often travel by myself for several months at a time, but I also have a handful of friends who are photographers. As a fun way to spend time together I will sometimes join them when wandering and exploring areas to photograph, both rural and urban. However, more often than not, I find myself returning to a place on another day, on my own, to either take more photos, or just concentrate on a space. There’s something about solitary travel, and searching out places of interest, that recharges my spirit and keeps me going. I’ve also traveled extensively with one of my adult children, but we are both happy to split up, and go our separate ways for two or three hours at a time, to pursue our own interests. 

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9 hours ago, Ed Rooney said:

 

I've done all the late-night roaming I care to in this town. Most Scousers are friendly in daylight but these guys (mostly retired rugby tackles?) get a few too many beers in them at night and look out. 

 

Much as I would like to have a drink and a talk with you, Sally, I don't relate to group photography. 

 
I do understand that Ed. I was part of a photography group for a while and when it came to birds and wildlife it was quite difficult to do, especially as the group made a lot of noise. Overall I’m very solitary with my photography but I did find it really useful being in a group at night time, especially in an urban setting.

 

A challenge I’ve had is when I am doing a landscape shot with a tripod and I’m timing things exactly based on remaining light at dusk, and someone wants to come up to me and ask me all sorts of things about what I’m doing. I want to be polite and have developed some skill in multitasking where I continue to operate the camera while talking with them. But really there are times when being solitary is best.

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7 hours ago, gvallee said:

 

A very popular means of cheaper travel in Oz is a car with a roof tent. Many pubs offer free overnight stays. It's just courtesy to have a beer or a meal.  


That’s a great idea Gen. I only have a little hatchback car and the roof tents I’ve seen have mainly been on 4WDs, but some places may accommodate camping in general. I have seen some pubs that allow camping such as the one at Dumbleyung where I stayed in 2021. There was a sign for camping around the back. I’d be happy to eat at the pub for payment 👍

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8 hours ago, IKuzmin said:

Nikon's AF for wildlife (at least in Z8, I assume the same in Z9) is inferior to Canon. When Nikon introduced FW with bird recognition, some folks said it became "almost Canon-like", not me. It definitely became better for birds (still not all birds and not all settings) but when you go for any other critters, particularly in action, it fails way too often. I have both systems and am not a fanboy of any. Wait a bit for Canon R5ii, and you have fun without those extra muscles 🙂


I’m sure I’d love the Canon R5ii. Nikon seemed to take some time in developing their mirrorless cameras and so lagged behind Canon and Sony in certain areas. They may catch up eventually with bird recognition. Fuji which I use definitely has areas it can improve in terms of birds in flight which will hopefully keep improving with firmware. For birds not moving fast it is excellent. I have found it can track a bird’s eye at an incredible distance. With regard to Canon, I enjoy watching Duade Paton’s videos on bird photography and Canon is his main system. Some wildlife pros now are even opting for micro four thirds as their main system such as Andy Rouse using Olympus (or OM as I think it’s called now). I love your wildlife images by the way.

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7 hours ago, Mr Standfast said:

A sunny afternoon stroll around the neighbourhood produced 6 viable stock pictures. One will be a repeat seller, I hope! 😊


Wonderful Mr Standfast! I have been wandering around this morning while my car is at the mechanic’s. I think I may have 4 viable stock pictures varying from a fungus to some public art. I love the random surprises of just wandering.

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7 hours ago, Sally Robertson said:

 

A challenge I’ve had is when I am doing a landscape shot with a tripod and I’m timing things exactly based on remaining light at dusk, and someone wants to come up to me and ask me all sorts of things about what I’m doing. I want to be polite and have developed some skill in multitasking where I continue to operate the camera while talking with them. But really there are times when being solitary is best.

 

 

Even worse if you have a partner who doesn't understand photographers, and you're out somewhere together and they get impatient if you take more than 10 seconds over a photograph. I've had my fair share of those.

 

Alan

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7 hours ago, Sally Robertson said:

A challenge I’ve had is when I am doing a landscape shot with a tripod and I’m timing things exactly based on remaining light at dusk, and someone wants to come up to me and ask me all sorts of things about what I’m doing. I want to be polite and have developed some skill in multitasking where I continue to operate the camera while talking with them. 

 

Or the "that's a really nice camera, it must take great pictures". Well actually I take pictures, the camera is a tool that in the right hands can take really amazing pictures but right now it can't because you're talking to me.

 

No actually I am polite to people I meet like that and enjoy the conversation unless it is time critical. I do find it amusing. 

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14 minutes ago, Inchiquin said:

 

Even worse if you have a partner who doesn't understand photographers, and you're out somewhere together and they get impatient if you take more than 10 seconds over a photograph. I've had my fair share of those.

 

Alan

 

How many have you gone through? My wife just refuses to come out with me most of the time. So far so good.

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Posted (edited)
9 hours ago, Sally Robertson said:

Nikon seemed to take some time in developing their mirrorless cameras and so lagged behind Canon and Sony in certain areas.

It seems that Nikon is trying to cover the segment underrepresented by Canon (and I do not know Sony enough). Canon has made recently a very wide division between "consumer" and "prosumer" stuff leaving little to nothing in between. Not only bodies but lenses, too. This niche is somewhat filled by Nikon, that's why I shifted (not switched!) to Nikon last year.

Edited by IKuzmin
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On 19/05/2024 at 09:54, Ed Rooney said:

and the cost of hotels and travel. 

 

What do you think?

 

It's absolutely not worth travelling just for stock. I take my camera if I'm already on a day trip somewhere and I try to avoid NT if I want to shoot.

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12 minutes ago, Inchiquin said:

 

I wasn't counting! My wife was brilliant though. When I met her she wasn't interested in photography and couldn't see the point in taking pictures. As soon as she saw my photos from our first holiday together and she realised that good photos can bring back the feeling of a place she became a convert. She was very much into zen so she would just sit, meditate and absorb the essence of the place while I took half an hour to get the best shots.

 

She's now in a care home with Alzheimers so I can use all the photos to stimulate her memory.

 

Alan

 

Oh wow.  How sad. I wish you both the best. 

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14 minutes ago, MDM said:

 

Oh wow.  How sad. I wish you both the best. 

 

Thanks. We've been divorced for 20 years but we're still best friends.

 

Alan

 

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34 minutes ago, Inchiquin said:

 

I wasn't counting! My wife was brilliant though. When I met her she wasn't interested in photography and couldn't see the point in taking pictures. As soon as she saw my photos from our first holiday together and she realised that good photos can bring back the feeling of a place she became a convert. She was very much into zen so she would just sit, meditate and absorb the essence of the place while I took half an hour to get the best shots.

 

She's now in a care home with Alzheimers so I can use all the photos to stimulate her memory.

 

Alan

 

 

What an emotive but lovely post.

A reminder of the power of photography.

 

All the best.

 

James

 

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