Camera Articles

Vernon Chalmers Canon Camera Articles (Demonstrations)

Canon EOS 7D Mark III Wish List for Birds in Flight Photography
Canon EOS 7D Mark II / 400mm Lens
Testimony of the Modern AF System: Canon EOS 7D Mark II
Some of the more challenging Birds in Flight shots to get into focus are those of small (erratic flying) birds coming straight at the lens. Fortunately, most modern AF Systems are capable of assisting the photographer for tracking and capturing these shots. Read more>>

Highlights as Cape Town Photographer / Workshop Facilitator
During 2016 I spent more time with different photographic genres (compared to 2015) and also assisted many new and experienced photographers in their skills development via my Photography Workshops Cape Town. Read more>>


Birds in Flight Photography: Background Blur ConsiderationsSlower aperture lens on APS-C / Crop vs f/2.8 lens on Full Frame body): With a fast aperture lens, i.e. the Canon EF 300mm f/2.8L IS II USM super telephoto lens, its much easier to blur the background - and when paired with a full frame body its almost effortless (ito panning and the work required for rendering background blur compared to an APS-C / Crop sensor body and / or slower aperture lens). Read more>>

Long-Term Use / Discussion of the Canon EOS 7D Mark II
I've used the Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM lens on both Canon South Africa's own Canon EOS 7D Mark II and during my field review of one of my workshop delegate's Canon EOS 80D and I can in all objectivity say that the AF and tracking speed of the Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM lens is just (by a small margin in my opinion) more responsive than the Canon 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM lens. Read more>>

Canon EOS 6D / EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM  Lens
Canon EOS 6D / EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM Lens
Birds in Flight Photography with Canon EOS 6D (Full Frame)
Capturing Birds in Flight with a basic Autofocus (AF) System and the reasonably slow frame rate of the Canon EOS 6D Full Frame body and EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM zoom lens. 


Generally, when I capture Birds in Flight at Woodbridge Island Cape Town, I prefer the extra fps and reach of a faster APS-C (crop) body paired with a 400mm prime lens. Distance between foreground and background / depth of field for both images are very similar - and captured in the same area in the Milnerton Lagoon, Woodbridge Island, Cape Town.Read more>>

Birds in Flight Photography Cape Town: Using Canon's Wide Zone Autofocus
Canon EOS 7D Mark II / Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM Lens - Birds In Flight AF Application Woodbridge Island / Cape Town.  Using the Canon EOS 7D Mark II body / EF 400mm f/5.6L USM lens with AI Servo / Wide Zone selection for tracking fast and at times, erratic flying smaller birds Read more>>


Canon EOS 7D Mark III Wish List for Birds in Flight Photography

We may only still be halfway in the Canon EOS 7D Mark II's life cycle, but with current (competitive) advancements in the APS-C DSLR and Mirrorless camera market I'm starting to think about some of the features that could be improved on. Read more>>

Canon EOS 7D Mark II: Low Light Shooting - Cape Town
Canon EOS 7D Mark II - ISO 3200
Canon EOS 7D Mark II: Shooting In The Fog - Cape Town
Shooting in the fog at Woodbridge Island Cape Town with Canon EOS 7D Mark II / EF 400mm f/5.6L USM Telephoto Lens. Shooting in the fog / low light with Canon EOS 7D Mark II in early morning / changing light conditions. Read more>>

Canon EOS 7D Mark II: Low Light Shooting - Cape Town

Auto-ISO Birds In Flight shooting with Canon EOS 7D Mark II / EF 400mm f/5.6L USM Telephoto Lens Woodbridge Island, Cape Town. Low light testing of the Canon EOS 7D Mark II's Auto-ISO ability in early morning / changing light conditions. Read more>>

Challenges of Small Bird in Flight Photography - Canon EOS 7D Mark II

Photographing a small, fast moving bird is in most cases quite a challenge, but indeed possible with patience and the correct camera body and lens settings. Small birds are erratic movers / flyers and when they get ready to fly / or already in flight it could result in some hit and miss captures. Read More>>

Two Canon EF 400mm Lens Options for Birds in Flight Photographers

This is a topic that we will discuss in more detail during the upcoming Birds in Flight Photography Workshop at Intaka Island / Woodbridge Island, Cape Town. Both prime and (certain) zoom lenses are good to go for Birds in Flight photography, but there are various criteria for enthusiast photographers to consider: Read more>>

Canon EOS 7D Mark II : Automatic Selection Autofocus Testing Cape Town
I went out this morning with the objective of testing the Canon EOS 7D Mark II in ISO 1250 - 1600 light conditions, using for the 1st time the camera's AF point selection on Auto-Selection 65 Point AF with initial AF point selected - instead of the usual (extended) Zone AF that I generally use for fast flying birds in flight photography. Read more>>

Canon 500D 77mm Close-Up Lens Filter
Canon 500D Close-Up Filter
Testing the Canon 500D 77mm Close-Up Lens Filter
In an effort to reduce the minimum focus distance (MFD) of my 400mm lens (3.5 meter) I ordered a Canon 500D 77mm close-up lens filter. This is mainly to eliminate the carrying of a second body with macro lens when out in the field with the long lens (for Birds in Flight). The 400mm works well for close-up work from a distance, but I wanted a closer focusing option (with more magnification)
Read more>>

Canon EOS 7D Mark II: Birds in Flight Photography - Cape Town
Canon EOS 7D Mark II / EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM Lens. Fast shutter speeds / panning hand-held in Manual. All images processed in Lightroom 5.7 / 6. Converted from RAW to JPG. Lens profile correction. Minor colour correction. Cropping. The last two images in the gallery were captured in morning fog at the Diep River, Woodbridge Island. Read More>>


Canon EOS 80D: First impressions / Test Shoot Cape Town

As a Birds in Flight photographer with extensive experience with the Canon EOS 70D and the Canon EOS 7D Mark II I was looking forward to see how well the new body with its larger 24 MP sensor will perform in terms of general handling, autofocus, shooting speed, ISO performance, image quality and cropability during post processing. Read more>>

Birds in Flight with Canon EOS 70D / EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM Lens

I frequently get questions on what the 'best' focal lens length is for shooting Birds in Flight at Woodbridge Island, Cape Town. My response: it will depend if you're shooting with a Full Frame or an APS-C (Crop) DSLR body. For most bodies the focal length of 300 - 600mm generally works best. Read more>>

Canon EF Lens Full Time Manual Focus Override
Full time manual focus override is a lens focusing function for fine-tuning focus while in camera / lens Autofocus mode. Its not always possible in the field (without a tripod) to go manual focus when doing close-up photography - for this purpose I gently turn / fine-tune the lens focus ring for pin-point focusing (whilst in AF Mode). Read more>>


EOS iTR AF Testing: Birds in Flight Photography
EOS iTR AF Testing: Birds in Flight Photography
As with all new Canon EOS Full Frame bodies - EOS 5D Mark IV / EOS 5DS(r) / EOS-1D X (II) - the Canon EOS 7D Mark II is equip with EOS iTR AF (Intelligent Tracking and Recognition Auto Focus) enabling the camera for potentially focusing faster on moving subjects when in AI Servo mode shooting moving subjects. Read More>>

Canon EOS 70D: Birds in Flight Photography - Cape Town
Paired with the Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM lens the Canon EOS 70D quickly delivered the expected results via application of the 19-point Autofocus system, Digic 5+ Image Processor and 7 fps / frame rate (compared against my older Canon EOS 700D's 9-point Autofocus system). Read more>>

Auto-ISO Study for Birds in Flight Photography - Canon EOS 70D
My own field study is based on the relationship between BIF photography (high shutter speed shooting / continuous AF tracking) and the modern DSLR's Auto-ISO function and will not (necessarily) apply for static subjects (i.e. perched birds) - although, I use the same settings when shooting perched birds. Read more>>


Canon EOS 70D / EF 100mm Macro Lens: Close-Up / Macro Flowers

Demonstrating application of the Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM lens with / without Canon Speedlite EX430 II Flash paired with the Canon EOS 70D body. Note: Photos are hand-held in Av mode with / without out flash. Some cropping / other post-processing in Lightroom 6. Read more>>


Canon EOS 70D / EF 100mm Macro Lens: Close-Up / Red Pepper
Canon EOS 70D / 100mm Lens
Canon EOS 70D / EF 100mm Macro Lens: Close-Up
Demonstrating application of the Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM lens with natural light (paired with the Canon EOS 70D body using ISO's between 640 - 3200). Note: Photos are hand-held in Av mode without out flash. Some cropping / minimum post-processing in Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 6. Read more>>


Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Lens For Hair Fashion Action
At first I didn't consider the Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM lens as an option while planning for the Partners Hair Design Training Academy Graduation / Fashion Show 2015 Cape Town.
 Great value and sharpness and I'm sure there are a few Sigma and or Tamron 85mm lenses that could do a similar job Read more>

Remarkable Crop-ability of a Full Frame Sensor - Canon EOS 6D
With bigger pixels on the sensor, the full frame body produces less noise than a crop-sensor body (i.e EOS 7D Mark II) at the same higher ISO - in this case at ISO 800. Tighter cropping of the original full frame image should therefore produce better / cleaner results than with a crop body. Read more>>

Canon EOS 6D : High ISO Noise Comparison (Full Frame)
With Canon EOS 6D (Av Mode) / EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM Lens. Testing of the Full-Frame Canon EOS 6D's noise levels by comparing pre-set ISO ranges of ISO 6400 and 12800 with no post-processing (except for Canon lens profile correction in Adobe Lightroom 5.7 / RAW to JPG conversion). Read more>>


Panning with Canon EOS 70D Killarney Motor Racing Cape Town
Canon EOS 70D / 70-300mm Lens
Panning: Canon EOS 70D Killarney Motor Racing Cape Town
Demonstrating panning photography technique / application with the Canon EF 70-300mm f4.-5.6L IS USM lens paired with the Canon EOS 70D DSLR body. Slower shutter speeds / panning hand-held in Tv mode. All images processed in Lightroom 5.7. Converted from RAW to JPG. Lens profile correction. Read more>>

Canon EF 16-35mm f/4L IS USM Lens Zoom Test - Cape Town
Canon EOS 6D / EF 16-35mm f/4L IS USM Ultra-Wide Lens : Different Focal Lengths Test. Demonstrating five different focal lengths using the Canon EF 16-35mm f/4L IS USM Ultra-Wide lens (paired with the Full Frame Canon EOS 6D) across the two Woodbridge Island bridges, Milnerton Lighthouse and Table Mountain, Cape Town. Read more>>


Show Focus Points - Adobe Lightroom Plugin
By default Adobe Lightroom 5 / 6 does not offer any way to view your camera's focus points, but the Show Focus Point Adobe Lightroom plugin shows which focus points were selected by your camera when the photo was taken. Read More>>

Close-Up / High ISO Testing: Canon EOS 6D and EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Lens
Demonstrating application of the Canon EOS 6D / Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM in natural light and using ISO's between 2500 - 8000. Handheld. Note: Photos are hand-held in Av mode without built-in / speedlite flash. Some cropping / minimum post-processing in Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 6. Read more>>


Testing the Canon Extension Tube EF25 II - Cape Town
With Canon EF25 II Extension Tube
Testing the Canon Extension Tube EF25 II - Cape Town
An extension tube is a cost-effective hollow tube that increase magnification of subject and decrease the minimum focus distance between lens and subject. It does not replace a macro lens, but works well for bringing smaller subjects closer. There are various brands on the market. The Canon tubes are designed to work on Canon EOS DSLRs with either a Canon EF or EF-S lens.Read more>>

Canon EF 24-70mm f/4L IS USM Lens Zoom Test - Cape Town
Canon EOS 6D / EF 24-70mm f/4L IS USM Lens : Different Focal Lengths Test Woodbridge Island. Demonstrating four different optical focal lengths using the Canon EF 24-70mm f/4L IS USM lens (paired with the Full Frame Canon EOS 6D) across the Diep River, Milnerton Lighthouse and Table Mountain, Cape Town. View More>>

Canon EOS 6D / EF 50mm f/1.8 STM Lens - Aperture Test
With Canon EOS 6D (Av Mode) testing the new Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM lens. Demonstrating application of different aperture settings and the effect on background blur / bokeh quality using the Canon EOS 6D and new EF 50mm F/1.8 STM lens. Milnerton, Cape Town.
Read more>>


Canon EOS 7D Mark II : AI Servo Autofocus / Frames Per Second Test
Canon EOS 7D Mark II / 400mm Lens
Canon EOS 7D Mark II : AI Servo Autofocus / FPS Test

I generally shoot Birds in Flight in AI Servo Autofocus mode in shorter bursts of 4 to 5 shots. These consecutive images were all captured in less than 3 seconds (using the Canon EOS 7D Mark II's impressive 10 fps multi-shot mode). Read more>>

Canon EOS 7D Mark II : First Impressions Cape Town
The body and lens combination feels rugged and solid in-hand and is ergonomically well designed in terms of comfortable grip, LCD monitor(s), button / control layout and general usability (similar to the EOS 7D) - and not too heavy for hand holding action photography. I mostly shoot handheld and for a few hours at a time. Read more>>

Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM Lens Zoom Test - Cape Town
Demonstrating the difference between five focal lengths when using the Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM lens (paired with the Canon EOS 7D Mark II) across the Diep River, Woodbridge Island Cape Town. Read more>>


Canon EOS 70D for Birds In Flight : Paired with EF 400mm f/5.6L USM Lens
The Canon EOS 70D is a very responsive and relatively fast continuous shooting Canon EOS APS-C DSLR body to serve my BIF shooting requirements. With the leftover budget I added a new Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 USM Macro lens and Canon Professional Gadget Bag 1EG to my growing Canon EOS system. Read more>>

High ISO Test: Canon EOS 70D / EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM Lens
Canon EOS 70D ISO Field Test: Low Light / Evening Cape Town Demonstrating application of higher ISO settings between ISO 800 - ISO 6400 with the Canon EOS 70D and EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM zoom lens - handheld, without any flash and low / deteriorating lighting conditions. Read more>>


High ISO Test: Canon EOS 700D / EF-S 10-18mm IS STM Ultra-Wide Lens
V&A Waterfront  Cape Town
ISO Test: Canon EOS 700D / EF-S 10-18mm IS STM Lens
Ferris Wheel V&A Waterfront Cape Town. Demonstrating the application of higher ISO settings at ISO 800 and ISO 1600 with the Canon EOS 700D / Rebel T5i DSLR camera and EF-S 10-18mm IS STM Ultra-Wide Angle / Wide lens. Read More>>


Sunrise V&A Waterfront Cape Town - Canon EOS 700D 
Demonstrating application of the Canon EOS 700D / Rebel T5i DSLR camera with EF-S 18-135mm IS STM lens (without any lens filters) at the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront Cape Town. All photos on tripod in Av mode (Aperture Priority). Images captured in RAW (conversion via Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 5.4). With no correction. Read more>>

Depth of Field photo samples with Canon EOS 700D and various EF lenses
Close-up photos in / around Constantia, Century City, Durbanville and Milnerton Cape Town. Demonstrating Depth of Field application and quality / level of background blur (bokeh) using different lenses with the Canon EOS 700D / Rebel T5i DSLR camera body. Read more>>

Canon EOS 6D / EF 16-35mm f/4 IS USM Wide-Angle Lens
Canon EOS 6D / 16-35mm Wide-Angle Lens
APS-C vs Full Frame DSLRs for Landscape Photography
More important than the body you shooting / learning landscapes & long exposure photography with in my opinion will be the focal length of your lens used.

There are many Canon Full Frame / APS-C and third party lens options, but the most popular focal lengths for APS-C (Crop sensor) bodies will be the standard 18-55mm kit lens range and also the ultra-wide option(s) in the 10-22mm range. 

Another useful option is the 18-135mm lenns range. Read more>>

Canon EF 16-35mm IS USM Lens: Different Focal Length Comparisons
Demonstrating the difference between five wide angle focal lengths when using the Canon EF-S 16-35mm IS USM Ultra Wide-Angle lens (paired with the Canon EOS 6D DSLR camera) at Milnerton Lagoon / Woodbridge Island Cape Town. Read more>>


Canon EF-S 10-18mm IS STM Lens: Different Focal Length Comparisons
Demonstrating the difference between three wide angle focal lengths when using the Canon EF-S 10-18mm IS STM Ultra Wide-Angle lens (paired with the Canon EOS 700D / Rebel T5i DSLR camera) at Milnerton Lagoon / Woodbridge Island Cape Town. Read more>>


Interior photos with new Canon EF-S 10-18mm IS STM Ultra-Wide Zoom Lens
Demonstrating application of the relatively new and inexpensive Canon EF-S 10-18mm f4.5-5.6 IS STM Ultra-Wide zoom lens mainly in an interior mall environment to assess Image Stabilization / Image Quality in Av Mode f/8.0 an Auto ISO (paired with Canon EOS 700D / Rebel T5i DSLR camera body). Read more>>

Vernon Chalmers Photography Articles
Canon EOS 70D / 100mm Macro Lens