28 February 2019

Great white pelicans flocking to Woodbridge Island, Cape Town

During the last week or so we were frequently greeted by an unusual large flock of great white pelicans in the Table Bay Nature Reserve / Woodbridge Island area. Normally we only see a few, with most of the pelicans camping out towards Rietvlei, Table View. Pelican photos with the Canon EOS 70D Mark II / 400mm lens.

(Click to Enlarge)
Great White Pelicans - Table Bay Nature Reserve / Woodbridge Island
Great White Pelicans - Table Bay Nature Reserve / Woodbridge Island, Cape Town

Great White Pelican above the Diep River / Woodbridge Island
Great White Pelican above the Diep River / Woodbridge Island, Cape Town

Great White Pelican above the Diep River / Woodbridge Island
Great White Pelican above the Diep River / Woodbridge Island, Cape Town

Great White Pelican above the Diep River / Woodbridge Island
Great Whitel Pelican above the Diep River / Woodbridge Island, Cape Town

Birds in Flight Photography Cape Town

Canon EOS 70D ISO Field Test: Low Light Cape Town

High ISO Test: Canon EOS 70D / EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L USM Lens

High ISO Test: Canon EOS 70D / EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM Lens - Cape Town Street Photography
Objective: 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.

Note: All Street Photography Cape Town images handheld in Av Mode. From low light, to poor light to after dark with very limited ambient street light(s). Images captured in RAW (conversion via Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 5.7). Very little post-processing except flower images are slightly cropped with Noise Reduction applied in Lightroom.

Canon Camera Equipment

  • Canon EOS 70D SLR camera body 
  • Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM lens
  • No Flash used 
  • Handheld

Av Mode - Camera Settings

  • Aperture f/5.6 - 8 
  • ISO 800 - 6400
  • High ISO Noise Reduction: Standard 
  • Image Stabilization / Auto Focus 
  • Shutter speed: Various
  • 70-300mm focal lengths

Cape Town Location
  • St Georges Square (Low light)
  • Company Gardens (After dark)

(Click to Enlarge)
High ISO Test: Canon EOS 70D / EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L USM Lens
Canon EOS 70D / EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM Lens  ISO 6400 f/8
70mm Low light just before sunset (no Lightroom noise removal)

High ISO Test: Canon EOS 70D / EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L USM Lens
Canon EOS 70D / EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM Lens  ISO 800 f/5.6
88mm low light just before sunset 
(no Lightroom noise removal)

High ISO Test: Canon EOS 70D / EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L USM Lens
Canon EOS 70D / EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM Lens ISO 500 f/5.6
93mm low light during sunset 
(no Lightroom noise removal)

High ISO Test: Canon EOS 70D / EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L USM Lens
Canon EOS 70D / EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM Lens  ISO 800 f/5.6
120mm low light after sunset 
(no Lightroom noise removal)
High ISO Test: Canon EOS 70D / EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L USM Lens
Canon EOS 70D / EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM Lens  ISO 6400 f/5.6
70mm low light after sunset 
(no Lightroom noise removal)

High ISO Test: Canon EOS 70D / EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L USM Lens
Canon EOS 70D / EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM Lens ISO 6400 f/5.6
70mm very low light after sunset 
(no Lightroom noise removal)

High ISO Test: Canon EOS 70D / EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L USM Lens
Canon EOS 70D / EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM Lens  ISO 6400 f/5.6
300mm very low light after sunset (slight crop / Lightroom noise reduction)


Canon EOS 70D / EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM Lens ISO 6400 f/5.6
300mm very low light after sunset (slight crop / Lightroom noise reduction)


Canon EOS 70D / Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM Lens - Birds In Flight Photography

Great White Pelican in flight - Woodbridge Island, Cape Town

Great White Pelican in flight - Woodbridge IslandIt's a very big welcome back to the pelicans. Haven't seen them for a few months. Happy to have them back over / and hopefully on Woodbridge Island.

All pelican photos by Vernon Chalmers with Canon EOS 7D Mark II / Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM lens. (Manual Mode: f6.3 / ISO 640 / 1/5000s / 10 fps / AI Servo / Extended Zone AF / AF Case 1 / Handheld).

(Click to Enlarge)
Pelican in Flight: Canon EOS 7D Mark II / 400mm Lens Woodbridge Island, Cape Town
Pelican in Flight : Canon EOS 7D Mark II / 400mm Lens Woodbridge Island, Cape Town


Pelican in Flight: Canon EOS 7D Mark II / 400mm Lens Woodbridge Island, Cape Town
Pelican in Flight : Canon EOS 7D Mark II / 400mm Lens Woodbridge Island, Cape Town 



Pelican in Flight: Canon EOS 7D Mark II / 400mm Lens Woodbridge Island, Cape Town
Pelican in Flight  : Canon EOS 7D Mark II / 400mm Lens Woodbridge Island, Cape Town


Pelican in Flight: Canon EOS 7D Mark II / 400mm Lens Woodbridge Island, Cape Town
Pelican in Flight: Canon EOS 7D Mark II / 400mm Lens Woodbridge Island, Cape Town


Canon EOS 7D Mark II - Birds in Flight Photography Gallery
Canon EOS 7D Mark II - Birds in Flight Photography Gallery

Birds in Flight Photography Cape Town
Birds in Flight Photography Cape Town

Little Grebe - Diep River, Woodbridge Island

Little Grebe : Diep River, Woodbridge Island Cape Town
This is the first year that I'm seeing so many little grebes swimming and diving in the Diep River, Woodbridge Island Cape Town. Small water birds, skittish and elusive for any close-up photography.

I was quite fortunate to have had this little juvenile grebe diving and feeding past me without really noticing me, or hearing the high speed burst rate of the Canon EOS 7D Mark II.

Cape Town Location
Diep River - Woodbridge Island, Cape Town

Equipment Used (Birds In Flight / Action Photography)
  • Canon EOS 7D Mark II DSLR camera body
  • Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM Lens
  • Lexar Professional 800x / 120MB/s 32GB CF Card

Manual Mode Settings
  • Shutter speed: 1/4000s
  • Aperture: f/5.6
  • Focal length 400mm
  • Auto-ISO (ISO 800 -1000)
  • Continuous shooting mode (10 fps) / AI Servo
  • AI Servo / AF Mode Option (Wide Zone AF / Case 1)
  • Lens AF On / No IS / Handheld

(Click to enlarge)
Little Grebe - Diep River, Woodbridge Island Cape Town - Copyright Vernon Chalmers Photography
Little Grebe : Diep River, Woodbridge Island Cape Town

Little Grebe - Diep River, Woodbridge Island Cape Town - Copyright Vernon Chalmers Photography
Little Grebe diving - Diep River, Woodbridge Island Cape Town

Woodbridge Island Cape Town Bird Species
Woodbridge Island Cape Town Bird Species

Canon EOS 70D: Close Up / Macro Flower Photography - Cape Town

Canon EOS 70D/ EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM Lens -  Close-Up / Macro Flowers

Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM Lens 

Objective: 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 Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 6.


Cape Town Shooting Location
Arnhem Milnerton, Cape Town

Canon DSLR / Flash Equipment

  • Canon EOS 70D DSLR camera body 
  • Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 USM Macro lens 
  • Canon Speedlite 430EX II flash 

Av Mode - Aperture Priority Settings

  • Aperture f/4 -F/8
  • Auto-ISO 400-6400
  • Lens Autofocus on
  • Shutter speed: various (auto in Av mode)


(Macro / Close-Up Flowers with Flash - Click To Enlarge)

Canon EOS 70D/ EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM Lens -  Close-Up / Macro Flowers
Canon EOS 70D / EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM Lens ISO 400 f/8


Canon EOS 70D/ EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM Lens -  Close-Up / Macro Flowers
Canon EOS 70D / EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM Lens ISO 400 f/4


Canon EOS 70D/ EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM Lens -  Close-Up / Macro Flowers
Canon EOS 70D / EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM Lens ISO 400 f/8


Canon EOS 70D/ EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM Lens -  Close-Up / Macro Flowers
Canon EOS 70D / EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM Lens ISO 400 f/8

(Macro / Close-Up Flowers without Flash - Click To Enlarge)
Canon EOS 70D/ EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM Lens -  Close-Up / Macro Flowers
Canon EOS 70D / EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM Lens ISO 6400 f/4


Canon EOS 70D/ EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM Lens -  Close-Up / Macro Flowers
Canon EOS 70D / EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM Lens ISO 5000 f/2.8


Canon EOS 70D/ EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM Lens -  Close-Up / Macro Flowers
Canon EOS 70D / EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM Lens ISO 1600 f/2.8


Canon EOS 70D/ EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM Lens -  Close-Up / Macro Flowers
Canon EOS 70D / EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM Lens ISO 6400 f/8

Canon EOS 70D / EF 100mm f/2.8 USM Macro Lens - Red Pepper CapeTown
Canon EOS 70D / EF 100mm f/2.8 USM Macro Lens- Red Pepper Cape Town

Focus Stacking in Macro and close-Up Photography (Canon EOS 6D)

15 February 2019

What is Camera / Lens EXIF Data?

What is Camera / Lens EXIF Data?
From Canon's EOS Utility Software
EXIF = Exchangeable Image File Format Information (EXIF Data)

EXIF Data is the identification and listing of information metadata tags and its values -available for DSLR / Compact / Smartphone cameras before and / or after taking the photo. 

Generally found on your LCD screen viewing image detail or when downloaded in Canon's Digital Photo Professional / Adobe Lightroom (and other camera / editing software).

Basic camera and lens detail such as Camera Make / Model, Lens Type, Exposure, White Balance, File format and various other settings are included in the EXIF Data.

Before / after the shot
The image on the right is a Windows 7 screenshot from a Canon EOS 700D DSLR attached to the EOS Utility (via USB) - before a shot. The Canon camera was set to Av mode with a pre-set f/stop value of F4.5, ISO 200, AF (Auto-Focus), RAW, and Single Shot. The absence of the shutter speed is indicative that when in Av mode, the camera will select the shutter speed during the actual exposure - and will only be available as EXIF Data after the shot.

The bottom image is the EXIF data displayed after the shot settings (extracted from the Canon Digital Photo Professional post-processing software). Notice that the Shutter Speed is now included = (1/45) - The lens information - Canon EF-S 18-135mm IS STM is now also displayed (together with other useful information).

Adobe Lightroom Free Plugin to view Body / Lens EXIF Data
Adobe Lightroom Free Plugin to view Body / Lens EXIF Data

Exposure / EXIF Data
Exposure EXIF information is the result of the Exposure / Lens settings set by the photographer ie. in Manual / Aperture Priority / Shutter Priority / Program Mode the photographer controls exposure settings such as Aperture / ISO / Shutter Speed.

What about EXIF Data in Auto Mode? Although the camera carries out all exposure decisions (except for lens focal length / zoom), all EXIF data will still be recorded and be available after the shot.

Basic camera and exposure info:- Camera / lens type ie. Photo taken with the Canon PowerShot SX60 HS at a focal length of 200mm.
  • Aperture - measuring the size of incoming light areas (f/stop) ie. f/5.6
  • ISO - light or image sensor sensitivity standard) ie ISO 100
  • Shutter speed - (measured in seconds) ie. 3 seconds or 1/1000's

Example of EXIF Data
: Canon PowerShot SX60 HS

  • Focal Length (FL) 200mm
  • f/5.6 (Aperture)
  • ISO 200 (ISO)
  • 1/250s (Shutter speed)

EXIF Data as displayed in the Canon's Digital Photo Professional Post-Processing Software:


Canon EOS 7D Mark II RAW EXIF DATA (After the Exposure / Capture)

EXIF Data as displayed in the Canon's Digital Photo Professional Post-Processing Software (Canon EOS 7D Mark II):
Canon Digital Photo Professional Post-Processing Software Snapshot

More on The Exposure Triangle (Aperture / ISO / Shutter Speed) - Exposure Triangle

Canon Digital Photo Professional 4.10.0 For Windows / Mac - Download

08 February 2019

Photography Training Availability Update

Vernon Chalmers Photography Training Availability UpdateVernon Chalmers Photography Training Availability Update

Please note that I will not be available during February for any Photography / Canon EOS training.

I will be available from Tuesday, 6 March.

Contact me should you want to discuss any training for March. Training could be scheduled during the day or evening.

Exact dates will depend on availability.

Private Training Options 2019

Vernon Chalmers Photography Training Cape Town
  • Introduction to Photography / Canon Cameras Cape Town More 
  • Canon EOS Autofocus / AI Servo Master Class Cape Town More
  • Birds in Flight Photography Workshop Cape Town More
  • Canon Speedlite / Ring Lite Flash Photography Workshop Cape Town More
  • Macro / Close-Up Photography Workshop Cape Town More
  • Landscape / Long Exposure Photography Workshop Cape Town More

Canon EOS 6D: High ISO Noise Comparison

Canon EOS 6D: High ISO Noise Comparison
High ISO Noise Comparison: Canon EOS 6D at ISO 6400 and ISO 12800

With Canon EOS 6D (Av Mode) / EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM Lens.

Objective: 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).

Shooting Conditions: Outside in the rain, poor light and totally covered by a tree and other foliage. (Auto-ISO reading = 6400). Handheld


Images
One full-frame image at each ISO setting: ISO 6400 / ISO 12800 with +- same cropping and sizing (3 each).

Location
Milnerton, Cape Town

Canon Equipment

  • Canon EOS 6D SLR camera body 
  • Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM lens 
  • Exposure settings: Aperture f/8 
  • Manual ISO 6400 / 12800 

Av Settings: Canon EOS 6D / EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM Lens

  • Aperture: f/8 
  • ISO's: 6400 / 12800 
  • Focal Length: 140mm 
  • Shutter speed: 1/500 seconds 
  • Centre-Point AF on (body)
  • Lens Image Stabilization / Autofocus on

            (Click to Enlarge)           

Canon EOS 6D Full Frame ISO 6400Canon EOS 6D Full Frame ISO 12800
                                        ISO 6400                                                      ISO 12800

Canon EOS 6D ISO 6400 Crop 01Canon EOS 6D ISO 12800 Crop 01
                                        ISO 6400                                                      ISO 12800

Canon EOS 6D ISO 6400 Crop 02Canon EOS 6D ISO 12800 Crop 02
                                        ISO 6400                                                      ISO 12800

Canon EOS 6D ISO 6400 Crop 03Canon EOS 6D ISO 12800 Crop 03
                                        ISO 6400                                                      ISO 12800

Birds in Flight Photography with Canon EOS 6D View

Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Lens For Hair Fashion Cape Town View

Canon EOS 6D and EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Lens View

Close-Up Photography: Canon EOS 6D / 50mm Lens View

Cormorant in Flight: Canon EOS 6D / 400mm Lens

Cormorant in Flight: Canon EOS 6D / 400mm Lens
Canon EOS 6D / EF 400mm f/5.6L USM Lens
As posted before, I don't really shoot birds in flight with the Canon EOS 6D, but have done so on a few occasions (evaluating reach, image quality and AF speed with the Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM lens). 

During the last few outings to Woodbridge Island, Cape Town I've used the Canon EOS 6D again, but this time paired with my Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM lens.

I am quite happy with the Canon EOS 6D / 70-300mm lens action photography pairing performance and really wanted to see how the 400mm lens would perform on the full frame EOS 6D and to what extend the basic AF system and slow 4.5 fps would be a handicap (when compared to the Canon EOS 7D Mark II's advanced 65-Point AF system and 10 fps).

Note: The Canon EOS 6D Mark II is not renown for its AF abilities and for most photographers are not a serious consideration for action / birds in flight photography - I share this sentiment, but the EOS 6D's AF is better than what is being floating around the online forums.

A while back I wrote about the performance of the Canon EOS 6D vs the Canon EOS 7D Mark II for my own birds in flight photography.

One of the main reasons for taking the Canon EOS 6D for birds in flight photography  is that I'm considering the option of replacing both my EOS 6D and tEOS 7D Mark II with a Canon EOS 5D Mark IV (and to add the future Canon EOS 7D Mark III when introduced in the next year or so - see Canon EOS 7D Mark III Wish List for Birds in Flight Photography). This is my current thinking and research, but the final decision may be different.  

I quite like the Canon EOS 6D's image quality, low light performance and the fact that images can be cropped much more than with i.e. the Canon EOS 7D Mark II - for images with my current 400mm birds in flight lens. I know with the Canon EOS 5D Mark IV I should have an even bigger advantage (at 7 fps, advanced 61-Point AF system and 30 MP sensor).

I personally don't see the 10 fps of the Canon EOS 7D Mark II as such a major advantage over slower fps shooting rates - the full frame sensor's cropping and low light capability is currently more important than fps.

Location: Woodbridge Island, Cape Town

Canon Equipment Used
  • Canon EOS 6D
  • Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM Lens
  • Manual Mode:  Auto-ISO 640
  • Aperture: f/5.6
  • Shutter Speed 1/4000s

These 4 consecutive images of the double-breasted cormorant are substantial crops.

(Click to Enlarge)
Birds in Flight Photography with Canon EOS 6D /  EF 400mm f/5.6L USM Lens
Birds in Flight Photography with Canon EOS 6D /  EF 400mm f/5.6L USM Lens

Birds in Flight Photography with Canon EOS 6D /  EF 400mm f/5.6L USM Lens
Birds in Flight Photography with Canon EOS 6D /  EF 400mm f/5.6L USM Lens

Birds in Flight Photography with Canon EOS 6D /  EF 400mm f/5.6L USM Lens
Birds in Flight Photography with Canon EOS 6D /  EF 400mm f/5.6L USM Lens

Birds in Flight Photography with Canon EOS 6D /  EF 400mm f/5.6L USM Lens
Birds in Flight Photography with Canon EOS 6D /  EF 400mm f/5.6L USM Lens

Canon EOS 7D Mark II - Birds in Flight Photo Gallery

Birds in Flight Photography Cape Town

Canon EOS 6D and EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Lens

Close-Up / High ISO Testing: Canon EOS 6D and Non-Macro Lens
Canon EOS 6D / EF 85mm Lens
Canon EOS 6D: High ISO / Close-Up Photography 

Objective: Demonstrating application of the Canon EOS 6D / Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM lens in natural light and using ISO's between 2500 - 8000. Handheld.

Note: Photos are hand-held in Av mode without flash. Some cropping / minimum post-processing in Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 6.

Canon EOS DSLR
  • Canon EOS 6D DSLR Full Frame camera body 
  • Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM lens 

Av Mode - Aperture Priority Settings
  • Aperture f/5.6 - f/11 
  • Auto-ISO 2500 - 8000 
  • Lens Autofocus on 
  • Shutter speed: various (auto in Av mode) 

(Click to Enlarge / Slideshow)
Close-Up / High ISO Testing: Canon EOS 6D and Non-Macro Lens
Canon EOS 6D / EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Lens ISO 6400 f/8


Close-Up / High ISO Testing: Canon EOS 6D and Non-Macro Lens
Canon EOS 6D / EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Lens ISO 8000 f/11


Close-Up / High ISO Testing: Canon EOS 6D and Non-Macro Lens
Canon EOS 6D / EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Lens ISO 2500 f/5.6


Close-Up / High ISO Testing: Canon EOS 6D and Non-Macro Lens
Canon EOS 6D / EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Lens ISO 2000 f/8

Birds in Flight Photography with Canon EOS 6D View

Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Lens For Hair Fashion Cape Town View

Canon EOS 6D: High ISO Noise Comparison View

Close-Up Photography: Canon EOS 6D / 50mm Lens View