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My Pictures Are Better Than Yours Are!

Published January 31st, 2014

I know they are because my camera is better than yours.

At first my pictures sucked just like yours.

But I quickly realized that my camera was complete crap, just like yours is.

So I bought myself a new camera. I spent several thousand dollars and I got myself the most megapixels money could buy. Yeah baby! I've got the best camera available. I know that because someone on the internet said so. And someone else did a review of theirs the day they got it. I even saw pictures using stupid high ISO's taken at noon on a blazingly sunny day. And they looked great!

But for some reason my pictures didn't look as good. Especially high ISO images when viewed at 1000%... They looked like crap.

AHA! I didn't buy a new lens worthy of such a camera! The crappy kit lens was holding me back and making my pictures suck; just like your crappy kit lens is making your pictures suck.

I'm not stupid; I did my homework. I surfed the internet, I talked to a guy I met who also owned a great camera, and I ...

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Penis Envy

Published October 28th, 2012

Penis envy is a strange thing; and it seems to be something that affects photographers particularly...

There's always something lacking with the equipment you have...

There's the "I don't have one of those" type of envy.

Be careful of this one. If you've never had "one of those" it probably means you don't really understand all of the consequences ownership comes with. At the very least you'll probably also have to buy some other specialized stuff to store/carry/clean it correctly. And even if you know what it does, that doesn't mean you know how to use it to best effect...

There's the "color bias" type of envy.

The perceived need for the "professional White (L) Version." Paying for professional is really expensive... And quite often a regular version will do the job just as well.

And then there's the "embarrassed at the public shower" type of envy.

The "mine's not big enough" or "his is bigger" thing. It's not all about size. It's about picking the right tool for the job (at lea ...

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I am officially "Bird Stupid"!

Published October 11th, 2011

Well, I think I have crossed over to the other side... I am no longer an enthusiast. I think I now safely qualify as a lunatic.

Yesterday was a holiday and I decided to go take some pictures....never mind that it's almost winter and I don't have heat in the house yet. I've been working on the house too much, I deserved a break.

I decided I'd go someplace "new", the Edwin B. Forsythe wildlife preserve.....180 miles away! We don't get shore birds where I live.

So I got up at 3:30 am after 4-1/2 house of sleep and drove 3 hrs to get there at sunrise. I spent 7 hours taking pictures (looking for opportunities is more like it) and then drove 5 hrs home (philly sucks!).

All in all I took about 75 pictures...about 25 made it onto the computer....15 hours for 25 pics, maybe 6 of which are pretty good. I think that qualifies!

I saw quite a bit of activity..Peregrines (no good pics), Norther Harriers (no good pics), Bald Eagle (no good pics), Terns (no good pics), Ospreys (maybe 2 good pics) ...

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Patience and the Green Heron

Published August 25th, 2011

I had never captured a great picture of a Green Heron in flight. I had good pictures of Green Herons just standing around. And I know a spot where they occasionally fly by, but I had never gotten the shot.

I've talked about my lack of patience in the I Hate Tripods post And it's this lack of patience that had prevented me from getting the shot I so desired.

Well, this time I was determined!

I decided I would dedicate an entire day to it if necessary. So I grabbed my gear, drove to the lake, walked to the location, set up my tripod, and I waited.

Now, when it comes to standing around waiting, I'm not very good at it.

I'm like the child playing outfield during a practice T-ball game.

Spin around looking at the sky.

Put my glove on my head.

Look at the flowers.

Try to find a four leaf clover.

Chase a bug.

And maybe a little song and dance....

But this was serious! And I was serious, so I was good.

I stayed focused. I didn't chase any bugs. I didn't do anything but wait for th ...

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Camera Bags are just Purses

Published August 14th, 2011

Understanding this fact has really improved my life and it can improve yours as well.

I came to this bit of knowledge quite by accident.

It was a cloudy rainy day and I was sitting on the porch with my wife.

It went something like this:

me: "You know, I really should sell some of my camera stuff I never use."

her: "Probably."

"Why do you have so many camera bags anyways?"

me: "I'm not getting rid of any camera bags!"

"Bags are like purses."

No sooner had the words left my mouth when the clouds parted, a brilliant beam of light shone upon us, and we were overcome by a feeling of peace and tranquility!


Because we UNDERSTOOD each other!

Let me explain:

If you are a owner of purses partnered with a photographer, I don't know why you are reading this but think of it this way:

You need a large purse when you need to bring a lot of stuff with you.

You need a smaller purse when you want to carry less.

You need a nicer purse for more formal situations.

You need a ...

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Published August 7th, 2011

I hate them!

And I hate them for a lot of reasons.


Why are they so expensive? I don't know. It's just some aluminum or carbon fiber tubing. It must be a supply and demand thing. Maybe if more of you would buy decent tripods the price would come down. Currently, if it's cheap; it's crap.


This I want to support heavy gear you need heavy gear...But damn! Add a 10 pound tripod to my 17 pound camera and lens combo and it's almost 30 pounds!

Now I have to bring my wife along just to help me carry the stuff!


When I'm carrying the setup, because my wife got tired, I tend to smack her in the head or the shins every time I turn to "look around". My wife's not very cheerful about carrying my gear when her shins hurt.


"Oh please Mr. Bird...don't swallow that fish until I get set up."

It takes SEVERAL MINUTES to set up a tripod properly. If the legs are already extended you might get lucky and be able to get it h ...

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Photographic Withdrawal

Published August 6th, 2011

Not having a good DSLR is KILLING ME!

I think I'm going thru withdrawal.

I can't stop thinking about all of the pictures I'm not taking.

I keep envisioning shots I want to take.

I'm constantly thinking of the fall migration that will be here very soon...

I keep looking at cameras.

The wait for the D4 is just too much!

I NEED something for my addiction!

I almost bought a D2xs

I almost bought a D3s

I almost bought a D3x

I did buy a D7000.






Hopefully when it gets here the shakes will go away.

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Mourning for my Mistress

Published August 3rd, 2011

She's gone.

She died. Actually, she didn't just die...

I killed her.

It wasn't intentional. I didn't mean to do it.

It was an accidental drowning.....

And I got away clean.

No police inquiry, no trial, no lawyers, no judge or jury. Just a few questions from the insurance agency.

I feel a little guilty about that.

I still have the other one. You know, "the backup". But she's just not as high class as my mistress was. In comparison she's kind of trashy and cheap. She's been tossed around and beaten up. Not really given the care or attention she deserves.

She just hangs on the sideline waiting for her chance. Always there. Always ready to please.

She's a fine camera, but it's just not the same with her.

And really, my mistress was banged up and ugly too.

But you know, when "it's right" those things don't really matter.





I'll miss her.

Open box viewing.

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The Mighty Tree Swallow

Published August 2nd, 2011

Tree swallows are such pretty little birds. Beautiful iridescent blues, purples and greens set against a clean and perfectly white breast. And they are happy birds. They fly around gracefully doing their aerobatics and chirping away. They sit carelessly in the sun just posing for photographs..."look at me, I'm gorgeous, take my picture".

Ah, but that's too easy. One thing I love about photography is the challenges it can pose. I seldom take "the easy shot". I've passed up gorgeous wood ducks posing at the park pond (yeah, I'm an idiot) and I've never taken an animal pic at a local zoo....Too easy, not *real* enough for me. (I REALLY need to get over that!)

So the challenge....

Photograph a tree swallow in flight. No tricks. No trap focus, no remote triggers, no flash to freeze the motion. Nothing. Just me and my skills. My panning technique and reaction time against the speed of the little swallow. Mano a Mano.

Hah! No problem. I know what I'm doing and I've got skills. I'm big (rel ...

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Oh the gear.....

Published August 1st, 2011

I'm an addict.

There, I said it. I've taken the first step. Right?

Every since I started into digital photography I've been buying and upgrading my gear. I have "everything" one needs. But then again, I always did. I had a camera.

I started out in digital with a Kodak DC35 (I think). Ok, that's officially now a POS you couldn't give away if you owned one today, but it took pictures. And some nice ones at that. Then it was a couple P&S upgrades and then the DSLRs. D200, D300, D3 soon to be the D4 (fingers crossed!)... And you know what? They all take pictures. My talent hasn't increased one bit.

Oh, and the D3 "upgrade"....I took the exact same pictures with the D300 and a 500mm lens as I do with the D3 and the 300-800. But the D3/300-800 cost A LOT more so I guess the pictures must be better.

I have all of the "pro lenses", 14-24, 24-70, 70-200, and some specialized pieces as well like the 150mm macro and the 300-800. Of course, with that comes the requirements for quality tripods ...

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