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Photography Blog and Information

Enjoy my Articles, Blog and Photography related informaton

Photography Content for the many

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Improve Focus for a Nikon Z6 or Z7 Camera

Higher Keep Rates For Sports and Wildlife

When I first received my Nikon Z7 and then a Nikon Z6 mirrorless camera I was somewhat critical of the focus performance in an otherwise excellent camera. After 2 years, and firmware updates I can now say I am much happier with my Nikon Z mirrorless cameras for sports and wildlife photography. Why? It starts with understanding Nikon's Focusing system and what settings are best for your situation.

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Goodbye So Long

Fickle YouTube Channels

We all have experienced this - we run across the YouTube Photography Channels that change camera brands like underwear?

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Summer Dragonfly

Dragonfly Macro photos

I was chilling this Saturday not motivated to do anything other than clear up some backlog on this site.  The weather was going to be hot, humid and miserable and I had no inclination to go anywhere.  Then I started to browse around and ran across a few Dragonfly images and realized I just don’t have enough!

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Nikon Z7 & Z6 One Year Later

Still in Love

Well, it has been well over a year of using both the Nikon Z7 and Z6 and I wanted to share my experience with others who might be considering moving to a Nikon Z mirrorless or fellow users of the Nikon Z camera.

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Nikon 24mm f/1.8 S Lens

Is It Worth It

Nikon has announced yet another S lens in their line-up, the Nikkor 24mm f/1.8 S lens.  The big question I receive is is it worth the price or should I wait for the f/1.4S lens?

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Nikon Z System

The Future

Are you ready for the future of photography? I know I am, and being a Nikon user for many years I have high confidence the Z mirrorless system will be the system and here is why I think that.  Read on....

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Ultra Wide Angle Lens Fisheye

Nikkor Fisheye & Sigma Fisheye

Are you considering a super wide angle lens or possibly a fish-eye lens for your photography bag?  In this article I will cover information you may find useful for making a decision to purchase a super wide lens. We will dive into the awe inspiring wide angle lens, the super wide.  Making a decision may be overwhelming which lens to invest your money into.

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Summer Macro Photography

Easy Does It

Going outdoors with your Macro Setup in the heat of summer can challenge even the most serious macro enthusiast. Here are some tips to help you survive and enjoy the hobby during hot humid summer months.

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Joy of Summer

Summer Fun Photography

Summer is a wonderful time of year, birds are well established and most have raised at least one brood of chicks who by now have fledged and are now part of the echo system. During this time of year we endure the heat and humidity but also the emergence of beautiful summer flowers.

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Copy Data Between Two Synology NAS

The Easy Method

Recently I had a failing drive in my primary Synology NAS. While I have a redundant system I did not want to take any chances of trying to replace the failing hard drive without a full backup of the data.  This is the easiest method to copy folders over to another Synology NAS.

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Macro equipment and Techniques

Best bet for success

Making an investment in close up photography can be a rewarding aspect of this amazing hobby.  Seeking the advice and guidance from those who have blazed the trail before provides you with in sight for making the right choices. Unless you live in the Nikon world, Macro is what most people refer to when describing close up photography.  Nikon calls it Micro, in this article and others I will simply call it close up or macro photography.

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Eastern Box Turtle of Occuquan

Help Save My Life on the Wildlife Refuge

HELP SAVE MY LIFE!  If you are reading this and live in North Virginia - send the Occuqan Wildlife Refuge an email and ask they NOT ALLOW TRAFFIC on  park grassy trails during March - Jun due to turtles mating and laying eggs.

FACT: Occoquan issues special permits for autos that unknowingly CRUSH the turtles - Help stop the decline of this special creature!! email:  [email protected]

http://www.virginiaherpetologicalsociety.com/reptiles/turtles/eastern-box-turtle/eastern_box_turtle.php
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Nikon 14-30mm f/4 S Lens

Nikon Wide S Glass

I made my pre-order for the 14-30mm f/4 S along with the 24-70mm f/2.8 S - I am most excited about Nikon's wide zoom 14-30mm f/4 lens because it offers me the widest angle I can acquire except for my F mount 8-15mm Fisheye.  I love wide angle!

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Joy of Bird Photography

Techniques for Bird Photography

How many times have you either wanted to take bird photos or tried and was disappointed in the results? My guess if you are like me you have had a few false starts and missed opportunities.  Although bird photography is extremely rewarding it is also extremely challenging when out in the field.  You need to be the master of the equipment you use, and knowledgeable of the birds themselves.  Lets cover a few things that will increase your productivity. 

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Northern Cardinal - Photography

Vibrant and Subtle Beauties

I am lucky to live in an area that has Northern Cardinals year round to perk up my backyard and when I go out for Bird Watchers day. These medium-sized birds frequent my backyard on a daily basis throughout the year and especially during the colder months when I put out food. Not too pushy at the feeder and shares the feeding areas with smaller birds without any fighting. If there is a perfect backyard bird the Cardinal just might be it.

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Blue Jays Habits and Temperament

Cyanocitta cristata

The Blue Jay is a loud active bird that frequents many backyards throughout the year.  This article will detail my observations of the Blue Jays I know for several years. During these years some are departed and new arrivals have appeared. Join me on a quick read to as I share my observations of the wonderful Blue Jay.

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Photography, Videography and Data Management

Keep or Cull

The age of digital information is fully underway and with all the digital media we produce comes decisions about what to do with it. Is it worth keeping for the long term and what needs to go bye bye. Me personally, I now take a more aggressive approach to my photo and video keepers - very unlike what I once did.

 

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Cooper's Hawk

Watching the birds

This Cooper's Hawk first appearance in my backyard was about three years ago and now routinely visits throughout the winter months, I most recently spotted him in the late afternoon perched about 50 feet up in a boundary tree tucked in behind a few branches to obscure his view.

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Downsizing DSLR Cameras and Systems

Make Better Use of Your Funds

Over time photographers may consider other camera brands to blend into their camera bag. While it is exciting to try out new gear it is not always the smartest thing to do for a few reasons.  Mostly adding other camera brands to your mix consumes your financial resources + you then need to add lenses for the other brand and learn the ins and outs of the new camera system. In this blog, I will point out why you should not add other camera manufacturers to your collection.

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Nikon Z7 with FTZ Mount on Nikon 600mm f/4

Little Camera Big Lens

Now that I have the Nikon Z7 for over a month now I wanted to try it out with my Super Telephotos the Nikkor 400mm f/2.8 ED FL and the Nikkor 600mm f/4 ED FL lenses to test the capability of the Nikon Z7 on very big FX glass.

Anyone who owns a Nikon Z7 and never experienced a mirrorless camera before knows the Nikon Z7 is a different experience from a DSLR but, at the end of the day you get an image. What are the shooting differences between the DSLR world and the Nikon Z mirrorless world.

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Photo Storage Solution Synology Diskstation

Mass Storage Solution

So, you are an avid photographer with thousands of images in your collection.  Maybe you have been relying on an USB 3 external drive to as your file backup along with your lightroom database;  one copy on your work computer and a backup on the external - does this sound familiar?  While that approach is a viable one, you just might be at risk of serious data loss.  Here is my story on the near loss of many years of work, and why I decided to go pro, and invest in a serious NAS.

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Best Summer Photography Clothes

Clothing

So you are interested in Outdoor macro photography?  We explore what I believe will make your outdoor macro photography a more pleasing experience.

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DSLR to Mirrorless Transition Switching to Mirrorless

will you survive

For many, the move to a Mirrorless cameras body and lens system may not seem to you all spectacular - especially if you are just starting your photography journey and began with a Mirrorless camera system.  But if you are a hobbyist, enthusiast or even a professional and have been into this for many years chances are you have a DSLR or two and now face the question of what to do, knowing your decision will incur a cost for the transition.

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Black & Yellow Garden Spider

Argiope aurantia

The last few years I became interested in the Orb Spiders, in particular, the Black and Yellow Garden Spider as the common name or the Argiope aurantia, scientific name. Ultimately my fascination for spiders and insects in general always cause me to stop and take a closer look when I run across them out in the wild. As a photographer I enjoy taking a few photos at any opportunity, here in this write up I share my observations and images of the Black and Yellow Garden Spider.

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Black & Yellow Garden Spider

Argiope aurantia

Over the last few years I became interested in the Orb Spiders, in particular, the Black and Yellow Garden Spider as the common name or the Argiope aurantia, scientific name. Ultimately my fascination for spiders and insects in general always cause me to stop and take a closer look when I run across them out in the wild. As a photographer I enjoy taking a few photos at any opportunity, here in this write up I share my observations and images of the Black and Yellow Garden Spider.

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Why Are My Photos Not Sharp?

Understanding Image Quality

Regardless of how long you been into photography one thing is for certain – we all have throwaways.  Those photographs that simply do not cut the muster, most of my toss outs are due to poor image quality – blurry or out of focus.

In this short but useful article, we will dive into several reasons you may not be aware of that is causing you many wasted shots.

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Summer Flower

Mid Summer Dream

On June 20th we officially enter into summer known as the summer solstice and on that day summer arrives.  I took a stroll through open  wooded area looking for signs of summer, you know - Dragon flys, and beautiful cone flowers.  I was greeted with this wonderful specimen, using my long telephoto I took a moment and snapped a couple images.  The color and contrast speak for themselves. Summer is Here!  

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Prothonotary Warbler Nest Building

Beautiful Warbler

This Prothonotary Warbler (Protonotaria citrea

) migratory bird is visiting the North East USA  for some nest building and baby rearing duties.  You can find this fine bird along trails near wooded swamps or marshes.  Here I was able to get a photo of the activities of preparing the nest.  

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Rainy Day Photography

Shooting in the Rain

I admit I like being out during rainy days  Why?  It is refreshing and stimulating to walk a wooded trail hearing and feeling the rain,  and besides that, It offers many opportunities for photographers - if we come prepared.

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Rainy Day Photography

Shooting in the Rain

I admit I like being out during rainy days  Why?  It is refreshing and stimulating to walk a wooded trail hearing and feeling the rain,  and besides that, It offers many opportunities for photographers - if we come prepared.

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The Morning Commute

AMTRAK to DC

I enjoy the early morning sun rise in hopes of capturing one good image. My modest setup was a Nikon D7200, great camera.

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Lighting & Flash Photography

Flash Strobes and Softboxes

For years I was afraid to use flash – why? Because I always had mixed results - sometime success but mostly that hard washed out look we all fear as photographers.  Almost 10 years ago that all changed when I choose to follow this guy named Joe McNally, I picked up his book, and watched his videos.. What have I learn in 10 years?

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Early Morning Photography

Nikon 58mm f/1.4

New lens new adventure - early morning light calls my name.  I ventured out with the Nikon 58mm f/1.4 lens to see what it light can be captured with a fine lens as this.

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Early Morning Photography

Nikon 58mm f/1.4

New lens new adventure - early morning light calls my name.  I ventured out with the Nikon 58mm f/1.4 lens to see what it light can be captured with a fine lens as this.

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July Cone Flower

Digital Paint

I took the reference photo in early July in very bright sunlight at about 9 A.M, I thought I the image was a good photo to make a digital painting from.

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Wood Duck Photography

Great Find

I was not all that lucky in previous years of getting any real useable photos of Wood Ducks in the location I lived, due to the scarcity and short time frame they seem to stay in this area during the late spring season.  I find the Wood Duck a stunningly beautiful waterfowl. The males in particular with iridescent browns, blacks, white green, ornate patterns on nearly every feathe, this is one pretty bird.   Females very attractive but have a less colorful pattern but the same distinctive profile and delicate white pattern around the eye. I find Wood Ducks in the wooded marsh ares that have hardwood forest adjacent to the water.  With some research I discovered they nest in holes in trees or use man made nest boxes. Little did I know they are one of the few duck species with claws that can grip bark and perch on branches- see my photos of a group perching.

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Cedar Waxwing

Chasing Berries

Each year I am blessed by the migration of the Cedar Waxwing, Bombycilla cedrorum through my area of the country. Their visits are timed almost perfectly with the arrival of the fruiting trees and bushes.  These delightful birds will stay in the area for several months basically as long as the fruit holds out. See my gallery and read more on these birds.

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Blog Post

Site Postings

Welcome to the Blog.  Check out my postings and ramblings about photography.

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Flower Photography

Beautiful Details

I have a couple photographic weakness, Birds and Flowers.  Whenever I am out doing some photography shooting regardless what my intentions are, if i run across a great looking flower I stop and take a photo or try to incorporate the flower into my scene. The great thing about flower photography is you really dont need any specialized equipment.  I have even taken flower photos with a fish eye lens. I you want to discover more about flower photography read on...

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Carolina Wren

Super Song Bird

When you spot the Wren it looks to be rather plain but is a Whitney Houston of birds song wise; mostly brown with some lighter brown and speckles on the wings. The Wren is commonly found over nearly the entire Western Hemisphere. Listen for its rush-and-jumble song in summer and you’ll find this species zipping through shrubs and low tree branches, snatching at insects. Wrens will will accept and use man made nest boxes.

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Woodland Photography

Forest for the Trees

I truly enjoy the outdoors especially during spring months, plants and animals begin to flourish and the forest comes alive with colors, sound with a calm atmosphere.

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Lower Cost Wildlife Kit

Get Out and Shoot

You probably noticed most of my blogs cover the upper end of the Photo Spectrum. I owe it to many my recommendation for getting a 90% solution for fantastic wildlife photography.

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Great Blue Heron

Getting a good Photo

I am lucky to live in an area that the Great Blue Heron is found in most of the year. Here in North Va, you can expect to see the Great Blue Heron in numbers starting in Mid April through Late September. I really enjoy watching and photographing these birds. They are large and somewhat predictable and with some good planning you can acquire a few good photos on most occasions..

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Thank You Nikon!

100 Years

Thank you Nikon for being a wonderful company. In particular as my camera company of choice, I could not think of photography without Nikon as being part of it.

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Coming of Spring

Last Throes of Winter

This wonderful Male Cardinal sits on a perch as sleet comes raining down, and is undaunted by the ice crystals that are falling on his face and feathers. The Cardinal is a native species of North America and suited for the elements, he appears well protected from these elements.  

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