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Steve Foss

Can you waste a day shooting pictures?

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Well, I went out late this morning, in full camo, planning to use the screaming rabbitt call to try to bring predators in to the camera, which I haven't had a chance to do yet this winter.

I parked at the Lake One entry point and got my camo on and my gear on my back and around my neck, and as I was walking into the woods two guys walked up and very apologetically explained that they'd put their Volvo SUV into the ditch about 50 yards farther up the road, and would it be too much trouble for me and my Toyota 4Runner to take 15 minutes to try to help them out?

Yeah, see how this is going?

So I took off a bunch of my gear and drove over to help them. My tow strap was in my pickup at home, and all they had was a 1/4 inch nylon line, but they had 100 feet of it, and it's pretty amazing how much weight that rope will bear when it's threaded through each tow hook six times. grin.gif

Anyway, while we were taking a break from shoveling and pushing and rocking, this gray jay showed up, obviously hoping one of us middle-aged fellas would drop dead from a heart attack or stroke and provide some badly needed food for the jay after a -20 night.

Nothing at all remarkable about this image. Gray jays are a dime a dozen, and I've posted many images of them here over the last coupla years. Just a way to remind myself that no one DID drop dead from a heart attack or stroke. And to chronicle the day, which is one of the reasons we bring our cameras out, after all.

gray-looks.jpg

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Huh, coyote pics. That's good. grin.gif

Nope, no polarizer. It was gorgeous blue sky in the background, but a bit of hazy cloud had come over the sun just then, so the jay itself wasn't blown out. Sharp? Yeah, who says the 100-400L is a bit soft?

Of course, five minutes before I was done helping the winter campers get unstuck (they'd walked in a couple miles and camped on Lake One the day before and overnight before walking back out) the light went down the tubes as clouds with the newest front moved in. By the time I was finished, it would have been an iso400, 1/50 sec at f5.6 and monopod deal at best, so I just headed back to town.

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just saw the pic. very nice. it must be great to have that zoom for the 'reach out and touch someone' ability.

my puny 135 is what i'm making do with right now. i have a 18-200mm VR (image stabilization) lense coming in a month or two and then i can hsolist my 18-135.

That will get me a bit closer. Plus, cropping always helps.

Do you use Adobe lightroom? I just started using it and for the most part I love it for the workflow.

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Nope, Carl. No Lightroom. I shoot RAW+small jpeg and download the day's work into separate folders based on species. So I may have a dozen folders from the day with titles like, say, 2-26-07 hairy woodpecker, with all the ganged RAW and small jpegs there. To sort, I then just double click on the jpeg which, being so small, pops right up. I go through all the images that way, casting off the RAW-jpeg pairs I don't want and naming the ones I do. Then I move all the folders onto my backup supplementary drive and, lastly, burn them also on CD/DVD before trashing them from the desktop and the camera.

I've looked at Lightroom, but it's really no help to me based on how I handle images. Plus, I'd have to upgrade my OS and system memory to handle it, and there's no need. I've heard great things about it, though.

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I have never had need previously of any specific workflow since i just had a jpeg camera and dumped all the shots into group folders. ( I used Adobe photoshop elements with its tagging capabilities to find and sort them). Now shooting raw and seemingly shooting 10x more images at a time, I've tried to incorporate a more aggresive deletion policy. previously i kept just about everything.

Starting in Adobe Lightroom with little previous adobe experience and no workflow experience, it is shaping up to be an amazing tool.

I import the images, scroll through them in lightroom and hit a key for images i want to reject etc. then you delete them all at once etc. There is ability for library management to move them to different folders and cd backup built in. I love the non destructive editing as well. The cropping tool has got to be the best cropping tool I've ever seen and it alone make the product worthwhile for me. I absolute love the levels/curve adjustment as well as H/S/L adjustment tool. You can click a widget on then click in a specific color or shadow/light area in the image and drag up or down to adjust the curve. Allows for very quick adjustment of levels where they need to be adjusted.

It has some rough edges. The tagging/keyword is not nearly as easy as photoshop elements. The support of raw/jpg pair is not quite what I want. Hopefully this is better finished in the final project

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