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Thread: Break from moose hunting

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    Default Break from moose hunting

    Well, I have been moose hunting for about a week already, but haven't seen any. I decided to come home, but plan to go back after resting for a day or two. My friends and I (more like I) have had a wonderful time camping and the usual stuff relating to moose hunting. Some birds come to visit every now and then as you can see below. The hawk comes to visit late in the afternoon. It wants me to walk around the rocky knob I stand on so I can flush-out birds and rodents for him (or her?) to catch. It's quite friendly (not afraid of me, I guess), and sometimes flies so close that it overfills the frame. This time it landed on a tree on the side of the knob perhaps 30 to 40 feet away, and just stared at me. Meanwhile I was talking to it and taking lots of photos.



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    I have been trying to take a photo of this kind of bird for awhile now, but they never stand still long enough. This time I am standing with my 40D and 400mm prime attached, looking down the side of the rocky knob, and this bird just lands on a branch not more than 20" in front of me. I snapped around 20 shots while it looked at me before it flew away

    Just playing games while I sit out of view in the brush.

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    Member Hunt'N'Photos's Avatar
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    Killer shots Ray! That 400mm is really working out for you!
    US Air Force - retired and Wildlife photographer

    To follow my photography adventures check out my facebook page

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hunt'N'Photos View Post
    Killer shots Ray! That 400mm is really working out for you!
    It's a very nice lens, and quite fast-focusing with all the light available to us in Alaska during the summer. It's very quiet, too, even with the camera set to AI-Servo and burst mode. Another outstanding little lens is the 200mm f/2.8L. it's bright, very fast, and sharp, but the 400 gives me a lot more reach. I have set my 40D to just one click past in-camera sharpening. As you can see by the photos, no software sharpening is required. The 400 is quite a sharp lens.

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    I got moose, but it was my hunting partner who shot it We are going back tomorrow to take-down the campsite, and maybe I will hunt for another day. Took a few photos of jays using the 400mm lens.


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    Quote Originally Posted by RayfromAK View Post
    I have set my 40D to just one click past in-camera sharpening. As you can see by the photos, no software sharpening is required. The 400 is quite a sharp lens.
    "In-camera" sharpening is "software" sharpening, and has very little practical relationship to how sharp the lens is.

    Note that "sharpening" is not just a digital technique, and virtually all film development methods result in chemically "sharpening" the image (due to intermittent agitation of the developer solution). The difference with digital is how much easier it is to control. But, just as with film, virtually all digital images benefit from sharpening.

    It appears that you are setting the in-camera software sharpening to one click less than "normal"?? That very likely results in a perfect match for most landscapes; but it leaves something to be desired for birds. Many of the photos you just posted have a sort of mix between the "busy detail" of a landscape (in the backgrounds, but also in any areas that have plants in them) where sharpening will be distracting, and the birds themselves which would benefit from a bit of edge contrast enhancement.

    I downloaded one of the images (with the bird on the spruce branches) and tried adding a little sharpening and also tried using a little unsharp mask (USM) on it. Each technique had a rather dramatic effect! USM was particularly nice on that image.

    Sharpening of course can be a bit counter productive too, and on an image like that where the object of interest looks better it still has to be weighted against everything else becoming "too busy". Sharpening causes really harsh (read that as "ugly") bokeh! The bird itself certainly does look better with either sharpening or USM, but it might best be done using a selected area to avoid adding detail to the background. That selection could then be inverted and the background blurred just slightly to further enhance the effect. Feathering the selection sufficiently helps too.

    Sharpening greatly depends on a number of characteristics that are unknown at the time the shutter is released; which is one reason that I prefer to shoot RAW and do everything in post processing. The amount of sharpening that is best changes with the scene and it changes with the image display size too. Hence just setting the in-camera sharpening to some "normal" level is likely to be too much in some cases and too little in others. The trick is to set in-camera sharpening at a minimum, as you seem to have done, but to then add more as needed with post processing.

    Un-Sharp Mask is a different method of enhancing the apparent sharpness of an image, and also was a commonly done wet darkroom technique. But in a darkroom it required a great deal of skill, and with digital is easy. And just like sharpening, it is often best applied selectively to only some areas of an image.

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    Great shots, Ray!

    Though it must be a real burden packin' that heavy 400mm around.



    A burden that I would have no problem putting up with.



    Congrats on the moose, now go get another!!!
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    Floyd,

    With the 40D, the camera is preset for the correct sharpness. All I have to do is to switch to "Landscapes" for these, or "Portraits' for these too, etc. If I take a picture of a person in the portraits mode, then the photo will be slightly soft, but not so if I use the camera on landscape mode since this one is in-camera preset sharper than portraits.

    But if I set my own modes and increase/decrease in-camera sharpness, contrast, etc., I can save these settings one of three locations in the camera. The photos above have one point above in-camera sharpness, therefore I didn't want PhotoShop sharpness in the computer.

    I have created and saved three modes, one for moon shots (saved to C3 on the mode dial), another for birds or wildlife with plenty of daylight (saved to C2), and another for birds and wildlife with low light (saved to C1). If I am outdoors and I encounter any of those situations, all I have to do is to turn the Mode Dial on to of the camera to C1, C2, or C3, and avoid fumbling with camera settings and missing shots.

    I agree with what you have said relating to sharpening and the rest, but if I do so I follow a sharpening/softening guide offered by a PhotoShop teacher at the University. It's a table that shows the degree of sharpening/softening, etc., before image degradation. This applies to Internet-posted photos, or any other.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tull777 View Post
    Great shots, Ray!

    Though it must be a real burden packin' that heavy 400mm around.



    A burden that I would have no problem putting up with.



    Congrats on the moose, now go get another!!!
    Thanks, Tull777

    I bought a "water fowler's" bag at Sportsman Warehouse. I place the camera bag (with the camera and lenses) inside the water fowler's bag, then tie it to the ATV's rack. The camera bag has a rain shield, but the fowler's bag keeps rain and mud off the camera's bag. The 400 doesn't have IS, so is very light compared to the 100-400 IS. Now, the 200 is very small and easier to carry around.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RayfromAK View Post
    Floyd,

    With the 40D, the camera is preset for the correct sharpness. All I have to do is to switch to "Landscapes" for these, or "Portraits' for these too, etc. If I take a picture of a person in the portraits mode, then the photo will be slightly soft, but not so if I use the camera on landscape mode since this one is in-camera preset sharper than portraits.

    But if I set my own modes and increase/decrease in-camera sharpness, contrast, etc., I can save these settings one of three locations in the camera. The photos above have one point above in-camera sharpness, therefore I didn't want PhotoShop sharpness in the computer.

    I have created and saved three modes, one for moon shots (saved to C3 on the mode dial), another for birds or wildlife with plenty of daylight (saved to C2), and another for birds and wildlife (saved to C1). If I am outdoors and I encounter any of those situations, all I have to do is to turn the Mode Dial on to of the camera to C1, C2, or C3, and avoid fumbling with camera settings and missing shots.

    I agree with what you have said relating to sharpening and the rest, but if I do so I follow a sharpening/softening guide offered by a PhotoShop teacher at the University. It's a table that shows the degree of sharpening/softening, etc., before image degradation. This applies to Internet-posted photos, or any other.
    Okay! That is a good description of methods that will work well. I was concerned with the idea that "software sharpening" was not needed because the lens was sharp. (Which is a very common mis-perception, and one that we don't want to accidentally perpetuate.)

    With many images I don't apply any sharpening at all, and only use USM. Unfortunately cameras don't do USM and it has to be done as a post processing step, which many people want to avoid.

    USM, for example, really made a difference when applied to the bird picture of yours that I experimented with. It's the first image that shows in the last set posted.

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    Thanks, Floyd. I will look into that soon, at least for the photos I usually post on the Internet. There is a place that want to sell some of my photos, and I have been asked not to sharpen them since they want to do it themselves. But they don't mind in-camera sharpening as long as it's not to much.

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    Great idea, Ray ..."water fowler's bag"!!!
    http://www.pbase.com/tull777

    http://www.eddiefisherphoto.com/


    "If you're too open-minded, your brains will fall out. ....."Tight Lines & Best Fishes"

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    Quote Originally Posted by RayfromAK View Post
    There is a place that want to sell some of my photos, and I have been asked not to sharpen them since they want to do it themselves. But they don't mind in-camera sharpening as long as it's not to much.
    That speaks very well for them.

    Sharpening should be the last step in the image production process because everything else affects how much sharpening is needed. They clearly are aware that the only ones who will be able to get it dead right are their staff!

    Must be nice people to work with.

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    Floyd ; can you please explain how agitation sharpens film ??

    I have searched all over the internet with no results found in this technique you mentioned ?

    I guess with your lifelong experience spanning many decades this must be one of those "trick's " that only professionals such as yourself are aware of due to the experience level you posses. I feel like a novice ! Please share

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    Quote Originally Posted by Majik Imaje View Post
    Floyd ; can you please explain how agitation sharpens film ??

    I have searched all over the internet with no results found in this technique you mentioned ?

    I guess with your lifelong experience spanning many decades this must be one of those "trick's " that only professionals such as yourself are aware of due to the experience level you posses. I feel like a novice ! Please share
    I used to be the dark room guy from 7th through 9th grade for my schools year book and took classes from Mr. Boothe at OSU in the late 70's and had never heard of that technique either.

    It has been a while since I ventured into the darkroom and may have just forgotten about how it works.



    Still Interesting though.
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    Well I am totally clueless how this technique is supposed to work. I am very interested though - I love learning new things.

    Microdol-X will process film much sharper than D-76 or HC-110. I know that certain developers for film will provide much more finer grain than other developers. I am extremely familiar with all of Kodak's products but for B&W - Illford has the market and I have never used any of their products.

    Instead of purchasing packaged products for film developing in B&W. I used to make my own. Dr. Beutlers formula was one incredible developer for film to make from scratch. That was always my preferred choice.

    Agitation sharpens film ? I sure want to learn more.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tull777 View Post
    I used to be the dark room guy from 7th through 9th grade for my schools year book and took classes from Mr. Boothe at OSU in the late 70's and had never heard of that technique either.

    It has been a while since I ventured into the darkroom and may have just forgotten about how it works.



    Still Interesting though.
    Technically it is called "Eberhard effect", though "Mackie lines" are the same thing.

    Google will provide nearly two million hits on such topics, for anyone who actually does attempt to find it. Searching on something like 'film agitation sharpen' ("acutance" can replace "sharpen") will provide fewer hits but may result in material that is more readable for most people.

    Here's one that I really like, given certain comments that have been made (and deleted by the moderator):
    "The phenomenon due to the fact that the density of a photographic plate, given a uniform exposure through a metal plate with an opening, varies with the size of the opening, when an organic developer is used."
    http://www.answers.com/topic/eberhard-effect
    For a fairly good discussion of sharpening aimed at photographers:

    www.phototechmag.com/articles/email/1106.pdf

    To avoid further confusion... I did not say that increasing agitation causes sharpening. (I said that decreasing agitation increases sharpening!)

    And let me point out that only an advanced darkroom worker (as opposed to an advanced photographer who happens to do a little darkroom work) would be likely to adjust film processing to control sharpening. The gross interaction between different effects when doing anything with chemicals is too complex, and most of the time consistently following the instructions for a given film and developer was hard enough!

    With digital, sharpening can be done with no effect on contrast or density, which was not true with film. Yet note that even with digital most photographers want to merely set something that works with a camera setting and then never touch it again, much the same as they did with film!

    With digital tools both sharpening and Un-Sharp Mask are easy techniques to work with; but they still are significantly difficult to understand.

    Another suggestion (in a deleted article) was that using Un-Sharp Mask is "unprofessional". Note that while sharpening is an advanced darkroom technique, USM is absolutely for only the most advanced and well equipped darkroom! Which is to say that most magazines such as Life, Playboy, and Time were equipped to do it, but even large newspapers were not.

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    Well this discussion is most interesting indeed !

    Mackie lines and the Eberhard effect do not occur during normal film development.

    It must be introduced by re-exposing the paper or film to light !! Mackie lines are a direct result of solarization (using light to re-expose film or paper).

    Neither of either of these effects is a result of decreased or increased agitation.

    Less agitation will cause the film or paper to streak (any rookie knows this only too well).

    Developing film is not hard or complicated one bit. the instructions are staightforward and simple. The processes are easy for a child to understand and successfully follow through( It is done in every school in this country for many decades.

    Very few ever developed these skills to include color. Printing color images is much easier than printing Black & White. Very few people in this country can effectively process B&W correctly !! (to the standard of Edward Weston or Ansel Adams).

    I have spent decades living in the darkrooms (17) that I have designed and built. I made a great living from teaching advanced darkroom techniques to children and adults for decades.

    Kodak offererd me 10 million in 1975 when I discovered a process that no one knew about !!


    The Process I discovered made it possible for Kodak to introduce its whole new line of high speed films !!

    I have owned the best of equipment cameras and darkroom equipment that only professionals could afford to purchase. I have been teaching for decades !!

    I stand by my original statement and I can easily prove it.. decreasing agitation in any film process will not increase sharpness one bit !!

    solariztion and eberhard effect do not occur with normal film processing techniques. and each have nothing to do with agitation !!

    I am sorry if you get offended I am just trying to have a logical discussion of the truth.

    for decades I had 3 color labs bugging me day and night to come work for them because of the skills I had learned in processing color FILM & PRINTS BY HAND !!

    Professionals Labs & Photographers do not hire for teaching purposes (occasional darkroom workers) !!

    thanks for your outstanding post my friend !!

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    Interesting ...both of your writings!



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    "If you're too open-minded, your brains will fall out. ....."Tight Lines & Best Fishes"

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    Well let me make this extremely simple:

    Agitation has only one purpose. To coat the emulsion (paper or film) with a NEW coat of developer because developer is exhausted quickly.

    too little agitation and your film/ print will streak or mottle and become uneven.

    Have you ever read food labels ?? The chemicals that are used to preserve food ??

    Those same chemicals are present in black and white developer solutions for one purpose - same purpose - perservatives. to make it last longer.

    If developer did not have sodium sulfate and or sodium sulfite the developer would develop itself !! It would be exhausted in a matter of hours instead of just days.

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