Saturday, October 23, 2021

My real-world interview with "Behind the Shot" about the new Canon R3

Join me on the latest episode of the Behind the Shot podcast (@ BehindTheShotTV), as I sit down with Steve Brazill (@SteveBrazillPhotography) to chat about my real-world experience at this year's Olympics with a pre-production @canonusa EOS R3.
 
Watch, Listen, and Subscribe here:
 
https://behindtheshot.tv/2021/10/21/real-world-use-of-the-canon-eos-r3/

 

So many people have asked about this camera, and I think this will answer many of your questions.

Enjoy!

__________________________________________________________________________

Subscribe to the Jeff Cable Photography Blog by clicking HERE!
__________________________________________________________________________
If you are interested in purchasing ANY equipment, please click here to go to B&H Photo, as I get a referral from them if you enter this way. It does not change the cost to you in any way, but it helps me keep this blog up and running.
__________________________________________________________________________
Check out my upcoming photo tours to amazing places around the world. I have photo tours to Africa, Costa Rica, Cuba, Europe, Asia, India and more. And Canon will loan you any gear you want for FREE for any of my tours. 

__________________________________________________________________________  

Wednesday, October 20, 2021

The beautiful elephants of Africa: On land and in the water

I have been home from Africa for more than a month now and I have been swamped ever since. Lots of events to photograph in the Bay Area and lots of work to get caught up on. But Africa is still on my mind and I still have so many photos to go through. After having a year and a half of no travel and little to photograph, I am so happy to have all these new photos to share with you all. 

Today I would like to share many of my favorite elephant photos and stories, including an awesome elephant crossing in the Chobe River of Botswana. So...after not blogging for numerous weeks, lets get to it!


One of the things that people first notice when seeing elephants in the wild for the first time, is the way that the adult females protect the youngsters. The youngest members of the group are most commonly found in the middle of the herds, making them slightly harder to photograph in plain view. 


Luckily, there are still plenty of chances to photograph the little ones as they graze and move from one location to another. I love how this little youngster has its trunk touching mom's back foot. Everyone on the trip was using a long zoom lens to capture their images. I was using the Canon R5 cameras with the Canon 100-500mm lens for all these photos.


I could not decide which image I liked better in this sequence, so I included all three.



I was sitting on the deck of my raised tent in Botswana when I saw this young elephant playing in the water. I grabbed my camera and had fun photographing this little one taking a bath and having a great time.


Both of these images (above and below) were taken at the same time, along the marsh in my "backyard".  I must have been watching at least 10 elephants from my deck at that moment. 



Here is a wider shot of the young elephant playing as its mother was grazing in the nearby grass.


I have always loved photographing elephants in the wild, because they do so many interesting things. Quite often we will see them throwing dirt and water on themselves to keep themselves cool. This always makes for great photos. As always, I kept my shutter speed at least 1/1000th of a second to freeze the action of the dirt in the air.


One of the highlights of this last safari was watching large groups of elephants crossing from one piece of land to another, often submerging deep into the Chobe River. This was one of my favorite photos, with this "two-toned" elephant rising above the others. 


It was fun to watch them climbing over each other...


...and splashing around.


We all watched as this mother found a shallow enough crossing for her youngsters. I love this photo showing the one young elephant climbing on the back of another.


For this photo, I isolated the two youngsters as they made their way across the Chobe River. They are just too cute!


We also took the opportunity to pull the boat up close to shore to get nice photos of the elephants on dry land.



We did spend one afternoon on a land safari and had this one teenage male challenge us. Check out the video above. It was an awesome experience. This did scare one of our guests at the time, but at the end of the trip she confessed that this was the highlight of her trip!



Being low in the water and having the elephants above us on the land gave us a nice low perspective when photographing these magnificent giants head on.


One of the photographic techniques I was teaching was high-key shooting. This is a technique where we purposely overexpose the photo to expose for the animal but blow out the background. This was perfect for converting our images into black and white. 


People always ask me why I love photographing in Botswana, and I always tell them that it is a joy to photograph from a boat on the river. We are at the same level as our subjects and able to capture images of them in their environment. 


This younger elephant was looking for some assistance (and maybe a little love) while crossing the water. 


This female was moving quickly through the water, right in front of our boat. I saw her churning up all this water and fired off a bunch of photos. 

On our last evening on the Chobe River, I told our guide that I wanted to find an elephant on the shoreline so that we could get a photo of the animal with the sunset in the background. I challenged everyone to get a shot with the sun by the tusks or under the trunk. Everyone got a nice shot using this scene. It was the perfect way to end the day!

I hope you enjoyed the photos. If you have not been to Africa, you need to get there!! It is life changing.  We will be there next year and you can find information about upcoming trips here. Join us!


__________________________________________________________________________

Subscribe to the Jeff Cable Photography Blog by clicking HERE!
__________________________________________________________________________
If you are interested in purchasing ANY equipment, please click here to go to B&H Photo, as I get a referral from them if you enter this way. It does not change the cost to you in any way, but it helps me keep this blog up and running.
__________________________________________________________________________
Check out my upcoming photo tours to amazing places around the world. I have photo tours to Africa, Costa Rica, Cuba, Europe, Asia, India and more. And Canon will loan you any gear you want for FREE for any of my tours. 

__________________________________________________________________________  

Monday, October 4, 2021

The amazing and colorful birds of Africa

I have been back from Africa for more than 2 weeks now and have not really blogged much. I have spent the last 19 days trying to play catch up after being gone for the last 2 1/2 months. And of course the Canon R3 was officially announced, so I have had a lot of people asking questions about my use of the new camera at the Olympics. But...now I am back at it, and wanted to share something different with you all. 

When people think of photographing wildlife in Africa, they generally think of the big animals. They think about capturing photos of the elephant, the big cats, rhinos and so much more. And sure, I am not that different, but when you go to Africa you need to see the beauty in the smaller things too. In that spirit, todays blog post is all about the amazing birds that you find in Africa. Because, unlike the birds near my house, the birds in Africa are more colorful and more dynamic and worthy of photographing for sure.

Here are many of my favorite bird photos from the trip mostly in chronological order.


One of my favorite birds in Tanzania is the Superb Starling. The colors of this bird always amaze me.  And they are all over the place, so getting a good photo of this starling is really easy.


I swear that this one was giving me the "evil eye"!


Another favorite bird in Tanzania is the Lilac Breasted Roller, and you can see how it earned it's name. 


Here is a photo of the LBR in flight.


It is not uncommon to see the Ox Peckers freeloading off of larger animals...


...and they were not the only birds hopping on for a ride. We saw this bird hanging out on the back of this hippo which was eating along the shoreline of the Chobe River in Botswana.


The hippos actually made for good landing pads for many species of birds.


It is quite common to see raptors throughout the continent.


I took this photo mainly because of the environment behind the bird...


We saw this King Fisher hovering over a small river, looking for its next meal. All of us shooting with the new Canon R5 and R6 were amazed at how well the subject tracking followed the bird perfectly. We were getting shots that normally would be almost impossible to capture.



This is a Hornbill but they call this bird the flying chili pepper.


And this type of hornbill is nicknamed the flying banana.


The colors are not just in the feathers, and are commonly found in the beaks as well.


Even the vultures have colorful faces.


Like I said before, the ability of the Canon R5 to track birds in flight was nothing short of astounding. My take rate was at least 10 times better than with any of Canon's DSLR cameras. 


There is something majestic about watching these large birds in flight.




I really liked the way that this bird matched the coloring and patterns in the wood.


They call this bird the "Jesus bird" since, with its really large feet, it appears to walk on water.



More great colors....


...and interesting patterns.



This is another favorite bird of mine. This is one of the Bee Eaters that you find in central and southern Africa.


Whenever we saw Fish Eagles near the shoreline of the Chobe River, we would pull the boat close to the shore and wait for the eagle to take flight.


If other birds were taking off in the area, we capture photos of them as well.


This bird is a skimmer, aptly named since it would fly close to the water and skim for small fish.


You can see the trail behind the bird as its beak skimmed the water.


I caught this skimmer taking off from the shallow water. I really liked this photo because of the water coming off the feet, but also the curve of the sand and the shadow which is cast behind the bird.


I was talking to one of the other photo guides on another boat as we watched the skimmers in action.  We challenged each other to capture a clean motion pan of these birds skimming at 1/40th sec. It took a while but I got one! 


More take-offs.


This spoon bill was walking on the shoreline in front of our boat as we took photos. It almost looks like it is watching us as closely as we were watching it.


Here is another species of Bee Eater. I don't remember ever seeing this color bee eater before, but loved it!


Check out the colors on this King Fisher. Simply awesome.


We saw this bird hanging out in a tree and I decided to teach the group how to shoot and zoom at the same time to get a cool effect like this.


Look, there is snow on the rocks in Botswana. Oh wait, that is not snow. :)


At one point, we pulled our boat close to the shore because we saw a fish eagle on a rock. As we pulled closer, the eagle took off and we saw that it had a large catfish in it's tallons.


I took numerous photos as it flew off with it's catch. I really liked this one with the eagle's eye showing through it's wing.


On the opposite shore, we spotted the eagle's partner. We crossed the river and captured images of that eagle flying off. It was facing directly into the diffused light which lit the bird beautifully.


We saw this bird which was showing off its fresh catch. It stood in this position for a long time, giving us all ample time to grab a photo with the fish in full view. The look on the face of the ill-fated fish is priceless.


We even got some nice profile shots.


It was our last day on the Chobe River when we came across these two bee eaters hanging out together. 


We would typically be on the water until sunset. And on our final evening, we saw this bird drying its wings in the last bit of daylight.

And then the sun set and we were back to the lodge to download all our photos and to enjoy an amazing meal. 

I hope you enjoyed seeing these photos and seeing some of the smaller, but no less magnificent wildlife from Africa.  I ca assure you that all of us had a great time capturing the images.


__________________________________________________________________________

Subscribe to the Jeff Cable Photography Blog by clicking HERE!
__________________________________________________________________________
If you are interested in purchasing ANY equipment, please click here to go to B&H Photo, as I get a referral from them if you enter this way. It does not change the cost to you in any way, but it helps me keep this blog up and running.
__________________________________________________________________________
Check out my upcoming photo tours to amazing places around the world. I have photo tours to Africa, Costa Rica, Cuba, Europe, Asia, India and more. And Canon will loan you any gear you want for FREE for any of my tours. 

__________________________________________________________________________