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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre Wildlife Talk 
Thread started 18 Jan 2015 (Sunday) 11:11
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"TV" or "M"

 
Bogino
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Jan 18, 2015 11:11 |  #1

Will be doing a tour of Golfe Dulce next week in Costa Rica and trying to prepare for getting best pictures. Using a Canon 60D and I will be shooting from a slowly moving boat. In the gulf we will undoubtedly spot dolphins, possibly whales as well as Crocs. From the slowly moving boat and targeting moving fish am I better off shooting in "TV" mode or "M" mode for the best captures? I will have both my 70-300mm L lens as well as a 70-200mm 1:4 L IS lens. Imagine either/or should be fine but if any thoughts on which lens might be best please advise. Thank You.


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John ­ Sheehy
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Post edited over 4 years ago by John Sheehy.
     
Jan 18, 2015 11:22 |  #2

Bogino wrote in post #17388219 (external link)
Will be doing a tour of Golfe Dulce next week in Costa Rica and trying to prepare for getting best pictures. Using a Canon 60D and I will be shooting from a slowly moving boat. In the gulf we will undoubtedly spot dolphins, possibly whales as well as Crocs. From the slowly moving boat and targeting moving fish am I better off shooting in "TV" mode or "M" mode for the best captures? I will have both my 70-300mm L lens as well as a 70-200mm 1:4 L IS lens. Imagine either/or should be fine but if any thoughts on which lens might be best please advise. Thank You.

I consider Tv to be a special mode not suited to regular photography, especially ambient photography (no flash). Allowing the f-stop to wander all over the place is crazy, IMO. Tv can be tamed by auto-ISO, of course, which will try to keep the lens all the way open, which may or may not be what you want. Tv with fixed ISO is a dangerous game, IMO. If light is constant, full manual is the way to go; if light is varying, then manual Av and Tv with auto ISO is a good choice.

For shooting fish, you're probably going to want to use a circular polarizing filter, to remove the glare of the sky in the water. You're going to lose about two stops of over-all light though.




  
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sweetlu60
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Jan 18, 2015 17:28 |  #3

Bogino,

Are you expecting the light to be bad? My guess is that you will be out in full sun, so I do not think you will have that hard of time with Av. I would think that as long as you make sure that you are shooting at greater than 1/300 of a second, then you should be fine to get sharp images that are stopping the motion. Take a few test shots to check exposures, but I would think that you might not want to be fiddling with both aperture and shutter speed while trying to get a breaching dolphin or whale, I would think it would be better to just leave it on f8.0 and if you want on AutoIso,while possibly overexposing a bit to account for the animals being a little darker than the surroundings.

As John said, a CPL would be good if you are trying to see through the water, especially if you want to try to get the entire body of the croc and it is in clear water.

Have fun and look forward to your pictures.


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bubbygator
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Jan 18, 2015 17:59 |  #4

Yes, regardless of what you decide, definitely take a few test exposures and look them over carefully - it's a lot easier to make adjustments before the dolphins arrive.


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Bogino
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Jan 18, 2015 20:26 |  #5

I will be starting the boat tour between 7:30 - 8:00 a.m. January is pretty well into the dry season in Costa Rica so the odds are that the weather should be quite favorable. To answer the lighting question: Yes I am "expecting" good lighting but surprises I guess can always happen and I won't take anything for granted.


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vk2gwk
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Jan 18, 2015 20:40 |  #6

Just done a dolphin watching cruise around Port Stephens. For this sort of "action and wildlife" I keep a custom setting on my camera with Tv at 1/1000, AF Servo, high speed continuous and auto ISO. As this was a "twilight" cruise the last series of dolphin shots were at ISO 12800. - With much light I usually switch to spot metering - especially for birds against a bright sky.
For action a CPL filter has limited value as your camera angle my switch constantly and throw off the optimal polarisation - especially on a moving (and sometimes rocking) boat.
Enjoy your trip.

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Tom ­ Reichner
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Jan 18, 2015 22:55 |  #7

If I were going to be shooting the situation you describe, I wouldn't even consider Tv (shutter priority) mode. For me, the question would be whether to shoot in Av (aperture priority) mode or in manual. And this is not a decision that has to be made ahead of time. In fact, most of my shoots involve a spontaneous mix of both aperture priority and manual shooting.

The reason I would not use Tv mode is because YOU set the shutter speed and the camera picks an aperture to match. Unfortunately, the number of suitable apertures is quite limited. In other words, the camera does not have many suitable options when it comes to aperture choices. There will, in many situations, not be a properly matched aperture, and then the camera will start jacking up the ISO.

Additionally, and perhaps more importantly, aperture has a huge effect on depth of field. Do you really want the camera to decide how much depth of field your images will have? Isn't DOF an artistic decision? And, if so, how will the camera - which is a computer - know what kind of look you want the images to have? As the artist, you should be in control of what your images look like, not the camera. YOU should be deciding how much of the scene should be in sharp focus, and how much you want blurred, as well as how blurry the out-of-focus areas are.

Except for specialty situations such as panning shots, shutter speed generally has less much effect on the final look of the image than does aperture. So, it is normally ok to allow the camera to pick a shutter speed to match the aperture you have selected (shutter priority mode). Plus, there are far more shutter speeds than there are apertures, so the camera will be likely to fun out of suitable choices when it attempts to find a shutter speed to match with the aperture you've selected.

The one time when Tv mode would typically be a good choice would be when you are doing panning shots in which you want the background to have pronounced streaking in the direction that the camera is being moved when you follow the subject. In this specialized situation, the shutter speed has more effect on the look of the final image than does the aperture. Therefore, the shutter speed is the artistic part of the decision, and is best chosen by the artist (not the camera).


"Your" and "you're" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one.
"They're", "their", and "there" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one.
"Fare" and "fair" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one. The proper expression is "moot point", NOT "mute point".

  
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OhLook
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Jan 18, 2015 23:04 |  #8

Tom Reichner wrote in post #17389113 (external link)
So, it is normally ok to allow the camera to pick a shutter speed to match the aperture you have selected (shutter priority mode). Plus, there are far more shutter speeds than there are apertures, so the camera will be likely to fun out of suitable choices when it attempts to find a shutter speed to match with the aperture you've selected.

Tom, did you say what you intended to here? Assuming "fun" should be "run," the statement seems backward. Many SSs available --> unlikely to run out of choices.


PRONOUN ADVISORY: OhLook is a she. | A FEW CORRECT SPELLINGS: lens, aperture, amateur, hobbyist, per se, raccoon, whoa, more so (2 wds.), shoo-in | IMAGE EDITING OK

  
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vk2gwk
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Jan 18, 2015 23:26 |  #9

From an artistic point of view and for situations where more than one subject is stationary or slow moving in the scene Tom Reichners reasoning and aproach is completely valid. There you have (the time) to consider DOF, bokeh and the like and is aperture more important than shutter speed.

In action and fast moving wildlife situations the "artistic" considerations come second and focus and freezing the motion are getting priority. That means a minimum shutter speed (especially when using long focal length) and unless there is heaps of light a variable ISO to ensure optimum aperture. You can do that "manual" and I do that when there is not much variation in lighting conditions. But shooting fast at different angles towards lighter or darker sections of an overall scene I trust the "computer" more than my fumbling fingers on the wheels of my camera to reset aperture or shutter speed (and ISO) within seconds.


My name is Henk. and I believe "It is all in the eye of the beholder....."
Image Editing is allowed. Please explain what you did!
5D MkIV 5DMkIII, 50D, 24-105/1:4L IS USM + 100-400/4-5.6L IS USM + 50mm 1.4 USM + Tamron 70-200mm F/2.8 VC + Sigma 150-600mm Sports + 580EXII + 430EX + YN568EXII, triggers, reflectors, umbrellas and some more bits and pieces...
Photos on: Flickr! (external link) and on my own web site. (external link)

  
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Tom ­ Reichner
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Jan 19, 2015 02:06 |  #10

OhLook wrote in post #17389117 (external link)
Tom, did you say what you intended to here? Assuming "fun" should be "run," the statement seems backward. Many SSs available --> unlikely to run out of choices.

You're right - I did write it backwards. Thanks for catching that.


"Your" and "you're" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one.
"They're", "their", and "there" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one.
"Fare" and "fair" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one. The proper expression is "moot point", NOT "mute point".

  
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"TV" or "M"
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