Friday, September 18, 2009

Migration

The fall weather is definitely approaching those of us in southern Ontario. The mornings are 'fresh' and the leaves are beginning to change. Of course one of the big indicators of the change in season is the migrating flocks of Canadian Geese. I don't know if these birds are even geese, but they do remind me of them. Perhaps they are snow geese.


1/250 f/4 ISO 800 24.0-105.0 mm @ 105 mm Canon EOS DIGITAL REBEL
Ontario Place,Toronto,Ontario

Photographically,this image could be improved. The biggest area in need of attention is the background. It is simply too busy. People often look at my images and comment on how great they are, and ask what kind of equipment I use. This background problem is an excellent example of where the gear doesn't matter much at all. There is only one aspect of gear that can fix this, all the others have to do with picking a different direction to point the camera in. Whether you have to world's most expensive camera, or the cheapest, that aspect remains the same.

The one aspect where gear can make a difference is 'depth of field'. Our eyes see near and far things  in focus (at least when we are young). A camera doesn't behave the same way. Things closer than a certain point become blurred and likewise with objects further away than another point. The difference between the far point and the near point is the 'depth of field'.  It is usually measured in feet or meters.

The DoF is controlled by the lens' aperture. Designated by "f/n", where n is a number that typically ranges between 1.4 and 22. For a dSLR, that aperture can be controlled. The smaller the number the shorter the DoF. This image was taken at f/4 which is the largest aperture that lens can achieve. I have a f/2.8 lens and that might have been a better choice in this case (if I had owned it at the time).


The distance between the geese and the background is likely a meter or more. Compare the geese to this coffee bean image. The background beans are less than a meter away and are nicely blurred.
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