Nature and Photography Blog

National Parks

New Website 2014 Schedule

We just finished our new website

It has a new photos. blog, and a 2014 schedule

http://www.sphotography.com

Check it out

 


Winter Photography Tips

Photography Tips Winter

Polar Bears

The weather outside is frightful for photography it is quite delightful.

Let it Snow!!! Let it Snow!!! Let it Snow!!!

Winter photography can be challenging but it is worth the effort. Here are some tips to improve your winter photography.

Don’t Exposure Camera equipment to Extreme Temperature Changes. Condensation is a major problem for camera equipment. Electronics and moisture don’t mix well. The good news is that the moisture will eventually evaporate if the equipment is allowed to warm up to room temperature, but it can take a long time.

I keep my camera in its bag before going indoors or outside. The bag insulates the gear a little from extreme temperature changes. When I return home I just leave my gear in the camera bag and make sure I don’t open the bag for at least one hour.

I also keep my car cold. It minimizes condensation. It also seems like less of a shock from going out of the warm vehicle to the cold. If you take off you gloves and coat, crank the heat,  you will find it tempting not to even get out of the car and take a picture.

Keep batteries warm. Your camera will work fine in very cold temperatures as long as it has functioning batteries. Batteries drain quicker with cold weather. When I do a winter shoot I often bring several sets of batteries which are charged daily. Certain types of batteries perform better than others in the cold. I keep extra batteries in a pocket inside my jacket where I can keep them warm. Sometimes I put a chemical hand warmer in that pocket also. I often rotate the batteries between my camera and my warm pocket.

Tripods: Avoid touching a cold tripod with you bare hands. Some people use tripod leg warmers to help with this problem. Several manufactures make tripod leg warmers. You can also use plumber’s pipe insulation for the tripod legs. For less than five bucks you can make your own tripod leg covers from foam pipe insulation and hockey tape (the best tape to use ’cause it can handle the cold). Be careful not to force your tripod into the snow. You can damage you tripod.

A Lens hood can help to prevent problems with snow on the front element of a lens from falling or blowing snow.

Hand Warmers are easy to use, they start warming the instant you open the package. You can keep some in your boots, gloves, and coast pockets.  I keep one stuffed in each glove or mitten, and this way my gloves are always warm when I put them back on.

Exposure:  don’t blow out the whites. The camera will want to make the snow a neutral gray color which is a problem. Learn to read the histogram and you will find exposing the snow properly is very easy.

Get out early. Winter landscape photography looks best with fresh snow on the branches. It is best to be out there before it melts or gets blown off the branches.

Take extra precautions. Let other know of you travel plans in event of an emergency. Bring emergency supplies with you on your adventures.

You can add interest and color to snow shots simply by including a colorful object or two in your composition.

Fly to Florida. If you need a break from the cold you can’t beat Florida. It is warm and incredibly beautiful. The wildlife photography is incredible. Winter is the dry season in Florida. Since there is less water the wildlife concentrates into smaller areas which make it a wildlife photographer’s paradise.

Some of my favorite photo opportunities are during winter. Don’t let the cold keep you inside. Get out and enjoy.


Black Bear Nap

Too much time on your paws.  Zzzzz Zzzzzzzzzzzz Zzzzzzzzz

Black Bear Sleeping

What Does A Bear use for an alarm clock?

 


Photo Tours and Workshops New England (1 Day)

Join us as we photograph several great locations throughout New England.

Currently we have 5 trips planned.

They will  come back with some great pictures and have fun.

Southern Maine Coast Photo Tour:  December 1, 2013

Photograph winter landscapes along the beautiful Maine Coast. The day will begin with sunrise shoot. We will photograph the dramatic rocky coastline, pounding surf, lighthouses, fishing harbors, lobster boats etc.

Mid Day we will take a well deserved break at a warm restaurant then back out to continue our photo adventure. We will conclude with sunset at Nubble Light which will be lit up with Holiday lights.

Plum Island MA-NH Coastline Photo Tour:   January 12, 2013

Join us on a photo tour as we photograph the Massachusetts and NH Coastline. We will visit several areas looking for local wildlife and beautiful landscapes. We will be out from sunrise to sunset with a mid day break for lunch.

The day will begin with sunrise shoot at Plum Island NWR. We will work our way to Salisbury Beach and head north along the 18 mile NH Coastline. I will also be looking for beautiful landscapes and winter wildlife like Bald Eagles, Seals, Snowy Owls, and anything else we come across.

Quabbin Reservoir (Massachusetts) Photo Tour: March 23, 2013

Located in central Massachusetts, It was built in the 1930′s to provide clean drinking water for the Boston region. Over 2500 people in the towns of Dana, Enfield, Greenwich, and Prescottsections of seven other towns were forced to give up their homes in the Swift River Valleyto make this project possible.

Today, Quabbin is recognized as one of the largest drinking-water reservoirs in the world, a remarkable feat of engineering, an “accidental wilderness” that is home to an impressive variety of wildlife, and a wonderful place to explore winter landscapes. Join us as we hike into Quabbin Reservoir to experience the beauty of the wilderness and diversity of life and habitats.

Note: In the event of a snow storm this tour will be cancelled and participants will be issued a full refund.

NH and Southern Maine Coastline Photo Tour:   March 30, 2013

Join us on a photo tour as we photograph theMaineand New Hampshire Coastline. We will visit several areas looking for local wildlife and coastal landscapes. We will photograph from sunrise to sunset with a mid day break for lunch.

We will head north along the 18 mile NH Coastline and intoSouthern Maine. The dramatic rocky coastline, pounding surf, lighthouses, fishing harbors, lobster boats etc provides us with unlimited subjects to photograph. I will also be looking for winter wildlife like Bald Eagles, Seals, Snowy Owls, and any other wildlife we come across

Newport (Rhode Island) Photo Tour: May 4, 2013

This photo tour we will cover the beautiful hotspots of Newport, RI. We will photograph some of the many marinas, Fort Adams State Park, Newport Bridge, Goat Island, Ocean Drive, the Lighthouse, and many other Gems. This is a great time to visit Newportbefore the busy tourist season.

For more information please visit

http://www.sphotography.com/tours.htm


See the Light

See the Light

Light Matters

Join us on a photo workshop or tour. See the Light

 


Acadia National Park

Here is another picture from my Acadia National Park Photo Workshop

 

Acadia National Park Photo Tour

Acadia National Park

 


Acadia National Park Sunset

Acadia National Park Sunset


Acadia National Park Rocks

Acadia National Park

Acadia National Park


Acadia National Park Sunrise

This photo was taken from Cadillac Mountain at Sunrise. It is hard to get up for sunrise in June but it is worth it.

Sunrise Acadia National Park

Acadia National Park Sunrise


Acadia National Park Photo Tour Sunrise

Acadia Sunrise Predawn Glow

Acadia Sunrise Predawn Glow

Predawn Glow Acadia National Park

 


Acadia Waterfall

The key to getting great waterfall pictures is timing. During the beginning of my Acadia Photo Tour it was raining hard so the next day we photographed a vernal waterfall. The next morning we went by the same waterfall and it was barely a trickle of water.


Photo Workshop Tip: 360 Degrees

Acadia Photo Tour

Cadillac Mountain Sunset

Here is a photo taken of Cadillac Mountain from my Acadia National Park Instructional Photo Tour.

Whenever you are photographing constantly look around 360 Degrees.

Sometimes you may be anticipanting a photo but the best shot is behind you.


Weekly Photo Tips

 

Grizzly Bears and Cubs

Grizzly Bear and Cubs

Every week will be adding some new photography tips to our blog. I am going to target Wednesdays.

Please bookmark this page and check back often.

If you see this on the Facebook page please chick the LIKE button.


Wild Florida Photo Tour Results

Roseate Spoonbill

Roseate Spoonbill in Florida

Wild Florida Photo Tour Results 2011.  

I just got back from Florida last week. It was a long but exciting trip. It started out on a bad note when the Patriots lost the Superbowl. Thankfully each day got better. 

I spent many weeks preparing for this trip even though I have photographed Florida for almost 20 years. It is important to keep up with the recent wildlife reports. I check the internet, call and email other photographers, birders, biologist etc. I also monitor the water levels and tide charts. 

I drove down a week early to scout out the area. I checked on some eagle, osprey and owl nests.  Some of my most photogenic nests were vacant this year but I had other ones planned out. 

The tip started off in Fort Myers. Participants flew into the Fort Myers Airport and took a shuttle to the hotel. This group was a lot of fun. I haven’t laughed so much in a long time.  

The wildlife on this trip put on quite the show.  

Some of the highlights were 

  • Roseate Spoonbills (multiple locations)
  • Manatees (Everglades National Park and Big Cypress Preserve) one 10 feet away
  • Alligators (multiple locations) including Baby Alligators
  • American Crocodile
  • Some of the herons, egrets, anhingas, wood stocks, vultures, and cormorants were so close they were able to get head shots.
  • Pelicans: Both White and Brown Pelican were photographed. Some nesting, perched, and diving for fish.
  • Bald eagles: (multiple locations)
  • Nesting Burrowing, Great Horned and Barred Owls.
  • Purple Gallinule (Multiple locations Everglades)
  • Limpkin: (multiple days and locations)
  • Osprey: perched, in flight, nesting (multiple locations)
  • Red Shoulder Hawk (multiple locations)
  • Black necked Stilt (multiple locations)
  • Loggerhead Shrike
  • Painted Bunting
  • Watching hundreds of birds return to their rookery at night
  • The beauty of the Everglades, Sanibel Island, Big Cypress Preserve
  • Burrowing Owls (multiple nests)
  • Great Horned Owls (two locations)
  • A great sunset in the Everglades
  • Reddish Egrets
  • Ospreys nest building at Sanibel Island
  • The vultures at Myakka
  • Robert was Here: Tropical Drinks

 

It was sad to drop people off at the airport after the tour was over. 

Thank you all for the memories and laughs. 

 You never know what you are going to see in Florida everyday is an adventure. 

 I can’t wait for next year. 


Roseate Spoonbill Florida

Roseate Spoonbill

Roseate Spoonbill

I love photographing Florida I have been going there for several years.

The Roseate Spoonbills is one of my favorite birds. This species feeds in shallow fresh or coastal waters by swinging its bill from side to side as it steadily walks through the water, often in groups. The spoon-shaped bill allows it to sift easily through mud. It feeds on crustaceans, aquatic insects, frogs, newts and very small fish ignored by larger waders.

We still have space on on Florida Photo Tour.