Thursday, December 30, 2010

F300EXR – A walk in the woods …

There’s a trail that was once called Stony Swamp that I often walked with the boys when they were younger. They have since renamed it to Beaver Trail, probably because Stony Swamp was not all that appetizing a name for a place to walk with your kids.

I walk it now and again just to see what has been changing and to see what I can photograph. I did this late in the day two days ago, and the conditions were very nice. Not too much snow, and people had left enough seeds lying around for me to catch a few Chickadees.

The F300EXR is a pretty nice camera for shooting in low light, and especially if you tend to publish at web sizes or in small prints. But this kind of light stimulates the EXR camera’s tendency to smear like-colored foliage in the distance, so if you are a raging pixel-peeper, I encourage you to look elsewhere. Canon perhaps …

I brought the D700 along to shoot the Chickadees, and only remembered to take the F300EXR out of my pocket about half way around the loop, Just before I reached the swamp itself. Note that these are all processed. The cam does a nice job, but I prefer a warmer presentation (the woods were dark this late on a cloudy day, and no cam can really give the warmth I like.)

I noticed a tree stump chewed off and of course thought it appropriate to capture the evidence as to why this is called the Beaver Trail.


I always try to get a decent image of the vast swamp and its thousands of bull rushes, but I never really manage to get something I like. Here’s what the F300EXR was able to do.


I’m a sucker for tree bark in all its flavors. Birch trees peeling away make for a great subject. Especially set against the woods …


I also like the texture of dried Oak leaves. I missed the perfect shot here by clipping the bottom left corner, but I like it enough to publish anyway.


More leaves, and if you can identify them in this state, let me know.


Fungi tend to grow on fallen logs, but I don’t get to see a standing tree hosting that often …



The inevitable Chickadee shot … but I had the cam on 400 ISO and the shutter speeds were too slow. I got one that I was able, with heavy processing, to coax some detail from …


Sometimes the slow shutter makes for an interesting image …


As I arrived at the meadow, I remembered how much I like the tree that dominates it.


And finally, I came upon a really cool tree that defines gnarly … a couple of shots of its branches …



And as I passed the Wild Bird Center, I noticed that someone had lost a scarf somewhere and a good Samaritan had left it hung from the fence near the center. Nice person …


Stay tuned for the D700 images in a separate post.

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