Exposing for Edge of Light

When I was kayaking on Sunday morning I saw a Great Blue Heron downriver and noticed some shadow areas behind the bird.  I knew I may have a chance at some “edge of light” photos.  I wasn’t sure how tolerate this bird would be to my presence so I made some advance preparations for my photos.

I first took a picture from far away to determine the proper exposure on the heron and set my camera to manual with those settings. Then I aimed the kayak in the heron’s direction and let the river take me to the bird, just using the paddle as a rudder to make subtle course changes.

Once I drifted down, I was able to get these exposures without having to worry about the dark backgrounds because I knew the heron was in the same light as my test exposure taken before I got close.

4010-180624-_5D43903.jpg1/640; f/10; ISO 250; 428mm


4010-180624-_5D43905.jpg1/640; f/10; ISO 250; 428mm

The bird flew a short distance away to some branches sticking up out of the river and as I continued my drift down the river I was able to get this shot before I passed by.

4010-180624-_5D43927.jpg 1/640; f/10; ISO 250; 600mm

Anticipating a situation and making the proper preparations are the difference between a good picture and a failure.


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