Wednesday 20 October 2010

Mini Trip Report - Part 4 - Red Kites

OK I promised you Red Kites last time so here they are.

Not too much commentary - just a few pictures to share with you.


 Slow shutter speed for wing blur but sharp where it matters

 Carrying away the food

 Juvenile bird

Its worth clicking on the images to view in large. The shots of the Kites against a background were not possible with the 1Dmk3 - this is where the 7D has proved so great.  With the ability to click between C1 and C3 modes on the dial select, it was easily an instant change when going for either background or clear sky shots.  I wrote about that here

By the way, all these images were processed in Capture One with only the final crop and sharpen in CS5 - an expensive way to sharpen and crop perhaps.  but when you get the exposures well and you have a great RAW processor this is little else to do for these type of shots.  If you are wondering why the blues in the sky are not all the same - simple - the shots were taken over a couple of hours towards sunset, occasional bits of thin cloud came through and I was shooting at different angles to the sun.

I will bring you another couple of posts from this trip at least yet.  We have Buzzards to come along with Kite behaviour, flash in poor light and finally the White Kite.  So keep dropping by.


  1. Nice images Martin. Clearly these were taken with the 7D and 500L judging by the early post. Did you also use the 1.4 converter.
    This has been on my list of places to visit for some time, but not got there yet. This certainly wets my appetite.

  2. Thanks Ian

    All with the 500 only. With the 1.4 on the 1.6 crop you have too much lens. I also wanted the maximum AF response

    The 7D, 300f2.8 + 1.4 combo makes a good hand swing-able combo.


  3. Martin
    I like the technique / effect in no. 5. Exhilirating location.

    I presume these were taken using a tripod. Given the choice again of 7D, 500 & tripod versus 7D, 300 2.8 + 1.4, handheld, what would you choose and why? I only ask as I've done the latter and was very pleased with results and versatility but at a cost to my left arm (!)plus as yet I don't own a £300 gimbal head. I'd be interested in your reasoning.


  4. Hi Julian,

    Most of my shots were with the 500f4 on the tripod, with the Arca Swiss and Wimberley Sidekick. This is the perfect option for me with the 500, as I have a normal head for other genres ten Check the pics here

    The 7D, 300f2.8, 1.4 option gives you the opportunity to swing your elns onto a subject easily quickly and at those overhead moments when it is difficult to get enough tilt. All that said, I used the 500 on the tripod for more than 90% of the images I took.

    The point that is worth making is that for Gigrin you dont NEED 500 plus lenese. A 300 wil give enough reach at least with a 1.6 crop body, and with the 1.4 is OK on a 1.3 crop body too.

    Thanks for your comments

  5. Very helpful, thanks Martin. You confirmed my "hunch" in the final paragraph. I checked my EXIF's from last Spring and I used the "bare" 300 as if I recall correctly the 1.4 initially resulted in less rapid AF (on my 40D) and much greater risk of "clipped wings" for my first visit. Just have to work on strengthening that left bicep - somehow drinking pints isn't heavy enough exercise! Thanks again Martin.


  6. Wonderful set Martin - seems you really love the 7D seems you have set it up a treat, the one that really stands out for me is the slow shutter speed shot. Marvelous

    Mark W