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Thread: Clowning Grasshoppers

  1. #1

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    Victor Rakmil

    Clowning Grasshoppers

    Over a several weeks I spent considerable time honing my technique. I wanted to improve my hand holding and use of flash. With the 105mm D Nikon and tubes it takes time. There was a learning curve on how the grasshoppers react for example how they would face when they landed (they would jump away once then get curious and hang around). I ended up with five shots, out of dozens, I really liked and this is my favorite, the other four are on my website.

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  2. #2
    JimFred's Avatar
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    Jim Abbott

    Re: Clowning Grasshoppers

    The expression on it's face is hilarious! I love the DOF and the focus of the shot. Very nice, Victor.

  3. #3
    Mark von Kanel's Avatar
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    Re: Clowning Grasshoppers

    Please give us the benefit of your learning curve exactly what equipment did you use and how was it set up, this is a wonderful shot thats a great reward for your time and effort. i would be really tempted to give it a panno type crop, i think it would set the image off even more. well done Victor

  4. #4
    MilT0s's Avatar
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    Re: Clowning Grasshoppers

    Victor I think you should crop this one tigher so we can see the head with more details.

  5. #5
    Mark von Kanel's Avatar
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    Re: Clowning Grasshoppers

    Hi Victor, hope you dont mind but this is the crop id use, i think id adds to the comedy of the image

    Clowning Grasshoppers

  6. #6
    JimFred's Avatar
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    Re: Clowning Grasshoppers

    Yes....I like the crop, Mark. Victor should too.

  7. #7

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    Victor Rakmil

    Re: Clowning Grasshoppers

    Camera D7000, I use the be AeL/AeF button for focus, focus on continuous. Lens is the old Nikon 105d (hunts and pecks but still works - (the noise may force me to trade up). I use Kenko extension tubes, for handheld 20 or 36mm. Sb-900 Flash, inside a Lastolite 8x8 soft box on camera, front of box coincides with front to lens. Sd-9 battery pack to ensure fast recycling.

    Here in Ottawa we have several nice spots for wildlife. I went back to the same wild life garden as often as possible during different parts of the day over weeks. Getting a few grasshopper shots each time. These grasshoppers, given their color are mostly invisible until they move. They are sensitive to shadow or the foliage being stirred up. They tended to land facing away from me, but would, if I stood absolutely still turn around. Once they turned around they appeared to be curious and you could slowly get increasingly close, even leave and come back in some cases. The flash was either fill or TTL at levels where I tried to keep some ambient light in the frame, I was worried it would bother them but there was no sign of that.

    Challenges included other people on path, dogs, bicycles and the fact you are in garden and cannot trample the foliage.

    Lots of patience, lots of practice, and not worrying too much about the outcome worked. I ended up with lots of poor shots (Not just out of focus etc. I do not like the top down shots, or the side on shots that do not show off faces. Its too entomological. ) 38 shots were in the ball park and five worked.

    I am now applying this to other creatures though the seasonal change is a problem.

    Thanks for asking!

  8. #8

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    Victor Rakmil

    Re: Clowning Grasshoppers

    Actually I can see no reason to lose the batman-like shadow. That said we all have our own perspective and I appreciate the effort and views. My concern was the brightness of the background - to fix that i future I will use a little gaffer tape to cut down the size of my soft box.

  9. #9

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    Victor Rakmil

    Re: Clowning Grasshoppers

    The softbox to be precise is the EZYBOX speed-lite 22x22cm.

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