Equipment & Techniques

I thought you may find it interesting to see what photographic equipment I use. I will elaborate on shooting techniques and post processing work flow on a different page by spring 2021.

Cameras :
Canon 5D Mk3 (full frame sensor) which is my landscape camera and recently purchased Canon 7D Mk2 (crop sensor) with its 8 frames/second for wildlife photography. I’ve found that specialised lenses are extremely useful for example my budget Samyang 14mm f/2.8 is fine for night photography. The sharpest lens I own is the Canon EF 200mm f/2.8L II (no image stabiliser) combined with an old Canon 50D mounted on a tripod. I attach a wireless remote on the hot shoe and set the camera up on a particular branch, where a bird often lands, and  remotely operate it from 80 meters away. you can get amazing results. See my photo of a Kingfisher with a lamprey in its beak in the wildlife gallery. I have a Camcorder and GoPro Hero 4 to create interesting and fun video clips and slideshows. The kingfisher ‘PerchCam’ has been one of my highlights of wildlife videography.

Lenses :
Canon wide angle 16-35mm f/4 L is my favourite for seascapes, Canon 24-70mm f/4 L which I tend to use for woodlands, Canon 100-400mm F4.5 L for wildlife mainly. I’ve found that specialised lenses are extremely useful for example my budget Samyang 14mm f/2.8 is fine for night photography. The sharpest lens I own is the Canon EF 200mm f/2.8L II (no image stabiliser) combined with an old Canon 50D mounted on a tripod. I attach a wireless remote on the hot shoe and set the camera up on a particular branch, where a bird often lands, and remotely operate it from 80 meters away. You can get amazing results if you wait long enough. See my photo of a Kingfisher with a lamprey in its beak in the wildlife gallery.

Tripod : Manfrotto 055CX PRO3 carbon fibre with a Manfrotto ball head xpro and Manfrotto carbon fibre monopod. I do have my first small Slik tripod which I use with the remotely operated camera for bird photography.

Filters : Like most photographers I use screw-on ultra violet (UV) and Circular Polarising (CP) filters in certain conditions. My preferred rectangular slide-in system is the original Lee Foundation Kit and Neutral Density filters (ND full and graduated).

I always shoot in RAW with both my main cameras having dual slots for compact flash and SSD so I have two raw copies after a shoot. You never know when a card may corrupt just after you’ve taken the ‘shot of the month’ speaking from experience.

Image Post Processing : Adobe Bridge and Photoshop CC 2019 which is great for dealing with the Canon RAW (.CR2) files. I’m always learning the capabilities of Photoshop which is helping me become more creative. I find plug-in software can make all the difference to showcase an great image . Topaz AI is fantastic for noise reduction and sharpness particularly for single bird photographs.  Nik Color Efex Pro 4 and Nik Silver Efex Pro 2 are extremely useful. I’m learning Luminar 4 with its clever light rays, fog, and mystical settings. I don’t use sky replacement, It’s not what I saw on the shoot and will never by a photographic memory.

So, this is a brief description of how I capture what I see in all weather conditions. I’m continuously experiment with shutter speeds using ND filters to capture movement whether it’s water, clouds or swaying barley in the wind.  When I’m in the mood I’ll select and rate my favourite raw files and start editing to create a final image keeping it natural.

For more information on my camera gear and techniques I use please email me at chris@scoopsimages.co.uk  You may find something useful and interesting in my replies. I’m always pleased to talk about photography and be inspired by fellow landscape and wildlife photography enthusiasts. Please see the Contact tab for more details including links to my work on social media sites.