Re: [PICS] frustration of hummingbirds

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Eric Miller, Aug 27, 2008.

  1. Eric Miller

    Eric Miller Guest

    "jimkramer" <> wrote in message
    news:g8p3ab$1bn$...
    > Welcome to the frustrating world of photographing hummingbirds.
    >
    > http://www.jlkramer.net/Pictures/HB/morning.htm
    > -Jim
    >
    >


    It needn't be so frustrating. Didn't you just move to Mississippi? If you
    will put all your feeders within 10 feet of each other (and the First Nature
    one that is in your photo is inexpensive and one of the best available) you
    will, within the next two week or so, you will have too many hummingbirds to
    photograph.

    At that point set up a pancake style humminbird feeder (humzinger and Perky
    Pet Oasis are two examples of this type) supported from the bottom and place
    it about 30 feet away from the other feeders and in the shade. It will get
    regular visits and will likely only get one hummer at a time (with some
    fighting).

    Get your flash off camera and set it to a manual setting of 1/2 or full
    power. Put it at a height of about two feet above the feeder pointing at the
    feeder at a downward and horizontal angle of about 45 degrees to the line of
    sight from the camera. Use a small diffuser that does not send light in
    directions leading away from the subject, such as the Westcott Micro Apollo
    or the $5 foamcore one here:

    http://www.dyesscreek.com/hidden_pages/diffuser.html

    What you don't want is a Gary Fong Lightsphere, cut alcohol bottle, Sto-Fen
    Omni-Bounce or anything that will send your flash's light to places where
    your subject isn't. If you two flashes, put one on either side of the bird,
    again, pointing away from you and down at the bird at about a 45 degree
    angle on both axes. If you don't have two flashes, use a piece of white
    foamcore as a reflector on the opposite side of the bird.

    Your camera should be at a level approximately six inches above the feeder,
    which is the same level the bird will be most of the time that you shoot it.

    Put thumbtacks in the holes of the feeder leaving only one open and orient
    it such that you will get the side of the hummer that you want. Rotate the
    feeder to get different "poses." Cut the perches off the feeder if it has
    them and they cannot be removed any other way. After the hummingbird sips,
    it will "back up" and hover for a moment before sipping again. Shoot it
    while it is hovering in-between sips.

    Let the wings blur. They look natural that way and the trade-offs are worth
    it:

    http://www.dyesscreek.com/birds/index.php?dir=hummingbirds

    During mid-september, and especially after any big storm blows through, you
    will be able to shoot hundreds of shots in one sitting.

    Eric Miller
    www.dyesscreek.com
    Eric Miller, Aug 27, 2008
    #1
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  2. Eric Miller

    Annika1980 Guest

    Re: frustration of hummingbirds

    On Aug 27, 12:31 pm, "jimkramer" <>
    wrote:

    > I've counted well over 20 at once in air and on feeder.  


    You guys are lucky. I have 4 hummers at my place. I have 3 feeders
    surrounding my deck.

    >
    > My goal is to make Bret furious by getting set up to shoot them with the
    > MP-E 65. :)


    Good luck with that!

    If I set my camera outside on a tripod the hummers will sometimes buzz
    it so you might be able to get the shot that way with a remote cable.
    I can go out with my red shirt and red cap on and they'll buzz right
    by my ears.
    Annika1980, Aug 27, 2008
    #2
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  3. Eric Miller

    Noons Guest

    Eric Miller wrote,on my timestamp of 28/08/2008 1:37 AM:



    > Put thumbtacks in the holes of the feeder leaving only one open and orient
    > it such that you will get the side of the hummer that you want. Rotate the
    > feeder to get different "poses." Cut the perches off the feeder if it has
    > them and they cannot be removed any other way. After the hummingbird sips,
    > it will "back up" and hover for a moment before sipping again. Shoot it
    > while it is hovering in-between sips.


    and don't forget to paste in a few blossoms to replace
    that ugly feeder...

    So tell me something: how do you get blurred wings
    with two flashes? Do you slow down lightspeed as
    well? Last time I looked, the exposure time of a flash
    burst will freeze solid any moving wings.


    > Let the wings blur. They look natural that way and the trade-offs are worth
    > it:


    or just photoslop them in from another shot, blur and all.
    Bret would.
    Noons, Aug 27, 2008
    #3
  4. Eric Miller

    Paul Furman Guest

    Paul Furman, Aug 27, 2008
    #4
  5. Eric Miller

    Eric Miller Guest

    "Russell D." <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > Eric Miller wrote:
    >>
    >> directions leading away from the subject, such as the Westcott Micro
    >> Apollo
    >> or the $5 foamcore one here:
    >>
    >> http://www.dyesscreek.com/hidden_pages/diffuser.html
    >>

    >
    > (This is not about hummingbirds.) I'm wondering if I'm confused about
    > the point you are making in the link above. I actually prefer the
    > lighting in the second photo without the diffuser. Or is that the point?
    >
    > Russell
    >
    > BTW, you hummingbird photos are awesome.
    >


    OOPS! Wrong link. The diffuser link that I wanted to post is the following:

    http://www.dyesscreek.com/hummingbirds/softbox/index.html

    The one that was posted was on a different subject entirely and used the
    wrong type of diffuser for hummingbird photography.

    Eric Miller
    www.dyesscreek.com
    Eric Miller, Aug 27, 2008
    #5
  6. Eric Miller

    jimkramer Guest

    "Eric Miller" <> wrote in message
    news:0Zjtk.19035$...
    >
    > "Russell D." <> wrote in message
    > news:...
    >> Eric Miller wrote:
    >>>
    >>> directions leading away from the subject, such as the Westcott Micro
    >>> Apollo
    >>> or the $5 foamcore one here:
    >>>
    >>> http://www.dyesscreek.com/hidden_pages/diffuser.html
    >>>

    >>
    >> (This is not about hummingbirds.) I'm wondering if I'm confused about
    >> the point you are making in the link above. I actually prefer the
    >> lighting in the second photo without the diffuser. Or is that the point?
    >>
    >> Russell
    >>
    >> BTW, you hummingbird photos are awesome.
    >>

    >
    > OOPS! Wrong link. The diffuser link that I wanted to post is the
    > following:
    >
    > http://www.dyesscreek.com/hummingbirds/softbox/index.html
    >

    just not your day for links---> htm not html
    http://www.dyesscreek.com/hummingbirds/softbox/index.htm

    > The one that was posted was on a different subject entirely and used the
    > wrong type of diffuser for hummingbird photography.
    >
    > Eric Miller
    > www.dyesscreek.com
    >
    >
    >
    jimkramer, Aug 27, 2008
    #6
  7. Eric Miller

    Eric Miller Guest

    "jimkramer" <> wrote in message
    news:g93vh6$i18$...
    >
    > I put up two feeders and am now going through just over a gallon of sugar
    > water in a week. The feeders each have ten holes and I have seen as many
    > as eight on a feeder used at one time, not for long mind you. :)
    >
    >


    Soon you will have many more birds coming through and a lot of adult males
    will lead the crowd.

    > There was just a mass hatching as there are lots of juvenile males
    > (oxymoron?) . . .>



    "Truism" is the word I think you are looking for if my wife is correct.

    >
    > My goal is to make Bret furious by getting set up to shoot them with the
    > MP-E 65. :)
    >
    >


    Good luck with that. Give a 70-200 with a 1.4x teleconverter a try if you
    just want to get close. For filling the frame, my lens of choice is a 400mm
    5.6 (Canon's EF 400 5/5.6L) with an extension tube, somewhere around 35mm
    length.

    >
    > Have you tried flashing from the underside to get the gorget to flare?
    >
    >


    No. But I have tested lighting from different angles but never got around to
    posting a web page on that subject. My verdict is: illuminate from above. A
    rubythroat's gorget will light up best if illuminated from above while the
    bird is facing you. Of course, this is foiled by the bird sometimes because
    they can apparently control whether the red shows or not. After testing by
    placing the flash at different angles to the feeder and rotating the feeder
    to change the position of the birds, it dawned on me that I probably should
    have known this anyway since that is where their light comes when not being
    photographed. Anyway, this photo shows the bird with light hitting the bird
    at an approximate 45 degree downward angle and from about the same angle to
    the right and left of the line from the lens to the bird:

    http://www.dyesscreek.com/birds/index.php?display=hummingbirds/crw_6372.jpg

    >
    > Any flower recommendations?
    >


    For attracting them to the yard, the three most successful plants that I
    have are:

    Mimosa a.k.a. Silk Tree - when this blooms in spring, my hummingbird numbers
    grow significantly.

    Turk's Cap - when this blooms in late summer and fall (right now) the birds
    will ignore the feeders until they have drained this plant first.

    Coral Honeysuckle - another plant that the birds will feed from before the
    feeder.


    Eric Miller
    www.dyesscreek.com
    Eric Miller, Aug 27, 2008
    #7
  8. Eric Miller

    Annika1980 Guest

    Re: frustration of hummingbirds

    On Aug 27, 4:29 pm, Noons <> wrote:

    >
    > So tell me something: how do you get blurred wings
    > with two flashes?  Do you slow down lightspeed as
    > well? Last time I looked, the exposure time of a flash
    > burst will freeze solid any moving wings.
    >

    Not unless you have a VERY high-speed flash unit.
    Hummingbird wings beat so fast you'd need about 1/15,000 of a second
    to freeze it totally.
    Annika1980, Aug 28, 2008
    #8
  9. Eric Miller

    Noons Guest

    Re: frustration of hummingbirds

    Annika1980 wrote,on my timestamp of 28/08/2008 10:45 AM:

    >> So tell me something: how do you get blurred wings
    >> with two flashes? Do you slow down lightspeed as
    >> well? Last time I looked, the exposure time of a flash
    >> burst will freeze solid any moving wings.
    >>

    > Not unless you have a VERY high-speed flash unit.
    > Hummingbird wings beat so fast you'd need about 1/15,000 of a second
    > to freeze it totally.
    >


    Just to prove what sort of a liar you are:
    http://hypertextbook.com/facts/2000/MarkLevin.shtml

    If you take a flash to a spinning airplane propeller,
    you'll freeze the action right there. Even 1/1000 will do it.
    Hummingbirds beat their wings much, much slower than
    a spinning propeller, at around 60Hz.
    That's why they are called "humming": the noise
    from their wings is a low pitch "hum".

    Or in photo terms, around 1/60 second.
    If you used the default synch speed of your camera
    of around 1/200, the wings would be nearly frozen solid.
    So how come the hummie bodies show evidence of flash
    light reflection but the wings are blurred?
    Strange flash you have, that has a flash burst speed of
    less than 1/60. May I suggest you try to sell it
    in epay? Must be worth a fortune!

    Like I said: nothing like letting a liar like
    you talk. It shows straight away what you
    claim is nothing but crap. But everyone already
    knew that, it's only you who can't fathom how silly
    you really make yourself look.
    Noons, Aug 28, 2008
    #9
  10. Eric Miller

    Annika1980 Guest

    Re: frustration of hummingbirds

    On Aug 28, 9:08 am, Noons <> wrote:

    > Or in photo terms, around 1/60 second.
    > If you used the default synch speed of your camera
    > of around 1/200, the wings would be nearly frozen solid.
    > So how come the hummie bodies show evidence of flash
    > light reflection but the wings are blurred?


    You are an idiot.

    If a hummer beats his wings at 50 beats per second then the wings will
    make one full cycle of motion in 1/50 of a second. At a shutter speed
    of 1/200 of a second the wings will go through 1/4 of their total
    cycle of motion. In other words they'll move a couple of inches in
    the time that the shutter is open. So tell us again how 1/200 is
    going to freeze the motion? Better yet, provide us ANY examples of
    that happening without the use of high-speed flash.
    Annika1980, Aug 28, 2008
    #10
  11. Eric Miller

    jimkramer Guest

    Re: frustration of hummingbirds

    "Annika1980" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    On Aug 28, 9:08 am, Noons <> wrote:

    > Or in photo terms, around 1/60 second.
    > If you used the default synch speed of your camera
    > of around 1/200, the wings would be nearly frozen solid.
    > So how come the hummie bodies show evidence of flash
    > light reflection but the wings are blurred?


    You are an idiot.

    If a hummer beats his wings at 50 beats per second then the wings will
    make one full cycle of motion in 1/50 of a second. At a shutter speed
    of 1/200 of a second the wings will go through 1/4 of their total
    cycle of motion. In other words they'll move a couple of inches in
    the time that the shutter is open. So tell us again how 1/200 is
    going to freeze the motion? Better yet, provide us ANY examples of
    that happening without the use of high-speed flash.


    The difference between someone that is just ignorant and someone that is
    just an idiot; you can teach the ignorance away, not so with the idiotcy.
    You have clearly identified the problem; the only logical course of action
    should also be painfully apparent, lest we begin to categorize you as
    well. -Jim
    jimkramer, Aug 28, 2008
    #11
  12. Eric Miller

    Annika1980 Guest

    Re: frustration of hummingbirds

    On Aug 28, 11:11 am, "jimkramer" <>
    wrote:
    >
    > The difference between someone that is just ignorant and someone that is
    > just an idiot; you can teach the ignorance away, not so with the idiotcy.
    > You have clearly identified the problem; the only logical course of action
    > should also be painfully apparent, lest we begin to categorize you as
    > well. -Jim


    So I should ignore the idiot? Gotcha.
    Having said that, it is sometimes tough to let some of his blatant
    lies stand.
    Annika1980, Aug 28, 2008
    #12
  13. Eric Miller

    jimkramer Guest

    Re: frustration of hummingbirds

    "Annika1980" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    On Aug 28, 11:11 am, "jimkramer" <>
    wrote:
    >
    > The difference between someone that is just ignorant and someone that is
    > just an idiot; you can teach the ignorance away, not so with the idiotcy.
    > You have clearly identified the problem; the only logical course of action
    > should also be painfully apparent, lest we begin to categorize you as
    > well. -Jim


    So I should ignore the idiot? Gotcha.
    Having said that, it is sometimes tough to let some of his blatant
    lies stand.



    The only one paying him any attention is you. Again, the logical course of
    action...
    -Jim
    jimkramer, Aug 28, 2008
    #13
  14. Eric Miller

    Noons Guest

    Re: frustration of hummingbirds

    Annika1980 wrote,on my timestamp of 29/08/2008 1:00 AM:

    >
    > You are an idiot.


    You took the words off my mouth.
    Thanks for admitting it.


    >
    > If a hummer beats his wings at 50 beats per second then the wings will
    > make one full cycle of motion in 1/50 of a second.


    And that somehow is 1/15000 of a second?

    > At a shutter speed
    > of 1/200 of a second the wings will go through 1/4 of their total
    > cycle of motion.


    And that proves they move at 1/15000second how?

    > In other words they'll move a couple of inches in
    > the time that the shutter is open. So tell us again how 1/200 is
    > going to freeze the motion?


    By firing a flash at it that has a 1/1000th of a second
    exposure duration, dickhead?

    > Better yet, provide us ANY examples of
    > that happening without the use of high-speed flash.


    of WHAT happening, dickhead?
    Noons, Aug 29, 2008
    #14
  15. Eric Miller

    Noons Guest

    Re: frustration of hummingbirds

    jimkramer wrote,on my timestamp of 29/08/2008 1:11 AM:


    >
    > The difference between someone that is just ignorant and someone that is
    > just an idiot; you can teach the ignorance away, not so with the idiotcy.
    > You have clearly identified the problem; the only logical course of action
    > should also be painfully apparent, lest we begin to categorize you as
    > well. -Jim
    >
    >


    "Hummingbird wings beat so fast you'd need about 1/15,000 of a second
    to freeze it totally. "

    the words of YOUR idiot. not mine.
    Noons, Aug 29, 2008
    #15
  16. Eric Miller

    Noons Guest

    Re: frustration of hummingbirds

    Annika1980 wrote,on my timestamp of 29/08/2008 1:31 AM:


    > Having said that, it is sometimes tough to let some of his blatant
    > lies stand.
    >


    "Hummingbird wings beat so fast you'd need about 1/15,000 of a second
    to freeze it totally. "

    nothing like letting your lies stand on their own.
    Noons, Aug 29, 2008
    #16
  17. Eric Miller

    Annika1980 Guest

    Re: frustration of hummingbirds

    On Aug 29, 5:55 am, Noons <> wrote:
    >  So tell us again how 1/200 is
    > > going to freeze the motion?

    >
    > By firing a flash at it that has a 1/1000th of a second
    > exposure duration, dickhead?


    We have learned at least two things so far in this thread.
    You are mathematically challenged and you can't keep up.

    Let me try to school your dumb ass once more.
    Eric Miller explains it much better on his website:
    http://www.dyesscreek.com/miscellaneous_pages/howto_1.html

    Eric writes:
    "Let me explain the math. The wings on a ruby throated hummingbird
    beat at approximately 50-60 beats per second. With a wingspan that
    varies between birds from 3-4 inches or so, that means that the
    wingtips travel from front to back about 6-8 inches, more or less.
    This means that the wings travel between 300 and 500 inches per
    second. So a 1/1000 second shutter speed will catch a wing movement of
    about 1/2 inch or so, i.e., a complete blur. Of course, the 1/2 inch
    distance is not always true because the wings don't actually move at a
    constant speed. Instead, they move through one beat, stop (or slow
    down greatly) and then move in the opposite direction, but you get the
    idea. In order to see detail in the wings you would need a faster
    shutter speed than you will find on most any good SLR. Catching the
    wing near either end of a beat will help a lot too."

    Hope that helps.

    >
    >  > Better yet, provide us ANY examples of that happening without the use of high-speed flash.
    >
    > of WHAT happening, dickhead?


    Damn, try to keep up. EXAMPLES OF FREEZING A HUMMERS WINGS WITHOUT
    USING HIGH-SPEED FLASH, dickhead.
    By "high-speed flash" I am of course talking about a flash duration
    much shorter than the usual 1/1000 second.
    Annika1980, Aug 29, 2008
    #17
  18. Eric Miller

    Scott W Guest

    Re: frustration of hummingbirds

    On Aug 28, 3:08 am, Noons <> wrote:
    > Annika1980 wrote,on my timestamp of 28/08/2008 10:45 AM:
    >
    > >> So tell me something: how do you get blurred wings
    > >> with two flashes?  Do you slow down lightspeed as
    > >> well? Last time I looked, the exposure time of a flash
    > >> burst will freeze solid any moving wings.

    >
    > > Not unless you have a VERY high-speed flash unit.
    > > Hummingbird wings beat so fast you'd need about 1/15,000 of a second
    > > to freeze it totally.

    >
    > Just to prove what sort of a liar you are:http://hypertextbook.com/facts/2000/MarkLevin.shtml
    >
    > If you take a flash to a spinning airplane propeller,
    > you'll freeze the action right there. Even 1/1000 will do it.
    > Hummingbirds beat their wings much, much slower than
    > a spinning propeller, at around 60Hz.
    > That's why they are called "humming": the noise
    > from their wings is a low pitch "hum".


    You believe a spinning propeller is going much faster then 3600 RPM?

    Scott
    Scott W, Aug 29, 2008
    #18
  19. Eric Miller

    Noons Guest

    Re: frustration of hummingbirds

    Scott W wrote,on my timestamp of 30/08/2008 12:29 AM:


    > You believe a spinning propeller is going much faster then 3600 RPM?


    No. And that is much faster than the wings of
    ANY bird, including stuffed ones.
    Exactly what was your point?
    Noons, Aug 29, 2008
    #19
  20. Eric Miller

    Noons Guest

    Re: frustration of hummingbirds

    Annika1980 wrote,on my timestamp of 30/08/2008 12:13 AM:

    > We have learned at least two things so far in this thread.


    You don't have a clue what the short exposure of
    a flash does to a wing beat and you are a complete liar.
    Yes, we know that.

    > Eric Miller explains it much better on his website:
    > http://www.dyesscreek.com/miscellaneous_pages/howto_1.html


    <yaaaaaaaaaaaaawn, this is gonna be fun!>

    > Eric writes:
    > second. So a 1/1000 second shutter speed will catch a wing movement of
    > about 1/2 inch or so, i.e., a complete blur. Of course, the 1/2 inch
    > distance is not always true because the wings don't actually move at a
    > constant speed.



    I wish he'd make up his mind: is it a "complete blur"
    or is it 1/2 inch distance blur or is it a full stroke
    blur like in your shots? One wonders...


    > Instead, they move through one beat, stop (or slow
    > down greatly) and then move in the opposite direction, but you get the
    > idea.


    Yeah, I get the idea your shots have fake wings:
    they show a full stroke of blur with a flash burst
    on the body.


    > In order to see detail in the wings you would need a faster
    > shutter speed than you will find on most any good SLR. Catching the
    > wing near either end of a beat will help a lot too."



    Fantastic! Thanks for proving my point.
    So, when you use a short flash burst, you get wings
    that look blurred? Like: in YOUR obviously FAKE
    shots?



    > Damn, try to keep up. EXAMPLES OF FREEZING A HUMMERS WINGS WITHOUT
    > USING HIGH-SPEED FLASH, dickhead.


    Cripes, Bret: are you making a special effort
    to show yourself as a complete idiot?

    Get this very simply, dickhead:
    you CANNOT have a flash-frozen body of a bird
    and at the same time blurred wings, like you do
    in your fakes!

    Got it, you blithering moron? What you just
    provided in this stupidly moronic post of yours
    is complete proof of what *I* said since the start.

    Of course: being the complete idiotic arse you really
    are, instead of READING my original post you charged along
    in some confused understanding of yours.

    > By "high-speed flash" I am of course talking about a flash duration
    > much shorter than the usual 1/1000 second.


    Yes, like what you get when a flash cuts out:
    as short as 1/15000. Plenty short to "freeze"
    ANY bird's wings.

    So, HOW COME YOUR SHOTS WITH SUCH A FLASH SHOW
    A COMPLETE, FULL STROKE BLURRED WING BEAT AND
    A "FLASH-FROZEN" BODY AT THE SAME TIME?

    Got it now, diddums?

    Hey, knock yourself out: it's only your reputation
    completely in tatters yet again, you stupid moron!
    Noons, Aug 29, 2008
    #20
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