Category Archives: Using Your Gear

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ISO Insurance

I know what you’re thinking, “What the heck – is Steve trying to peddle some kind of ‘photo insurance’ now”?

Not so much, but I didn’t really know how else to describe what I’m about to explain 🙂

So, let’s dive in – what do I mean by ISO Insurance?

Probably the easiest way to explain it is to grab a crayon and draw an analogy.

You know how when …

Also posted in Techniques, Wildlife Tagged , |
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What’s In My Bag? Costa Rica Edition

Here it is! I’ve had a TON of requests over the years for a “What’s in my bag” video. The trouble is, what’s in my bag varies by location. So, I decided to start with the wildlife kit I use when I’m in Costa Rica. However, this is also a really great “general purpose” wildlife kit as well.

For this video, we’ll discuss not only what’s in the bag, but …

Also posted in Nikon Gear, Travel Tips
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Finding Your Subject With A Long Lens

One of the most common problems I observe while in the field – and during my workshops – is when someone can’t find the subject in their viewfinder while using a telephoto lens. Nothing’s quite as cringeworthy as watching a photographer flail around with their glass in a desperate attempt to capture an image before the opportunity disappears (oh, and it usually does). 

Of course, it doesn’t have to be …

Also posted in Techniques, Wildlife
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How To Back Up Nikon Camera Settings

Stuff happens.

You send your camera in for repair and it comes back reset to factory defaults. You mess around in the menus, things get out of hand, and you can’t get back to the way things were. You get a second identical body and want a quick way to get your settings from one camera to another.

Well, if you’re using a mid-range or pro-level Nikon body (sorry, this …

Also posted in Nikon Gear
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The “False Positive” Autofocus Trap

Have you ever faced a low light or low contrast subject and discovered that, despite the viewfinder showing a confirmed AF lock, the camera actually missed critical focus?

If you answered yes, then you’re certainly not alone. You fell victim to the “false positive” AF lock – and it can be a heart breaker.

When I run across that scenario myself, I use the technique outlined in the video below …

Also posted in Techniques, Wildlife
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All About Teleconverters (TCs)

This time around I thought we’d take an in-depth look at teleconverters. Not just what they do – but how they work, how to get the best results, how they affect AF speed and accuracy, the best way to use them and more. Even if you think you know all about teleconverters, there’s probably something new for you in this video.

Plus, as a bonus, towards the end I even …

Also posted in Nikon Gear, Techniques, Wildlife
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The Secret To Sharp Eyes & Better Compositions

Psst…Wanna know the secret to getting consistently sharp eyeballs and better compositions with your wildlife photos? Use your AF points in conjunction with your composition.

One photographic faux pas I see regularly – even from more experienced pixel pushers – is improper AF positioning technique.

What the heck am I talking about? I think this discussion is best illustrated with an example using the regrettable photo below. I think we’ve …

Also posted in Techniques, Wildlife
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7 Quick Tips For Wildlife Photographers

This probably won’t come as a surprise to anyone who knows me, but as it turns out, I tend to have a lot of “random” little thoughts creep into my mind when I’m out doing wildlife photography. Some of these are actually pretty handy, others are just bizarre, and some are simply not appropriate material for an article (but they are freakin’ hilarious).

Let’s talk about the handy ones for …

Also posted in Opinions, Techniques, Wildlife
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Avoid Overexposure With Blinkies

Think you know blinkies? Well, not so fast!

In this video, we’re going to take a look at “Blinkies,” – technically called your Overexposure Highlight Warning or Highlight Alert. No matter what you call ’em though – this video will show you just what they are and how to use them.

During our in-depth look at blinkies, we’ll cover the basics, how they work, why you might like them better …

Also posted in Nikon Gear, Techniques
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Game Changer – Shootin’ Eye Level

OK, I’ll admit it, this is a weird post for me. The thing is, I realize I’m covering a topic that pretty much every photographer already knows:

If you want better wildlife photos, get to eye level or even lower.

In fact, getting eye-to-eye with my subject(s) is something I’ve been doing for a couple of decades now and is one of three techniques I would classify as having a …

Also posted in Opinions, Techniques, Wildlife