Black Turnstone feeding on the shores of Tomales Bay (video)

I went on an early morning kayak yesterday. Absolutely beautiful out there. I decided to test out the video capabilities of my new camera.

It is definitely a learning process. A kayak is not an ideal shooting platform for holding a camera steady on a subject. I am learning the best way to hold a long lens for wildlife movies, without using a tripod. (I discuss some of the overwhelming negatives of a tripod on a kayak in this post.)

I’ve gotten used to using the autofocus as a crutch. No longer. To focus during the video is a manual process that takes some getting used to. I’d forgotten what it was like when I was using my old fully manual Nikon FE film camera (haven’t used it much since I went digital). It’s actually kind of fun in a challenging sort of way.

Sound and motion. Two things that have a different meaning when taking stills. Motion is no longer implied, and sound… well you can actually hear what is going on. (in fact, you can hear me bumbling along as a narrator.

Shutter speed is counter intuitive for those of us that are long time SLR users. A slower shutterspeed can actually give you a clearer, better image with video than a higher one. Sort of. If you are shooting action images, a high shutter speed will give you a jerkier, choppier final image than a slower one. Think about it this way. If you are shooting 30 fps, but at 1/1000 of a shutter speed, you are capturing only a small percentage of the movement each frame. If you are shooting at 1/30 to 1/120, you are capturing a much larger percentage of what happened per frame, even if everything looks more blurred if you go through frame by frame.

Still figuring out the best way for uploading videos onto this site as HD, because at the moment I’ve uploaded a dumbed down faster size, which does not do the video quality of the full HD SLRs justice.

Oh, and by the way, so far I am loving this new video capability.

I will keep all of you updated as I figure out better methods for kayak videography

About Galen Leeds Photography

Nature and wildlife photographer, exploring the world on his feet and from his kayak. Among other genres, he is one of the leading kayak photographers in Northern California. To learn more about him, visit him on his website-
This entry was posted in birds, kayak photography, marine life, photography, video, wildlife photography and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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