Bugling Bull Elk

Discussion in 'Len's Nature Photos' started by Len Backus, Sep 28, 2008.

  1. Len Backus

    Len Backus Administrator Staff Member

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    [​IMG]

    I spent 3 days in Rocky Mountain National Park. Weather was pleasant and shooting conditions were perfect. There were 2 main meadow areas that were predictably good. I shot for a few hours in the morning and late afternoon. The first 2 and last 2 hours of light are the best for pictures. The light intensity is much softer and the color is best then.

    This guy was one of the better performers for the camera, although there were plenty of participants, some larger.

    This was fairly early. With the brighter light later I would have been able to have a bigger F stop number for even greater depth of focus. This was shot at F8 which isn't bad since the animal's plane is parallel to my camera.

    Things to notice in this photo are the activity inferred by the position of the legs and the bugling; clean background; soft light; contrasting background.

    There are more photos up on my site, URL below.

    Nikon D2X
    600mm 4.0
    ISO 400
    1/500, F8
     
  2. lovdasnow

    lovdasnow Well-Known Member

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    great shot, very nice to see some more of your work. I looked through your site and you have quite a few good shots of those elk.

    were they worried about you being there, or were you pretty hidden?

    random question? what do you use to clean your sensor? I took my 40d on a antelope hunt and shot a lot during 3 days of scouting, but it was DUSTY!!! and now need to do more than just use the built in sensor cleaner.

    thanks
     

  3. Len Backus

    Len Backus Administrator Staff Member

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    Thanks, no need to hide at all. I use a product called Dust Aid.
     
  4. lovdasnow

    lovdasnow Well-Known Member

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    thanks I'll get dust aid ordered.
    I like how you gave some room for the elk to walk in your picture...


    kind of wish i was there with my bow.

    thanks again
     
  5. MT4XFore

    MT4XFore Well-Known Member

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    Great Pics, Len. I did that one fall down at Mammoth Hot Springs in Yellowstone, I got a lot of the "mature" type pics. Kinda felt bad about it later. It is so cool to watch them go about their procreative process. And the "music" that accompanies it is wonderful. Thanks.
    Jim
     
  6. lovdasnow

    lovdasnow Well-Known Member

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    just wanted to update, i got the dust aid. the wet solution kinds, and it works great. very easy to use. thanks for the recommendation.
     
  7. bigg_sexy1

    bigg_sexy1 Well-Known Member

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    Great pic Len... sort of looks like my bull right before I touched off.
     
  8. winmag

    winmag Well-Known Member

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    Even with the mud caked on, he's still ''blonde''. Nice highlight with the field,it blends well. Ive always been a sucker for a ''blonde''. I have a question tho, were you facing south or west if this is an evening shot? No glare, so im asuming south, if its an evening shot. The lack of shadow in the pic is cool with all the grass. What little shadow I can see, on his neck and back, just reminded me of a bull facing west,and bugling in the comming sunset. Its a peacfull pic, with bright color and action wich I view as rare, and pretty dang cool.
    Just wondered. You stated earlier a couple hrs before sunset or couple after sunrise. Just wanted to see if my guess (evening)was right or not. Neat pic either way.
     
  9. Len Backus

    Len Backus Administrator Staff Member

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    I guess this was AM. And thanks, I may go back there his year if I don't go to Yellowstone.
     
  10. Chas1

    Chas1 Well-Known Member

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    Well taken picture Len. Thanks for sharing.
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2010
  11. LR3

    LR3 Well-Known Member

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    Great picture Len and also my favorite light and angle. Sometimes when there is a little more shadow over the legs I ll use a flash to fill in the shadow and set at -1EV. Also gives a nice soft highlight in the eye. I use alot of flash also for filling shadows in the face for portraits of animals but the problem with the current generation of Nikons (digital) apart from the D40 is that they synch at slower speed which can be a problem for a 500mm or 600mm especially if digital APS and not full frame. The newer stabilization lenses do help from that point of view.

    Keep the great picturs coming!

    Lovadasnow - I ve damaged some sensors with vigorous cleaning so if you get a lot of dust, I find it better to send the camera in to Nikon and get it cleaned by them. They also will often update the software. Rull of thumb is to minimize changing lenses and then your camera can survive severe dust abuse.
     
  12. BeanCounter

    BeanCounter New Member

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    Just checking in...

    I'm bored at work. Just dropping in to say hi and introduce myself.
     
  13. BeanCounter

    BeanCounter New Member

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    Just checking in...

    Thanks for the warm welcome, guys! ;)