I was feeling a little bit rough today, but come the afternoon I needed to get out and breath some fresh air. I decided that I would get overly bundled up and head back out to the park for another bird session. Last night I did some reading online on techniques for bird photography and found out that often people will use a flash. Being wildlife photography and outdoors, I wouldn’t have thought that a flash would be useful at all, but decided I would give it a try. I knew I wasn’t going to try for anything in flight or motion, and figured what would be the harm. Turns out, it helps. What I like is that is gives a little highlight detail into the body of the bird, but it really brings out the eye.
I took a series of shots and played with some camera setting a little. One thing that I have set up recently was camera presets that I can just flick to and shoot, but I had not tried them out yet. I decided that I would give it a go today and they worked for the most part. A few tweaks to make still, but it is getting there. With these presets I set my maximum ISO values and then set the camera to Auto ISO. This allowed for some changes in lighting, and less mucking about with the controls, but by setting the max value you know that your shots are not going to end up a pile of grain. I have three presets that are set to max ISO 400, 800 and 1600. My hope is to never use the 1600.
I used my Canon 7D Mark 1 with a Sigma 80-400mm F4-5.6 lens, shooting at 1/250, F11, with an ISO setting of 250. It was an sunny day when the shot was taken and I used a flash on 1/64th power.