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Old 04-23-2019, 10:31 PM   #1
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Question Photography especially while boating

I'm a bit of a photographer, have been all my life, an amateur. I won't go into how many "systems" I've had over the years and seen the revolution in technique and gear changing the photo world. Needless to say, drone photography is especially popular amongst cruisers who want those unique aerial views. My current system are Fuji and Canon, with multiple lenses and cameras of each.

So I'm curious how others approach photography when boating. Is stabilization an issue when under way. Great haunts you love to shoot, great animals you like to pictorially capture?

I suspect there are a number of us in this community. What's your experience?
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Old 04-23-2019, 11:42 PM   #2
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Hi there!

I’m dipping my toes into the digital pond in a fairly serious way these days.

I picked up a Fujifilm X-E1 for a family snapshot camera after they first came out because of its basic, simple controls and because the viewfinder showed what the aperture and shutter dials do to the image in real time. No chimping “to see if it came out”.

When the X-T2 came out I nabbed one of those. What a relief to have the ISO, aperture, and shutter dials all on the camera! Brilliant! Just like ‘real’ cameras had back in the olden days!!

I find the image stabilization works pretty good on the boat, but still have to use the lens focal length/slowest safest handheld shutter speed rule if the water is lumpy.

Have plans on using the X-T2 pretty much like I used to use a 4X5, that is to say, on a tripod and stitching several frames together to generate large enough files. Really enjoy the hand held animal stuff as well, but at the bottom of the learning curve on that stuff.

Learning Lightroom, peeked into Photoshop, plan on forging into a luminosity panel such as Lumenzia, still haven’t plugged in the Epson P800, temped by platinum/palladium or photogravure, but the Piezography system may win out.

How has your past influenced what you’re doing now, and what’s your goal/dream?
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Old 04-24-2019, 03:33 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rsn48 View Post
I'm a bit of a photographer, have been all my life, an amateur. I won't go into how many "systems" I've had over the years and seen the revolution in technique and gear changing the photo world. Needless to say, drone photography is especially popular amongst cruisers who want those unique aerial views. My current system are Fuji and Canon, with multiple lenses and cameras of each.

So I'm curious how others approach photography when boating. Is stabilization an issue when under way. Great haunts you love to shoot, great animals you like to pictorially capture?

I suspect there are a number of us in this community. What's your experience?
I recently completed the Great Loop. My photos (hundreds) were taken with a Nikon D800. I used only a 28mm-200mm lens. I do have a 50mm prime lens aboard but never used it. Being much lighter, the 50mm might have been useful when walking around on shore.

Stabilization is not an issue. You will be cruising in daylight. Assuming you will be cruising at trawler speeds, you can just select a faster shutter speed. This will also yield less depth of field but most of the pictures you will take will be at ranges that will be long enough such that DOF won't matter. One problem that I did encounter was "autofocus". Sometimes, such as when trying for a shot of a flying eagle, the autofocus would not function quickly enough.
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Old 04-24-2019, 06:53 AM   #4
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Been into boating (and adjunct) photography for twenty years.

Because my family are all back in Ireland and the UK I bought a domain and built an HTML web site in the early 2000s so that I could share. People often asked me how I managed to get such a great address and the answer is - I got it early before individuals really got going grabbing domains.

AtAnchor.com | The Voyages Of Sonas And Her Crew.

Since retiring I have built a full WordPress site using the same domain which has become quite popular. PassageMaker chose one of my pics as a Top Photo of 2018 recently!

Current equipment is a D7200 with a 18-300 (3.5-5.6), a 35 (1:18) and a 10-24 wide angle. All Nikon.

The camera, with the 18-300, is always by my helm when underway.

I also have a Fuji underwater camera which is great for snorkeling, a little Nikon pocket camera for when I don't want to lug the rather heavy D7200 around, and a Phantom Advanced 3 drone. Enough to get me in trouble!

I know that I am only using a fraction of the capabilities of the D7200, one if these lazy days I might actually read some of the two inch thick manual and play a little more!
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Old 04-24-2019, 07:07 AM   #5
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I am an amateur photographer with no formal training and only basic equipment.

I spend a lot of time in the water with a waterproof Nikon AW100. It works great and has taken some of my best shots and video.

We also have 3 GoPros for under water. These are attached to our wrists with Velcro straps . I have also attached them to my head with a ball cap strap. Lastly, I like to connect these to various parts of the boat for above water video shots and time lapses.

For editing I previously used GoPro Studio, then switched to the free basic version of IMovie which I really like a couple years ago. I will likely upgrade to the better version one of these days. Editing is done on a MAC.

Personally, I have found stab is not needed and I can get what I need with this equipment.

Drone is a Mavic Pro. Lost a Mavic Air in the water last year.

Future goal is a small under water Drone. The price points have come down a lot.

When I retire, photography and editing is a subject I would like to pursue more and possibly take some classes at a local community college.
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Old 04-24-2019, 08:22 AM   #6
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I enjoy wildlife and nature photography. I was into photography in high school. Rolled my own film canisters from 100 foot bulk rolls, developed photos in the bathroom and so on. Digital is much better. I bought one of the early Kodak one meg (640x480) cameras in 2000 and that was it.

I always bring along a bunch of equipment. The weather usually determines how much it gets used. I rarely take photos underway or from the boat, though. On shore and in the dinghy mostly.

I use Canon because that's what I started with and once I bought a few lenses I just kept going. I shoot RAW and use Lightroom on a Mac for everything.

I have a little photography website at https://rustylewisphoto.com

Drones are fun! I have an older DJI drone. Technology has moved on, though. Cameras are much better now. I'd like to get a new DJI Mavic Pro with the Hasselblad lens.

Here is a little video I did a few years ago when I first got it. Even has a Marvel ending for those who suffer through to the very end. https://youtu.be/8RgoL1dv9RU
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Old 04-24-2019, 09:14 AM   #7
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This is my rig below...

The Berlebach tripod (with self levelling base) I picked up a few years ago because the 15 pound (6.8Kg) Zone VI tripod for the 4X5 was starting to get too heavy to carry all day in the bush, but it works quite well with the X-T2 and 100-400 lens. The tripod head (Induro PHQ1) just came in about a week ago and like it a bunch so far.

Waiting for an L bracket and nodal slide(s) to begin experimenting with stitching together several frames for panoramas or to stitch several frames to add up to the same aspect ratio as 4X5, like my avatar. (Not much of a fan of the longer frame native to digital, especially in vertical, and would prefer to stitch than crop a single frame).

I've been 'blinders on' for photography since high school, and would tell people I intended to earn my living as an artist, using photography...ahhh youth! Someone told me I should look up Edward Weston and Ansel Adams, which I did, and got my 4X5 when I was 20.

I did go to art school, and was accepted using 4X5 B&W contact prints as the entrance portfolio. They told me my compositions were good, but my printing needed work. I took the same portfolio to the photography instructor who told me my compositions were weak, but that my printing was good. I had chosen the right program

Later, I took a one year college photography course but essentially was on self directed studies and only did a couple of the class assignments. I walked out with my first one man show printed and matted and managed to get a B.

Life threw some tangents my way, and I wasn't willing to go as far as Edward Weston for my art, where potentially starving the family was always lurking around the corner.

We already have the local museum booked for my wife and I to put on a show (she specializes in wildlife and macro) one month after I retire in 2020, which is really putting a flame under my arse to decide how to print my stuff.

My wife calls me her long term, high risk investment.

So much to do...so little time!
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Old 04-24-2019, 09:46 AM   #8
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Fuji Xpro 2, favorite lens is 16mm. DJI Mavic pro. Not the best photographer, but I try.
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Old 04-24-2019, 10:23 AM   #9
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I enjoy wildlife and nature photography. I was into photography in high school. Rolled my own film canisters from 100 foot bulk rolls, developed photos in the bathroom and so on. Digital is much better. I bought one of the early Kodak one meg (640x480) cameras in 2000 and that was it.

I always bring along a bunch of equipment. The weather usually determines how much it gets used. I rarely take photos underway or from the boat, though. On shore and in the dinghy mostly.

I use Canon because that's what I started with and once I bought a few lenses I just kept going. I shoot RAW and use Lightroom on a Mac for everything.

I have a little photography website at https://rustylewisphoto.com

Drones are fun! I have an older DJI drone. Technology has moved on, though. Cameras are much better now. I'd like to get a new DJI Mavic Pro with the Hasselblad lens.

Here is a little video I did a few years ago when I first got it. Even has a Marvel ending for those who suffer through to the very end. https://youtu.be/8RgoL1dv9RU

Rusty, thanks for the local video. Princess cove is one of my favourite and most visited anchorages. My home is on the Saltspring shore in the background of some of your shots. You also sent me a shot of a cruise-by in the Rescue boat a couple of years ago. As a result of this thread, I will be looking seriously at getting more into my own photography, neglected these past few years.
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Old 04-24-2019, 12:45 PM   #10
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I in the midst of refit so phone calls and visits to my boat (an hour away in Comox from Qualicum Beach) making the multitude of decisions redoing just about everything except for the hull, even some of it is getting worked on, and top side, and it too is getting worked on. This is my way to say I'd like to respond to some of your comments but it will have to wait a day or two.

So I thought I'd tell my short photo story. My first camera bought in Victoria BC in 1974 while in Navy Officer Fleet School was a Konica T3, built like a tank, didn't need a battery to work but had the old mercury batteries no long available for assistance when metering. It was shutter priority only and was what the sales clerk handed me when I asked for an idiot proof SLR.

Fast forward to my first Canon which was the 10s, the second level down from the top in its inception. What was unique with this camera was a bar code reader that could read bar codes then input them into a camera. So for example, if I want to shoot water fountains with the water droplets stopping in mid-air, I found that page in the book, read the bar code, inserted the code into the camera, then shot. It worked.

Then the first Digital Rebel DSLR from Canon, the first DSLR below a thousand dollars, then onto a Tsi Rebel, then a full frame Mark 4 and then into the Fuji system. I am big into Street Photography so I have the X100f view finder that I love. I also got the T1 even though the T2 was out as for my needs I knew the T1 would be capable of taking excellent photos. It became my hobby to find only used lens for the T1 and I literally saved thousands going this route. I got the T1 as I have an electric bike that I will be using pedaling around the country side shooting rural images and I wanted a camera that didn't cost an arm and a leg should I fall with the bike. I didn't want to damage my Mk 4 camera and more expensive lenses.

Everything I bought used, including the camera, all look brand new, thankfully most amateurs don't use their gear that much.

Fortunately I'm in an area with lots of wildlife, eagles, whales, sea lions, harbour seals, ducks of all manner, the occasional cougar (Vancouver Island has the highest concentration of cougar - mountain lions - in the world).

I edited this in, for those in the Victoria BC area soon, go to the Imax theatre located at the museum across the street from the Empress Hotel and see The Great Bear Rainforest move - 41 minutes long, you'll quite like it.

And here is a trailer from it: [Go to Youtube and full screen this trailer]

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Old 04-26-2019, 10:06 AM   #11
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I personally love taking videos. They say photos speak 1000 words but videos speak 1000 photos. My children are making me lean toward sharing it on social media so stay tuned on that
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Old 04-28-2019, 09:57 PM   #12
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Boating and Photograhy

Concur with RSN48’s feeling about boating and photography going together. I got back into boating about the six years ago and did the same with photography. Both activities require skill, learning and an esthetic appreciation of the places we cruise and the beauty of boats. Six years ago started thinking about what life be like after an intense 40 year career. Both seem to be a part of the next phase.

On my boat I keep a Nikon D5500 with a Tamron 18-300mm lens. The lens is image stabilized. While this configuration is limited comparted to the equipment used in my other photography, its virtue rests in light weight and it can do a good job in capturing images in 95% of the circumstances I run into boating. I also keep a polarizing filter on the camera all the time. Works wonders with sky and water images. Years ago used a high end Canon point and shoot, but ran into some limits with that approach.

Most of my other photography is done with a Nikon D810 and various macro lens and light boxes. Most of those images are flower related. This equipment is not very practical when boating.

When boating my images are “marine scenes” or somewhat abstracted marine images. This is a relatively new area for me. I’ve tried to do wildlife images, but I just plain old suck when it comes to wildlife. Have much to learn. I have a website, www.angelomuzzin that includes some of the recent marine scenes, in black and white.

There is a lot to be said about boating and photography inspiring each other.

Cheers,
Angelo
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Old 04-28-2019, 11:17 PM   #13
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Angelo, check out the Sigma 150 - 600 contemporary lens. Cheap for what you get and it gets good reviews. Its been around now for a bit, but still a deal:

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Old 05-03-2019, 01:23 PM   #14
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I used to be a pro photographer and now I am retired. I do the odd article for the magazines, you can see some at coast2coastmedia.co.uk - I'mm not very good at updating the website. I also use my boats a lot.

I have Nikon D750 with the 28 - 300 D750 that I keep at the helm so I can photograph things as they happen. Usually, set to ISO 200 or 400 f8 (best aperture for the lens) and set to aperture priority. I always shoot on RAW on one card (the one I use) and high res JPEG on the other (my insurance).

Once off the boat I have (like many others) the Fuji X system with a variety of bodies. I have a variety of zoom lenses that I can select depending on what I am planning to do. The most useful is the 18 - 135. My next purchase will be the XPro3.

lately, I have ventured into street photography - when I have time I'll put some on my website. This has a great many advantages. I use an XE2 with the 28 mm lens and a wrist loop. Brilliant! Most importantly, I can carry it around easily and be unobtrusive. Settings f8 ISO 800

The most important thing is to stand still, feet apart, big breath in, swallow (trick of pearl divers) take the pic, then take it again several time then breathe out. With digital you can set the camera to take bursts and it doesn't cost you anything.

Once you start looking at them delete is the name of the game. You will be lucky to get one or two great pics a shoot. Don't store them all. Don't forget keywords (especially places) and set cameras to UTC so you don't have to worry about time zones and camera settings when reviewing them.

Above all else enjoy the memories they'll bring

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Old 05-03-2019, 03:34 PM   #15
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Like many others here, I am an amateur photographer and videographer, and have had so many different cameras, platforms, and devices that I am sure I could have bought at least a really nice small boat, if not a flotilla of dinghies from the money I spent....

I used to carry around a bag of DSLRs and a second and potentially third bag of lenses and other things.

Two years ago I found the world of bridge cameras which I originally had some mixed feelings about. Now, they are my go-to for all photography both on the boat and off.

I have used the Sony RX10 III and IV and absolutely love the concept. 24-600mm integrated lens, good enough for wide angle stuff inside a boat, and catching eagles on distant shores, image stabilization, and amazing 4K video to boot. It is water resistant, is built like a tank, and takes amazing pictures. I highly recommend looking into bridge cameras for the boat - they are great to grab when going ashore or on dinghy rides, give you phenomenal range and picture quality, yet do not require anywhere near as much gear.

I've used Lightroom for years, and 3 years ago paired it with Perfectly Clear to do post-processing which saves me hours when doing final edits before they go on the site or wherever.

I have also flown drones since you had to build them by hand, and currently have a couple from DJI. They are a fantastic tool on the boat, giving you a birds eye view of anchorages and beautiful places. I took mine to Princess Louisa Inlet last year and got some amazing shots. Post processing photos in Lightroom and Perfectly Clear are great here, but I flip to Adobe Premiere Pro to deal with the video, which is far more time consuming than the photos.

I also have an OpenROV Trident underwater ROV that I have been using the last year or so, and am loving that platform even more than the drone, as it is silent and gives you a view to a whole new world.
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Old 05-03-2019, 06:01 PM   #16
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I do some photography on our boat.
I have a Garmin VIRB XE that is mounted on our bridge and I had a USB port put there as well, so battery is not brought into play.
When we start out I start the camera, before we leave, and let it run until after we are docked. 144GB from last year. I also have a Nikon for stills.
Great to be able to look back on our travels.
Seeing the Lift Loch and Big Chute again is 'priceless'.
I am thinking of a Drone, just don't know where to start.
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Old 05-04-2019, 07:54 AM   #17
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I sometimes say I'm in the boat business because it affords me ample opportunity to travel around the world and take photos. My first camera was a Honeywell Pentax, hand me down from a brother who bought it used. I took it to sea aboard RV Westward, a 120 foot schooner for a semester at sea program, and that was the beginning of a beautiful relationship between me and SLRs, every one of which (perhaps 25 in 35 years) since then has been a Nikon.

Boats and photography do go hand in hand, the opportunities are endless. I encourage my clients who aren't into photography to take it up, as being aboard will give them so many opportunities to develop this interest. I also tell them that while any camera is better than no camera, cell phones really aren't cameras, invest in a real camera and you won't regret it. The attached was taken a few days ago, you can't do this with a cell phone, this tunnel was pitch black. Having said that, the bird in hand photo was taken with my phone because that's all I had with me.

Because I have to fly with my gear, I try to keep it small enough to fit into a Lewepro ProRunner rolling camera bag (it doesn't look like a camera bag, which is good), which is also a back pack. I love these bags, but I do wear them out, they last me about two years and I keep a new spare on hand at all times. I'm now on my way home from a 2 week trip to China and Taiwan, during which I did a three day side trip to the mountains of Taiwan. The kit I carry is as follows, all Nikon, bodies, D700 with 17-35 f2.8, D800 with 79-200 f2.8, D7200 with 18-200 f5.6 (this body and lens is almost strictly for boat yard work), AW 130 underwater point and shoot (I love this little camera, virtually unbreakable, great pocket camera and great when you want someone to take a photo of you. I also use a 2x Teleconverter that when paired with the 70-200 doubles the focal length, with a sacrifice of only one f stop, very good for wildlife photography with no noticeable degradation in sharpness. When packed the bag weighs 38 pounds. I also use two cross shoulder straps, so I can carry both bodies at the same time and they can never slip off my shoulder, among the best camera investments I've ever made. I shoot exclusively on aperture priority, so I can always control depth of field. My schedule does't allow for a great allow for a great deal of post processing so these days I shoot JPEG, if I had more time I'd shoot RAW.

Photography is a wonderful pursuit, it's changed me forever, every day I look a scenes and can't help but compose images, it's both a blessing and a curse, you are always looking for the perfect image, and the opportunities while afloat are endless.

For those who are interested, I have some galleries on my website https://stevedmarineconsulting.com/photo-gallery/
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Old 05-04-2019, 10:09 AM   #18
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I used to be a pro photographer and now I am retired...

Once off the boat I have (like many others) the Fuji X system...

The most useful is the 18 - 135....
You must have done very well. Not many photographers can afford a boat!

I'm waiting for the 16-80mm WR lens which should be coming out this summer or fall. Foresee it being on my camera over 90% of the time, with the 100-400 used to stay a "comfortable distance" from Grizzlies and to pull in distant scenes.

My wife is about to pull the trigger on an X-T3, which suits her because she takes more wildlife photos than I do. She's looking forward to her instruction manual going from Nikon novel to Fujifilm large pamphlet size

I'm keeping the X-T2...at least until the next revolutionary advancement in sensor technology makes a switch obvious...
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Old 05-04-2019, 03:50 PM   #19
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My wife is about to pull the trigger on an X-T3, which suits her because she takes more wildlife photos than I do. She's looking forward to her instruction manual going from Nikon novel to Fujifilm large pamphlet size
We are now a 2 Fujifilm X camera family

Her camera bag weight will drop by at least one half
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Old 05-04-2019, 09:54 PM   #20
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When it comes to photography I consider myself an enthusiastic amateur, which means I like to take photos but am not really sure what I'm doing. I have a Nikon D7000, which I upgraded to from my D80 only because of its better low light performance and level indicator. I guess the low light performance is better, but the huge benefit for me, and the reason I'm posting, is that the level indicator is a huge benefit for marine photography. Many of my previous shots were ruined by having the water level somewhat akilter; the level indicator makes my phenomenally mediocre shots less phenomenally mediocre.
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