December 24th, 2017

Testing the new equipment

Only just starting to understand the new camera body. Using my old manual lenses I have only just started to hone in the capabilities. Unfortunately there are many more settings yet to be used, and they must have a purpose. Most, still to be discovered. Today was a huge breakthrough though in the level of sharpness and clarity throughout. Enough to capture a drop of water rolling off a swans nose, and starting to capture birds in flight is a huge step forward. It was also noticibly cooler beside the lake, instead of in the surrounding bushland today.

Picture Gallery

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Vintage Fishing Boats - Wyong River

These old long boats are still used today by the fishermen in Wyong. Today most of the fishermen in the region now live in million dollar properties beside the river and have alternate jobs working in town. However, these boats played an important role in the Riverlands around Wyong and Tuggerah Lake. Most of the boats are built using the carvel method that was popularised in the 1960's. Most of the boats have since been refurbished and coated with fiberglass at various stages in their life, to help with durability. Outboard motors have also been fitted in place of the old inboard motors too. These days the number of boats has been reduced to about six, having been replaced by modern craft. However these long boats are very specialized to the region and remain the preferable choice because the boats were built by master craftsman of the time who knew the lake and its conditions well. Even with that in mind, commercial fishing is a declining trade because of the number of fish being imported to the region. They are if anything; a reminder of the rapid change affecting the region.

Extreamly Rare - Great Knot - Calidris tenuirostris


Today the low wind conditions made it perfect to get out and about with the new Canon EOS 7d - I also added a 400mm prime lens to test it out, with great results. Little to my knowledge a tiny bird came into view right at the end of my walk. A Great Knot as they are known. These have never been previously sighted by anyone I known on Tuggerah Lake, so it caused a bit of a stir when I presented the pictures to some friends in the area.

These birds are known internationally as a symbol of harmony between nature and society. However these are known to have caused shellfood shortages in Korea. Foraging about the mud and shorelines in general, they will eat relatively anything from the sea; including worms. They do have a preferance for bivalve molluscs and shellfood though. Seen here rummaging though the banks of thin seaweed with its long bill suited for the job, it was a very special encounter. These birds are listed on the federally endangered list and are considered extremely rare. In most states of Australia, these birds are listed as vulnerable, or critically endangered.

Tuggerah Lake - Mavic Test Flight

Today I decided to set up the Mavic Pro and test out its features. Useing an iPhone 7+. I was eventually able to connect to the drove via wifi to fly it. Because for some odd reason; getting a live preview of the footage from the RC is impossible. So it was up to the phone to save the day. I also learned that taking still shots of the footage in editing is just not the same as the live snapshot feature. Overall I rate the final product in 4k a 5/5. However the problems with setting up the drone with the RC and previewing the live footage are a major dilemma still unresolved. These issues are a substandard experience; 2/5 at best, as on all the commercials advertising the drone, it was possible to fly the drone from the RC and preview the footage at the same time. As I take more photographs than footage, it looks like I will be flying from the wifi mode until a solution is found.