Thursday, July 11, 2013

Nonchalant Deer at Grand Bay

Over the weekend I was hiking a little bit at Grand Bay. Every so often I'll see a deer there, but only briefly before getting spooked and running away. This time though, I was able to watch and photograph a yearling for the better part of an hour as he nonchalantly ate some leaves barely 20 feet from the boardwalk.

I had nothing but my 4x5 camera, but luckily brought my 300mm f/9 Nikkor-M. But f/9 is pretty slow and it was getting dark as the sun was setting. I was persistent though and nailed two shots of him! I was pretty lucky, as I more or less guessed where to focus as he was constantly on the move:

The second shot was even better, and luckier. He was very close, and not staying still at all. But then another hiker showed up with a dog, which he reacted to and stood stock-still long enough for me to shoot this:

I shot both of these wide-open on the 300mm. Even that wasn't really fast enough, but instead of attempting a 1/8 of a second exposure, I just shot it at 1/30. I then developed it in Acufine, stock, for 4:30 at 70F. This developer gave me a bit of a speed boost - just enough to get really nice shadow detail at an effective ISO of 800. Normally for T-Max 400 I rate it at about 200 for development in Pyrocat HD. But it worked out, and I also now know how to get some extreme speed from my TMY if I need it!

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