Celebrity birder?

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The Baylands Preserve in Palo Alto, California, is regarded as one of the premiere spots for avian photography on the west coast. It's a great place to take pictures of birds...

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... and to take pictures of people taking pictures of birds.

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After I took that picture, I walked over and engaged the photographer in a discussion about birds, gear, and technique. He was friendly, knowledgable, and though he was shooting upper end Canon gear, was the furthest thing imaginable from a gear snob.

That snap, drew the following comments in my pbase gallery.

This is a nice candid portrait. Did you know you captured Mr. Marcus Armani? One of the best if not the best bird flight photographers around. I dont know him but have seen his work and know of him..
Heck yeah...this is the infamouse Marcus Armani. Go and check out his website...you will be amazed.
So I visited his website, and I was.

http://www.armaniphotography.com/index.htm

I sent Marcus a note with a link to my candid of him, and received a very generous invitation to go birding and visit some of his favorite shooting sites. I'll have to think about that, as I don't have the gear for BIF photography, but I'll look forward to meeting up with him at Baylands again.
 
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Ok, first of all, I misread the title of your post (or rather misinterpreted it) and when I saw the first photo I cracked up thinking it did indeed look like a bird thinking it was a celebrity posing for the paprazi...then I saw the second photo and thought oops, read that wrong. Oh well, great pictures no matter how you read the subject line, and YES, that is one impressive website you linked!! I don't know whether to be inspired or slink off and sell my gear!! thank you for sharing the photos and the link.
 
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You meet some very nice fokes sometimes standing in mud. Very cool. Go shoot with him. We did "BIF'' shots long before VR came along. That bird is going to land somewhere.
 
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I would be most positive that someone on here could lend you some BIF equipment! I would definitely take him up on his offer!! :biggrin:
 
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........received a very generous invitation to go birding and visit some of his favorite shooting sites. I'll have to think about that, as I don't have the gear for BIF photography, but I'll look forward to meeting up with him at Baylands again.
More lenses! Only this time their focal length is exponential to their mm size. Perpare to go banktupt.

300mm f/2.8 $4500
200-400mm /f/4G $5100
600mm f/4 $8600

:Shocked: :Shocked: :Shocked: :Shocked: :Shocked: :Shocked:

:tongue:
 
Joined
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More lenses! Only this time their focal length is exponential to their mm size. Perpare to go banktupt.

300mm f/2.8 $4500
200-400mm /f/4G $5100
600mm f/4 $8600
Those are so far out of my budget that I'm not tempted in the least, Rich. The 300/4 AF-S would be a stretch for me.
 
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whats wrong with the 80-400vr for less than 1400...? excuse my ignorance since i rarely shoot wildlife

-drew
 
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whats wrong with the 80-400vr for less than 1400...? excuse my ignorance since i rarely shoot wildlife

-drew
I've seen some good work with it, but it's not regarded as a fast focuser. I think I'd rather have the new 70-300 AF-S VR for birds in flight. But the 300/4 is in different class than both, and is generally suggested as the best starting point for beginning birders.
 
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I don't know anything about Mr. Armani, but any friend of yours is a friend of ours! Now I am heading over to check out his site.
 
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whats wrong with the 80-400vr for less than 1400...? excuse my ignorance since i rarely shoot wildlife

-drew
Not at all. In order to capture wings in flight (for example) you need a fast shuter speed, but as the focal length goes up, generally speaking the aperture size (light gathering capacity) goes down (f-stop goes up). Therefore you need to have lots of glass to gather in enough light to capture birds in flight (BIF). For example, my Sigma 50-500 is fine on a bright sunny day, but in the early morning light the f/6 just can't gather enough light so most images are blurred.

Gla$$ is very expensive to make. So my previous joke about an exponential relationship isn't too far off.

Rich
 
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Glad you liked the snap, Andy. I took that shot in June of '05, and the subject was a juvenile Snowy Egret, still housed in the rookery. He was waiting for momma to deliver a hot meal.

There are dozens of mated pairs of egrets and herons nesting in those trees at this time of the year, but I haven't seen any chicks yet.

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Jan 25, 2005
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Alabama
More excellent shots Frank. Sure wish that I could shoot at places like this more often. As to the guy with the web site, OK, he has several hundred BIF shots that are better than anything that I'll ever get, so whats the big deal. :biggrin:

Just kidding of course. Obviously an awesome talent. While I'm a bit envious, it only makes me more determined to get better (probably not ever going get that good though :rolleyes:). I did bookmark his site. :tongue:
 
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Great story Frank. It is nice to hear that Marcus was a nice guy to talk to. I would definitely take him up on his offer. Rent a lens and ask him for some tips. His sight is great. I hope to have one shot that good one day. The one of the shovelers in flight with the moon in the background is amazing. What lens is he holding, the 300 2.8?
 
Joined
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Great story Frank. It is nice to hear that Marcus was a nice guy to talk to. I would definitely take him up on his offer. Rent a lens and ask him for some tips. His sight is great. I hope to have one shot that good one day. The one of the shovelers in flight with the moon in the background is amazing. What lens is he holding, the 300 2.8?
He's a Canon shooter, and I think he said the lens was a 400mm f/4 IS.
 
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