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Clearing snow storm

Today brought one of those rare winter storms to the San Francisco Bay Area that actually left snow standing on the 2000-2500' hills between Silicon Valley and the ocean (eg Russian Ridge Open Space Preserve). I had only 30 minutes to shoot early in the morning, but made the best of it. A 100mm or 180mm is more suited to my vision for what I want to do from this vantage point, but this shot is great fun when all the detail can be seen, and would make a nice 5' wide print. Apparently salt is still harvested across the bay. Click to see a larger size.


Clearing storm
(Canon EOS 5D-IR + Coastal Optics 60/4 APO macro, 46MP stitched image)

I had no cable release and only a diminutive Gitzo 0-series tripod with me, but I shot this 46-megapixel stitched image (8 frames) on the Canon EOS 5D-IR. Infrared often doesn’t cut through many types of atmospheric haze, but it did so reasonably well here. I’m not even sure I had the focus nailed, so I shot at f/8 and it seems pretty good; it’s a bit difficult with the 5D-IR to be sure, and freezing/windy conditions made it challenging.

There is as yet no full-frame camera with Live View at a reasonable price suitable for conversion for IR purposes (though a Nikon D3 would do very nicely!). When converted, my 5D-IR had its focus adjusted for IR; world-class lenses like the Coastal Optics 60/4 don’t need that accommodation, and thus end up front-focusing in IR (most lenses backfocus). The diglloyd Guide to Digital Infrared Photography details such lens characteristics for over 50 lenses.


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