Saturday, April 10, 2010

Eye of the Tiger

"April is the cruelest month;
I will show you fear in a handful of dust."
-T.S. Eliot

Who knew that T.S. Eliot was an ice-off musky fly fisherman? Certainly not I, but how else can this quotation realistically be explained?

Thick plates of ice render stillwater useless to lint flickers, yet we know what lurks beneath in the darkness...

Wicked souls.

With the retreat of hard water, hope springs forth in a cruel form. Lines can now be cast through the crisp Spring air, but in cold water musky often adopt the personality traits of couch potatoes. Languishing in the aquatic equivalent of Barcaloungers, the demon torpedoes mimic the average man during the NFL playoffs: Consuming only that which is placed within effortless reach.

Slim chances aside, those who are consumed by the freshwater Jabberwocky go forth and give chase. Today, teeth gnashed.

Eye of the Tiger

Snaggletooth

Sage Xi3/Nautilus NV on the Prowl

Finz

Musky Mugshot

Once Bitten

12 comments:

  1. Brett, Nice musky mugs! What kind of glass are you using on these shots?

    And, congrats on the MidCurrent #deux. Mighty deserving I'd say.

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  2. Thanks Scott! These were taken using a Nikon 35mm f/2 and Tokina 100mm macro. Both are gems.

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  3. Brett, if you don't mind, I'm going to pick your brain a bit more. I've found my macros of fish with my dSLR at such a big aperture are frequently out of focus, and my point-n-shoot comes up with the shot better. I'm using auto focus with center metering on the dSLR, and the same with the p&s. How do you manage--do you use auto focus, or manual? If auto, what kind of metering do you use?

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  4. I may be able to venture a guess...

    Macros, especially non-high-end macros can often seem a bit soft when wide open, even when the focus is spot on.

    Leave your focus on auto, preferably continuous focus mode, and set your camera for multiple frame mode (when you hold the shutter it keeps going). Frame your shot, and blast away for a sec... odds are, one will come out pretty sharp, and if it is still a little fuzzy around the edges, may I suggest a unsharp mask and a little high pass filterage...

    But then again, I am usually just guessing anyways. :)

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  5. Oh, and I forgot to say sweet pics!

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  6. I definitely don't mind a good brain pick Scott. The comments Alex left are very good. If I feel like I'm on unsteady footing, I use the technique he describes along with matrix metering. Light permitting, all of my hand-held macros are shot at f/16 or smaller. DoF is already miniscule at these distances, so select an aperture that allows you to shoot between 1/250 and 1/500. Most of the time I focus macro lenses manually. This allows me to depress the shutter button to the verge of release, and trigger the image precisely when I see the sharp focus I want.

    Alex - thanks for the props man. Fun to chase the toothy stuff.

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  7. Great set of images.I have some eyes arriving soon that would rival that muskies.Someday I'll get to fish for musky....some day!

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  8. Simon: Baie dankie. I am very jealous of those fly wallets by the way. Hook a brother up! :)

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  9. They are 15 euros each...$20 I'll make an order for a couple if you want them. Just email here at balticpiketours@leisurepath.fi

    Where you learn the mother tongue? or are you a saffa in disguise?

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  10. Ek praat 'n bietjie Afrikaans... My brother lived in Joberg for a number of years and I picked up just enough to get myself into trouble. I'll drop you an e-mail!

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  11. Alex & Brett - thanks for the info! I'll definitely step down that aperture based on the light. I'm usually by myself, so I have two problems (well, I have many problems, but...): 1) how close the fish is and 2) manually focusing with one hand. I usually go with the bigger aperture because it gives me the faster speed which helps with the squirming fish (and I like bokeh). I have a feeling the fish moves out of focus with that big aperture.

    Thanks again guys!

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