Photography

Murmuration

Sunrise 2 copy

Murmuration is a word that’s used for the flocks of starlings which are often seen circulating the Piers on England’s South coast at this time of year. It’s a particularly famous phenomenon in Brighton, which is the South Coast’s most popular seaside town for day trips and short stays. Every even numbered year they have a major photo festival. in 2012, The Japanese photographer Rinko Kauwachi was one of several commissioned artists and se made a sweet little book linking the ebb and flow of the starlings, the tides and the day trippers who visit Brighton, for 2010’s Brighton Photo Biennial. Link to book – “Murmuration” which I was lucky enough to buy at the cover price and have signed at the launch!

Back to my own shot – I’ve always felt that there was a ‘Landscape’ quality to the wreckage of Hastings Pier but needed a long lens to get the shot – so I pulled out my big gun – the Zeiss 300mm f/4 Tele-Tessar. Interestingly this lens is noticeably more telephoto than the long end of my Tamron 70-300VC. On the quality of the lens, I know the Tele-Tessar doesn’t have the best reputation for quality but on the basis of this image I have to say I’m satisfied, I shot this at f/4 to maximise shutter speed as I had to shoot handheld. It’s plenty sharp enough all the way out to the corners, the down side is a touch of CA. The lens is not billed as an Apochromat, so there was a touch of red/green CA in shot however it wasn’t massive and is easily fixable in Photoshop or Capture One.

One last thought, the shot was taken on an Eos 1Dx at ISO 1600 which gave a lovely filmic grain and for me coming from a 1Ds MkI earlier this year (thank you new for old insurance!!) the ISO performance of the 1Dx continues to blow me away.

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