WNPP Episode #34 2021 A Retrospective and 2022 What’s in Store

As is tradition on my blog, every year I do a “What’s in Store” post for the new year as well as reflect back, and wrap up the year that was. 2021 was quite frankly a disastrous year for just about everyone and when I look back at the calamitous results of the COVID pandemic I can categorically say I am very glad to see the back of 2021. Historically, I have always done this as a written blog post, but because of the extended length, I have decided to move my Wrap post to the Podcast format. You can access the podcast through your favorite podcast player or download the episode directly HERE.

2021 was a year that included just one travel destination, that was Finland for my Wolves and Wolverines workshop (Read the Trip Report). The rest of the year was more or less spent in various stages of COVID lockdown.

In equipment terms, 2021 represented my first serious foray into mirrorless cameras with the purchase of the Canon EOS R3. I did previously own a Canon EOS R, but sold it recently as I was just never using it. I have already published several podcasts on the EOS R3 as well as developing specific noise pre-sets (available HERE) and will have more to say about it early next year after I use it in Iceland and Finland. I also purchased the Canon 14-35mm f4L IS R Mount and the 70-200mm f2.8L IS R Mount as well as a 1.4 R Mount Teleconverter. I will continue to run both my EF 400mm and EF 600mm lenses with the EF to RF adapter.

My gear pick for the 2021 year (I always choose something I actually own) is not surprisingly the Canon EOS R3. With its animal eye Auto Focus the R3 quite simply offers the best autofocus of any camera I have ever tested.

Lastly and certainly not least, I want to wish all of you a very safe and happy New Year, and may 2022 be pandemic-free and one of amazing light and experiences for all of you. See you in the New Year!

Last Minute Availability Arctic Fox Expedition 2022

It would appear the COVID pandemic is not yet done wreaking havoc on the travel industry and as a result of the rapidly spreading Omicron variant I now have two last-minute places available on my February 2022 Arctic Fox expedition. Full details of the expedition are available on my website at http://www.jholko.com/workshops. If you would like to photograph Arctic Fox in the north of Iceland in Winter this February please drop me an email to register your interest.

Merry Christmas and Seasons Greetings 2021

I wanted to take a moment to wish all of you who may have traveled and photographed with me either past, present, or future, who follow my blog and photography, or even just stumbled across my work somewhere, a very happy and safe Christmas and festive season. It has been a tumultuous year that many of us will be very glad to see the back of! I wish you good health and happiness and all the very best for the festive season and New Year. Roll on 2022 and may it be pandemic-free! (or as close to as possible!)

WNPP Episode #33 Canon EOS R3 High Speed 30 FPS Issue Solved

I have just published Episode #33 of my Wild Nature Photography Podcast. This podcast details a fix for the issue I discussed in Podcast #32 of the Canon EOS R3 not being able to shoot continuously for more than about 6 seconds when in High Speed + (30 FPS) mode. My sincere thanks to my very good friend Dave in the states for finding this solution and sharing it with me.

In brief, out of the box, the Canon EOS R3 can only shoot around five to six seconds on High Speed + mode before it stops for a second, starts again then stutters. The problem would appear on the surface to be a buffer issue, but extensive testing has shown that the cards we have been using (1400 mb/s+) are more than fast enough to write 30 FPS at 24 MPX. This leaves the processor as the brick wall and it was my conclusion that the processor was not capable of writing out the files at 30 FPS for more than about six seconds before it could no longer keep up. As it turns out, this is NOT the case. By setting the camera’s shutter button to AE lock, instead of ‘Start Metering’ the camera can shoot 30 FPS unlimited in High Speed + mode.

In summary, if you set up your Canon EOS R3 for back button focus and have the back button focus also ‘start metering’ and set the shutter release to ‘AE lock’ the camera will shoot 30 FPS unlimited in High Speed + mode. With this setup, the processor no longer has to worry about metering between frames and this is the difference between the camera stalling, and continually shooting without stopping. This is an absolutely ideal solution as there is zero need to meter individually between frames when shooting at 30 FPS. In fact, it’s advantageous not to be metering between frames if you are shooting in Manual.

With this issue resolved the EOS R3 now powers ahead as the best wildlife camera Canon has ever produced. Its auto-focus is absolutely incredible and with its No. 1 rating by DXO for the Best Low Light performer in a still frame camera, it really is just about the perfect Wildlife camera. I am very much looking forward to finally testing the cold weather performance of the R3 in winter in Finland in February.