I was looking forward to attending the Red Thunder Air Show, it has been a long time since I had been to an air show. The last air show was Wings over Wairarapa in New Zealand in 2009, at that time I had the Canon 350D with probably a Canon 18 – 55 standard kit lens. Since those days I have been taking more of an interest in photography and post-processing and spent quite a bit more money on equipment.
Shooting moving objects at speed and using a long telephoto lens has its challenges, so this necessitated a change in camera settings. I usually shoot in Aperture Priority mode (AV), but in this case, I wanted to control the shutter speed. The Canon 6D Mark II was set up as follows. Take note that I was for the morning shooting into the sun, as the day progressed the sun moved over to my left so there was a need for changing exposure settings depending on where the plane was. Rather than me trying to do this all day in Manual mode, I thought it best to let the camera sort it out.
The reason for using exposure compensation, I didn’t mind blowing out the sky a little, but I did want some color in the planes, not just a silhouette of them.
All photos are handheld.
- Shooting Mode Tv (Shutter Priority) Shutter range from 1/180 – 1/1500
- Iso set to Auto (range from 100 – 12800)
- Exposure compensation + .5 to +2
- Zone AF
- AI Servo
- Drive mode, Low-Speed Continuous.
- Sigma 150 – 600 Contemporary
- Canon 70 – 300 IS USM
The Sigma lens is a beast of a lens, heavy and bulky, but with a reach of 600mm, it could pull in small planes that are far away. The Canon lens is definitely a lot more manageable and had the advantage of a shorter zoom range which came in handy when the planes weren’t too far away.
I am pleased with the images. When comparing to my earlier Airshow photos from 2009, there is a definite improvement. This can be put down to having a better camera and lens setup and also having a better understanding of how to control the camera.
It was a good day out, and since the airshow is close to Brisbane I will most likely have another go at the next Red Thunder Air Show.