First day out with the Tamron SP 150-600mm VC G2 lens

Yesterday was my first spin out with Tamron USA’s updated G2 version of the acclaimed 150-600mm super telephoto lens.  Though I purchased the optional Tap-in Console for lens updating and fine tuning, I did not have time to initialize the device yet.  Hence, I unboxed the new birding lens, mounted it on my compact yet powerful Canon SL2 digital rebel, and took a drive to a nearby nature area, Great Swamp NWR.

Interestingly, I do not recall photographing a Gull of any sort before at the Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge in the past.  I have been doing bird photography there for years… go figure.  Anyhow this handsome Ring-billed Gull was photographed from my car yesterday.  I shut off the engine to take the shot (too many vibrations and who needs the extra CO2 emissions anyhow).  In the caption for the photograph I have included specific camera settings.

Tamron SP 150-600mm VC G2 Birding Photography

Ring-billed Gull photographed with the Tamron SP 150-600mm VC G2 super telephoto lens + Canon SL2. 600mm, 1/640 f/6.3 ISO 200. Great Swamp NWR in New Jersey.

Below is a 100% crop from the above image.

Tamron 150-600 G2 sample image detail

100% crop of Ring-billed Gull Photograph. Tamron SP 150-600mm VC G2 + Canon SL2

Here is a Flickr link to view the full sized original 24 megapixel image of the Ring-billed Gull.

I find the results to be very good for keeping the aperture wide-open at F/6.3.  I find that most lenses get sharper when stopped down a couple of stops.  We might even see a bit more fine detail if I had taken this Gull image at F/8.0 versus F/6.3.  Below is a look at the G2 lens, I shot this in my home studio.

Bird Photography DSLR Lens

Tamron SP 150-600mm VC G2 Super Telephoto Lens which replaces my trusty G1 version which I have happily toted around for a few years.

 

Any questions or comments on the article?  Leave them on WordPress or email me at dave@daveblinder.com

 

 

 

Interested in spoiling yourself with this new lens?

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Tamron SP 150-600mm F/5-6.3 Di VC USD G2 for Canon Digital SLR Cameras

Tamron SP 150-600mm F/5-6.3 Di VC USD G2 for Nikon Digital SLR Cameras

Canon EOS Rebel SL2 Digital SLR Camera Body – WiFi Enabled

5th Annual New Jersey Highlands Juried Art Exhibit

I have the great privilege of being among the finalists for the 5th Annual New Jersey Highlands Juried Art and Photography Exhibit at the Morris Museum

Museum Entrance

New Jersey Highlands Coalition Juried Art & Photography Exhibit Morris Museum Morristown, New Jersey January 11, 2018 Photo by Dave Blinder

My finalist entry within the exhibit is titled “Summer at Kincaid Woods”.  Taken in Summer 2017, I was hiking back towards my car when I found myself bathed in warm late day light as I passed over wetlands and through woodlands.

I hoped to best capture the mood of that moment.  My limited edition (1 of 25) piece is matted and framed to 16″x24″ on archival quality paper and materials.

Dave Blinder picture

Kincaid Woods in Summer by Dave Blinder New Jersey Highlands Coalition Juried Art & Photography Exhibit Morris Museum Morristown, New Jersey January 11, 2018 Photo by Dave Landry

Opening reception took place the night of January 11th 2018.  The artwork remains on display at the museum in Morristown until February 18th.  Please let me know if you visited and would like to provide feedback on your experience.

Museum Attendees

Crowd View New Jersey Highlands Coalition Juried Art & Photography Exhibit Morris Museum Morristown, New Jersey January 11, 2018 Photo by Dave Blinder

I would especially like to thank my friends Jim, Geoff, Len, Pauline, Ellen, and Douglas for coming out in support. Great mingling with the other artists and outstanding organizing by Morris Museum Staff and the Highlands Coalition.

NJ Highlands Coalition Directors

Elliott Ruga and Julia Somers New Jersey Highlands Coalition Juried Art & Photography Exhibit Morris Museum Morristown, New Jersey January 11, 2018 Photo by Dave Blinder

Dave Landry picture

David Landry Photographer, Denville Resident, POWWW Boardmember New Jersey Highlands Coalition Juried Art & Photography Exhibit Morris Museum Morristown, New Jersey January 11, 2018 Photo by Dave Blinder

NJ Highlands Painting

New Jersey Highlands Coalition Juried Art & Photography Exhibit Morris Museum Morristown, New Jersey January 11, 2018 Photo by Dave Blinder

Morris Museum Visitors

Crowd View New Jersey Highlands Coalition Juried Art & Photography Exhibit Morris Museum Morristown, New Jersey January 11, 2018 Photo by Dave Blinder

Morris Museum Exhibit

New Jersey Highlands Coalition Juried Art & Photography ExhibitMorris Museum Morristown, New JerseyJanuary 11, 2018 Photo by Dave Blinder

Morris Museum in Morristown NJ

New Jersey Highlands Coalition Juried Art & Photography Exhibit Morris Museum Morristown, New Jersey January 11, 2018 Photo by Dave Blinder

 

Morris Museum visitors information:

Morris Museum
6 Normandy Heights Road
Morristown, NJ 07960
PHONE: (973) 971-3700
EMAIL: info@morrismuseum.org

Museum Hours:
Tuesday through Saturday, 11:00am to 5:00pm
Sunday, 12:00pm to 5:00pm
The Museum is Pay as You Wish on the second and third Thursday of each month from 4:00pm to 8:00pm.

 

If you have any questions or feedback on my article or artwork please contact me at dave@daveblinder.com

Winter Hiking at Former Greystone Psychiatric Park / Central Park of Morris

I felt ambitious in today’s 8°F temperatures and took a short drive in search of winter birds and outdoors adventure.  After some internal debate, I settled on the Central Park of Morris County vicinity as I thought the diversity of trees and grounds might yield cold weather wildlife sightings.

Central Park of Morris

Upland meadow in Winter.  Former Greystone Pyschiatric Park now incorporated into Central Park of Morris and falling under the jurisdiction of Morris County Park Commission. 1/6/2018 photo by Dave Blinder.

The last time I visited this area, the final remnants of the Kirkbride building of the former Greystone Psychiatric Park was still being cleared away.  No public access had been possible due to safety precautions.  Ironically I had been subdued by local police for illegal “urban decay exploration” a couple of years back, which I find humorous because all of my time is spent photographing and studying solely nature.  This incident is story for another time.

Greystone Psychiatric Park nature walk photo

Meadow and Wetlands in Winter.  Former Greystone Pyschiatric Park now incorporated into Central Park of Morris and falling under the jurisdiction of Morris County Park Commission. 1/6/2018 photo by Dave Blinder.

As you can see from my mobile photographs, the former “No Trespassing” and “Keep Out” signage has been removed from the Kirkbride grounds as well as most adjacent lands.  I did observe newly posted signs by the Morris County Park Commission alerting hunters that hunting is by explicit permit only.

Pileated Woodpecker damage hole picture

Pileated Woodpecker cavities.  Former Greystone Pyschiatric Park now incorporated into Central Park of Morris and falling under the jurisdiction of Morris County Park Commission. 1/6/2018 photo by Dave Blinder.

I only encountered a few species of wildlife on my walk which is fine with me.  Pursuing wildlife is mostly just a vehicle I drive to get me outdoors.  Today’s sightings included: Red-tailed Hawk, Dark-eyed Junco, Song Sparrow, Gray Squirrel, White-tailed Deer (big bucks).  I also saw a good deal of Red Fox and Cotton-tailed Rabbit tracks dotting the frozen landscapes.

New Jersey hiking nature picture

Uphill meadow in Winter.  Former Greystone Pyschiatric Park now incorporated into Central Park of Morris and falling under the jurisdiction of Morris County Park Commission. 1/6/2018 photo by Dave Blinder.

The former Greystone grounds could use some help combatting invasive plants such as Multiflora Rose and Barberry.  However, the wildlife habitat still looked very good to me with mature trees including Pines, Cedar, Spruce, Oaks, and other trees which I have to study up on.  Conifers in particular are of high value in our area as they make for great shelter for various hawks and owls.  Fox and deer also find good shelter and bedding at the bases of some Conifers.

In my home area, central Morris County, we do not have much acreage of intact forest due to housing developments and extensive highways.  Hence, we should conserve each remaining stand of trees and acreage of meadow to provide homes for our native New Jersey wildlife.

X-country skiing NJ

Cross-country Ski Trail in Winter. Former Greystone Pyschiatric Park now incorporated into Central Park of Morris and falling under the jurisdiction of Morris County Park Commission. 1/6/2018 photo by Dave Blinder.

After doing a bit of internet research, I found this 2017 press release by the Morris County Government. 

“The (Morris County) Freeholders, in June 2016, subsequently approved a long-term management and use agreement with the state to manage the additional 126 Greystone acres for passive recreational, conservation, historic preservation or farmland use by the Park Commission…..”

“Under terms of the management and use agreement, the state would deliver the property to the county in suitable condition for passive public outdoor recreation, such as walking, hiking, picnicking, nature watching, or for conservation purposes. The county could add active recreation uses in the future.”

Active recreation most often means organized sports or playgrounds.  Ballfields and playgrounds mean the removal of wildlife habitat and potentially degrading nearby natural lands by way of herbicides, pesticides, and erosion.  For those of us who find great value, beauty, and of course the diverse health benefits of natural area it is important that we express our opinions to our voted representatives.

Local governments have tough shoes to fill as they must balance the needs of large populations.  However, in the most respectful way possible, nature lovers should “remain voices for the voiceless” and speak up for our trees, waterways, wildlife, and health concerns.  It can never hurt to send your local elected officials an email on topics of concern.  I plan on forwarding this article to both the park commission and freeholders to congratulate them on the public opening of this land and to speak of the high value of wildlife habitat conservation.  Don’t be shy, speak up.

New Jersey wetlands picture

Watnong Brook in Winter. Former Greystone Psychiatric Park now incorporated into Central Park of Morris and falling under the jurisdiction of Morris County Park Commission. 1/6/2018 photo by Dave Blinder.

If you would like to stretch your legs and walk these peaceful trails you use Google Maps to navigate to the nearest parking area.

 

For any comments or questions on the photographs or concepts in my article please contact dave@daveblinder.com