Barbel Angler

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PostPosted: 28/06/12 09:51 
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In response to a request about self take photos, here's what works for me.

Equipment required: A camera with a timer setting and a bankstick adaptor.

There's an adaptor from Gardner Tackle.....
http://www.gardnertackle.co.uk/products/miscellaneous/camera-adaptor/

......and another from Wychwood:-
http://www.wychwood-carp.co.uk/productinfo.aspx?catref=X0708

To take the photo, here's what you have to do:-

Firstly, leave the fish to rest in the landing net (in the water), while you set up.

Screw the camera and adaptor into a bankstick and face it to where you want the photo taken. Set up your unhooking mat. Switch your camera to self timer mode (usually a 10-15 second delay). Take a practice photo, pretending to hold a fish (even though you may look a complete plank).

When you're happy with the setup, get the fish and gently lay it on the unhooking mat until it settles. Hit the shutter button on the camera, lift up the fish, gazing into the camera lens with a LazyLuke type grin until the shutter fires (and if it's dark get blinded by the flash). When done, take another, just in case you've blinked or the fish decided to have a wriggle.

Put fish back in the landing net, while you check your photo. If it's OK you can release the fish. When you get back home upload your photo to Barbel Angler for everyone to see. thumbsup

Simples........

Roy

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PostPosted: 28/06/12 11:33 
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paul whiteing - admin
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Thanks Roy, BUT ................ and bear in mind I'm a complete numpty with a camera in my hand :o

I have camera, I have a Gardener multi-angle adaptor (cr#p Gardener site doesn't work, so your link no good), I have bankstick, ok so far :)

To take a photo you depress the button "half way" and it focuses? So if you select timer and press the button, how does it focus?

paul4

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PostPosted: 28/06/12 13:44 
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Paul,

I noticed that link didn't work, but at least you can see what the adaptor looks like. :)

Try googling "gardner tackle camera mount". There's a few places that have links that do work such as ebay

Regarding taking the photo and depressing the button half way to see it focus. This is a feature that's not on all cameras. My Canon DSLR has that feature but if I depress the shutter fully without doing the half way bit, it still auto focuses before taking the shot.

Therefore, if you set it up and take a photo without your good self in the shot, the camera will auto focus on whatever is behind such as a tree, bushes, fields, sky etc etc. When you stand in the posing/holding big fish position, it will focus on you. Most digital cameras in auto mode will sort out the correct aperture and shutter speed and fire the flash if necessary.

Hope this helps thumbsup

Roy

PS: There's also a few sites with self take fishing advice. Some go into real great depth.

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PostPosted: 28/06/12 14:11 
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I agree Paul....it is nowhere near as simple as that....otherwise we could all do it....even simple folk like me :lol I too have the Gardner adapter, the camera and the bank stick....but like you, I am a numpty with a camera, especially in the dark, which is when the majority of my fish choose to be silly.

My old Canon G6 has a swivel screen, so in theory it should be simple...sadly not so. For a start, the screen is tiny, so you would need bionic eyes like superman to see what is what in detail, and at night...forget it, you are looking at a black screen :rolleyes

I have read detailed accounts of how to do it....bank sticks in the ground goal post style, with a line where your knee should be between them, all set a measured distance from the camera on the bank stick/tripod. The focus etc. is then fine, and with you and the fish between the sticks, you should be in frame nicely, because you have spent a lot of time setting it up and making sure of that.

Absolutely lovely then, Alfred Hitchcock could not have done better. Only problem is....you can't have the fish hanging around while you take half an hour to set all this up, whether it is in the net 'resting' or not....and it is NOT easy to do in the dark. Which means you have to do it all beforehand. So...when you are roving....you are going to do that in each swim? In the dark? when it's raining? Carry all that extra gear? Noooooo :b

OK, I know, some folk DO manage perfectly acceptable self takes...but they are also probably the techy types who know how to set their DVD/hard drive recorder so it records the things you want...on time...and not two hours of 'Watch with mother' instead of the footy....some folk are clever like that :lol Then again, I see the other efforts as well, the headless men and partial fish, all in glorious 'soft focus' and bright oranges...the ones I would be too ashamed to publish personally...and I will give you two guesses as to which type I would come up with.

And THAT is why I, and most anglers, give up when there are no mates to hand.... and put the fish back :lol :lol

Cheers, Dave.

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PostPosted: 28/06/12 19:08 
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Hi guys i ve kind of got the hang of self takes but they dont all come out great . My wife got me a camera with a screen on the front aswell ! this makes things a bit easier but the timer is only 10 seconds which some times is nt quite enough . I just use a single bankstick with a camera adaptor so only take a few seconds to sort out .

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PostPosted: 28/06/12 20:03 
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Is this how you do it Roy thumbsup


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PostPosted: 28/06/12 20:53 
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paul whiteing - admin
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Don't feel bad Dave, Biggun is good at it too :)

Image


This was my last attempt, I think I forgot something :swim

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paul4

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PostPosted: 28/06/12 21:35 
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:lol :lol :lol :lol :lol :lol :lol :lol :lol :lol :lol :swim

Roy

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PostPosted: 28/06/12 21:39 
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Shane Page wrote:
Hi guys i ve kind of got the hang of self takes but they dont all come out great . My wife got me a camera with a screen on the front aswell ! this makes things a bit easier but the timer is only 10 seconds which some times is nt quite enough . I just use a single bankstick with a camera adaptor so only take a few seconds to sort out .


Hi Shane,

Can you see yourself clearly in the screen on your camera when doing a self take, good enough to make sure heads and tails and everything are in shot?

Have you been able to do it successfully at night, in the dark, on your own? If so, what camera do you have, and where do you keep it :lol

Cheers, Dave.

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PostPosted: 28/06/12 21:44 
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I spent a huge amount of time trying to learn how to take decent self takes, without much luck!

In the end I did a 6 week course on how to use a basic SLR as I really wanted a good pic as I was spending so much time going after some decent fish, here and abroad.

I was gutted when I first caught a decent barbel and had to take a picture of it on the matt.

Thankfully it all came together one rainy night when I had my new PB. It's not the best shot in the world but it was 2am and chucking it down:

Image

Here's my approach anyhow that works for me now. I first get the fish landed (!) and don't take it out of the water to unhook it, just leave it resting facing upstream to recover - no harm leaving it in the net while you get everything set up for 10 mins.

I use a Digital SLR, put it on a gorilla pod so you can wiggle it about and get it level, and then will then put that on top of my chair or rucksack to bring the level up better so you are not shooting upwards.

I use a remote pump release valve thing (like the drs blood pressure pump) on a long air line that I then kneel on to release the shutter and fire off shots. Self timers are too hairy and you feel rushed. You don't want to be putting the fish down and leaving it to go off back to the camera for another self timed shot.

So that you don't get the glare of the white barbel belly over exposed at night a good tip is to have a spare headtorch/torch shine on to the fish so the camera can focus and adjust its settings appropriately.

Position the unhooking matt and run off some test shots to make sure when you get the fish out to unhook and shoot it's all ready to go and a quick operation. I position the valve release where my knee will be.

Set the camera to rapid fire and you can run off 50 shots instantly, just one needs to be ok, and the fish goes back as quickly as if you had someone with you taking the shots.

Good advice on the course was to also try and think about what's going to be in the frame of the shot - so basically get landing nets out of the way, make sure the frame of your chair isn't in shot and get a nice solid green background, rather than shooting with the river behind you, as you'll stand out better.

Hope that might help!

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PostPosted: 28/06/12 23:01 
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Hi Simon,

Just running your post through my mind, and firing thoughts out on the run, as it were :b I take it that when you have the camera on the pod, aimed in roughly the right general direction, you then have something positioned where you will be when holding the fish, something which allows you to aim the camera at pretty well exactly the right spot, otherwise you may end up with shots of your knee, the top of your head, or whatever. Surely that can't be easy at night?

Mind you, having said that, I see from your sample picture that you compose your shots in a different way to myself, which obviously makes the problem above easier to deal with. I was bought up on roll film cameras, whereby the picture you took was basically what you got, because they were not post-shot adjustable, unlike digital pictures. I aim to get much closer, so that the subject fills the frame. I was taught that the fishes head and tail should be near the side margins, and the anglers head near the top. However, it dawned on me looking at your shot that I am being too fussy in that respect....it can be centralised, zoomed in etc. later, with modern cameras. Gosh, I'm answering my own questions here as I go along...I must be learning already :lol

I assume that your camera, like Roy's, must set the focus and do any other required settings automatically when you press the bulb....even at night? (No doubt you would need a light pointing at the subject to aid that at night?) I am not sure mine does that when I have it set for remote shooting (IR remote control gismo)....but I need to find that out. I have started to get twitchy at my lack of ability in these things, so I need to learn more. I am also prepared to spend a few pounds if a new camera is required....not TOO sure how much pain I can bear when I get caught....but it may be worth it in the end, if that's what it takes :lol

50 shots in one continuous high speed machine gun rattle? Does your camera have the power available to give you that many flashes for night shots as well :eek Hmmm, I really do need to learn more, gulp.

Cheers, Dave.

Last edited by David Gauntlett on 28/06/12 23:06, edited 1 time in total.


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PostPosted: 29/06/12 06:16 
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Hi Dave

When it's all set up prior to getting the fish out I take a few dummy shots to make sure I and the fish will be in frame.

And in terms of framing it, I prefer to make sure I and the fish are going to defintely be in then you can crop it down afterwards. The shot above could be cropped further to fill the frame better, better safe than sorry for me from experience!

At night I do rely on auto settings, but sometimes have to manual focus, trial and error before getting the fish out to make sure it's in focus if the camera auto focus is having difficulty owing to rain or mist etc at night like it was in the shot above. Wearing a head torch and a having another pointing back at me from cameras side helps.

re the flash, I was exaggerating a bit sorry! My camera is an absolute basic dslr but you can still set it to fire as quickly as the flash allows, which isn't machine gun but still pretty quick to allow a few poses and funny faces, which comes quite naturally to me so i need few to look human

Im no expert at all, the shot above could be a lot sharper for example, but I spose it's just the method I use so that if you're on your own at night and catch a good one it's not a comedy of errors running back and forth to the camera taking shots of your arse with a barbel slung over your shoulder :eek

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PostPosted: 29/06/12 06:29 
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paul whiteing - admin
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Ah ha, I see something here that might make the difference - digital SLR.

I have several digital cameras - none of which makes me into a photographer - but I won't take a "decent" camera to the riverbank. Size, weight, value (from the point of view of dropping it in the water or mud), too many knobs, can't read the settings thingies.

So maybe that's my problem? I have a simple (old) 2MP compact with no bells and whistles.

By having said that I've never ever seen someone taking a picture of a fish with a digital SLR, likely a better camera than mine, but not an SLR.

But it dawns on me, like Dave (well what he said, not that HE dawns on me), that with a fairly large megapixelly camera one can take the shot from further away and almost guarantee to get yourself and the fish somewhere in the frame and fiddle and diddle it later - that is as long as the flash is good enough, which probably brings me back to using a simple (old) compact.

paul4

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PostPosted: 29/06/12 10:20 
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paul4barbus wrote:

But it dawns on me, like Dave (well what he said, not that HE dawns on me)

paul4


:eek Me.....dawning on you :eek

Paul, that has conjured up pictures that will probably give me nightmares for some time to come :o

:lol

Cheers, Dave.

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PostPosted: 29/06/12 13:17 
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I must say I bought the cheapest dslr you can get really, nikon d3000, not too big and not too heavy either. Think it was £279.

As you mention fishing isn't really made for expensive photgraphic gear!

It's been out to lake bin el ouidane in morocco with me a few times now and the dust gets everywhere, but you can take some nice shots with the flexibility/creativity a dslr gives you:

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PostPosted: 30/06/12 20:01 
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paul whiteing - admin
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Those are stunning photos.

But as I've said, put a decent camera in teh hands of a numpty like me (I have a Nikon SLR, a Pentax SLR, a Fuji DSLR-type, a Lumix compact amongst my collection) and I can't get a decent photo with any.

Funny that I mentioned dropping a camera, therefore not wanting a good camera for fishing. I've never dropped a camera, but yesterday I was about to show someone a fish on mine, and the bl##dy thing flipped out of my hands and landed 3 feet in front, in the dried mud :rolleyes

paul4

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PostPosted: 30/06/12 21:18 
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a bit late getting back to you david but the screen on the front is nt the best ,but it does give you a good idea that your in the frame at least .

and to be fair its not a top of the range model either , still it does what i need it to do ! just how far do we need to go .

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PostPosted: 01/07/12 16:32 
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paul4barbus wrote:
Those are stunning photos.

But as I've said, put a decent camera in teh hands of a numpty like me (I have a Nikon SLR, a Pentax SLR, a Fuji DSLR-type, a Lumix compact amongst my collection) and I can't get a decent photo with any.


I'm sure you could Paul, I'd never really taken more than about 20 photos in my life before I decided I wanted some sort of record of fish I'd caught.

I'd recommend doing a weekend or evening course. Really enjoyed mine.

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PostPosted: 02/07/12 10:14 
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A good discussion going on here chaps. Lots of opinions and some aprehension from a couple of you considering you are not "techy" enough to do self-take photos. Also, there's comments about the quality of cameras and the number of megapixels.

Here’s how I see it.

Firstly, the most important consideration must be the welfare of the fish. I don't see a problem leaving the fish in the net, facing upstream to recover while you set up. Once prepared you can fire off a couple of photos pretty quickly and get the fish back in the river to swim away.

Setting up. After a bit of practice, and a few cock ups, you'll get to know roughly how far to position the camera away from you. I always set it up a little further to make sure that me and the fish are in the shot. You can always crop it later.

Try another angle. Lay the fish on the net on top of the unhooking mat and put your rod close by so that the reel is in the picture. Try not to get your feet in the shot. :eek

What camera to use? Don’t get fooled about the amount of megapixels. The lens and processing power of the camera are more important. Also, what’s the point of taking a high resolution photo of 8Mb which is only going to be seen on a computer screen and not blown up to poster size?

Night shots. I have to agree with you here. It’s tricky and sometimes damn frustrating and often not worth the hassle, especially if it’s chucking it down. Best not to bother, unless it’s a monster or a new PB.

Finally, my comments here, as I’ve said before, are based on what works for me. Please feel free to disagree. Mind you, after what I’ve said, I’m really under pressure on the next photo I upload.

Tight lines everyone. . . . . . . and keep the photos coming. thumbsup

Roy

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PostPosted: 14/07/12 00:20 
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Thanks for that Roy, and all who offered advice. I guess at the end of the day there is no alternative but to get out there and try putting all this advice to good use...just give it a go. Might I add that I would be eternally grateful if some kind soul could just pop down my river with me to give a demonstration....I would make sure to memories their technique, and then do my damnedest myself next time round :whistle

I suppose that in fairness, I should mention that on the way home, the lucky person involved would also be required to pop indoors with me to explain to my dear lady exactly why it was that they encouraged me to spend quite so much money on a new camera. If they survive, I will have memorised every move in that particular manoeuvre in even greater detail than the photography bit :lol

Cheers, Dave.

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