Last Saturday I took my first trip to Dublin Zoo in several years, and its improved vastly from my last visit. The animals have much more room to roam about than they had on my previous visits, and work is continuing to improve facilities further.
A Zoo provides great photo opportunities. One of my favourite pictures of the day was of an animal that I hadn’t seen before, a Red Panda.
This photo is almost perfect and thats frustrating! The depth of field is eactly what I wanted, 4.5 with the lens fully zoomed in. But when you use a long focal length and a small depth of field there is no room for error in focussing; in this case the little guy’s eye is just out of focus – focus is just in front of his ear!
I tried a similar picture with a Snow Owl at f/5:
Using a lower zoom the problem of getting depth of field at f/4.5 isn’t as big. This picture of the Red Panda is much more forgiving of focus.
This is all well and good when the animals are co-operative, but it was a hot day and some just wanted to hide in the grass and sleep.