Friday, 4 April 2014

Bean Bag Trials!

With 2 weeks off work now I started off with a quick call again into East Blean Woods to continue my caterpillar missions. This time I was armed with my new bean bag and wanted to see if it made a big difference to the shots that I have been taking. At the moment all have been hand held and as steady as I am, when shooting from a few inches from the subject the slightest movement can give you an out of focus shot. The sun was again absent this afternoon but I went to an area I had seen them yesterday and managed to find 3 Heath Fritillary caterpillars at rest on the moss. They eventually started to move a little which gave me the chance to get the bean bag into some action and despite the light I managed to get a few more shots. It was much easier as expected and let me really concentrate on the detail required. If the subject lets me get close to the ground this is the way to go I think. All I need is some good light now and I think I could get something quite nice with this set up.

Heath Fritillary Caterpillar


  1. Marc,

    Are you confident that you are not crushing other, unseen caterpillars with all that crawling about. A friend of mine went there last year to look for the butterflies themselves and found quite a bit of vegetation damage where photographers had been.

    1. I'm not crawling everywhere. If i did I would have more wood ant bites that I can mention. I stick to the path and have found a few just off the path so do't have to wander around. I'm fairly confident that I am not disturbing or crushing them as i am believe it or not quite careful

  2. Bright idea Marc, the bean bag is tremendous. It holds still when you need it. The caterpillar shows how much it needs cooperation, amazing shot.

  3. Marc,

    Fair enough, that's nice to know, it's amazing how oblivious some people can be to what secondary damage that they are causing when their prey suddenly appears before them.

  4. Marc have you tried the bean bag out on anything that moves faster than a caterpiller, would suggest a monopod will work better on these situations.