Please note that the photos shared on this site are of lower quality, but if you're interested in purchasing copies or using them for your own personal use, please don't hesitate to contact me. I'd love the chance to be able to work with you so you can get the photos that you're after.
CAMERA EQUIPMENT | I'm asked what kind of camera equipment that I use a lot. I began shooting with DSLR cameras in 2004 and have been loyal to the Canon line. I started with the original Rebel, then I upgraded to a T3i, and when the T3i died on me, during a whale watch of all places, I upgraded to a 7D which is what I'm still using today. For lenses, I've been using a very old and very inexpensive Canon 55-250mm lens for as long as I can remember and that's the lens I still use today. At the time I believe this lens ran for about $250, but I don't think that it's even made anymore it's so old! Knowing what I know now though, I would say that investing in good, quality lenses is far more important to investing in the camera body so that's something to keep in mind as you're researching.
LENS UPDATE: On 6/30/18 I decided to try my Tamron 70-200mm F2.8 lens which I'd been using for horse photography on the whales. I wasn't quite sure how this lens would perform, but I have to say that I'm VERY pleasantly surprised! Although, I must say that the whales were exceptionally cooperative and the weather and sea conditions were perfect as well. It'll be interesting to see how things progress using this lens.
SETTINGS | I always shoot in Aperature priority (Av). I tend to have it set for f7.1, but to be honest I really have no idea how I arrived at that number. That's just where I've always stayed. I have experimented, but my comfort level keeps me at f7.1. Before upgrading to a 7D, I kept my ISO at 400, but would go higher on really overcast days. I've noticed that my 7D tends to be more sensitive and I can crank the ISO up higher so I'm still experimenting with that. Shooting in Av mode allows the camera to set the shutter speed so I never have to worry about that.
PHOTOGRAPHING WHALES | I wish there was an easy way to describe how to photograph whales, but there really isn't. It all really boils down to practice, understanding whale behavior and being able to anticipate what they're going to do next, and of course a little bit luck. I've found that most whale watching tours will try to help you as best as they can to give you a better feel for where to point your camera, but really the more you go and the more you learn, the better your photos will be.
"We owe it to our children to be better stewards of the environment. The alternative? - a world without whales. It's too terrible to imagine." ~ Pierce Brosnan