Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Painted Ladies

During sunny periods yesterday, I saw my second and third Painted Lady butterflies of the year; again amongst the dunes at the top of Swansea Beach.
I had gone down there looking for birds (although I didn't manage any decent photos of them), so I had to press my 500mm lens (with extension tubes to allow it to focus close enough) into action for this shot, as the butterfly rested on the sea-wall when clouds pulled overhead:

I tried a different approach here, coupling a 50mm f/1.8 lens to a 2x converter, a combination I hadn't tried before. Sharpness is so-so on the original, although hopefully it looks okay here:

As soon as the sun came out, the butterflies came to life again, mainly feeding on a small group of Red Valerian plants. I was back to the 500mm lens for this shot:


  1. Very good shots Jeremy....nice colors.

    greetings, Joop

  2. I prefer extension tubes to teleconverters. Both are a pain. Sharpening with unsharp mask can pull back enough for the web. Lovely shots of the Lady. Hundreds about a couple of years ago but they are scarce or non existent up here.

  3. I haven't seen any this year. But yours is very good indeed. What is your equipment?

  4. Great photos Jeremy. I've not seen any Painted Ladies yet this year. Looks like the dunes are worth checking out at the moment.

  5. Thanks for your comments. Bob, I listed some of the equipment in the blurb with the pictures. I was using a Canon 40D camera mounted on a Feisol 3471 tripod with Markins M10 ballhead. The first and last shot were taken with a Sigma 500mm f/4.5 lens, using a Kenko extension tube to enable it to focus closer. Middle shot was taken using a Canon 50mm f/1.8 lens and a Kenko 2x converter. I used the camera's self-timer with mirror-lockup to get things as sharp as possible. Hope that helps.

  6. Wonderful butterflies and lovely colors,
    nice work Jeremy.

    Greetings, Joop