Happy Easter everyone! The Easter Bunny made a visit to a little sparrow that is just outside the front-door. The eggs were even decorated!
Oh how busy life can get. Saturday was the first day I’ve been out to ‘just shoot photos’ in many months. We went up to the Marin Headlands which is worth a trip even without a camera. The day was great, and I think I have at least a few posts worth of shots. What we’re looking at today is a very excited turkey that was attempting to impress a couple of hens that were nearby. He was doing some dancing and showing off his very colorful feathers. I got lucky as he started walking in my direction which gave some great reflections off of his feathers.
We hit the Santa Barbara Zoo today for Father’s Day. The shutter was clicking and I managed to get a few decent shots. This is a sleeping flamingo that was somewhat curious in what I was up to, but not enough to remove its beak from under his wing.
Today I saw the full extent of the recession here in the United States. We can’t even afford bald eagles for photo ops. We’re settling for bald seagulls in front of old flags.
Yes, this is a real flamingo. It is probably the most dramatic flamingo image, as it steps from the shadows. Very little post processing was done to this other than trying to sharpen it just a tad since there is the slightest bit of motion blur. I love the lighting here!
Doesn’t this make you want to go for a swim? This shot was achieved through skillful negotiation, and patience. The birds were flying in and out of this little cove and the family wanted to move on. Of course once I setup for the background, the birds decided to take a rest from flying. This didn’t help my small window of opportunity to get the shot I foresaw. As luck would have it, everyone wanted to take a break like the birds and took a breather. This gave me five more minutes to sit and wait. Even though I would have preferred an incoming seagull, I was pleased to get this guy on his way out. He’s in a good spot, great wing angle, and I can still see his eye. Perfect.
The month of May has been almost, if not, the coldest on record for the Bay Area. Rain, cold, clouds. The sun and warmth tended to appear only mid-week. This weekend, everything is starting to feel normal. The sun is shining, it’s warm and we went to Monterey to enjoy the coast. Here’s a nice seagull that was brave enough to hang around while I climbed on the rocks to get closer for some shots.
This little quail was on the trail sitting on a branch as we were walking by on the way to the farm. He was sitting in a very picturesque spot until I brought the camera out, and then he started scooting down. I managed to get a couple shots before he went into the underbrush. I didn’t realize just how colorful a quail is.
Our first visit to the new Happy Hollow Park and Zoo provided a few opportunities to get some fun photos. This one is of a Cattle Egret. Sure, it’s a zoo bird, but it is a good looking bird nonetheless. The sun was high and bright for most of the day, so shooting was a real challenge. This photo was taken in the shade and had the grass highlighted wonderfully behind the egret.
Additionally, I wanted a photo of some vivid colors that weren’t flowers or bees for a lagging daily shoot assignment. This one will do nicely I think.
#ds152 – Bright, vivid colors can draw attention and add “pop” to a photo. Make a photo that has vivid colors today.
This shot has sat around for some time, ready to go and not let out. I have very mixed feelings on it and I’m not sure why. On one hand it always catches my eye in the grid display in Lightroom while reviewing older shots. Whenever I open it with some renewed excitement, I feel let down that the bird (I believe it is a turkey vulture) is not larger in the frame. Perhaps it works since it gives a sense of scale as-is. I do love the cloud formations.
Today I am planning on going to the Japanese Tea Gardens and tomorrow to the Embarcadero up in the city. I should have some good material for awhile after that.
Today we’re visiting the Golden Gate Bridge as it was seen about two months ago on a February Sunday morning from Travis Marina. The fog was just beginning to lift as we were getting out of the car to visit the Bay Area Discovery Museum.
Today is the first time one of my Daily Shoot suggestions was used. Today also has horrible weather and I won’t be going out shooting in it. So instead, I am sharing a photo that I’ve been sitting on this for a while. The image quality isn’t great, but this catch shot of a hummingbird chasing a bug is one I feel lucky to have. In this, the beak is open and the bug is plainly visible.
This was taken in San Jose while at a park with the kids. I was trying to shoot some of the birds in the trees when I saw this hummingbird in the air. This was shot a 110 mm on a 70-300mm lens at 1/1000 f5.6.
#ds147 – Birds are beautiful and rewarding to photograph. Challenge yourself by making a photo of a bird today! (@theskane)
While shooting at Travis Marina, I found this fine seagull model. He made sure to pose a few times for photographs. In the end he looks quite stunning with his bright plumage and yellow eye and beak. This is my contribution for Daily Shoot #80, a tack-sharp focus.
#ds80 – Make a “sharp” photo today any way you interpret it, either tack-sharp focus or a subject that is sharp itself.
This was shot at Shoreline Lake in Mountain View. This time, the camera was properly setup for bird photography. I like the tones and position of the Seagull here.
Sunday morning, while at Shoreline Lake in Mountain View, this hawk flew into the bushes nearby where my friend Jose and I were setup. Since I knew it would be moments before it would take flight again, I took the camera off the tripod and set it up for servo focus. It was overcast at about 8:30am. I forgot to set shutter priority and oh how I wish I had the camera set for a higher ISO. I think the solution is to setup one of my camera presets for bird photography.
This shot is slightly out-of-focus since it was handheld. Then the bird took flight and flew right at us. They were framed wonderfully, but each was blurry due to the slow shutter speed. Despite the issues with this shot, I still like it and how close I was. I suppose I can tell always people I took this with my iPhone.
On an early morning shoot which failed to deliver any good sunrise shots, it did lend more favorably to the wildlife. The seagulls were dropping mussels to break the shells and then diving after them to guard their meal. One aggressive large one would then chase them off of their food. He was able to score a few free meals that way.
#ds77 – “Sunday Challenge: Wherever there’s an edge, there’s energy. Make a photo where two things meet: land-water, land-sky, etc.”
With all the rain that has been around here lately, it is probably a good time to post some photos from a few weeks ago when it the weather was much more pleasant. These were taken near Pescadero, CA
Today I did a brief photowalk along the Guadalupe River in San Jose. The primary goal was to complete today’s Daily Shoot assignment. I ended up taking more pictures. Many had challenges being framed nicely due to all the trash along the river. While the trash helped with the goal of the assignment today, it was tough because the birds down there are great subjects of photos. Here are a few of the shots from today.
Below are the shots for The Daily Shoot #ds62: “One man’s trash is another’s treasure. Make a photo of something discarded or abandoned today. (@lyzadanger)“
This last one, I considered posting as my assignment contribution, but I figured the one above was a stronger photo.