Monday Musings – White Breasted Nuthatch

One of the very first avian photographs I made was of a White Breasted Nuthatch. I look forward to the winter to try and photograph them because it is hard to get a lens on them when all the leaves are out, they are very skittish birds.

White Breasted Nuthatch Pose

A real challenge for me is trying to better my images. Before I try to photograph a place or a subject I have already photographed, I look through the past images and try to figure out how I can be better than I was the last time. Things like, angles, time of day, background, focus, depth of field and composition are all elements of the photograph that I can clearly make better the second time around…..at least I try!

White Breasted Nuthatch Pointing

Neither one of these images will win any awards and thats ok. The important thing is that you go out and try. You never know when you might make that once in a lifetime image!

Here Come the Winter Migrants

I know some of my friends and family probably thought the title related to my sons coming home for the Thanksgiving holiday that we will be celebrating in the U.S. tomorrow! While I am thrilled to have them both home, I was in fact refering to my avian friends. While photographing this weekend near the bird feeders I have on my property, I saw some of the first winter migrants, in particular Dark Eyed Junco.

Black Capped Chickadee

I look forward to having the chance to observe the behavior of these birds over the winter. We had approximately 40 Dark Eyed Junco living in and around our woods last year. The research I have done seems to indicate that this species of bird returns to the same place each winter. I will be interested to see if that is the case for me. We are going through 2 full feeders every other day now, so with that many birds, I might need to take a second job to be able to buy bird seed!

Tufted Titmouse

Can They Really Fly?

Ha! Thought you were stopping by to look at some interesting bird I photographed didn’t you? I had the pleasure of volunteering some time for the wonderful actors and actresses (my daughter) at New Canaan High School as they prepared for this weekends performance of “Peter Pan“.

The dress rehearsal I attended was first class and the kids are sure to please anyone who attends. You can click on the “Peter Pan” link here or above to be brought to the website for the show which includes ticket information and show times.

What a great way to kick off the holiday weekend with family and friends!

Note: Peter Pan will be performed Nov. 18, 19 and 20, at 7:30 p.m. in the NCHS auditorium.Tickets will be on sale in the New Canaan High School lobby from Mon., Nov., 15 through Fri., Nov., 19 from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and an hour before showtime.

Monday Musings

Now that fall has the northeast firmly in its grasp, finding good birds to photograph is a little more difficult. I ventured to some coastal wetlands in search of some migrants and was able to add a new bird to my file.

Sanderling on the Rocks

I found a pair of Sanderlings foraging. Boy can they move. They never stood still and practicing peak of action photography was tough. The conditions also complicated things as the sun was very low and the birds were backlit.

Sanderling Call

One of the great things about photography is the excitement associated with trying again. While I didn’t get the shot I wanted, I now have some experience with a new species that will help me upon my next encounter. The lessons learned from putting your time in are transferable to all aspects of this vocation.

Its a Matter of Opinion

I ventured out on a beautiful fall day with the intention of photographing fall migrants at the beach. Some would say I failed since I came home with few bird pictures worth keeping…..if any.
This is what I did come home with

Fall Foliage

So while some might say I didn’t make any wildlife keepers, I would say I spent a beautiful day outside trying!

This was the closest to a keeper I had all day

Ring Billed Gull Eating

If it wasn’t for the gesture, I don’t think I would like this image either.

Have a great weekend.

Gesture

If you have ever been fortunate enough to listen to or attend a lecture given by Jay Maisel you would know that capturing gesture is very important in his photography. I have been fortunate to have studied with and read many articles written by and about Jay. A game I like to play with myself is to find gesture in wildlife. Doing so brings your subject to life. What better way to speak on behalf of an animal?

While it is not easy to capture gesture in wild animals the reward if you are successful are images that tug on the heart strings of the viewer. The ultimate reward for visual communicators. Here are some of my recent wildlife photographs that I think are good examples.

Laughing Gull Gesture

Ring Billed Gull Peek a Boo