Hummingbird with her tongue out

Continuing on with the hummingbirds!

If you look very closely, you can see that this hummingbird is sticking her tongue out (maybe she was tired of the flash).  I've posted a second photo where she is not, for comparison purposes. I love the angle of the light, as the beautiful gold green colour of her feathers is very apparent. 1/200 sec, f5.6, ISO100 with speed light
If you look very closely, you can see that this hummingbird is sticking her tongue out (maybe she was tired of the flash). I’ve posted a second photo where she is not, for comparison purposes.
I love the angle of the light, as the beautiful gold green colour of her feathers is very apparent.
1/200 sec, f5.6, ISO100 with speed light
I've posted this photo to compare to the other photo of the female on the feeder. 1/200 sec, f5.6, ISO100, 150mm with speed light
I’ve posted this photo to compare to the other photo of the female on the feeder.
1/200 sec, f5.6, ISO100, 150mm with speed light

Male Rufous Hummingbird

Male Rufous Hummingbird

The photos I have of the male rufous hummingbird in flight (so far!) are not as sharp as I would like, but this one of him paused at the feeder highlights his beautiful colouring.
He didn’t stay long as the female kept coming around and chasing him off!

1/500 sec, f5.6, ISO1250

Female Rufous Hummingbird

Rufous Hummingbird

I was so happy to see my first hummingbirds of the year this past weekend, and was able to spend some time relaxing on my parent’s porch, camera at the ready to capture a few shots. I’m quite pleased with the results, so there just might be a hummingbird of the day around here for the next little while 🙂

1/200 sec, f5.6, ISO 100 with speed light

1/200 left significant motion blur of the wings, and with the light, the fastest I tried was 1/640, and that didn’t even come close to freezing the wing motion.

Penguin

Penguin

The long grass was doing nothing to enhance the photo, and the Jackass penguin has only a limited amount of pale pink colouring around the eyes, so I decided to do a black and white conversion. After a hectic day, unwinding with some editing seemed like a good choice, and the penguin made me smile. Mission accomplished 🙂

1/320sec, f5.6, ISO200 – conversion in Silver Efex

Penguin at Boulder Beach, Cape Town, South Africa, March 2013.

Slow

I saw this painted on a street in Vancouver and it made me chuckle.  I'll give them an A for effort...
I saw this painted on a street in Vancouver and it made me chuckle. I’ll give them an A for effort…

Sometimes, I make poor decisions.  Okay, oftentimes I make poor decisions.  But today, the decision to leave my camera at home really pissed me off.

I’ve not had much success photographing bald eagles.  The closest I came was last summer, but it came out of nowhere and my shutter speed was a bit too slow.  The last three times I have seen bald eagles, my camera was safely packed in the well cushioned case… at home.  Once was a juvenile bald eagle with a rainbow in the background, the second was a single mature eagle chasing a Cooper’s Hawk, and today, two mature bald eagles perched in a tree, scanning the river.   As I was walking with Spencer this morning, a Cooper’s Hawk flew in front of me at head height and as I scanned to follow it, spotted the pair of eagles.

Hence the SLOW (or is it WOLS?) photo.  Hopefully this time I have finally learned, and the next time I think it is too damp to bother taking my camera with me when I walk the dog, I will grab it anyways.

This was the best my phone could manage of the last couple of eagle sightings. Big, sad sigh.

eagle pair

I am posting this as a lesson to myself to be better prepared for opportunities! The photo, and the lack of quality, clarity, detail and definition just makes me mad!
I am posting this as a lesson to myself to be better prepared for opportunities!
The photo, and the lack of quality, clarity, detail and definition just makes me mad!

 

Crocuses

I’ve been hoping that the weather would finally cooperate, and I would be able to get some photos of the crocuses before they are gone. Sunday afternoon I finally got my chance.

I’m still getting used to the focusing of my new macro lens, and I am sure I will look at these in a couple weeks and cringe at the decisions I made on focus, but for now, I’m pretty happy with the results.

I love the vivid colours of the crocus; they are a vibrant sign in the midst of awful weather that spring, and brighter days, are coming.
I love the vivid colours of the crocus; they are a vibrant sign in the midst of awful weather that spring, and brighter days, are coming.

Striped Crocus Crocus

Safari Sunset

Safari Sunset

I set this photo as my desktop wallpaper a couple days ago, and that seems as good a reason as any to share it. This was taken on our first game drive at Londolozi.

1/800sec, f4.5, ISO100, April 2, 2013

Leopard

Leopard

Another photo from the vault. The direction of the sunlight made the original black and white conversion I did in Lightroom look washed out. I re-edited this with Silver Efex pro, and the harsh highlights have been minimized without losing detail.

Elephants at Chobe

I decided to go back and re-edit some old photos, as I wasn’t inspired to get out and shoot this weekend. Here is a photo taken at Chobe Park in Botswana while on a boat tour.  I see lots of possibilities for editing it.

Base image, with only basic Lightroom  adjustments for chromatic aberration and lens profile correction.  1/250Sec, f10, ISO100 April 8, 2013 at Chobe Park, Botswana
Base image, with only basic Lightroom adjustments for chromatic aberration and lens profile correction.
1/250Sec, f10, ISO100
April 8, 2013 at Chobe Park, Botswana

To me, the elephant at the far left of the photo looked out of place.  I cropped it out, and edited the photo with Colour Efex adding a polarizing filter effect.

Edited with Colour Efex Pro

Edited with Colour Efex Pro
Edited with Colour Efex Pro
Edited with Colour Efex Pro

For the edit above, I used the same polarizing filter effect, but cropped in just to focus on the elephants crossing their trunks.

Edited with Silver Efex Pro
Edited with Silver Efex Pro

Finally, I did a black and white conversion with Silver Efex Pro, on a cropped version of the photo showing several elephants with their tusks in alignment.  I added in vignetting and a border to help obscure the elephant far right that was heading out of the water.

Thanks to my landscape photography instructor Jim for reminding us to always look for the picture within a picture. 🙂

Silhouettes

The clear, cold weather over the weekend brought with it a lot of shivering, but also a lot of great photos opportunities.  I had Spencer with me, so I was more concerned with his well-being and enjoyment than getting the perfect shot… but, I still managed to get a few that I really like.

I hadn’t set out with a theme in mind, but the strongest photos of the weekend were all silhouettes (a clear topic for the blog – hurray!)

I see a Cooper's Hawk on nearly every weekend walk I take out at the dikes, and still they catch me by surprise most times.  I was glad I had the camera set to capture it in flight.  The setting sun is glimmering off of some of the ice floating in the river.  1/1250, f5.6, ISO100.
I see a Cooper’s Hawk on nearly every weekend walk I take out at the dikes, and still they catch me by surprise most times. I was glad I had the camera set to capture it in flight. The setting sun is glimmering off of some of the ice floating in the river. 1/1250, f5.6, ISO100.
I saw this pair on the dike as we were pulling into the parking lot, and snapped a few quick photos without thinking too much more about it.  This is one of my favourites from that afternoon. 1/1250, f4.5, ISO100
I saw this pair on the dike as we were pulling into the parking lot, and snapped a few quick photos without thinking too much more about it. This is one of my favourites from that afternoon.
1/1250, f4.5, ISO100
Cool tones in the sky, and ribbons of ice lining the river's edge.  The ice creaking in the dark made things a little bit spooky.   I had to adjust my exposure slider 1 1/2 stops in processing, so I guess I should have bumped my ISO to start or waited an extra 10 seconds or so during the exposure.  61sec, f22, ISO100
Cool tones in the sky, and ribbons of ice lining the river’s edge. The ice creaking in the dark made things a little bit spooky.
I had to adjust my exposure slider 1 1/2 stops in processing, so I guess I should have bumped my ISO to start or waited an extra 10 seconds or so during the exposure. 61sec, f22, ISO100
While we were walking, I saw this shape in the water, and thought it was a oddly shaped stump.  When I realized it was a heron resting, I set up right away, and didn't bother adjusting my settings; I just hoped it would stay still long enough to get a shot.  Like the Golden Ears photo, I had to adjust my exposure slider 1 1/2 stops...but I am glad I pressed down on the remote when I did, as he soon shifted position.  34sec, f29, ISO100
While we were walking, I saw this shape in the water, and thought it was a oddly shaped stump. When I realized it was a heron resting, I set up right away, and didn’t bother adjusting my settings; I just hoped it would stay still long enough to get a shot. Like the Golden Ears photo, I had to adjust my exposure slider 1 1/2 stops…but I am glad I pressed down on the remote when I did, as he soon shifted position.
34sec, f29, ISO100
I love the sky before sunrise, with the beautiful warm tones to the east, and cool tones to the west.   2.5sec, f22, ISO100
I love the sky before sunrise, with the beautiful warm tones to the east, and cool tones to the west.
2.5sec, f22, ISO100
Beautiful Mount Baker, about a half hour before sunrise. 6.0sec, f25, ISO100
Beautiful Mount Baker, about a half hour before sunrise.
6.0sec, f25, ISO100