Rich Ditch's Photography Blog

February 27, 2009

Investing time for variety

Filed under: behavior, Birds, favorite places, Gilbert Water Ranch, light, style — richditch @ 6:47 pm
Sora on the hunt

Sora on the hunt

I’ve written here before about striving for variety in your portfolio, and spending time for more payoff and unexpected sightings. Well, here it is again, with more results of the cooperative Sora that I’ve already discussed here.

This bird was such a treat to work with, after many years of frustration with the species, that a return visit made a lot of sense. And more time meant different light on the second visit, and more opportunities for capturing different poses, habitat, and behavior.

The top image is my favorite of what I’ve processed so far, and was taken on 2/17/09 (the second day of shooting) with only the 300mm lens, ISO 320, 1/200th second at f/9. I love the intense look and direct eye contact here. I also love the grasses that show the bird in habitat. Plus, the pose seems very active, with the rail actually about to do something.

Sora wing stretch

Sora wing stretch

This wing stretch was caught on my first day with the Sora, 2/15/09. The light wasn’t as good so I was working at ISO 400 and had the 1.4x on the 300mm lens as well. Exposure was 1/160th at f/8, so the shutter speed wasn’t fast enough to freeze the motion of the head as the Sora plunged it forward. But I really like the upraised wings – something I haven’t seen this species do before.

Of the two shots I like the top image best, but I’m glad to have both in my portfolio instead of just the rail in a clean view on the mudflat.


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