From the Archives: Photography Close to Home: Backyard Birds

From the Editor:  We’re featuring another post from the Archives.  With signs of spring beginning to show, this is a good time to review the relative ease of backyard photography, and the rewards it can bring.  If you don’t have a backyard, these principles can be applied during a visit to a nearby park.  This post first appeared in 2015.  Enjoy!  DCL

 

Story and Photographs by Bob and Jorja Feldman 

 

House Finches © Bob Feldman

House Finches © Bob Feldman

Backyard bird photography can be undertaken on the spur of the moment, no travel time or travel expenses required, no clothing and gear need to be packed and, if Mother Nature rains on your parade, you can easily resume when the rain stops.

Backyard photography is a way to keep photography skills fresh and up to date. The backyard can serve as a test bed for a new lens, camera body, flash or other equipment. Not only new equipment, but the old can also be checked out in advance of a major photo tour. Continue reading

Spring Migration: A Richness of Diversity

Horned Grebe

Horned Grebe

Story and photography by Bob & Jorja Feldman

Starting in early spring and sometimes even before—snow is often still on the ground here in Ann Arbor, Michigan—something quite extraordinary happens. Migration. Species that we haven’t seen for a long time and sometimes species that we have never seen at all magically show up in the woods and waters around us, offering new photographic opportunities.

We do not live in a bird-rich venue such as south Texas or Florida, nor do we have the luxury of photographing a migration up-close from a blind. Our pursuit requires substantial time, energy, devotion and a lot of scrambling around carrying heavy equipment—typically a lens in the 500mm to 800mm range along with a camera body, an extender or teleconverter, a tripod and a gimbal head.

If we go to a favorite spot early in the morning and nothing is there, we may return in the evening. Even if the sun is in the wrong place for our purposes, we go just to see if there are birds. And we will certainly return the next day, checking out known and new locations, much as a hummingbird works its way from one neighborhood feeder to the next. Continue reading

Photography Close to Home: Backyard Birds Story and photographs by Bob and Jorja Feldman

House Finches © Bob Feldman

House Finches © Bob Feldman

Backyard bird photography can be undertaken on the spur of the moment, no travel time or travel expenses required, no clothing and gear need to be packed and, if Mother Nature rains on your parade, you can easily resume when the rain stops.

Backyard photography is a way to keep photography skills fresh and up to date. The backyard can serve as a test bed for a new lens, camera body, flash or other equipment. Not only new equipment, but the old can also be checked out in advance of a major photo tour. Continue reading