Sunday, 22 February 2009

On running on water

Yesterday I spent another couple of hours in Bushy Park practicing flight shots. It was a particularly good day to do it, because there was a lot of activity. In particular, with the first hints of spring in the air the coots were getting frisky. Every few moments a fight would break out and send a few of them literally running on the water.

And it wasn't just the coots. A couple of male mute swans wanted to get in on the action as well and race around the pond mowing down any unfortunate geese that happened to get in the way. Most amusing.

Sunday, 15 February 2009

On missed opportunities

This weekend I popped in briefly on the RSPB reserve at Fowlmere. At first there seemed to be very little of interest - just a handful of greylag geese, a single little grebe and the usual crop of mallard and coots. However, as the light was fading and I was considering leaving I had a brief, very close encounter with a barn owl. Sadly, despite all my recent practice, my camera was not set up for flight shots. To be honest, even if it had been my chances of a decent shot were not great - the highest shutter speed I could get was a measly 1/40th of a second. Not really fast enough for a moving target. Still - it was great to see.

With no owl shot to show, here instead is my favourite shot from the recent snowfall. I'm hoping a lyric from one of my favourite Genesis songs proves true. "They say a snow year's a good year filled with the love of all who lie so deep"

Sunday, 8 February 2009

On penguins

It's been a while coming, but I am pleased to announce that some of my favourite penguin photographs from my trip to the Falkland Islands are now available for sale. I've created a new Photobox gallery, Quantum Penguin with a selection of images for sale. As time goes by I'll add a few more. In the meantime here are a couple of my personal favourite shots.

I loved the poise, the light and the reflections in this image of a group of gentoos as they waddled down to the sea.

King penguins are both colourful and graceful. Once again I like the shape and the colours in this image.

If you like these images then head over to Quantum Penguin and take a look at the rest!

Sunday, 1 February 2009

On the joys of birds in flight (part II)

Since my recent entry on the joys of flight photography, I've gone out specifically to practice photographing birds in flight. Yesterday I popped into Bushy Park and stood by one of the main ponds as various people fed the birds. There were a lot of gulls there as well as various other waterfowl, jackdaws and pigeons. With all the activity there was plenty of opportunity for flight shots.

Here are just a handful of the shots I took.

The 1D MkIIN certainly makes the job of getting flight shots easier. With forty-five auto-focus points it tracks targets much more accurately than my 20D, and more often than not the focus is bang on.