Be alert to photo opportunities. There are lots of times we walk right past a great picture without even realizing it. People travel far and wide in search of images to capture and forget about their own backyard.
I gave a business associate an old manual 500 mm lens for her camera. She loves to photograph bald eagles when she hears of new sightings in our area.
After explaining how to get the best results from a lens that will require using a “T” mount and full-manual operation on her Canon DSLR camera, I had a “eureka moment” (yeah, with years of experience shooting professionally, I still get them).
It occurred to me that a lens I use on occasion likes to seek “focus” from one end of the range to the other when you put it on a 2x teleconverter. Why not set the camera to “aperture mode” and set it to the aperture range in which the lens would best operate with the converter?
So, this photo was taken in my own backyard.
This is a downy woodpecker. He visits my suet feeders all day long. He pecks on a dead tree along the creek that runs the property line between me and my neighbors. I hear his cheerful song in the morning. I hear his pecking on the old tree as he looks for insects. I am convinced, though, that he loves the suet I put out for him and his friends, and he eats more of it than any other bird in the yard.
Birds, Birds, and More Birds
There are quite a few species of birds right outside my back patio doors perhaps twenty feet away. There are cardinals, house finches, English sparrows, cove birds, Carolina chickadees, blue jays, downy woodpeckers, red-bellied woodpeckers, pileated woodpeckers, hairy woodpeckers (similar to the downy with a bit more brown and a little larger, with a longer beak). We had a single visit from a red-headed woodpecker and two visits from an Eastern Bluebird. We have seen some English starlings and mourning doves. Then, there is the red-tail hawk. He comes and goes, but, he’s not interested in the suet, he’s interested in the other birds.
Keep your eyes open. Great bird shots might be available in your own backyard.