Today, after a bout of running about on errands in preperation for Christmas, the girls asked me to take them to the “Parrot Park” as they now call it. It was a bright and unseasonally warm day, and so a trip to the park was a great idea! To be honest, we go to the park in all weathers, but it is nicer in the sunshine, of course it is.
Anyway, I took my camera but not with any serious aspirations of capturing a photograph, not specifically anyway. The only thing I wanted to do was sharpen my skills with my nemesis long lens. To be fair, as much as it frustrates me with its soft edges, slow focus, and wild chromatic aboration, I do really enjoy using it!! So, when we got out of the car to go and play on the park, I took my camera but not my camera bag or tripod or anything, just my long lens bolted to the front of it so that was all I could use.
The car park was empty, as was the play ground, so when we got there I let the girls loose and I stood right in the middle of the play area and had a great time tracking seagulls flying past whilst keeping an eye on the girls. The buzz I get from tracking birds in light is amazing, it all happens so fast, and with the limitations of my kit its pressured, its stressful, and when it all comes together its genuinelly exhilarating!
I haven’t actually put any of the in-flight shots in the post, save for the seagul taking off, becasue they were just to practice my technique, not actual compositions so to speak; and I want to save space on the blog and my Flickr account so I have enough available to finish the challenge. I will share some more on my Instagram though, so if your interested have a look there.
Anyway, the images I have shared in this post are the ones I really like from today, the ones with something that little bit different, just that hint of an edge that I like.
The girls had great fun, and so did I. In fact, they’ve been with me everywhere I’ve gone today, and save for being full throttle from dawn to dusk and wearing me out, they’ve been an absolute joy, as always.
I love this last photograph, I darkened the background to the point its almost entirely black, so that the Moor-hen looks like its tip toeing across a thin strip of ground, on the edge of a vast abyss.
Learnings – I actually shot a few of the in-flight images I took today in manual focus mode, becasue its way faster than in auto with my long lens. I found that at certain distances, it was not only quicker but also more accurate than using the auto focus. Something to bear in mind for the future, I think.