The Blue Jay is a loud and active bird that frequents many backyards throughout the year. This article will detail my observations of the Blue Jays I know for several years. During these years some are departed and new arrivals have appeared. Join me on a quick read to as I share my observations of the wonderful Blue Jay.
The age of digital information is fully underway and with all the digital media we produce comes decisions about what to do with it. Is it worth keeping for the long term and what needs to go bye bye. Me personally, I now take a more aggressive approach to my photo and video keepers - very unlike what I once did.
This Cooper's Hawk first appearance in my backyard was about three years ago and now routinely visits throughout the winter months, I most recently spotted him in the late afternoon perched about 50 feet up in a boundary tree tucked in behind a few branches to obscure his view.
Over time photographers may consider other camera brands to blend into their camera bag. While it is exciting to try out new gear it is not always the smartest thing to do for a few reasons. Mostly adding other camera brands to your mix consumes your financial resources + you then need to add lenses for the other brand and learn the ins and outs of the new camera system. In this blog, I will point out why you should not add other camera manufacturers to your collection.
Now that I have the Nikon Z7 for over a month now I wanted to try it out with my Super Telephotos the Nikkor 400mm f/2.8 ED FL and the Nikkor 600mm f/4 ED FL lenses to test the capability of the Nikon Z7 on very big FX glass.
Anyone who owns a Nikon Z7 and never experienced a mirrorless camera before knows the Nikon Z7 is a different experience from a DSLR but, at the end of the day you get an image. What are the shooting differences between the DSLR world and the Nikon Z mirrorless world.
I take the Nikon Z7 out for a few days of Landscape Photography - The experience using the Nikon Z7 is excellent - everything you need in a small, portable, lightweight, high resolution mirrorless camera.
I took my new Nikon Z7 out with my 600mm f/4 to find out if the camera is up to the task for bird photography. What I found was a camera that adapts well to the past and is the path for the future.
So, you are an avid photographer with thousands of images in your collection. Maybe you have been relying on an USB 3 external drive to as your file backup along with your lightroom database; one copy on your work computer and a backup on the external - does this sound familiar? While that approach is a viable one, you just might be at risk of serious data loss. Here is my story on the near loss of many years of work, and why I decided to go pro, and invest in a serious NAS.
So you are interested in Outdoor macro photography? We explore what I believe will make your outdoor macro photography a more pleasing experience.
For many, the move to a Mirrorless cameras body and lens system may not seem to you all spectacular - especially if you are just starting your photography journey and began with a Mirrorless camera system. But if you are a hobbyist, enthusiast or even a professional and have been into this for many years chances are you have a DSLR or two and now face the question of what to do, knowing your decision will incur a cost for the transition.
Over the last few years I became interested in the Orb Spiders, in particular, the Black and Yellow Garden Spider as the common name or the Argiope aurantia, scientific name. Ultimately my fascination for spiders and insects in general always cause me to stop and take a closer look when I run across them out in the wild. As a photographer I enjoy taking a few photos at any opportunity, here in this write up I share my observations and images of the Black and Yellow Garden Spider.
Regardless of how long you been into photography one thing is for certain – we all have throwaways. Those photographs that simply do not cut the muster, most of my toss outs are due to poor image quality – blurry or out of focus.
In this short but useful article, we will dive into several reasons you may not be aware of that is causing you many wasted shots.
On June 20th we officially enter into summer known as the summer solstice and on that day summer arrives. I took a stroll through open wooded area looking for signs of summer, you know - Dragon flys, and beautiful cone flowers. I was greeted with this wonderful specimen, using my long telephoto I took a moment and snapped a couple images. The color and contrast speak for themselves. Summer is Here!
) migratory bird is visiting the North East USA for some nest building and baby rearing duties. You can find this fine bird along trails near wooded swamps or marshes. Here I was able to get a photo of the activities of preparing the nest.
I admit I like being out during rainy days Why? It is refreshing and stimulating to walk a wooded trail hearing and feeling the rain, and besides that, It offers many opportunities for photographers - if we come prepared.
HELP SAVE MY LIFE! If you are reading this and live in North Virginia - send the Occuqan Wildlife Refuge an email and ask they NOT ALLOW TRAFFIC on park "grassy" trails during March - Jun due to turtles mating and laying eggs.
FACT: Occoquan issues "special permits" for autos that unknowinly CRUSH the turtles - Help stop the decline of this special creature!! email: email@example.com
The photo you see is of a 16 year old female Easter Box Tortise who lives in the Wildlife Refuge. Over the years I have the pleasure of seeing her out and about in the area she lives in. Also in the area are Eagles, Osprey, Owls, but I respect this creature the most, due to the extreme habitat loss.... Read More..
I enjoy the early morning sun rise in hopes of capturing one good image. My modest setup was a Nikon D7200, great camera.
Take a few minutes to take a virtual flight to Asia...Then enjoy some excellent photography lessons..
For years I was afraid to use flash – why? Because I always had mixed results - sometime success but mostly that hard washed out look we all fear as photographers. Almost 10 years ago that all changed when I choose to follow this guy named Joe McNally, I picked up his book, and watched his videos.. What have I learn in 10 years?
New lens new adventure - early morning light calls my name. I ventured out with the Nikon 58mm f/1.4 lens to see what it light can be captured with a fine lens as this.
I spent a few hours outdoors enjoying my macro photography and I hope you enjoy and find inspiration in the images I captured. What do I use for my Macro setup and why? read on...
I took the reference photo in early July in very bright sunlight at about 9 A.M, I thought I the image was a good photo to make a digital painting from.
I was chilling this Saturday not motivated to do anything other than clear up some backlog on this site. The weather was going to be hot, humid and miserable and I had no inclination to go anywhere. Then I started to browse around and ran across a few Dragonfly images and realized I just don’t have enough!
I was not all that lucky in previous years of getting any real useable photos of Wood Ducks in the location I lived, due to the scarcity and short time frame they seem to stay in this area during the late spring season. I find the Wood Duck a stunningly beautiful waterfowl. The males in particular with iridescent browns, blacks, white green, ornate patterns on nearly every feathe, this is one pretty bird. Females very attractive but have a less colorful pattern but the same distinctive profile and delicate white pattern around the eye. I find Wood Ducks in the wooded marsh ares that have hardwood forest adjacent to the water. With some research I discovered they nest in holes in trees or use man made nest boxes. Little did I know they are one of the few duck species with claws that can grip bark and perch on branches- see my photos of a group perching.
Each year I am blessed by the migration of the Cedar Waxwing, Bombycilla cedrorum through my area of the country. Their visits are timed almost perfectly with the arrival of the fruiting trees and bushes. These delightful birds will stay in the area for several months basically as long as the fruit holds out. See my gallery and read more on these birds.
Take a few minutes to browser thousands of images taken by the TrueToad. Enjoy!
Take a minute to browser over my reviews of the equipment I use. I hope you find one useful.
Welcome to the Blog. Check out my postings and ramblings about photography.
I have a couple photographic weakness, Birds and Flowers. Whenever I am out doing some photography shooting regardless what my intentions are, if i run across a great looking flower I stop and take a photo or try to incorporate the flower into my scene. The great thing about flower photography is you really dont need any specialized equipment. I have even taken flower photos with a fish eye lens. I you want to discover more about flower photography read on...
When you spot the Wren it looks to be rather plain but is a Whitney Houston of birds song wise; mostly brown with some lighter brown and speckles on the wings. The Wren is commonly found over nearly the entire Western Hemisphere. Listen for its rush-and-jumble song in summer and you’ll find this species zipping through shrubs and low tree branches, snatching at insects. Wrens will will accept and use man made nest boxes.
I truly enjoy the outdoors especially during spring months, plants and animals begin to flourish and the forest comes alive with colors, sound with a calm atmosphere.
You probably noticed most of my blogs cover the upper end of the Photo Spectrum. I owe it to many my recommendation for getting a 90% solution for fantastic wildlife photography.
I am lucky to live in an area that the Great Blue Heron is found in most of the year. Here in North Va, you can expect to see the Great Blue Heron in numbers starting in Mid April through Late September. I really enjoy watching and photographing these birds. They are large and somewhat predictable and with some good planning you can acquire a few good photos on most occasions..
Thank you Nikon for being a wonderful company. In particular as my camera company of choice, I could not think of photography without Nikon as being part of it.
This wonderful Male Cardinal sits on a perch as sleet comes raining down, and is undaunted by the ice crystals that are falling on his face and feathers. The Cardinal is a native species of North America and suited for the elements, he appears well protected from these elements.
This is my early sunrise overlooking the Potomac. This photo was a result of taking 4 images and merge both the exposure and panographic ends together to form a single photo.
Many times each year I take time to appreciate wild life and nature, These creatures who fly, walk, slither and live along side us humans. Several things stand our as I write this, one being how amazing are the birds survival capabilities out doors in the cold, wind, and snow, I took a few hours today to brave the near 0 temps to go out and take a few photos of birds being birds.
Sometimes when I am out shooting I like to take a set of HDR images and see what the outcome will be when I get the images back in the editor. Most often I get what I expect but when using special techniques you can come up with a lot of variations from the same set of photos.
While out hiking a couple years ago my interest in fungal growth started to peak when I began to run across what I thought were a few simple mushrooms scattered about. As I made my way further down the trail, I spotter more and more of various mushrooms everywhere. I knew I was on to something. Why were there so many and what do mushrooms provide or their purpose. I spent several months photographing every mushroom I ran across - It was fascinating.
The Pileated Woodpecker is an elusive bird. At least for me it is very true that this bird species is difficult to approach and photograph. For over a year I tried to get one good usable photograph, but at every turn the Pileated eluded me. I keep trying....
How many times have you either wanted to take bird photos or tried and was disappointed in the results? My guess if you are like me you have had a few false starts and missed opportunities. Although bird photography is extremely rewarding it is also extremely challenging when out in the field. You need to be the master of the equipment you use, and knowledgeable of the birds themselves. Lets cover a few things that will increase your productivity.
Fall like Spring is wonderful time. In my area we begin to see a few bird species that are less common in the summer months. In my most recent outing I had the pleasure of capturing a few birds and ran upon a fun flock of Eastern Bluebirds.
Time is moving fast this year.. wow, already Fall Season; sometimes we are reminded about passage of time through visual clues and the habits of animals. When I begin to find Orb Spiders and the Pine Siskin birds in the area I know fall is closing in.
Our family feline of 13 years passed away early this morning, bringing to closure Easter's wonderful life with our family. At his passing he was believed to be 20 years + of age. Everyone in his family will miss his presence and are saddened by the loss of our cat Easter. He is survived by Teeny his fellow feline house companion, and three caretakers who provided and received his love over the years.
Time does move fast when your having fun, and the Summer of 2016 is fast fading away into the memory folder. 2016 was hot and fun, sorry to see it go. My camera was barely worked this year due to my laziness, and photography things went to the sidelines until today, I was out and about enjoying the last sweaty days, here is what I have.
I recently had the opportunity during my vacation to explore the Nikkor 400mm out in the field over the course of a few days in various weather conditions from hot, rainy, humid to dusty. All in all the lens delivers exceptional performance with a price tag to match.
This is a short effort in impressionist paint splatter. The source image was of course an image taken this year of a Great Blue Heron overlooking the Potomac River.
I am exploring some of my original photographs for re-creating as digital paintings. Some of my favorite photos are of the flowers because of their awesome colors. Flowers are a beautiful source of rich vibrant colors found everywhere and in nature, flowers deserve special consideration for any digital artist work.
Time to enjoy Summer.
When you are able to go out carry along your camera, then take a few minutes to look around, you will find nature is beautiful. The colors, texture, sounds, and smell came rushing in. Today as I walked through an area I spotted a blush of color that caught my eye in the distance, a flowering tree so, I took a moment to capture a few images of the plants and life happening around me my photographic reward captured.
This is my story about the discovery of a magnificent organism called the Mushroom. It all begins on a warm summer day and continues still. Following a wet spell and increased temperatures I found one "Mushroom" growing in the forest floor, then another and another and another....I was obsessed.
The Wild Turkey is an interesting bird, who as groups share in the child rearing duties among other females. The male gives gobbling call to attract females. In courtship, males puff out feathers, raise and spread tail, swell up face wattles, droop wings; in this exaggerated posture they strut, rattling the wing feathers and making humming sounds. One male will mate with several females. Nest site is on ground, often at base of tree, under shrub, or in tall grass. Nest is shallow depression, sparsely lined with grass, leaves. The American Wild Turkey is a keen aware bird - always on the look out.
Crop Sensor Cameras (DX) vs Full Frame (FX) Cameras, what are the considerations and is the full frame better than a crop sensor camera? Many of you, like me during the transition to digital cameras had questions or was confused with all the hype, fiction, & rumors on this topic. In this article, we will dive into crop vs noncrop sensor cameras. This article applies in concept to most camera brands while we explore DX vs FX sensors. thankYou For Reading..