Jan 8 2015 Burnaby Mountain Sunny 6c
As mentioned in my last blog I was so carried away with composing clean uncluttered images of the colourful male Pine Grosbeaks I totally forgot the female of the species.
Ironically, ignoring the female species is something my wife kindly reminds me of when I return from one of my extended birding trips!
With the Lower Mainland fogged in I decided to return to Burnaby Mountain where at least there would be blue skies, sun and warmth.
When I arrived I was lucky enough to find the grosbeaks feeding on cherry buds. The Rose Garden was almost deserted, except for one young birder sketching and enjoying the tranquility. An hour later a dozen photographers and birders were on the scene by which time the birder/artist had long departed!
The Pine Grosbeaks are easy to find near the Horizons Restaurant and seemed to have no fear of humans, just respect their space and they'll reward you with excellent views.
|Male Pine Grosbeak (Pinicola enucleator)|
This one came down to drink and take in grit and water at the Rose Garden.
Some thoughts on CompositionWhen I started photographing birds a record shot was mandatory, later as I learnt a little more about bird lore, a close-up shot would be the goal. None of those early images show any kind of habitat and if they did it was as a second thought. These days I am trying to include more habitat within the frame as well as a clean background. Not as easy as it sounds. I have tried hard to compose better images with this second round of Pine Grosbeak images.
|Female Pine Grosbeak in an "active pose" in my opinion a step up from the 'bird on the stick' pose.|
There is tension in the bird's pose
|First year male showing rump and uppertail coverts.|
|Female Pine Grosbeak.|
|Male Pine Grosbeak.|
In this composition above I tried to combine the simplicity of primary reds and blues. I waited for the bird to move along the branch until it entered a space, creating a frame within a frame. Note the foreground and background branch. A touch of blue sky and the pinkish red plumage compliment each other. This was one of five shots before the bird flew off. The open beak with cherry bud capped off the composition.
So what make a good image ?
1. Impact: Does the image have wow factor, does it evoke some emotional connection?
2. Story-telling: Does the image tell you anything about the subject.
3. Technical stuff : Exposure, Composition.
sense of humour!
sense of humour!
It's never too late to start birding