Friday, April 29, 2011


Drama in the skies

A look at the skies in northern Illinois while storms and tornadoes battered the southern U.S. Spring is the time when the cold of winter is replaced by the warm of summer. It does not change peacefully, however.


Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Lights! Camera! Robins!

As the day closes

I heard a commotion near my front door about a week ago. A series of shrill warbles that sounded like a robin. Upon investigation, I found that a female had built a nest in a yew bush right outside the door at about eye level. I presume the commotion was to announce the laying of a clutch of four eggs.

Robin's egg blue

Not being one to waste an opportunity when it's handed to me, I've scouted various angles of view, planned placement of lights and cameras, and will document the robin family over the course of the next three or four weeks.

Mama's already gotten a taste of being in the limelight. The top picture looks as if it were taken in the late afternoon sun. Oh, no. Mid-day. Flash on a light stand ten feet away, zoomed and gelled to simulate late day sunlight and put a catchlight in mama's eye. White balance on camera adjusted to heighten the effect.

Mama took it all in stride. No prima robin she.


More to come.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Mmm ... nectar

Mmm ... nectar We both struggled to get what we wanted. I wanted a picture and the hummingbird wanted food. The bird came back to the feeder again and again, despite my presence just five feet away. I'd fire off a shot and scare the little guy off. He'd come back for his meal and we'd repeat. After I got a few shots worth keeping, I let the bird eat his fill. Bounced flash fired by wireless trigger.