May 6th, 2016 – Avian Friday: Western Gull

Some of the more common birds are easy to take for granted or pass off as being not very interesting. Sea Gulls here in the Pacific Northwest are no exception, but if you take closer look at them you might notice some of the differences in the numerous species. A couple of the most common around the Seattle waterfront are the Western and Herring Gulls. I was out this weekend testing out a new lens and this guy was kind enough to provide a couple of poses.

Western Gull (Larus occidentalis)

Seattle, Washington
200mm | 1/4000th Sec. @f/5.6 | ISO 125

Sony A7+ Nikkor 200/2 Ais

Processed with Lightroom CC, Photoshop CC, Nik ColorEfx.

To see a larger version please click on the image.

Feel free to comment below if you like what you see or have any other observations.

Thanks for stopping by,

JayT

April 29th, 2016 -Avian Friday: Beach Comber

This weeks bird is one you’re only likely to  find along Pacific Northwest beaches or shorelines of  lakes and ponds. When not resting along the shoreline, Sanderlings are often chasing breaking waves along the shallows of sandy beaches in search of small prey exposed by the receding waters.These medium sized sandpipers  usually stick to flocks of about a dozen birds. This one ventured out in front of the rest of his group which allowed me a chance to get an isolated shot of him.

Sanderling (Calidris alba )
Seattle, Washington

Canon 1DX, EF 500/4L IS USM + 2X Rear Extender/Monopod

100mm | 1/250th Sec. @f/8| ISO 2000

Processed with Lightroom CC, Photoshop CC, Nik ColorEfx.
To see a larger version please click on the image.

Feel free to comment below if you like what you see or have any other observations.

Thanks for stopping by,
JayT

April 22nd, 2016 – Avian Friday: Buffy’s On Her Way

I haven’t found time yet this spring to get out for some new bird images. Just another shot from the archives this week. A little female Bufflehead jetting across a local urban slough. These guys get real skittish whenever they sense people are around.

Female Bufflehead (Bucephala albeola)

Bellevue, Washington
700mm | 1/800th Sec. @f/6.3 | ISO 640

Canon 1DX+ Canon EF 500/4L IS USM + 2X Rear Extender

Processed with Lightroom 4, Photoshop CS6, Nik ColorEfx.

To see a larger version please click on the image.

Feel free to comment below if you like what you see or have any other observations.

Thanks for stopping by,

JayT

April 15th, 2016 – Avian Friday: Giveth or Taketh Away?

It’s that time of the year again and I hope all of you survived Tax Day and got your returns finished. I filed just yesterday and was pleasantly surprised and relieved that we don’t owe the IRS. 🙂 Maybe one of these years I’ll get mine done earlier to avoid the anxiety. It’s also almost time of the year for Bald Eagle season here in the Pacific Northwest. Next month I’ll be making at least a couple of trips over to town of Seabeck on Hood Canal to capture a few images like this one.

Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus Leptocephalus )

Seabeck, Washington

Canon 1DX, EF 500/4L IS USM + EF 1.4X Rear Extender/Hand-held

700mm | 1/8000th Sec. @f/5.6| ISO 1000

Processed with Lightroom CC, Photoshop CC, Nik ColorEfx.
To see a larger version please click on the image.

Feel free to comment below if you like what you see or have any other observations.

Thanks for stopping by,
JayT

April 8th, 2016 – Avian Friday: Painted Predator

This weeks post again has something a little different from the usual  bird photograph. Those of you who are regular viewers know that I’ve tried to  expand my photography to include a more artistic  techniques. Recently as well as painting, I’m experimenting with mono printing using a gelatin plate instead of a printing press. I scanned  a couple of images of the prints and layered with different blending modes in an iPad program to use as a background for the  image of a Northern Harrier. There are ton of options to be explored with this technique and I’ve also got some ideas for incorporating woodwork.

Northern Harrier (Circus cyaneus)

Stanwood, Washington

700mm | 1/1600th Sec. @f/6.3 | ISO 1250
Canon 5D Mark III+ Canon EF 500/4L IS USM + 1.4X Rear Adapter

Processed with Photoshop Touch,  Filterstorm for iPad, Photoshop CC, Acrylic paint.
To see a larger version please click on the image.

Feel free to comment below if you like what you see or have any other observations.
Thanks for stopping by,
JayT

April 1, 2016 – Avian Friday: Goldie Art

Week before last I posted a shot of an American Goldfinch and mentioned I might attempt a watercolor painting  of the bird. I wasn’t too thrilled with my first attempt, but this second one I think  might be worthy of presenting. I may try painting a few more other birds in the future  as they are fun subjects and can be a bit of a challenge.

American Goldfinch (Spinus tristis)

<em>140lb Fluid Cold Press Watercolor paper/Processed with Photoshop CC </em>

To see a larger version please click on the image.

Feel free to comment below if you like what you see or have any other observations.

March 25th, 2016 – Avian Friday: Snow Geese

Going back over some older images from the archives this week. Some of the birds I never made it out to photograph this season are the Snow Geese that migrate through Skagit Valley. They travel in large flocks and stop to graze the open grass farm lands in and around the Fir Island area.
Here is a shot of a single bird to show a little more detail of what they look like close up. I’ve also included one of my favorite shots of a flock that was captured from an earlier previous outing as they flew directly overhead on their way back to their evening resting place across Skagit Bay.

Snow Geese (<em>Chen caerulescens </em>)

Fir Island, WA
500mm | 1/80th Sec. @f/13 | ISO 160 | Hand held

Canon 1D Mark III+ Canon EF 500/4L IS USM vI

Fir Island, WA
24mm | 1/4000th Sec. @f/8 | ISO 400 | Tripod

Canon 40D + Olympus Zuiko 24mm/f2.8

Processed using LR CC, Photoshop CC, Nik Define & ColorEfx

To see a larger version please click on the image.

Feel free to comment below if you like what you see or have any other observations.

Thanks for stopping by,

JayT

March 18th, 2016 – Avian Friday : Goldie

I’m  a little late with this weeks post, but lately I’ve been devoting a fair amount of time to get back into sketching and painting; something I did a lot of while in college, but in my professional career have gotten away from. Recently I viewed a painting tutorial that used a Goldfinch as the subject. It reminded me of some of the images I had previously taken, as well as some I’d wished I’d captured. In the coming weeks I might also give that a try in watercolor. Until then here is one of my Goldfinch shots from a while back.

American Goldfinch (Spinus tristis)

Redmond, Washington 
700mm | 1/3200th Sec. @f/5.6 | ISO 400
Canon 1D MkIII+ Canon EF 500/4L IS USM + 1,4X Rear Extender

Processed with Lightroom CC, Photoshop CC , Nik Define & ColorEfx Pro.

To see a larger version please click on the image.

Feel free to comment below if you like what you see or have any other observations.

March 11th, 2016 – Avian Friday: Air Angler

The Black Skimmer is quite a fascinating bird to watch, especially when they are actively hunting. They glide just a few inches above bodies of water while dragging their unique bills below the surface to scoop up small baitfish.  I’m working on a submission for panoramic images and thought this one might be a potential candidate. I’ve transformed it with some digital artistic effects to make it more interesting.

Black Skimmer  (Rynchops niger )

Huntington Beach, California

Canon 1D Mark III, EF 500/4L IS USM/Hand-held

500mm | 1/1600th Sec. @f/5| ISO 320

Processed with Lightroom CC, Photoshop CC, Nik ColorEfx, Filterstorm for iPad.
To see a larger version please click on the image.

Feel free to comment below if you like what you see or have any other observations.

Thanks for stopping by,
JayT

March 4th, 2016 – Avian Friday: Bald Eagle

Another Bald Eagle image this week, this one is from a couple of seasons back.  Normally we are shooting away from the shaded spot of the tree landing perches so it really difficult to suddenly change exposure settings on the fly to swing back around and capture them landing in the trees. That’s one of the big benefits of shooting in RAW format, in that you have a much greater latitude to adjust the exposure in post-processing. One of the very useful features in Lightroom is the adjustment brush. In this shot I used it to lighten the shadow area on the bird first before making a global adjustment to brighten the entire image. I wanted to keep the overall shaded image of the background while making  the shadow portion of the bird visible and without sacrificing all the highlight detail on the Eagle as well. In a couple more months it will be time to shoot these guys again and I’m definitely looking forward to it.

Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus Leptocephalus )

Seabeck, Washington

Canon 1DX, EF 500/4L IS USM/Hand-held

500mm | 1/2500th Sec. @f/5| ISO 320

Processed with Lightroom CC, Photoshop CC, Nik ColorEfx.
To see a larger version please click on the image.

Feel free to comment below if you like what you see or have any other observations.

Thanks for stopping by,
JayT