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Developing a style (1 Viewer)

I am not especially a birder.
First and foremost I am a photographer who has developed an interest in taking photos of birds- and small garden birds in particular. My reason for concentrating on garden birds is because I have mobility problems caused by a bone disease. This has prevented me from carrying a heavy camera and lens combination and even prevents me from sitting hunched up in a hide for long periods.
Having a passion for wildlife and not wanting to give up my photography, I decided to work out a system for taking photos of the common or garden birds that visited my small garden.
This blog is all about how I have, over time, established a system that works for me.
It is easy for me to set up, can be used in any lighting conditions and gives predictable results most of the time. What is more, it gives me the chance to try and be creative with my photography instead of simply taking record shots.
There are several elements to my system.
The first element is the use of a perch that I place next to a feeder, so that I know where the bird is going to land.
The next part of the system is the use of a remote shutter on the camera, allowing me to sit in the comfort of the conservatory with my feet up and still take close up photos. The camera is on a tripod. A zoom lens is used, more for framing than getting close to the bird, as I could easily move the camera closer if necessary.
Another important part of the system is my use of an artificial background. It consists of a poster sized print of out of focus foliage. I have several different ones and can change them at will as they are simply attached to a wooden board with bulldog clips.
The final, critical part of the system and the thing that really changed my success rate and enjoyment, is my use of flash to provide the lighting. I can take photos in any conditions with predictable results and can alter ratios for foreground and background, main light and fill as well as even using coloured gels to alter the background.
The other, most important reason for using flash is that it allows me to operate at high shutter speed whilst keeping the aperture small for depth of field and the ISO low for quality of image.
I will go into the complexities of the flash and exposure set ups in a later posting as, while not being unique, is not the usual method for using flash for bird photography.
I am now happy with my system and can concentrate on the bird as a subject instead of fretting over the complexities of exposure, lighting and subject movement.
Does it work?
I think so.
Here are a couple more photos taken with the system lately:-
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Anglesey Birder
Persistence or not, they are very beautiful images, a combination of patience and talent i would say. Keep up the good work!

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