I spent several days guiding photographers this week, two days on the Jones Alta Vista Ranch and two at the Laguna Seca Ranch. I’ll be sharing what I think are unusual photos from both places, but today I’m starting with two photos I took of a Green Jay at the Laguna Seca.
I clipped and set up a native vegetation perch I thought would attract Green Jays and other local birds. As the sun sank lower into the sky, the grassy field in the far background behind the perch glowed shades of light gold and green.
The bird appeared out of the brush and jumped down onto the perch, facing away from us. Excited about the photo opportunity but not thrilled with the bird facing away, I made a few images. Suddenly, the jay seemed to notice the sound of the shutters and it cast a glance our way. The magic happened and the composition came to life.
My only real challenge is deciding which photos I liked best. Here are my two favorites; let me know which you like best and why. Remember to click on the images to see the full version of the photos!
A Green Jay looks back over its shoulder toward the photographers.
A Green Jay faces away from the photographers, showing the color of its head.
I was photographing in misty, drizzly weather at the Laguna Seca Ranch Friday morning. A Long-billed Thrasher came along and, from below, eyed a cactus near the water hole. I aimed at the top of the pads, hoping I’d catch the right moment. As it leapt up I fired away. When I saw the results, the bird’s pose reminded me of Darth Vader but with the wrong color cape and eyes. Click on the image to see the entire photo.
Darth Vader, is that you?
As I was photographing this Great Kiskadee on the Laguna Seca Ranch, a Golden-fronted Woodpecker landed on the dead snag the kiskadee had been using as a fishing spot. When the kiskadee returned and touched down on its perch, the woodpecker didn’t want the company. The wet kiskadee had to fly off to find another place to dry. Be sure to click on the photo to see the entire image!
Confrontation – two’s a crowd!