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Bloggers Who Crow About Their Cameras

Tuesday, January 2, 2007

There ought to be a German word for bloggers who crow about their cameras. Germans are so good at those portmanteau words. Something like Kamerageliebterblogunpfaffers. We're here, we're crowing, get used to it. Arooka rooka rooo!
I was happily shooting away with my 70-300 mm. Canon zoom lens, getting some modestly good pictures. I was after a nice junco shot, because I always seem to be shooting down on juncos, and they look so dull against grass. My pictures make them look boring, instead of sweet but feisty, which they certainly are. So I was pleased to catch this little immature looking properly jazzy as it prepared to jump over to the suet dough feeder. I like the way that inner toe is holding to the branch--something I do in my drawings, too. I waited a long time, until my bluebirds finally showed up, and this was the best shot I got of one of the males. Is there anything prettier than a winter bluebird, all chubbed up on suet dough?
Like I said, I was happy, schlicking away at these birds. And Bill had to come and ruin it all by saying, "Zick! Try my lens! You'll love it!" His is the fancy-schmancy fixed 300 mm. Canon lens, that advertises itself by being a highbrow taupe color instead of black. And he has a doubler on it, so it's functionally a 600 mm. lens. You get better quality out of fixed lenses than zoom lenses. I knew that intellectually, but had not yet experienced it.
I said, "No, I'd rather not fall out of love with my lens just as I'm learning to use it, thank you." And he turned away and got all pouty because after all he was just being sweet and generous because that's all he ever is so I sighed and got up and got his giant lens and chonked it onto my camera and fell smack in love with the !@#@$#$%# thing just like I knew I would. As Emeril would say, "BAM! KICK IT UP A NOTCH!" Rats rats rats rats rats.
This cardinal isn't in the best focus (the camera kept focusing on the durn dough) but oh, what a pose. I mean, how lucky are we to have bluebirds, and these solid red grosbeaks in our yards to admire? The Europeans just swoon over our birds. Don't get me wrong--they have some brilliant birds over there, but most of them are brown. I'm trying to get a rise out of European Zick blog readers, if there are any out there. Think it's gonna work?

And then it happened--I was shooting away at a cardinal when he decided to leap down to the suet dish. He spread his wings, of course, and fluttered the rest of the way. But he definitely had a Nureyev moment. Boinggg! I loooove this picture. I'm sure professional bird photographers throw out shots like this all the time. I am so not a professional bird photographer. These are the ones I love most--the outtakes, because they tell me something I didn't know about birds. Imagine just flinging yourself out into space like that with your parachutes still folded. He looks like a little seahorse.




I heard a couple of nuthatches arguing off my left shoulder, and swung the camera around just in time to catch this little guy threatening another bird offstage. The hunched back, spread tail and drooped wings are nuthatch for GET LOST. Of course, next time I want to capture the bird with its wings fully spread. There will always be a next time, as long as there is bright morning sun and suet dough. Oh, my my. Yes, I am in love, a card-carrying Kamerageliebterblogunpfaffer. Apologies to the Germans. Zickefoose is a German name. Some of my favorite relatives are German.

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