Experiment with iPhonography

20160204-007-2Faced with an interesting sky this (far too warm for the date) morning and no landscape lens for my camera I had to resort to “iphoneography” to capture the scene. I have to say that I was very pleasantly surprised by the quality of the result (photo taken using the ProCamera app and its HDR function). No comparison to a regular camera but when needs must … more than adequate for facebook anyway.


Apple iPhone6 camera – focal length 4.15mm – ISO 32 – 1/1000 sec – f.22

Easy living

20160131-001The water at the Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue rapids on the St-Lawrence river is always open during even the hardest winter (which this is not – so far) but today there were no ducks around … really a bit early for any returnees to drop by, but it’s always worth looking. At the end of the breakwater these two excellent seats have been provided for weary birders to take a rest.


Sony A7ii camera – Canon 24-105mm lens – focal length 80mm – ISO 100 – 1/400 sec – f5.6

Hunting

20160130-003 20160130-008A pair of photographs today – rather than just a “bird on a stick” this juvenile Cooper’s Hawk was alert and off on the chase in search of its next meal.


Canon EOS 7D camera – EF-L 300mm lens + 1.4x extender – ISO 800 – 1/1000 sec – f6.3

Down by the Waterside

20160118-004It’s cool today, not exceptionally (-11C) but there is a very strong wind from the west that lowers the effective temperature by another ten degrees. Just the day to go down to the riverside to see what things look like. Close followers of the Sparroworks ‘oeuvre’ will recognise certain views that I like to try again and again as the light is never the same twice. This afternoon the sun was settling at the end of the day and the light was warming up slightly to give this rather nice effect. Note the wind lifting the snow in the background.

Click image to see full size


 

Ancient and Modern

2014-04-08UK__141Two years ago, spring 2014, in Cambridge we came across a strikingly modern steel gate to the Fellows’ Garden of Clare College, accessible from “The Backs”. I did not like the juxtaposition of harsh new design with centuries old brick and flowers and hedges but was persuaded to take some photographs anyway. This one recently surfaced and this time, 3000+ miles away from the garden, I think I like it better today. Interesting.


 

A monochrome world

20160114-005It’s always nice in the forest but on very cold January days there is very little colour to catch the eye – in fact, it’s hard at times to take a photograph that doesn’t automatically come out in monochrome.  Note the sun – that’s about as high in the sky as it gets at this time of year.


Sony A7ii camera – Sony/Zeiss 35mm lens – focal length 35mm – ISO 100 – 1/800 sec – f5.6

Feeding the birds

20160114-003To avoid cabin fever in the winter it’s important to have plenty of outdoor jobs to do – and one of the jobs that the Sparroworks are engaged in is regularly filling feeders for birds around the corners of the Arboretum. While so engaged today the black and white of the snowy forest was brightened by this crab-apple tree that wil provide plenty of natural food for wildlife as the season progresses. A splash of colour.


 

Minus 23C

20160113-010-3A Collection of Waxwings. Out betimes, as the saying has it in temperatures of -11degC (windchill -23C) and bright sunshine. A small flock of Cedar Waxwings flew into the dense hedges around the fields east of the MBO site.  They seemed to be unconcerned about the noisy crunching as I approached on snowshoes, stopping every ten paces expecting them to fly off to take a photograph … but they worked out that I wasn’t a threat with those big things on my feet and so just sat there. Here’s one that allowed me to approach to about 20ft distance – I didn’t push it any more.  Lovely birds – winter birding is the best by far.

(Click image for full size)