Catching The Hummingbird

Finally Capturing The Hummingbird

This spring I bought a hummingbird feeder with the though of bringing a couple into my yard. Of course the only time the thing was emptied was when a squirrel knocked it out of the tree. The shot above was made with a lot of luck involved. I made it last night just before the sun went too low to make any good images. Earlier in the day I had my camera and setup on the same flower hoping for a bee or a monarch to fly onto the flower. That did not happen. Then while playing with the kids in the backyard I saw this hummingbird fly over to the flower. I ran back into the house to grab my gear that was already set up. I set the shot up again hoping that the hummingbird would return. When it did I was beside myself. How lucky was this! The shot is far from perfect, but it is a good start. Now that I have a plan I can tweak it to get better shots. By the way football season cannot get here soon enough.

The Settings

This is the easy part. Because I was using my ring light I was only able to go as high as 1/200th of a second with my shutter speed. Normally to stop something as fast as a hummingbirds wings I would need to be much higher. The flash stops the action for the most part though for me. My ISO was at 500 and I shot at f/10. I knew that I wanted more than just the flower area in focus so I chose f/10. A shallower depth of field would look nicer, but my odds of making a successful picture would decrease as well. For the first attempt f/10 sounded about right.

The Setup

For this shot I had my Canon 5D Mark IV with my Canon 100mm macro mounted to it on my tripod. On the front of the macro lens I attached my ring light. I used this setup for the water droplet photos, and it worked very well. I used my pocket wizards to fire the camera remotely. I then sat back a ways and waited for the right moment. The setup was one little part of the equation, and luck was the majority of it. I only picked this flower because it looked the best out the flowers that are currently in bloom.

A Big Thank You

This month was the best July in the history of this blog. In fact it is the best summer month ever on the blog. There was a time when the blog numbers were a big deal to me. I would live and die by how it did. Over the course of the last year or so I have just come to enjoy the blog as something for me. It is much more fun to write, and I really have a good time keeping it up. I love to write nearly as much as I love making photos so it makes sense. When I do have a good day or month though I really am happy to have people reading. It makes it much easier to write if I think that there is an audience out there. So once again thank you for a great July!

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