My daughter and I, were just returning from dropping off my son a birthday party, and we were just getting out of the car and heading into the house.
As I was opening up the front door with my keys, I noticed out of the corner my eye something on the lawn, and a focused on the object.
I was startled to realize, that I was looking at an immature Red-tailed Hawk, standing in the middle my front yard, eating something.
I motioned to my daughter to get her attention, and then to be quiet, by putting my finger to my lips with one hand, and pointing to the direction of interest with my other hand.
Seconds later, there was this very quiet – “That’s cool!”
What was even more astonishing, was the bird did not seem to care at all about what was going on around it.
Cars drove up and down the street, people open and close doors, and dogs barked, which did draw some attention, but not what you would expect for a bird on the ground.
As Madison and I continued to look at the hawk, out of the corner of our eyes, we saw my wife’s vehicle coming down the hill, and as the van approached, Madison ran to warn my wife to be quiet.
I took this opportunity, to run into the house and grab my camera!
When I returned, Amy and Madison were watching the hawk, and I started to take pictures.
Again I was amazed with the docileness of the creature as it stood there and feed.
As I took more pictures, I soon realized that Madison had returned with her iPod, and was taking pictures, and I was able to direct her into taking pictures of me, taking pictures of the bird, and I soon returned the favor!
At one point, I was on my stomach, and I had crawled within about 8 feet of the hawk, with my 70-300 mm lens, and was able to get some really nice portraits of our bird.
After a few more minutes, I suggested that we go inside, and allow our friend to eat in peace.
As we walked into the house, Madison asked, “Can we call him ‘Mr. Hawking’?”
10/6/2012 – With some help from local bird photographers, Mike Mill, and his father, Mike Blue Mill, helped to identify this beautiful creature as an immature Red-tailed Hawk. One of the reasons that we were able to get so close was because it is so young, and does not know to fear humans.
As part of “Daddy Day Camp”, I took the kids up to Lionville Elementary School to practice their biking riding, in prep for taking off the training wheels.
We first started in the upper play ground, and after parking, I unloaded the bikes, and the kids were gone. I had to coach them a little, but with the follow-up tweaks after Sunday’s outing, both kids were doing much better.
Now I was able to grab my tripod and camera and set up for some shooting.
The wind was rather gusty, and was really nicely formed white clouds against a very deep blue sky, and I had my new filter… Tee hee! wink… wink…
With my first few shots, I felt like a complete amateur, because as I would set one thing that, I’d forget about something else, and the shot would be blown, but I got into a rhythm and finally began to click off some shots.
Long exposure 019 – Take of the intersection of Rt 113 and Devon Drive.
Long exposure 022 – Taken from the outfield of one of the Baseball diamonds.
Long exposure 024 – Taken of the Main School Building
Long exposure 035 – Tennis Practice
Most of these pictures were taken at ISO 100 f22 for 30 seconds to 1 minute, the tennis practice image was around 3 second, using the B+W 58mm 3.0 ND MRC 110M Filter.
At one point, I could hear Logan asking me why I was taking pictures of cars, as I set up for my shot looking north on Route 113 with the Devon Rd. intersection in the background.
He was very puzzled, and even more so, when I showed him the pictures later during proofing. The cars just disappeared!
While playing with my new filter, it became very apparent to me, that I was going to need to recalibrate my water shots, and how to do my HDR work with so much potential ghosting issues during processing.
But as they say no gain without pain.
So come back again, and see what new things I’ve done with this new filter of mine!