Bird Weekly Challenge #15: Birds with Green Feathers

Painted Buntings and Ruby Throated Hummingbirds are two of my favorite back yard birds. I’ve seen them daily for the last few days and managed to get a few captures of these gorgeous birds.

Female Painted Bunting in Wax Myrtle
Male Ruby Throated Hummingbird

Thank you Lisa. for this Bird Weekly challenge. Her original post is Bird Weekly Challenge #15 – Birds with Green Feathers.

Lens-Artists #110: Creativity in the time of Covid-19

This week, Tina has asked us to show creativity in the time of Covid-19.

I’ve tried my best to stay creative with my photography during this time. I’ve been experimenting with different photo techniques and some different editing effects.

One day in early spring I went out after a rain shower to take some photos. I wasn’t happy with them until I started playing around with different editing effects. This Mexican Sunflower photo was boring until I added a water color effect.

Watercolor Mexican Sunflower

I am usually on the ground looking up when I take pictures of hummingbirds. One day I sat on our deck looking down at the flowers and captured this Ruby Throated Hummingbird going from flower to flower. By shooting from above I was able to get the shots I wanted.

Ruby Throated Hummingbird

I’d like to thank the amazing Lens-Artists team of Tina, Amy, Anne-Christine, and Patti for giving me inspiration and keeping me motivated during this time.

Tina, thank you for this weeks Lens-Artists Photo Challenge – Creativity in the Time of Covid-19

Bird weekly Challenge #8 – Birds at the feeder

Although my backyard bird feeder in coastal Georgia attracts many varieties of birds, my favorites are the Painted Buntings. I keep the feeder filled with their favorite seeds all year round.

Male Painted Bunting
Female Painted Bunting at the feeder

I enjoy watching the Ruby Throated hummingbirds as they dart between the three hummingbird feeders and the flowers in the butterfly garden.

Ruby throated hummingbird at the feeder

Thanks you Lisa. for this challenge at Bird Weekly Challenge #8 – Birds at the Feeder

Lens-Artists #108: Sanctuary

This week, our guest host Xenia of Tranature has chosen Sanctuary for our challenge. She reminds us that “Sanctuary can be found and created in a garden, a park, a field of wild flowers and by the sea …… watching wildlife, listening to birdsong …… along the forest trails and in the mountains.” She has asked us to show where we find it or how we create our calm and healing.

America’s National Parks and Wildlife Refuges are national treasures and wonderful places to find sanctuary.

Pa-Hay-Otee Overlook in Everglades National Park
Pa-Hay-Otee Overlook in Everglades National Park
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Cypress Trees in the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge
Polychrome Overlook, Denali National Park, Alaska
Polychrome Overlook, Denali National Park, Alaska

Closer to home, I can find my sanctuary watching the sun rise over the Atlantic Ocean on one of Georgia’s barrier islands (image at the top of the page), walking on the beach, or watching the birds and butterflies in my backyard butterfly garden.

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Waiting for Tropical Storm Isaias

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Xenia, thank you for this weeks Lens-Artists Photo Challenge – Sanctuary

Lens-Artists #96: Cropping the Shot

This week, Patti has asked us “show how cropping helped to improve an image and create a desired effect.”

I enjoy wildlife photography and even though I usually use a zoom lens the animal or bird I am photographing is often too far away to get a good close up. I crop many of my wildlife photos in order to make the animal the focal point of the image.

Here is the before image of a Ruby Throated Hummingbird at a feeder. The hummingbird is the focal point of the shot but he is too far away to see his face clearly and there are too many distractions around him.

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Original Ruby Throated Hummingbird

After cropping the photo, I was able to get the desired effect of a closeup of the bird without all of a extra space around him.

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Cropped Ruby Throated Hummingbird Male

All this spring I’ve been watching a  pair of Painted Buntings who come by my feeder almost daily. This week was the first time I was able to get some photos of the female. In the original image she’s too far away and I didn’t like having the bird bath in the shot.

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Original Female Painted Bunting

After the crop, the female Bunting is the star of the show.

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Cropped Female Painted Bunting

The before picture of a Blanket Flower in my garden is ok, but the bricks and mulch take away from the vibrant colors of the flower.

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Original Blanket Flower

When I cropped the photo into a square, the colorful flower takes center stage.

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Cropped Blanked flower

Many thanks to Patti for this weeks Lens-Artists Photo Challenge – Cropping the Shot