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JakeKurdsjuk
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AmandaJayne February 12, 2016
Stunning capture , welcome to view bug
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wendyclee February 12, 2016
Join the conversation. Add a comment or even better, a critique. Let's get better together!
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wendyclee February 12, 2016
Beautiful shot
 
carolt55 February 12, 2016
Absolutely beautiful , outstanding shot. Welcome to viewbug !
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Frozen_Time March 25, 2016
Superb capture.
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thunderlake March 26, 2016
Amazing
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Shelly-MichelleM143 March 26, 2016
Incredible shot!
 
louisedavey March 26, 2016
unbelievable
 
JDLifeshots March 30, 2016
"Meals on Wings"! Great capture and Congrats.
 
photographybug April 25, 2016
One of my fav's!!! Rare shot because these little birds are fast!!!!!
 
LLPell April 30, 2016
What an amazing shot!
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Cheever2 May 01, 2016
Congratulations! Amazing shot.
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JoanLoBo May 06, 2016
How long did you have to sit and wait for this one?
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pauladubin May 06, 2016
They don't came in better than this one. What a shot. Congratulations on well deserved ward.
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JakeKurdsjuk May 07, 2016
My apologies for not being around and thanking all of you in a timely fashion. I'm thrilled, and very humbled by your comments.
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edrobson June 16, 2016
Such a cool shot.
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beckykempf July 18, 2016
Wow! Amazing!
 
hollyhaskell July 26, 2016
Awesome !
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ecmguy September 08, 2016
Congrats on the finalist, brother... Such a gem of a shot, and I'm happy to see it get recognized!
 
s05CREATIONS September 09, 2016
congrats..superb shot
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billgeo October 27, 2016
Great Photo.
 
nikhiljahagirdar November 18, 2016
Amazing taken.What a moment
 
julie_cavell December 12, 2016
Outstanding image love it..
 
diveshmenon December 13, 2016
Superb!
 
SonyaL January 05, 2017
I love all the colors and the meaning behind the picture. You did a fantastic job on this picture.
 
Elizabeth_H April 16, 2017
Fantastic! Wow!
 
Richie83A September 05, 2017
great shot. Perfect timing, well done
 
Nayeefa September 17, 2017
O my God! Hats off!!
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Julesm2012 April 08, 2018
Absolutely amazing photo!!!
 
DNproSTUDIO October 18, 2018
nice shoot , good moment shoot
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IreneNo October 21, 2018
Absolutely incredibly amazing. It’s jaw dropping for sure
 
keepclicking November 12, 2018
Absolutely stunning picture. Be very proud. Congratulations

Breakfast To Go



Views

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Awards

Contest Finalist in Anything Birds Photo Contest
Contest Finalist in Wildlife Babies Photo Contest
Member Selection Award
Contest Finalist in Freshmen 2016 Photo Contest Vol 2
Featured
Spring Selection Award
Contest Finalist in Freshmen 2016 Photo Contest
Contest Finalist in Image Of The Month Photo Contest Vol 7
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Peer Award
Absolute Masterpiece
Superb Composition
Magnificent Capture
+82
Top Choice
+72
Superior Skill
+49
Outstanding Creativity
+42
All Star
+7
Genius
Virtuoso

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New User Photo of the Week Photo Contest Vol 75 Top 30 class

Behind The Lens

Location
This photo was taken just off the deck on our house. I named my photography business Backdoor Arts because a huge portion of what I shoot is literally just out my back door, with much of the rest being very local to home.
Time
The shot was taken a couple hours after sun up. There were 5 bluebirds in the clutch and 3 had fledged the night before. The father came knocking early the next morning hoping to collect the last two and reunite the family. Poppa never landed, he simply showed the baby what he had and went back to the tree to try and lure him out. It worked.
Lighting
Thankfully the morning was a little overcast because had it been sunny then the background would have been awash with light while the birdhouse and the area where the bird is flying would have been in shadows. It caused my ISO to run a little higher than I would have liked, but I've found that when you get "the shot" no one notices the noise. Overcast days can be your friend.
Equipment
I put my Sony a6000 on a tripod and set it up to lean up against the deck rails so it had a perfect view of the box from about 2 feet away. I used a Vello wireless remote set BULB. It has 4 settings including multi-shot, but I found that with the camera in Continuous shooting mode using bulb acts just like holding your finger on the shutter button so instead of getting 3fps I get the camera maximum, which in this case was 10 or 11. I also used a webcam wired to a laptop where I was sitting so I could see when a bird was in the hole. When I saw a parent flying in from a nearby tree I just started firing. Yes, spraying and praying. I apologize. The first baby out actually landed on the a6000 and, um, let's just say it left a deposit on the top. I'm happy to say it's baby bird poop proof, and you know what they say about luck after getting pooped on. I also had a Nikon D7100 with a synchronized clock set up with a 70-200mm on a tripod in front that was triggered by the same remote, so I have this same shot from another angle. Unfortunately the Sony does not record milliseconds in continuous mode, so when I attempted to sort the images together in Lightroom all the shots taken during the same second by the Sony sorted in a random order making connecting paired images quite a pain.
Inspiration
We absolutely love watching the birds in the yard, and these bluebirds come back to the same box every year. For years we'd get one or two clutches but for two years in a row while they laid eggs the eggs either never hatched or the nest was raided. This group of five fared very well, and since the last group of survivors I'd completely upgraded my photography equipment. Normally we'd sit on the deck and wait for one to pop out and fly away (they usually pop onto the deck first). This year I decided to put the camera equipment to work to catch their maiden voyage. Turns out they didn't like the sound of the shutter at first, and I suspect we may have delayed their launch by a day. We sat watch starting on Friday afternoon. This shot was taken Monday morning, so I put my time in on this one.
Editing
I shoot RAW almost exclusively so there's always post-processing. I use Lightroom and Photoshop for all of it, and will invoke the Nik Collection and other filters from there. I start in Lightroom, applying lens distortion, camera profile, and chromatic aberration correction on import. Then I do my Camera Raw adjustments and send it to Photoshop for the heavy lifting. I relied on Nik Viveza 2 a lot, if I recall, because the lighting was uneven in the original - the baby was dark, the parent and the flowers were brighter. Nik's control points made selective adjustment easier. It was very easy to cross the border to ridiculously oversaturated with the universal adjustments, and I still occasionally look at this and feel like I may have crossed over the edge just a bit. I try to stay away from generic presets. I know I used the Detail Extractor in Nik Color Efex Pro 4, as well as Tonal Contrast. I'd only been shooting with the a6000 for a couple months at that point and I suspect that I'd work a lot differently if I set about reprocessing it today.
In my camera bag
I'm primarily a Nikon shooter. My main bodies are the D750 and D500, plus a D800 that I sent to Kolari Vision for a 720nm Infrared conversion (I love shooting IR). What I have in my bag depends a lot on where I'm going and what I'm shooting. If I don't know then you'll often find me with a 24-120mm f4 on the D750 and a 70-200mm f4 on the D500, which has me ready for anything. I also have the 16-35mm f4 completing the zoom trinity. Since getting it the Nikkor 300mm f4 PF has been living on my D500 as a birding lens, sometimes with a 1.4x or 1.7x TC added. People justifiably rave about the 2.8 lenses, but the fact of the matter is that current sensors are so good that I'll take the reduction in size, weight, and cost on the series of F4's over their big brothers, and believe that when viewed on a computer screen on a website 9 out of 10 people advising folks to buy the "better glass" wouldn't know the difference. I also have a trio of Nikkor f1.8g primes (24, 50 & 85mm), and I'm a big fan of Sigma glass and carry the 15mm fisheye, 24-35mm f2.0, 105mm f2.8 macro, and 150-600mm Sport lens as needed.
Feedback
To capture something like this you need to first know your equipment and your subject. I could have sat with a camera in my hand for 3 days staring at this and never come close to this shot. In fact, my physical presence alone would have made it impossible given that this was shot through deck rails at 2 feet. Shooting the other direction would have gotten me the birds but not the backdrop, and I don't think deck rails and a grill would have served as well. As for the subject, we become one with these bluebirds when they nest. They get used to us, and we help them by removing the feeders we normally keep on the deck so they don't have to worry about predatory birds and squirrels as much. Had I not experimented with the triggers I never would have known I could trigger in continuous as I did, or use a "Nikon trigger" on a Sony camera for the cost of a cable. If you know those two things then it's a matter of putting your camera in the right place an waiting. The rest is a lot of luck and willingness to be there when the action happens. It's like going to Yosemite for 3 days with hopes of getting that perfect "Tunnel View" shot and showing up a noon every day. I sat on the deck for almost 3 full days, squeezing off about 7000 images from two cameras in that time to get this one (yes, there were some other keepers, but this stands above the rest). Even when you do everything right you're going to strike out 2/3 of the time because that's just the way it is. But you've still got to show up, because you can never get a "lucky shot" when you're not there. And I should add, you don't always have to "go somewhere" to get a good shot. Sometimes you just need know how to get your subject to come to you. I've lived in this house for 24 years and in that time my wife, who is an avid birder, has managed to attract almost 100 species of birds to our little 1/2 acre corner of the world. Every April a photo site I belong to does a Big Month seeing how many migratory birds we can capture in 30 days, and the last 2 years I finished second and third without ever stepping off my deck. And having a partner there with you makes the long waits for "the shot" a little easier - especially when they can also act as a spotter.

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