Top 10 of 2016 (#9)

This is Number 9 of my Top 10 images from 2016.  I should probably add that these 10 images are really a combination of my best and my favorites for the past year.  In other words, they may not all be technically "correct", at least photographically speaking, but I really like them.  My hope is that by looking back at images from the previous years, that I see some improvement.  This is a creative journey.  It's not about a destination, but rather all the memories that are created along the way.  That is the most important thing to remember.  

We always enjoy watching the hummingbirds right outside the kitchen window every summer.  It seems there are never fewer than about 20 of them that hang around, and there are likely more than that.  Each year, I've tried photographing these little speed demons, and have been able to capture some pretty good images of them perched on the feeder or a nearby branch.  Capturing them while in flight is a whole new ball game.  

For this image, I set up about 15 feet away from the feeder and just watched as they darted from a nearby tree, to the feeder, and back again.  They are constantly chasing each other and protecting 'their' territory, so you need to be quick on the draw and have the camera settings dialed in.  I wanted to capture a hummingbird as a silhouette against the sunset sky, so that was my goal.  The shutter speed had to be relatively fast to freeze the bird, but I wanted to show some movement in the wings.  It seems to have worked out, from what I can tell.

Technical Details (in case you're interested):

  • Focal length: 200 mm
  • Shutter speed: 1/500th of a second
  • Aperture: f/10
  • ISO: 1,000

Cleared for Landing