Monday, October 8, 2012

The One That Got Away

If you have ever talked to a fisherman, you know they are an enthusiastic bunch.  They'll talk endlessly about anything related to fishing.  This bait. That lure. How to properly use a noodlerod (there is such thing, by the way. It is not to be confused with a lasagna rod - that has not been invented yet). 

Any how, as I'm sure you know, they are prone to talk about "the one that got away."  It always seems to be so damned big, too. It is never an average fish.  Always state-record size, or even World-record size. Hell, maybe Universe-record size, if such a thing existed.  But no matter what, *big* seems to be the common denominator between all fish stories exaggerated.

So today, I opted to bow out of the hawkwatch and walk the trails with my finicky camera in hand (that is a story for another time).  With swarms of Yellow-rumped Warblers on the trails, I was hoping to snag another good pic or two.  Exactly 2 years ago tomorrow, I snagged one of my best photos ever.  One can always hope to top it, right?

I found myself more or less in the center of a good-sized flock.  Butterbutts (the Yellow-rumped Warbler nickname) were numerous while a few other birds were mixed in.  One was a Black-capped Chickadee. With a swing of the camera lens and the hammer of the shutter button, I confirmed that photographers and fishermen have some things in common.....

....the target of the day can get away......but they don't have to be big.....

All in all, this is a fair photo in my opinion.  Nice shades of green in the background mix well with the red leaves. The bird has a bit of dynamic pose while he stares me down.  Okay, you can see his little pooper, so maybe that is not so exciting to some.  But it works for the most part.

So was is the problem?

Depth of field. Damn it. It will get you every time.  

If you look close, the parts that should be focus, aren't.  The eye. The beak. The head, in general.  The body is in focus, but the tail and head aren't.  Honestly, tails don't matter to most.  But, damn, the head.  It is too soft.  

Between the three major parts seen - head, body, and tail - the head is the most important of the three. If the others were fuzzy but the head was crisp and sharp, I would be so much more happy. As it is, his butt is in focus, but not his eye.  

So, after enjoying my walk and checking out my photos here at home, I realizedI now have my own "one that got away" story.  Except it is not a giant fish from the deep.  It is a little black and white seed-eater showing me his butt.

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