Highland’s Pony

Critters, Landscape 2 Comments »










A Feral Pony in the Grayson Highlands of Southwest VA

Feral Pony

Critters, Landscape 2 Comments »

A Feral Pony in the Grayson Highlands State Park of Virginia.

Ebony Jewelwing

Critters, Macro 1 Comment »

I believe this to be an Ebony Jewelwing Damselfly.  In comparison to Dragonflies, Damselflies normally have a very narrow abdomen and while at rest their wings tend to lay together just above the abdomen (as this one did, however I captured this image just before it took flight).  Damselflies also have eyes that are far apart, while Dragonflies have eyes that normally touch.

Bird’s Eye

Critters, Landscape 1 Comment »

A bird’s eye view from atop the Empire State Building in New York City.

Garden Spider

Critters, Macro, Photography Tips 3 Comments »

I believe this big spider is referred to as a Yellow Garden Spider.  Found on a Holly bush on my front porch.

Photography Tip: I shoot most of my macros with a Tamron 90mm f/2.8.  However, if you are interested in shooting close-ups, but would like to try a less expensive route, then you might want to get a reversing ring for your 50mm lens.

The above shot was done with a Nikon 50mm f/1.8 lens and a BR-2A reversing ring.  The lens attaches to the ring (where a filter normally goes) and then the ring mounts on the camera, making the lens backwards.  This gives you about 1:1.1 magnification for approximately $150 total (lens plus the ring).  There are some downsides though…

You must manually adjust your aperture, and there is also a fixed focal point.  So in order to focus you must physically move the camera closer or farther from the subject, making focusing difficult with an obvious very narrow depth of field.  Finally, you must also get very close to your subject.  In the above photo, I was just a couple inches from the spider…  the image has not been cropped.

Playin’ Chicken

Critters No Comments »

These three ducks were “playing chicken” with oncoming traffic.  Fortunately none were hurt, and after posing for this photo they retreated back to the pond.

Bumble Bee

Critters, Flora, Macro 1 Comment »

A Bumble Bee flying over a white Azelea.

This was a tough capture.  I closed the aperture to f/13.0 so I’d have a better chance to getting the bee in focus, and then I raised the ISO to 800 to ensure a very fast shutter speed.  The rest of it was pure luck.

Blond Groundhog

Critters 47 Comments »

I’ve seen a lot of groundhogs over the years, but this blond one is a first for me. There are actually two of them (both with very light colored fur) that live on a hillside right outside of my office window. I estimate this one is about 20 inches tall when standing on its hind legs. I’m curious if anyone else has seen a groundhog with blond fur like this one?

Hunting Insects

Critters 4 Comments »

I was able to photograph this Eastern Bluebird today as it was hunting insects in mid-flight. The image is cropped from quite a distance (using 200mm focal length, and 400 ISO) so the quality suffered a bit. Regardless, I thought it was interesting in that I captured the image a split second before the Bluebird captured the insect.

Photo details: Nikon D80, Nikon 18-200mmVR lens @ 200mm, f/6.3, 1/2500 sec. shutter, 400 ISO.

Taking Flight

Critters 50 Comments »

I’m not very good with bird identification, but I believe this is a Blue Heron.  I found him sitting near a snow-covered, frozen pond in Unicoi, Tennessee.  When I got within 20 yards or so he took off, not leaving me much time to adjust camera settings.  If I had been prepared, I would have increased the ISO in order to have an even quicker shutter speed.  I may try to find this little guy again tomorrow, and give it another try.

Photo details: Nikon D80, Nikon 18-200mmVR lens @ 200mm, f/5.6, 1/400 sec. shutter, 100 ISO.  I also increased the contrast in post-processing.