The Gippy Pages


Lil' Miss Hummingbird

Feb 15, 2010 | Photography | By Shawn Parker

My uncle pointed out a hummingbird nest out front today and in typical obsessive fashion I just had to get a decent shot of the little gal. Little being the operative word here. I don’t think she was more than 6″ in length. Shooting through the window produced less than desirable results so I headed outside to get a closer look.

She saw me coming and bolted. So, I took a chance and got myself in to the best position I could and waited for her to return. I set up my GorillaPod to work help brace the camera on my arm and my chest since I knew that I’d be shooting slow because this was in the shade. She must have felt sorry for me ‘cause she came back and actually tolerated my little moves to get different angles. She actually let me move in to about 1.5 meters (the only reason I know this is because its the minimum focus distance on my 70-200) which allowed me to use the house as a brace to augment the GorillaPod and get a nice stable look at her.

I had to push the ISO to 800 to get anywhere near a hand-holdable shot, but I have to say that I keep being amazed at how well this old 20D is holding up. The grain here is not bad and actually kind of reminds me of film. It gives the shot a nice feeling. Now, if only someone would release a nice film-grain plugin for Aperture I’d be tickled pink, but that’s another story.

Lesson of the day: be patient, don’t be afraid of using a high ISO, and use what ya got for stabilization.

Tagged as: gorillapod, hummingbird, nest, photography, wildlife