Sunday, January 25, 2009

Sunday Stills - Potluck

This week's Sunday Stills challenge was Potluck. Ed said to go out and play with your camera to see what you can come up with. We were out for an evening drive and I was loving the sunset colors that were reflecting in the water. I took quite a few that didn't turn out well at all, but was fairly happy with this one. I need to learn a whole lot more about shutter speed and night settings to get anything worthwhile, but it sure was fun playing with it.

I'm always trying to get decent pictures of wildlife and birds, but it's been tough to get a good shot. My problems tend to be that I can't get close enough and when I zoom in to far the pictures are blurry. I'm sure part of that's because I'm not using a tripod, but the lightening is also an issue for me. Here in the Pacific Northwest, bright days are few and far between, especially this time of year. Elk tend to come out to the open fields to feed at daybreak or at dusk. These pictures are taken in the early evening and there was still a bit of sunlight, though most of the bulls were in the shade.

This bird and her twin were visiting in my backyard recently. I'm not quite sure what she is, but think maybe a Thrush. My camera's got a pretty good zoom feature, but it seems like the color gets a bit washed out when I zoom in at times. Does anybody else have that problem?
Happy Sunday!


calicodaisy said...

Wow! Great photos of the wildlife, and I LOVE the Carpenters. -- Michele

Jeni said...

Don't go selling yourself short here, Paula! I happen to think you did a darned good job with all the photos you posted today. The sky shot -those colors were beautiful, at least to me. I really liked the whole scene there and with the elk too. But the bird -that one I really loved as the setting around it -it't showing the bird is quite well hidden and yet, not quite well enough cause you captured it! A very pretty shot though. Don't look for me to give advice on photography though as I don't know/understand diddly squat about how to do things correctly, much less improve them too!

gtyyup said...

That is really a lovely sunset photo with the ripples on the water...beautiful!!

The elk and the bird are also great. The elk remind me so much of when I lived in Vernonia. There are elk over here on the East side, but not in our back yard.

Nicely done!

Ed said...

Same here, don't sell yourself short the lake pic is fantastic! I don't know what kind of camera you use but id it is one with both optical zoom and digital zoom, stay away from the digital zoom (max zoom) it will cause distortion in the pic. LAter...Ed

Ed said...

p.s. The Carpenters song Superstar is one of my guilty pleasures.. :-)

Far Side of Fifty said...

You have water and it is not frozen, what a treat for the eyes! I really enjoyed the Elk Photos also! :)

Twisted Fencepost said...

Those are beautiful pictures!
I have the same problems as you. But I just go a new Nikon, so I'm having to learn a whole new camera.

Kelly said...

Beautiful it!

Flo said...

what great photos. I love seeing animals we don't have in Hawaii, and that's most of them :)

J9 said...

I love the sunset photo!

TC said...

The sunset photo is gorgeous.

You have a pretty common problem for the others, based, as you mentioned, on the time of day you are trying to take them. Most digital cameras today - even the $300-400 range - just aren't equipped with a good enough flash to filter the light at that time of day.

Despite that, the photos turned out good. The one of the bird might not be quite as sharp as you'd like it - mostly the color I mean - but it's still a very nice shot.

Tilly said...

Such a restful calming scene. Lovely photo's!

VioletSky said...

I'm still trying to manage my blurry zoom shots. And I need a tripod. And maybe some elk to photograph. I love the light on them.

Tipper said...

Paula-I think all of your photos are just great. Love the cutie pie bird.

Sherri said...

Wonderful pics. I am especially partial to the lake pic, but then you know Ilove the water...any kind of water...fresh or salt.

catieann said...

oh paula
hi sweetie those pictures are soooo beautiful!!!
I have missed you and now that I have uploaded to my blog it keeps crashing so i have no idea when it will be ok again i can't even get on it to fix whatever is wrong.
keep up the picture taking and stop being so critical
love you

Stacey's Treasures said...

Those elk pictures are realy good & I realy like the bird picture to. It seems like whenever I try to get a bird picture it just looks like a little dot.

Jodi Renshaw said...

Oh how I wish I had elk in my area. But I guess Moose and Deer will have to do. Maine used to have Elk ... and the state even tried to reintroduce them (a failed attempt). Anyway --- keep up the photography work ;)


Mary said...


You did a great job with these. I love the photo of the elk and also the birds. The sunset photo is superb.

Take care, my friend. Going now to catch up on other posts I've missed.


zingtrial said...

Nice pics.Thanks for sharing.You must have a good camera.
Wishing you All Best .

Adrienne said...

Hi Paula -
Thanks for sharing your photos with us. I love the sunset picture but the elk pictures made me 'homesick' for the Astoria area. I honestly believe I could move back there in a minute! (But not into my old house with 37 steps to the front door - this ol' gray mare ain't what she used to be!).

I share your frustration with lighting and the elements needed for Pacific Northwest photography at this time of year. I was frustrated with so many photo ops on our recent Oregon Coast trip. I need to work on things and learn more. And I have a tripod and a remote I haven't yet used! I'd better get it out and start using it. Can't wait to see more of your photos.