To Photograph A Mockingbird

One of the more elusive visitors to the backyard feeders. This guy paused for a few photos before deciding that no amount of suet was worth risking an extended visit. Both shot with the vintage Minolta 500mm f/8 Reflex. Note the smoke ring-like circular bokeh in the second picture, a characteristic of this kind of lens that can either be really interesting or really annoying.

Mockingbird

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Mockingbird

Mockingbird

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Mockingbird

Backyard Bird Report – May 25, 2009

Gus (the guy over at swamplot.com who keeps “borrowing” content from baldheretic.com) has dubbed me the “Stay At Home Nature Photographer” which I suppose is in reference to the number of pics I take around the house of the birds and so forth. All in good fun, I’m sure.

This holiday weekend we had the usual suspects. House Finches, a mob of House Sparrows and numerous doves rule the day.

The Carolina Wren has been getting braver and braver, especially since we discovered his weakness for Orange Delight suet.

Mr Blue Jay continues to be elusive. He zips in and out pretty quickly. Seems awful skittish for such a well known bully of a bird.

In a revolting turn of events, a few lowly and undesirable Grackles have broken with the Westheimer tradition and have begun wandering into the residential areas and have found there way into our yard.

They seem to be raiding the neighbors dog food bowl and bringing the food to our birdbath for processing.

All of today’s shots were taken using the Sony 70-300G lens.

Technology Expert?

I was asked if I was available for an interview for ABC 13 for a segment on social networking. In the piece that aired on the 4:00 pm news I briefly explained the basics of Facebook and Twitter.

This aired on ABC
http://abclocal.go.com/ktrk/video?id=6814053

These are the extended interviews that did not make the air but are on the ABC 13 Web site:

http://abclocal.go.com/ktrk/video?id=6814048
http://abclocal.go.com/ktrk/video?id=6814050

Get Some Sleep And Dream Of Rock And Roll

Peter King of the Light Rock Express rolled up to the Continental Club in his latest acquisition, a 1978 Chevy Van RV. It was a surprise for the members of the band who took some time enjoying some cold Löwenbräu with their manager William S. Graham before their performance on Friday evening.

Chevy Van

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Chevy Van

Chevy Van

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Chevy Van

The first song the band played that evening came as no surprise whatsoever.

Fleetwood Mac @ The Toyota Center

After the Geek Gathering I wandered over to the Continental Club where I ran into Chris Gray, the music dude for The Houston Press. He asked if I was free on Saturday as he needed someone to shoot the Fleetwood Mac concert @ The Toyota Center. I told him I was available and he asked if I had a “long lens” because the photographers were going to have to shoot from the soundboard which is a pretty good distance from the stage.

My longest concert lens is my Tamron 70-200mm f/2.8 which works out to be about 300mm on my crop sensor Sony Alpha 700. I told him I would give it a try.

When I arrived @ The Toyota Center there were two other photographers, one with a Canon and a 400mm f/2.8 and another with a Nikon connected to a 300mm f/2.8 and each was armed with a monopod, something I have not yet invested in.

We were escorted to the soundboard before the show started and I was a little disheartened at the distance from the stage which was about 3/4 of the way to the back of the floor seats.

This shot was taken @ 70mm and gives you an idea of the distance

Fleetwood Mac

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Fleetwood Mac

Yea, it was back a ways. I shot the show fully extended at 200mm without the benefit of a monopod. Thank you built in image stabilization from Sony!

Stevie Nicks

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Stevie Nicks

Stevie Nicks

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Stevie Nicks

Stevie Nicks

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Stevie Nicks

Lindsey Buckingham

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Lindsey Buckingham

Lindsey Buckingham

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Lindsey Buckingham

Lindsey Buckingham

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Lindsey Buckingham

Not bad, but I would have liked to have been closer, or had a lens with more reach and a monopod. Just not sure

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