GBP Notes 1/13/23

Anatomy of a GreatBirdPic

Emil Baumbach has posted hundreds of pictures on and not a clinker in the lot.  Every one has been sharp and crisp, often with a buttery background behind the bird.  However this time he surprised me with a completely different look.  Below is his most recent photo of a Snow Bunting.

What’s the first thing you notice – the rock or the bird?  My first reaction when shooting a picture like this would have been to crop it down to just the bird atop a small slice of the rock, but Emil chose to include as much of the rock as possible.  What a powerful image!  The Snow Bunting looks small and frail compared to the rock.  The rock has been there for millions of years and it reminds us that the bird’s life is fleeting in comparison.  Now observe the shape of the rock and the shape of the bird – they’re the same!  Notice the dead grasses in the bottom left of the frame.  It would have been easy to crop those out but look closer – they’re the same color as the bird, providing a balance on either side the rock.

Emil stepped out of his comfort zone to publish this picture as it is quite different from almost every other picture he’s ever shared with us.  That’s how we all can become better bird photographers – by seeing more than just the bird.


Click Here if you would like to learn more about GreatBirdPics.  Membership is free; members can post their own great bird pics,  create an online gallery of their works, and receive emails about bird photography and birding.

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That he makes the rock of Gibraltar look awfully small!