Me and My Shadow

Put Yourself In the Best Light

Catching a bird in the best light is an important part of taking Great Bird Pics.  One easy technique I use to put myself in a good position to capture the bird in good lighting is to look at my shadow.  I know it sounds silly, but at times when out on the trail I lose track of where the sun is – I’m concentrating on looking for birds and get turned around during that process.  So I glance down and look for my shadow.  If I can see it, the lighting is behind me so the bird is getting illuminated from the front – good lighting for the shot.  Ideally, my shadow should be long (sunrise or sunset) and pointing right at the bird.  If my shadow is 45° to the right or left of center the lighting can still be pretty good as long as the bird looks toward the shadow (looking away from the shadow casts the head and body in shadow).  If my shadow is more than 45° from center I try to reposition myself to get better lighting on the bird.  If my shadow is behind me then I’m shooting into the sun, creating a backlit situation in which it is tough to get a good shot of the bird.
Next time you’re out and about, check out your shadow and adjust your position to maximize the lighting on your subject.
Stay Safe.  Go Birding.  Take Pics.  Share Here.  Repeat.

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