Karma's When I Feel Like It Blog

November 11, 2011

Best of, Part 1

Filed under: For the Birds,Photo assignments — Karma @ 6:08 pm
Tags: , , , , ,

Scott’s assignment for this month is to show off your “best” photos of the last year (from Nov.1, 2010 to Oct. 31, 2011).  Like Kathy of Lake Superior Spirit, I think I’m going to have to be a bit of a rule-breaker this time around.  I’ve spent quite a bit of time going through my archives from the last twelve months, trying my best to narrow down.  Scott said he was looking for a minimum of 3 photos, but that we could share as many as we wished.  So maybe I’m not really rule-breaking all that much, but like Kathy, I’ve decided to do a few posts on the subject.  To keep it interesting, I’ve categorized my favorites and will do a post for each category.  I believe I’ve shared the majority of these with you already, but maybe some will be new to some of you, and at the very least forgotten about by some of you regular readers.

My first category I’m sharing is Birds.  Through the various feeders in my yard, and birding opportunities in the woods and on vacation, I’ve gotten very interested in trying to get decent photos of these fast-moving creatures.  I actually took one of my favorites just a few days ago, but that doesn’t count for Scott’s assignment!

I was absolutely thrilled to get my first pictures of a hummingbird this year.  I had a pair that seemed to make their home very close to my yard this past summer and I was lucky enough to get some unique photos of which I’m proud.
My first hummingbird picture!

hummingbird edit



The photo-elusive male cardinal finally stayed around long enough for me to get some nice pictures this year.  Suet cakes turned out to be the key to getting Mr. C to hang around!

Male cardinal

On a visit to Cape Cod a pair of mallard ducks were quietly swimming in a small creek near my mother’s house, and I just couldn’t take my eyes off of them in the pretty afternoon light.
Mrs. Duck

Mr. Duck

A return visit to the Cape in July provided me with my first photo of an osprey.

Seeing this bird of prey and getting this photo gave me a thrill.

I believe the above to be my best avian photos of 2011.  Out of all photos I plan to share over the next few days, these shots gave me my strongest sense of accomplishment due to the challenging nature of the subjects, and the way they forced me to learn more about using my camera.

By the way, I just realized that this assignment will reflect a year of growth in learning to use my Rebel; I bought the Canon in July of 2010, and the time period for the assignment begins four months later.  Kinda cool, huh?

You still have plenty of time to participate in Scott’s assignment – it isn’t due until November 16th!  I hope many of you will jump in and show off your best!

ETA: I forgot to mention that I had some bird photo goals for this year that went unfulfilled.  I had been hoping to also photograph an oriole, a clear shot of a red-winged blackbird (the only one I got this year can be seen here) and Mr. & Mrs. Cardinal together in one shot.  Bob or Tracy, any advice for fulfilling those goals?


  1. What fun getting re-acquainted with some of your finest bird shots, Karen! I am particularly fond of that mallard duck with the fabulous light, but all of your shots are good. Will look forward to seeing what you post next–and thanks for mentioning my blog (and rule-breaking behavior, lol.)

    Comment by Kathy — November 11, 2011 @ 6:16 pm | Reply

    • Thanks very much Kathy! Just call us rebels – and hey, we both have Rebels! 😉

      Comment by Karma — November 12, 2011 @ 9:05 am | Reply

  2. Great shots of the hummingbirds!

    Comment by doudou — November 11, 2011 @ 6:59 pm | Reply

    • Thanks doudou – I love those little cuties!

      Comment by Karma — November 12, 2011 @ 9:05 am | Reply

  3. I love shooting birds and they are tough to follow! I’ve got to start feeding them so they will be attracted to my yard once again. Great shots, Karen!

    Comment by Becky Sue — November 12, 2011 @ 8:39 am | Reply

    • I know – it is time to get bird feeders out again. I was just out shopping for one yesterday since the squirrels destroyed my supposedly “squirrel-proof” feeder this year!
      Thank you Becky.

      Comment by Karma — November 12, 2011 @ 9:07 am | Reply

  4. The only way to get a “Mr & Mrs” Cardinal shot, is to be patient. Watch the feeders, or trees, and someday you will get lucky. It can happen. 🙂

    Comment by Bob Zeller — November 12, 2011 @ 11:31 am | Reply

    • You are of course correct, Bob. While I was looking through my archives I actually found a picture of the two together but it was completely out of focus. 😦

      Comment by Karma — November 13, 2011 @ 8:43 am | Reply

  5. I like them all, especially the hummingbirds because they’re so difficult to capture.

    Comment by TheDailyClick — November 12, 2011 @ 1:44 pm | Reply

    • Thanks Michaela. I sat outside with my camera at the ready many times last summer trying to get the hummingbird pictures.

      Comment by Karma — November 13, 2011 @ 8:44 am | Reply

  6. Wow! Birds are tough, and you’ve got a bunch of good ones here! I think the very first one is my favorite…I have a special spot in my heart for hummingbirds. 🙂

    Comment by kanniduba — November 13, 2011 @ 8:34 am | Reply

    • Thanks KD… I do love the hummingbirds; I hope this pair returns here from its winter in Mexico next spring.

      Comment by Karma — November 13, 2011 @ 8:45 am | Reply

  7. You are off to a good start, Karma! Course, I like the hummer photos…magical creatures they are. I’m with Bob…PATIENCE is the best way to capture skittish birds. Also, OBSERVATION. They are ALL creatures of habit and tend to do the same things at the same time every day. The male cardinals, for example, generally fly in first to feeding stations (they prefer platform type over tubes) to check things out. THEN, the females will join them. I tend to see them more together in late spring/early summer when they are raising their young and teaching them where to feed, drink, etc.

    As far as redwing go, they are a tough one sine you need to catch them in flight in order to see the nice wing colors. Again, observation and patience is your best bet here. I have camped out and waited for hours, over the course of many days, to get the bird shot I want. I swear it’s like they KNOW you are waiting!

    Comment by milkayphoto — November 13, 2011 @ 2:04 pm | Reply

    • Thanks Tracy – that definitely seems to be true about the male and female cardinals. It was always the flash of red of the male that had me looking for the female. I have seen a side view of a redwing perched – once, while on a walk in the woods. I was never able to spot one again. And I think the oriole was interested in my hummingbird feeder – but it never stayed long enough for a photo.

      Comment by Karma — November 13, 2011 @ 4:09 pm | Reply

  8. I do love to photograph birds also, and when I get a clear shot I feel like I have accomplished so much, Lol. You have a nice collection here, and a great idea to beak this up into many posts.

    Comment by Nye — November 16, 2011 @ 1:07 am | Reply

    • It is so true, isn’t it, Nye – that feeling of accomplishment. I could do a little “happy dance” when I get a good bird picture! Thank you!

      Comment by Karma — November 16, 2011 @ 7:33 pm | Reply

  9. These are some wonderful shots, and I could see why you would be proud of them. I’ve found birds to be a difficult subject too, and really admire how you worked at this. Well done. 🙂

    Comment by Robin — November 16, 2011 @ 5:12 pm | Reply

    • Thanks very much Robin. I did spend an awful lot of time this summer on my deck waiting for a hummingbird encounter!

      Comment by Karma — November 16, 2011 @ 7:34 pm | Reply

  10. […] Best of, Part 1, Best of, Part 2, Best of, Part 3, Best of, Part 4, and Best of, Part 5. […]

    Pingback by Assignment 16 Recap | Views Infinitum — November 23, 2011 @ 6:53 am | Reply

  11. How very beautiful ! All pictures are great but I find those humbirds just fabulous, the no 1 is a real stunning picture. I admire your talent to capture such instant scenes or do you have to wait a long time for it ? i still have to learn everything about it. Bravo Karen !

    Comment by isathreadsoflife — November 25, 2011 @ 3:25 am | Reply

    • I waited many hours for hummingbird pictures, Isa! I did try to keep my camera near by as much as possible last summer. Merci!

      Comment by Karma — November 25, 2011 @ 9:13 am | Reply

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Say hello! Tell me your thoughts! I'd love to read them!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: