Welcome to "The Blog Page." I've started a "Tips for Photography" each month while giving information used to improve your nature photography, while covering topics such as: building your own nature preserve, technical information, and ethics in the field. All of these will help improve your vision and outlook towards getting a satisfying image.
I also use this area to announce upcoming exhibits, lectures, or items available in my stores. Thanks again for checking this out!
To photograph birds in your backyard, it helps to have food, water, and shelter. For this photograph, its taken above a bird bath. This bird bath is situated underneath the hammock of a large live oak for protection from predators, and the birds come to it daily certainly, when its hot outside. One rule, I use is to not photograph them once they land on the bird bath. That is their protection zone. For this shot, I used two flashes set up on tiki torches so, I could move them, and the birds were familiar with the torches. Using the master/slave options, I had complete control of the flashes at the camera. By putting soft boxes over the main light source, it gives a softer light and shadows. I balanced the highlights of the natural light with my artificial light to give it a natural setting. My depth of field ran anywhere between f 5.6 to f 11 depending on the angle and background. My ISO ran between 800-1600 depending again on the light that was available. The artificial light is there to fill in where nature cannot. I've found with birds if you give them a safe place to go where they can bathe and have access to food or water, they will tolerate your existence in time.
So many people travel to find great pictures, but miss what's around them. I've spent years just photographing in my backyard documenting nature at its best during the year. "You never know what's going to pop up." Whether it's a spade foot toad, monarch caterpillars, or birds coming to your bird bath. Here are some tips on how to take advantage of these great situations.
First with caterpillars or butterflies. When you see a caterpillar, once its reached full size, it will turn into a butterfly within seven days. Watch out for fresh butterflies in the morning hours. Find a special bush in your yard, or plant one that will attract them. Make sure you have plants that the caterpillars can feed on as well. You could say, "Your own butterfly nursery." Next you need a close-up lens. Either a macro lens or one that will focus down with macro capabilities. Otherwise, get yourself extension tubes, and you can move into your subject. The Canon 100-400 lens focuses in close and with an extension tube you could stay a decent distance away. Watch your backgrounds when photographing. F8-f10 is good for blurring out the background, considering how close you are to your subject. You may need extra light. If so, there are macro flashes, or you can use one flash, just get something that will diffuse the light. A little soft box, tape, or plastic cover. Macro work takes some patience, but it can be rewarding everyday! Enjoy!!
Expanding my horizons ... Products now available with Maresa Pryor-Luzier images. Phone cases, prints, notebooks, pillows, clocks, and more.... I'll be adding more products weekly. Check it out and let me know what you think by liking the product. Just click the link to see what's available for your special purchase.
Thanks for your continual support!
I've received a number of questions on this photo at art shows, asking how did I get this image? Here is a quick explanation. To start no PhotoShop was performed on this image. It is the real thing. I was photographing after dusk during the Festival of the Cranes. The cars were pouring out of the park, and to my astonishment they lit the cranes as they past. The cranes were not disturbed in any way. I usually shoot on Tungsten to get that rich blue color as a starting point. The exposure was 30 seconds at f4.5 with a Canon 24mm f1.4 lens. In Lightroom, I added 19 points of Vibrance and some Clarity. No Saturation or changes to color blue were added. Sharpening was normal, and some Noise reduction was used. This truly was a once of a lifetime image, and available in print in the North American Cranes "Fine Art" Section.
This image was originally photographed for Color. The light was soft and the sky was blue. Because of the lighting it gave great detail in the wings and feathers. By converting the image to B/W in Lightroom, I bumped up the contrast, and brought out the shadows. Now you can see all the feathers on this great bird. This Eagle is in her twenties and on her second life partner, I've been following her for years. She is gorgeous, strong, and defiant against urban growth. That's what I wanted the image to display. This image is available in Print. Look in the Florida Fine Art Portfolio.