Tufted Titmouse: Kennebunk, Maine, USA, May 2023 — I am trying to find the best combination of focus settings on the OM-1 to allow me to pick the warblers out of the dense foliage at Magee Marsh in Ohio next week when I am there to give two Point and Shoot for Warbler workshops, so I am spending time in my backyard photo blind whenever the weather permits, practicing on the titmice, chickadees, chipping sparrows, and goldfinches. As you can see, this was a tricky shot, with foreground foliage and vines and a confusing background. I had the camera set to bird recognition and to the “small” focus target to give it a chance to find the bird in the brush and it worked quite well. Often with a larger focus target, which works fine in less obscured situations, the camera could not get close enough to focus to actually recognize the bird. But with the small target if I could get the target on any piece of the bird, the camera would focus, recognize the bird and move focus to the eye. Pretty slick! Still a lot to learn! Olympus OM-1 with the OM System 100-400mm zoom at 800mm equivalent. Program mode with my evolving birds modifications. Processed in Pixelmator Pro. ISO 320 @ f6.3 @ 1/640th. Minus .7EV. (to protect the highlights).
Siberian Ruby-throat: Keoladeo National Park, Bharatpur, Rajasthan, India, March 2023 — We worked hard for this bird. It was hanging around the little trickle of water that flows under the road at the second entrance station at Keoladeo. But it was only seen every few days. We were there at the absolute end of its season in India. Most Ruby-throats were already on their way back to Siberia. This one bird was still around. We stopped for at least a half hour at the entrance station each morning on our way into the park…some used the restroom facilities provided, and one day we had chi from the little canteen around the back of the garage, while we looked for the bird, but it was only on our third day in the park that we arrived at the right time…and even then it took more than an hour for the bird to emerge into camera range. And because the bird had already been sighted that morning, we had pretty much the whole staff of the entrance station out helping us. When we found it, it was perched, kind o flattened out, deep in the brush with only a few windows that allowed a look or a photo. Not easy! Still, worth it for a bird we basically had only this one chance of seeing…and which, indeed, we only saw at Keoladeo. Sony Rx10iv at 600mm equivalent. Program mode with my custom birds and wildlife modifications. Processed in Pixelmator Pro and Apple Photos. ISO 500 @ f4 @ 1/500th. Plus .3EV.