The Way I See Things



It wasn't an enticing kind of day, photography-wise, but I was feeling restless and sad, and that was enough to get me up from my desk and out of the house. I started at Bidford on Avon, where I spotted a couple of tufted ducks on the river yesterday, but today they were nowhere to be seen, so I ended up in Stratford. Which was heaving with cars and people, but strangely devoid of wildlife.

I'd walked the whole way from Old Town to the Bancroft Gardens without feeling the urge to lift the camera even once, and was wondering what to do next, when I noticed a woman feeding the birds off the terrace at the town end of the Bancroft Basin. Black-headed gulls were zooming about, leaping on and off the safety fence, pushing each other around, and generally making a lot of kerfuffle, and I stopped for a few minutes to watch and photograph them.

Neither R nor I have been able to choose between these two shots, which is why I'm posting both. The extra almost made it to pole position because I love the bird's attitude and facial expression, but it lost crucial points for having the blur of a second gull in the background. I could have cloned this out (probably), but I didn't want to get embroiled with Photoshop this evening. So I'm featuring the last shot of the day, which I mentally labelled "blip" as soon as I knew I'd caught it, because the gull was too close and moving too fast for it to be a comfortable capture, and I actually thought I'd missed it until I checked the file. The bird was on its way out of shot, and the combination of my desperate pivot and the camera's eye tracking only just caught it before it cut the left hand edge of the frame: my next shot, a split second later, caught nothing more than a few tail feathers.

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