Friday, January 25, 2008

In Flight

Kim Shields, an artist whose work I recommend checking out, asked me if I have a background in photography. The answer is no - not even one class!  For me, part of the thrill of photography is in the spontaneous discovery of what "that" button on my camera does, or how "that kind of day" produces that kind of light...and so on. It equates to those happy accidents in painting which end up defining an artist's style or chosen medium. 

As well, I see things that others don't tend to. When I am driving along the back country roads around my home, I see color where it normally is not, or a dark shadow against the bushes that seems odd, and when I look closer, I find it to be a deer, or moose, a pheasant, or something unusual. When I visit another artist's blog, many times I also find the unusual - a brushstroke of yellow in one spot that creates a unique or emotional response in the viewer, color in a shadow that is not obvious but that adds an extra dimension to the painting. It is an innate thing with me, and enables me to understand the potential for that photograph that others may pass by - not every time, but often. So - long answer to a short question!  

In the summer, we have many hawks in the valley over which our house looks. The cry of a hawk or eagle is like no other sound. I absolutely love the piercing loneliness of their voice! This hawk became very uncomfortable with how close I was (safely in my Jeep, with window open), and decided to take off. I have had hawks dive at me, so I have learned to be very careful when shooting these creatures with a camera. They are gorgeous in their markings, but they are very shy and defensive as well.

I am still painting. Because I work full time, getting to the easel often takes backstage to sleep. Today is my day off, and I will spend a really good chunk of time happily working on my passion! Hope to have some painting to post later in the week.

If you would like to purchase a giclee print of this photo, please contact me:


Mary Sheehan Winn said...

What a wonderful photo. I love watching the birds.

Kim said...

Spectacular detail! I love your innate understanding of nature, and how you seem to "find" spectacular moments with your camera. Beautiful.

Frank Gardner said...

Thanks for sharing this one Joanne. You must have a good lens on your camera.

Joanne said...

Thanks, everyone, for the feedback on this photo.
Frank, my digital camera is the little light weight Canon EOS Rebel. This picture was taken with my 75 - 300 mm zoom lens... just your standard deal. For my birthday, my husband bought me a 2x converter so that I can get better closeups, but I have yet to use it and get a good photo. It makes the camera very long and front-heavy, so I need to practice a way to steady myself for the shot, or I will have to use a tripod, which does not equate to getting spontaneous wildlife shots. Apparently, there is a way to get my camera to compensate for the movement my every breath or heartbeat creates when taking pictures! Something new to discover. :-)

Thanks for stopping by everyone. I'll be posting a painting next week - so hope to see you again then.

Michelle said...

Great shot! You do have a flair for seeing the unexpected. You also seem to have an uncanny knack for capturing pictures of birds.

I'm eagerly awaiting your next painting - I hope you day to day schedule calms down enough to give you some extra painting time!

Joanne said...

Thanks Michelle. I hope for more time, too This next week is pretty hectic, but by next weekend, I am looking forward to a bit more down time - so I can paint. I am hoping to have something to post soon on my current work. See you again!

Jean Victory said...

Thanks for the words of encouragement. You wouldn't believe how frustrated I am because I haven't been able to paint or do anything for that matter. I'm just going to hang in there. Your photos are incredible and I can't believe you've never taken any photography classes. You have a good eye you know!!!