Setting up a bird feeding station in our backyard about a year ago has to be one of the best things we've ever done. It has brought hours of pleasure and fascination and has been a wonderful learning experience for the whole family. By now we have quite a collection of bird books and on every outing find ourselves scanning the skies and looking up into the trees to find more of these beautiful feathered friends. And of course, we have tinkered endlessly with our feeders to keep the house sparrows under control ... and to keep the squirrels grounded (we do have one "Olympian" who defies all attempts to keep him down). And we've learned to keep cameras at the ready, or at least a cell phone in a pocket, as one never knows when a surprise visitor will arrive. If you do any bird watching, check out the group, WHAT'S THIS BIRD on Facebook ~ it's the best, and has helped us, as novices, to begin to identify those who come to us from near and far. Below, a red-tailed hawk. He was seen high up in one of our trees, busily consuming what appeared to be his prey, probably a small bird. I surprised myself, as my hands shook so much at the excitement of seeing him, it was a shock to see the photos came out reasonably well, not totally blurred as I expected ... also shot from quite a distance with the limited zoom on my DSLR. Again, below ... the original, and then, playtime, some alterations for CATURDAY ART, sponsored by Athena Cat Goddess, Athena and Marie.
ORIGINAL PHOTO: ZOOM IN and CROPPED
CROPPED PHOTO WITH BACKGROUND REMOVED
FINAL FOR CATURDAY ART
The cropped photo is worked through Photoshop; portions of the tree desaturated,
overall exposure darkened, slight sharpening for detail, inner grey shadow percentage
applied. Final photo slightly downsized and laid into a solid black square;
applied goldtone picture frame from from Adobe standard collection to the black background.