Feb 22nd


Postcard from Hokkaido

A quick hello from Hokkaido, Japan. I’ve got a few seconds to fire this off before we’re back out into the cold with cameras and tripods. I’ll do a fuller re-cap later, but this tour has been truly exceptional. This morning we were up at 4 and out the door an hour later to photograph the Stellar Sea Eagles, and were treated to a truly beautiful morning with the most magnificent birds. It’s a rough learning curve for someone who doesn’t photograph a lot of fast-moving wildlife, but I’m loving the challenge. And even if the photographs all failed to do what I wanted them to, and they didn’t, I’d still be having the time of my life with this group of people and these astonishing birds.

Comments (19)
  1. February 22, 2013 at 9:02 pm

    Truly Awesome capture. Thanks a lot for your post. Greetings from Assam, India

  2. Jeff Kennedy

    February 22, 2013 at 10:53 pm

    Stunning, powerful, poetic & beautiful!! Quite breath-taking.

  3. February 23, 2013 at 1:27 am

    Whoah David! You really nailed the timing and the focus on this one! I can’t even begin to imagine how difficult bird photography is…

  4. February 23, 2013 at 2:29 am

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  5. Graham

    February 23, 2013 at 7:56 am

    With “even if the photographs all failed to do what I wanted them to,” I’d say you were doing miiiiiiighty gooooood!

  6. February 23, 2013 at 11:05 am

    That, my friend, is an “astonishing“ capture.

    Thanks for sharing and it sounds like you are having an “astonishing“ time!

  7. Julie

    February 23, 2013 at 11:24 am

    Awesome capture. Love it!!

  8. February 23, 2013 at 11:27 am

    Beauty shot and sounds like an awesome time! Now get back at it!

  9. February 23, 2013 at 11:47 am

    Stunning picture. I love shooting birds of prey but they are very very difficult to capture. You really nailed this one.

  10. February 23, 2013 at 12:07 pm

    Wish I was there with you! Looks like you/re having an awesome time.

    Glad to see you are recovered from your fall last year.

    I’m recovering from a compound fracture of my left wrist. (ugh!)

  11. February 23, 2013 at 12:33 pm

    What a wonderful image.

  12. February 23, 2013 at 1:30 pm

    The joy is in the experience.

  13. February 23, 2013 at 7:06 pm

    Incredible photo. I’m thinking you’re a quick study to catch this one – really beautiful. I too discovered that photographing fast-moving birds is not the easiest thing after happening upon a bunch of dancing egrets on the water one day. I stayed up all night afterwards studying how to catch birds in flight. I’m still learning :)

  14. February 23, 2013 at 7:57 pm

    I dont think the learning curve was as much as you had feared.

  15. February 24, 2013 at 11:27 am


    Just came across this quote, which I feel expresses what you captured in this great image. Just change “Paint” to capture…

    “Paint the flying spirit of the bird rather than its feathers.” ~ Robert Henri

  16. Tanja

    February 24, 2013 at 8:15 pm

    This is just the perfect picture… I’ve never seen an eagle pictured like this… The light on it’s belly, the angle of its wings, the feathers of the wings,… I am in awe.

  17. Dirk

    February 24, 2013 at 11:16 pm

    David. This is beautiful.

  18. Eric

    February 26, 2013 at 1:11 am

    Superb David! These eagles are actually not far from my home, 500 km, but I’ve never been able to see them so close. Did you use a very long lens, or was a 200 mm enough?

    A trick to approach them closer would be to rent a fishing boat from a harbor in Hokkaido, I’m close to do that ;-)

  19. tari federer

    March 8, 2013 at 3:10 am

    David, this is such a beautiful image. I love the way the tips of his wing feathers gently envelopes his face.