A lot of things happened in the very short time that it took me to take this photo. And while I wouldn’t say it’s my favorite picture of a duck that I’ve ever taken, I do like the results and this image was only possible thanks to others that I have shot, and learned from, in the past. I was out for a walk around Theta Pond on the OSU campus one afternoon in April, armed with my D750 and an episode of MacBreak Weekly on my AirPods when I saw three ducks just hanging out by the sidewalk. I literally just walked on past, minding my own business and leaving them to mind theirs, when I realized that they didn’t flinch one bit as I strode by. It occurred to me that I might be able to get a picture if they were willing to sit still while I pointed my camera at them, so I figured I might as well give it a try. I went back, lowered my camera to the ground, put it in Live View, flipped out the rear screen, and snapped a couple pictures.
The duck didn’t budge an inch, so I pressed my luck just a bit. I crept ever so slightly closer, took another photo, and then the duck clearly started to notice me. I didn’t make any sudden or threatening movements, but I could tell this duck (and its friends) were a little skittish at this tall dude with a big camera intruding on their personal space. I held my breath (literally), placed my camera on the sidewalk, tilted it up at the duck, and took just a couple shots at f/1.8 with the focus point sitting squarely on the duck’s eye. And by golly, as my Dad would say, it worked.
I knew I was pressing my luck a bit by shooting at f/1.8, but the results speak for themselves. I’m telling you, even after owning this Little Lens That Could for nine years it still surprises me :)
Tom J Frye says
That there is a Mohawk Duck, a very mod creature known for its style and grace back at Wooodstock. Unfortunately, some very high hippies ate the last one known on this planet, during a frenzied state having the munchies. This one? Why I would name him Houdini because it looks like he’s escaped capture all these years! We have cornball woman who walks her Poodle in our neighborhood, and she shaves her dog so that he indeed has a Tall-Standing Mohawk, and then she dyes it a bright blue!!
A duck named Houdini…that’s awesome! You have the best stories, man :)
Jill McKechnie says
Is your lens a 50mm 1.8?
It sure is!
Jill McKechnie says