Birds are undoubtedly beautiful subjects for photography. But capturing these amazing living wonders of nature is not an easy task. Birds tend to be very alert and try to fly away quickly. To be a good bird photographer, you need to take care of the lighting, composition, background, camera settings, exposure, the position of the camera, and yourself. Though you don't need to be an expert like an ornithologist, you must have thorough knowledge about birds and a clear understanding of their habits and behavior. To make your task easier,
Here are the top 5 tips to click bird photographs like a pro
Notice the background
When you see a bird photograph, do you only look at the bird? doesn't the background enhance ( or diminish) the beauty of the creature? However well you capture a bird with your camera, all your efforts will go to waste, if you don't pay heed to the background. Make sure that the background is neither too bright nor too dull. Select the background first, then wait for the bird to take a desirable position or show desirable movement, to click. If you want most of the background to be out of focus, keep the aperture high.
Take the correct position
Your photo will look phenomenal if the bird is clicked from its level, i.e. a few inches ( or feet, depending on which bird you're taking photos of) above the ground. Of course, it is applicable only when the bird is not flying. The eyes of a bird are probably more photographically interesting than the bird itself. You should always focus sharply on the eyes of the bird when you are shooting from its height.
The best time to shoot birds is, of course, the 'golden hours' i.e. right before sunrise and right after sunset. You can capture bird movements easily in these times. As the light remains soft in these moments, shadows are not formed. Moreover, the eyes and features of a bird glow in this light which creates a beautiful effect in the photos.
Composition is very important
The basic rule of thirds composition trick works for bird photography well. Try to place your subject off the center. Maintain contrast in the color of the bird and the background. Also, make sure that the background is neat and clean.
Carefully click the action
Of course, it will not be very difficult for you to capture the movement of a bird with your camera. Still, you will require a lot of patience to click the desired shot. As stated earlier, birds remain active during the golden hours- when they fly away from their nest and return to it. Take photos in burst mode, as you might not get the perfect bird movement shot in a single photo. As a beginner, try capturing bird photos when they are eating, as they get less concerned about your presence only at that time. You get an awesome action photo when your subject is sitting still in this way. To capture a bird's action without making it alert, make sure that it is comfortable. Some photographers visit the habitat of the birds day after day, again and again, until the bird ignores his presence completely.
Written by Sanga Basu, Content Writer, WPC.