It takes an Attitude
There’s a place in FL where I love spending afternoons, North Pier. You can see it looking east from Fort DeSoto as it hides under the Skyline Bridge. Slowly falling into the bay, the pier still provides fisherman a place to relax and catch fish. And those birds that want to be free loafers, a place to work their trade. And photographers, a place for some easy, fun and rewarding photography. I’ve shot there with the 200-400, 300f4 but most of the time, I’m shooting with the 70-200VR2 which I used to get the top image. Now the majority of the time I’m going after flight shots. The key you want in flight shots is the sun and wind on your back. In the afternoon, that’s all you have at North Pier. But when this Brown Pelican after getting fed a fish from a fisherman went over to this perch, I loved the attitude and had to get the shot.
Here’s where you’ve gotta make a decision because the Pelican is on a section of pier separated from where I stand by a big expanse of water. What you see below is the final photo that I really like. Did I get there by putting a teleconverter on the 70-200, use High Speed Crop, Crop the image, use a 600mm? Being on a public pier where you really stick out, keeping a low profile is kinda of a good idea. The thing is, you gotta move quickly because at any moment the Pelican can be off to grab his next free lunch. I went with my favorite and best option, grabbing the 600mm but I didn’t take time to set up a tripod, just handhled it and shot. I took my handful of images, switched lens and went right back to shooting. I realize that everyone does not have a 600mm so that is not an option for all. I’m fortunate, it has been an option for me for a longtime and I make use of it whenever I can. You’ve got take advantage of the tools you own to get the shot at the moment. But keep an open mind that there might be other, better options in your future you need to explore. I think photography takes an attitude.