Broad-billed Hummingbird captured by Z 9 / Z400f4/5 w/Z1.4x w/2x Profoto A10

South of Tucson and just north of the border is a small piece of heaven, Madera Canyon. In the heart of the canyon is Santa Rita Lodge. Sharon & I first visited the lodge in 1980. We had driven all night and fell into our room late, real late! It seemed we’d just hit the pillows when there was the faintest of light out the window. Then the buzz started and as the light levels increased, so did the buzz. I just wanted to sleep and all I could think was we had a beehive outside our window with the loudness. I got up to close the window to find a ONE gallon hummingbird feeder surrounded by what seemed all the hummers on the planet. I was hooked! We’ve been going back ever since!

That sound is why I photograph the hummingbirds the way I do, so the wings are blurred. It’s why folks call them hummers. Up until this year, getting that shot required nearly all my attention. But technology has broken through so now I can concentrate more on the story then the settings. With the rig mentioned above, I watch and work at capturing the charisma that is wrapped up in all those jewels. In this case, it is the hummers ever present desire to chase the next hummer. They are constantly looking up to either chase or be chased. To me, they appear to be on launching pad just blasting off. I made strides in moving my hummer photography forward this year, I’m very excited. I’m more excited to keep working on it the rest of this summer at The Ranch as I have a whole bunch of hummer shooting planned for next summer. A “how I do it’ video will be posted soon, but it’s off to the moon, a small step.

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