Day 190—Shooting Up Close

I spent 3 hours steam cleaning Bobo’s cage today; it shouldn’t take that long but it had been quite a while since I’d done a thorough cleaning and I discovered that when Bobo wipes banana off her beak onto the cage bars after eating, that banana turns to concrete if I don’t clean it off immediately. Banana that has turned to concrete is almost impossible to get off, even using a steamer. After completing that chore, I didn’t feel like making much of an effort to take pictures, so I relied on my stand-by subject, Bobo. Since I’m still catching up on my photography class lessons, I looked to see what I had left to do. My Lesson 6 assignment was to use a macro lens but I don’t have a macro lens so an alternate assignment was to work on getting as close as possible to something with sharp focus. A twist on the assignment was to use a bean bag instead of a tripod. The goal was to produce an image with a life-size subject in a 4 by 6 inch format.

I had a bag of beans (a combination of small white navy beans and Great Northerns if you have to know) in a ziplock bag and I sat down in a chair in front of Bobo’s cage, set the camera on the bean bag in my lap, aimed the lens in her general direction and let auto focus find her. I was so lazy in fact that I didn’t even look through the view finder. I just looked at the LCD screen after I took the photo and moved my knees or adjusted the focal length accordingly. Bobo sat quite still, wondering WTF? while I slumped in the chair facing her and snapped her picture. I was able to get nice clear focus on most of the shots because she sat still and I didn’t have to hand hold the camera because I had the bean bag. I decided to go for bigger than life size and cropped the photo (also allowed by the assignment) to an interesting composition. I love the reflection of the bay window in her eye.

Focal Length 80mm
ISO 400