Lunch-time Photography

I am quite fortunate that my work place in Lincoln is right next to the Brayford Pool also known as the Brayford Wharf. This has been here for many hundreds of years and back before the advent of the car was a working dock connected by Canals and later railroads. Whilst the rails links have diminished somewhat and the transport of loads via water has stopped the pool and the interconnecting canals remain.

What has also been present or many years is the wildlife that has made the area their home (or part time home). If you prepared to venture the other side of the pool (the side adjacent to the University the concentration of the local wildlife increases. I decided to take the 5D3 to this areas Thursday (24th Jan). It was a very cold day and although my Lowepro photography gloves are better than none at all, my hands were very cold and this limited to time I was able to spend taking pictures.

The main reason for going out to take pictures was to practice using my new camera some more. I have been reading the manual and watching parts of a 5D3 tutorial too but the best way to learn is to take pictures. I have to say that the shoot produced many great shots (nothing I would call amazing but pleasing nevertheless).

As we are firmly in winter now in this part of the hemisphere we do have a large number of Black Headed gulls around, they are also sporting their winter plumage where almost all of the black from the head turns white apart from a small patch of black behind the eye. The tri of gulls in this shot about to fly off demonstrate this well:

However we have at least one gull that didn’t get the memo about the colouring:

Whilst most of photography is what I like to term environmental (i.e. a picture of what is happening in front of me) sometimes you have a shot that at first glance would go into the trashcan but with some playing around in Lightroom becomes more art than fact, I quite like how this one turned out:

Most of the birds present (particularly the gulls) were all scrambling for food and the following chaos ensues:

The food was being distributed by the following gentleman and some of the birds were quite tame:

If you are wondering what the black and white birds with the red beaks are, they are Muscovy Ducks (even though they are more Geese like):

These ducks are quite happy to “slum down” with the Feral Pigeons too:

One of the male Pigeons was obviously in a frisky mood as he was puffing his chest out and dancing round a smaller (female) pigeon – who didn’t seem interested:

One of the reasons I like photographing birds is that I find them quite comedic, the following gull was on the pole quite happy and the bird in the lower right decided he was going to sit there instead:


The gulls are very fast flyers and as good as the 5D3’s focusing system is coupled with my inexperience and technique (or lack thereof) most of my BIF or “Birds in Flight” shots came to nothing , some were way off and some just a few mm off. This is something that I will have to practice more and more as in the past (when I was doing a lot more photography) I have managed to get the shot more often than now. Although not perfect, this is the best of the day:

Most of the better shots were when the birds were not moving as per the following shots. I like this one as we have a Black-headed Gull almost posing for the camera amongst all of the madness (scrambling for food) around him:

This reminds me of the 3 monkeys except one of them is distracted:

This is one of my favourite shots from the day, I like the juxtaposition of the gull on the well water damaged log:

The final shot of the day (and near the end of my lunch break) was of this Mute Swan who was a moment ago was foraging for food from the pool:

Although I was cold (mostly my hands) after the shoot, I had a great time and will do this again, maybe in another area. There is after all a lot of areas in Lincoln where you can find all sorts of wildlife.


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  1. Pingback: Brayford Wharf in February | Chris Bennett's Photo Blog

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