All you need to know about Bird Photography

How To Photograph Birds? Camera Settings and Tips for Bird Photography

Have you heard of Salim Ali? Well, known as the ‘Birdman of India’, he was an Indian ornithologist and naturalist. His landmark creation ‘The Book of Indian Birds’ helped spark popular interest in the birds of India.

One of the popular genres of Nature Photography, Bird Photography requires a lot of patience and determination; it’s both – interesting and challenging.

Bird Photography

For Bird Photography, pay attention to the sound of birds – it will alert you of their arrival. Having sharp eyes will help you spot birds who camouflage/blend with their surroundings. You can photograph resting birds as well as birds in action.

Pro tips for Bird Photography

  • To photograph from a long distance, you need telephoto lens/zoom lens of at least 100 mm; 400 mm is ideal for close-ups and bird photography
  • Set your focus on the eyes of the bird
  • You can buy a bird feeder and attach to your window to attract birds
  • To shoot moving or flying birds, set a Fast Shutter Speed to freeze their action & avoid motion blur; go for 1/1000 sec or higher depending on your subject’s speed
  • You can use the Setting – Continuous Shooting so that you don’t miss out on any action/movement/motion of your subject
  • A Tripod is highly recommended to avoid camera shake or hold your camera closer to your body to support your arms & elbows for stability or find a surface to support your elbows or lean against a wall
  • Research your subject’s feeding/active time; be quiet & slow while approaching your subject

Take a look at the below pictures and Camera Settings that were used to photograph birds. In some cases, post processing was done in Lightroom to adjust exposure (brightness), contrast and sharpness:

Pigeon walking on the roof

Camera Settings – Aperture: f/5.6, Shutter Speed: 1/500 sec, ISO 800

Pigeon landing on the roof

Camera Settings – Aperture: f/ 5.6, Shutter Speed: 1/4000 sec, ISO: 800

Black Drongo sitting on the wire  

Camera SettingsAperture: f/5.6, Shutter Speed: 1/3200 sec, ISO 800

Common Tailorbird resting on the branch of the tree

Camera Settings – Aperture: f/5.6, Shutter Speed: 1/500 sec, ISO 800

Kite bird on the lookout for its prey

Camera Settings – Aperture: f/5.6, Shutter Speed: 1/1000 sec, ISO 800

Curious Myna looking into my camera

Camera Settings – Aperture: f/5.6, Shutter Speed: 1/1000 sec, ISO 800

When the Myna turned its head 180 degrees

Camera Settings – Aperture: f/5.6, Shutter Speed: 1/800 sec, ISO 800

Robin singing and posing for me 

Camera Settings – Aperture: f/5.6, Shutter Speed: 1/640 sec, ISO 800

Male Kite obeying the orders of his partner

Camera Settings – Aperture: f/5.6, Shutter Speed: 1/320 sec, ISO 800

Sparrow enjoying the light and shade of life

Camera Settings – Aperture: f/5.6, Shutter Speed: 1/640 sec, ISO 800

We bring you ‘Jo & His Camera’ Comic Strips wherein a Magical Camera gives DSLR photography tutorials to Jo.

Click on the below Image to see the Comic wherein the Camera explains Jo, the concept  of Bird Photography with the help of practical examples.

Click on the below Image to see the Comic wherein the Camera explains Jo, how to capture birds in action with the help of practical examples.

Keywords: DSLR Basics, Photography Basics, Basics of Photography, Photography Tips, Composition, DSLR Photography for Beginners, DSLR Photography Tutorials, learn DSLR Photography, learn photography, Incredible India, Nature Photography, Travel Photography, Black and White Photography, Bird Photography, Wildlife Photography, Types of Photography

When you do photography: Remember the 5E’s – Explore, Experiment, Experience, Enjoy & Express.  

Do Share The Learning – Like It, Post It, Pin It, Tweet It! So, what’s your favourite type of photography? Is it Bird Photography?

Landscape, Portrait, Food, Sports/Action, Wildlife, Architecture & Macro Photography

As World Photography Day approaches (on 19th August), we bring you different types of photography that you can choose to excel in, as per your interests and passion!

Landscape Photography

Landscape Photography

  • Set a small Aperture/opening (select from f/16 to f /22) to create a Deep Depth of Field so that all the objects/subjects (humans or animals) in the foreground and background of the scene appear sharp
  • A Tripod is recommended to prevent camera shake since you may use a small Aperture or Slow Shutter Speed to capture the beauty of landscapes at different times of the day
  • Use wide-angle lens (18 mm is wide lens, 55 mm is zoom lens) to capture a broader view of the landscape
  • Try Composition techniques like Rule of Thirds and Centred Composition to create aesthetically appealing images

We bring you ‘Jo & His Camera’ Comic Strips wherein a Magical Camera gives DSLR photography tutorials to Jo.

Click on the below Images to see the Comic wherein the Camera explains Jo, the concept of Landscape Photography with the help of practical examples.

How to shoot Landscape Photography

Portrait Photography

Portrait Photography

  • Make your subject/model feel comfortable and communicate/suggest different poses for the shoot
  • Go for a large Aperture/opening (small f/number) to create a Shallow Depth of Field that will keep the subject in sharp focus and make him/her stand out and blur the background
  • Use props to add some visual interest and context
  • Natural daylight is the best light for a portrait photography or else you can create light with flash or use studio lighting
  • Focus on the eyes of the subject; the eye contact between the subject and the viewer makes for an engaging and powerful photograph that could tell a story about your subject or reveal your subjects’ mood or personality

Portrait Photography

Click on the below Images to see the Comic wherein the Camera explains Jo, the concept of Portrait Photography with the help of practical examples.

How to shoot Portrait Photography

Food Photography

Food Photography

  • Depending on the height, size & shape of the food, you can either photograph it from the front or from the top that best highlights its qualities
  • Use cooking utensils, tableware, ingredients, sauces & other related props in the foreground or background to add depth to your photograph
  • Go macro, go close

Sports/Action Photography

Sports Photography & Action Photography

  • Set a Fast Shutter Speed to capture/freeze the action or quick movements of the athletes (select from 1/250 sec to 1/4000 sec) depending on the sport you’re shooting
  • To capture sports events, telephoto lens/zoom lens is recommended (55 mm or higher) so that you can photograph your subjects even from a distance
  • Get on your knees and try low angle shots

Click on the below Images to see the Comic wherein the Camera explains Jo, the concept of Food Photography & Sports/Action Photography with the help of practical examples.

How to shoot Food Photography & Sports & Action Photography

Wildlife Photography

Wildlife Photography

  • To photograph wildlife from a long distance, you need telephoto lens/zoom lens of at least 100 mm; 400 mm is ideal for close-ups and bird photography
  • Set your focus on the eyes of the bird/animal
  • For bird photography, you can buy a bird feeder and attach to your window to attract birds
  • To shoot moving animals or flying birds, set a Fast Shutter Speed to freeze their action & avoid motion blur; go for 1/1000 sec or higher depending on your subject’s speed
  • Use Setting – Continuous Shooting so that you don’t miss out on any action/movement/motion of your subject
  • A Tripod is highly recommended to avoid camera shake or hold your camera closer to your body to support your arms & elbows for stability or find a surface to support your elbows or lean against a wall
  • Research your subject’s feeding/active time; be quiet & slow while approaching your subject

The below pic was taken at a Shutter Speed of 1/1000 sec; this setting has freezed the movement/action of the Pigeon:

Bird Photography using Fast Shutter Speed

In the below pic, settings used were Aperture: F/ 5.6,  ISO: 800 and Shutter Speed: 1/4000 sec; fast shutter speed of 1/4000 sec freezed the movement/action of the Pigeon:

Bird photography using fast shutter speed to freeze motion

In the below example, you can see motion blur since slow shutter speed was used, it was set at 1/100 sec:

On the top is Female Purple-rumped Sunbird, below her is the Male Purple-rumped Sunbird.

Motion blur bird photography

Click on the below Images to see the Comic wherein the Camera explains Jo, the concept of Wildlife Photography with the help of practical examples.

How to shoot Wildlife Photography

Architecture Photography

Architecture Photography

  • Photographing the building/structure from different angles will make it look more dynamic; try looking up and take the shot to give the viewer a different perspective/form of the building
  • Look out for structures with interesting shapes like triangles and so on
  • Use monochrome (Black & White) creative filter to give the image, a timeless feel

Macro Photography

Macro Photography

  • Macro Photography is mostly used to photograph insects and other small animals; you need macro lens of 100 mm or higher to take photos of them up-close
  • If you don’t have macro lens, use extension tubes or get closer to your subject and zoom in for sharp photos

Click on the below Images to see the Comic wherein the Camera explains Jo, the concept of Architecture Photography & Macro Photography with the help of practical examples.

How to use Macro Photography & Architecture Photography

Bonus: Photography Tips for You –

  • Step out during early morning hours or late at night when it is less crowded so that you can capture a better view of the place and from different angles without anyone obstructing your view
  • Visit offbeat destinations which will give you the opportunity to take photographs of less explored or unseen places that will make your photo stand out
  • Use different composition techniques and take wide angle shots of the scene so that you can capture all that is present; at a later stage – you can always crop your photos but you can never get back the elements that were present in the scene but you didn’t capture them
  • To freeze motion/action of your subject (especially for wildlife photography) – always set faster shutter speed; don’t worry about the exposure (brightness/details) b’coz exposure can always be enhanced while post-processing (Lightroom) but if you’ve used slow shutter speed it will blur the motion of your subject which cannot be fixed in post-processing
  • Click as many photos as possible; practise is the key to develop your own style as a photographer

Keywords: DSLR Basics, Photography Basics, Basics of Photography, Photography Tips, Composition, DSLR Photography for Beginners, DSLR Photography Tutorials, learn DSLR Photography, learn photography, Incredible India, Travel Photography, Online Learning, Types of Photography, Landscape Photography, Portrait Photography, Sports Photography, Action Photography, Wildlife Photography, Food Photography, Product Photography, Wildlife Photography, Architecture Photography, Macro Photography, World Photography Day, World Photo Day, Motion Blur Bird Photography

When you do photography: Remember the 5E’s – Explore, Experiment, Experience, Enjoy & Express.  

Do Share The Learning – Like It, Post It, Pin It, Tweet It!