This past weekend was a typical November weekend with darkgrey skies, the occasional rainshower and galeforce winds. Only the Friday morning featured a vibrant pink sky, but I had decided to sleep in after a late night attending and organising the fantastic presentation that Marsel van Oosten gave at our camera club. Stubborn as I can be, I blatantly ignored the weather forecast on Sunday and still headed for the heathland in hopes of some good landscape photography. But this time the forecast was right. With only a tiny distant orange patch in an otherwise threatheningly darkblue sky and the trees having lost the last of their colorful leaves, I quickly acknowledged defeat, packed my gear and tried my luck elsewhere.

The plan was to just drive around with the big lens out of the window and see what I would come across. Sometimes, that lazy ‘mobile hide’ type of photography can be really nice and I really felt like giving it a try after way too long. The first few locations did not offer a lot. No mammals and the (water)birds were either sheltering from the stormwind or simply too far away. Almost home, I decided to try one more dirtroad and soon found seven Great Blue Herons (Ardea cinerea, Blauwe Reiger) foraging in a meadow. Distant statues in a not so photogenic setting. Not before long, one of them flew up and landed on an almost pendrawn tree against the very dark backdrop of a gloomy forest. A perfect setting, which I deliberately underexposed by over two stops to keep the overall scene dark and moody. Exactly how the morning had been.

Great Blue Heron; Canon 5D Mark III w. 500/4L and 1.4x; 1/60s at F11 and ISO800; beanbag from vehicle