Another year, another amount of (inclement) weather, another box of chocolates to open, not knowing what’s in there for you. I started the year at the local fishing ponds. Weather is not suitable at all for landscape photography and I myself am missing the inspiration and drive to make something fantastic out of nearly nothing. So I went for the waterfowl that’s always around. You never know what you are going to get, different light and a different position can yield completely different photographs. The gloomy dusk on this particular day made me decide to stick with the out-of-focus technique that I had tried before. This time the unsuspecting victim was a sleeping Cormorant. They always use the same tree to gather and spend the night. Not necessary to look for that tree as it is white from years of guano dropping down on it. I really like the effect the defocussing has on the twigs on the left side. When I turned around after taking this image, I found the first chocolate of this year’s box. Rather large flocks of Starlings gathered above me to settle for the night in the reedbeds between the ponds. Although they are by far not as many as in other parts of our country, it still looks impressive when their flying mass changes shape every second. Now I have to go and find the right spot to photograph them from and see how long a shutter speed works best in these low light levels. Mini-murmuration, here I come.

Sleeping Cormorant; Canon 5D Mark III w. 500/4L IS; 1/100s at F4 and ISO400; handheld