Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Barred Owl

I decided to take the "back way" home one night after work. As I drove along, I could see a large bird sitting on a fence post up ahead. I slowed my car as I approached it. I assumed it was a hawk, but as I got closer to it, it turned its head toward me and I knew in an instant - it was an owl. WoW! A Barred Owl. He stood nearly two feet tall. I think owls are magnificent creatures. This is the first owl I have ever seen in the wild. Did I have a camera with me? Of course not. What an idiot. I know better. I was instantly reminded of a quote I heard NYC-based photographer, Jay Maisel, say (in-person at a conference I was attending), "It is very difficult to capture a great image if you do not have a camera with you."

No kidding.

The next day - I decided to go home the same way I went home the previous night. Same fence post. Same owl. No camera. What a supreme idiot.

The next day - I decided to go home the same way I went home the previous two nights. I HAD A CAMERA! Duh. Near the same fence post...in a small tree...CLICK. We stared at each other for nearly ten minutes. I probably fired off thirty shots before he got bored with me and flew. I was delighted to get the shot, but I was even more excited about simply seeing him in all his splendor…3 straight nights.

I've not seen him since. Maybe he knew he gave me what I wanted…finally he could move on. He taught me something in the process. I carry a camera with me every single day. You should, too.

5 comments:

Ron said...

Hahahhaa, hilarious! Well, at least you finally got your shot...and what a great one it is. I carry a point and shoot with me at all times, too. Actualy just picked up a new Canon G10...awesome camera thus far. Seeya soon at work!

Dan Denardo said...

Good to hear from you, Ron. I've heard a lot of good things about the G10 (and the G9 for that matter). I'd love to get a look at your G10 some time. I like the fact that it shoots RAW.

Geek Girl said...

That's a very good lesson. While I was living in the Upper Peninsula, I once had a bald eagle fly along side my car while I was the only one on the road -- about 10 feet above and 5+ feet to the left. It was probably tracking something in the ditch, or maybe just saying hi as my Native American friend says they are very special.

Either way, it was totally insane. That is the biggest bird I've ever seen in my life (incredible wingspan!!). And who ever gets to be that close for so long? It lasted a good few minutes. Of course, no camera...but fortunately, no car accident.

Although, it's probably better I didn't have the camera or there would have been a car accident. That would have been one heck of a photo though.

Maybe you have some tips for taking photos while driving? Joking. Although, I'm sure you have some ideas about mounts and remote shutters.....

EjG said...

What a great shot...and great commentary. I cannot tell you how many "idiot moments" I have had wishing the Nikon was next to me. Thanks for the reminder.

Dan Denardo said...

E-man,
Good to hear from you. I know I don't have to tell YOU that I have my share of idiot moments, as you've seen a few of mine.