Stephen Stephen wrote in post #9509911
David you did very well here. If the bird's in the shade try a touch of fill flash sometime to see. You only need to dial the flash down to -2 or less. You only want to the image enough without it being obvious that flash has been used.
Thanks for the suggestion Stephen. I appreciate it. Unfortunately the only flash I have is the one built in on the 50D.
1rushfan wrote in post #9510110
David, I took a peek at your EXIF data, and I have two suggestions that might help you catch these fast-moving, twitching, hopping little buggers.
1) Switch to shutter priority instead of aperture priority.
2) No less than 1/500 shutter speed, even if you are using a tripod/monopod.
Unless you are getting full sun and are getting shutter speeds of 1/500+ when in aperture priority, this is the only way I've had any success shooting smaller birds. You can always adjust the levels if the pic comes out a little underexposed.
Good luck and looking forward to more pics!
Thanks 1rushfan. Appreciate the comment. Isn't proper exposure governed by both aperture and shutter speed though? With a change in one equal to a reciprocal change in the other. I understand the need for higher SS's in bird photography, but I am more and more believing that the challenge with black and white colored birds is first getting the proper light and then exposing properly. A combination of the right SS (higher is better) and aperture, assuming the light is workable. Not arguing at all as I'm just new to this hobby. Just explaining my understanding.
sparker1 wrote in post #9510131
I think that is an excellent shot, Dave, and I would be happy to have taken it. I rarely see a downy and they are always high and on the shaded side of the tree.
Thanks Stan. Its become a personal challenge for me to improve my skills on black and white birds . And its uphill all the way, but I think I'm gaining ground (for today!) .