Sunday, May 14, 2006

The joys of Nature

Azure Damselfly
(Canon S2IS - f/3.5 at 1/400 s focal length 919 mm)

Garden Lizard
(Canon S2IS - f/3.5 at 1/250 s focal length 919 mm)

DragonFly in Flight
(Canon S2IS - f/3.5 at 1/320 s focal length 454 mm)

(Canon S2IS - f/3.5 at 1/200 s focal length 340 mm)

(Canon S2IS - f/3.5 at 1/125 s focal length 919 mm)

DragonFly in Flight
(Canon S2IS - f/3.5 at 1/320 s focal length 575 mm)

I(Canon S2IS - f/3.5 at 1/200 s focal length 1815 mm)

This week's shoot was one of my best so far. I was hoping to capture lots of birds this time, especially after getting inspired by my last shoot at Hebbal. This time around i was accompanied by my good friend Nita. Another photography enthusiast, she is one of the most creative persons i have ever met. We reached the lake at 07:45 hrs. It had rained the previous night and the air smelt fresh. Everything still looked wet. We didnt realise how much it had rained till we got onto the shore of the lake. It looked like a marsh land! After a few steps I suddenly realised i was growing taller!! A fleeting glance at my shoes showed me that i was on 2 inch heels. The mud kept sticking onto my shoe in layers and it grew thicker with every step. I suddenly felt top of the world :)

One thing i immediately realised was to never look for birds immediately after a downpour. I have no clue where they all went. I mean this lake was supposed to house 120 different species of birds and here I was standing tall (literally!) and finding it difficult even to spot my loyal house crows. We managed to find a kingfisher and a barbett somehow but it didnt take us long to realise that this wasnt a birdie day. We shifted our focus to the lower strata of the trees and the marshy floor. We saw an assortment of colour and life , living unperturbed in nature's glory. An amazing variety of dragonflies, damselflies, butterflies, spiders, catterpillars, moths, .... the list goes on. Nita's ability to spot even the tiniest of creatures is truly amazing. Half my shots should be attributed to her spotting abilities. Each creature was more exotic than the other. It will take me ages to identify every species that i captured . But i promise myself that i will do it somehow.

In particular,the dragonflies really amaze me. These guys are the masters of flight. Their bodies are aerodynamically perfect. They are the fastest insects and can travel at speeds of 70 - 130 kmph! Mindboggling or what! Their ability to hover is unparalleled in the insect world. The only other animal with more specialised flight is the humming bird. The dragon fly is not just adept at flight but is a master of attack as well. Being a predator , it feeds on small insects. It attacks its prey head-on. It calculates its angle of attack such that the prey does not realise that it is approaching. After shooting a lot of damselflies and dragonflies perched on leaves and branches, i got a little ambitious and tried to capture one in flight. Crouching on the floor, i waited for one to arrive in my field of view. One such dragonfly came and whizzed past me so fast that i barely had time to click. If getting one of these nimble and agile creatures is hard enough, you can imagine how tough it is to focus on it when it is in the frame. Only after a good twenty minutes of swatting flies and after lots of blank pictures, I kinda got the hang of capturing these guys . How i wished i had a SLR to actually freeze these guys in flight,immortalizing the moment in time... But i have no complaints for,the S2 has this innate knack of surprising me time and again with its capabilities.

Ever since i could remember i hated reptiles. I guess this could be attributed to a small (rather huge) fear deep down of anything which is slithery and poisonous. But my short stint at photography has managed to change most of these feelings. I now know and truly believe that these creatures are mostly harmless and incredibly beautiful. The complexity and uniqueness of these creatures amazes me. I shot a water snake and a garden lizard. God! they are beautiful creatures :)

A nice shot of a spider coming out of its egg and an adult spider feeding on its prey rounded up my weekend shoot. We spent 15 minutes getting the mud cakes off our shoes and then returned home. Although i went back shorter ;) , I was a changed man as far as my perception of reptiles goes.

I am forever grateful to Gul for lending me her camera week after week. I think i have done more mileage on the S2 than her. It takes a lot of trust to lend something that costs 30g. Thanks pal! I dedicate this post to u..


  1. those pictures are awesome!

  2. dude this is awsome shots you have here. great lightning too. take care and thanx for u´r visit :)

  3. Some really cool photos! Especially the dragonfly in flight is really amazing how you caught it.

  4. hey, liked d damsel fly snaps.. both of 'em.. man, they r beautiful creatures! :) btw, reptiles continue to scare me even after I cliked them!! :P

  5. as always ur pictures and narrative r top notch.
    love the dragonfly in flight (top one)! wow!

  6. wow..I love the first shot.The colour blue is amazing in it.
    And I love the dragonfly in flight.
    They are all just great!

  7. awesome shot of wildlife, lovely detail and colors:-)

  8. maga... from where in the world do you get so much color color creatures? its like you dyed them and then took their pics. sooper stuff.


  9. My favorite is the Garden Lizard. Just look at his (or her) scales. Just magnify the size of this lizard by 200 or so, and you have a Tyronosaurus look-alike in front of you :)

    Amazing shots, Anoop. I can much make out you had a splendid time. By the way, does Nita have a photoblog too?

  10. Touched, my boy! touched!


  11. all awesome shots.. as always..

  12. Speactacular shots...I have always hated these creatures but your snaps make them adorable!! :)

  13. awesome! photos....

  14. keep on shooting, my friend. your work is stunning and beautiful!

  15. awesum!!
    loved the "dragonfly in flight"
    how, how did u manage to capture the motion that besutifully.. :)

  16. great images. nice emphasis on the details and colors. :-)

  17. excellent macros... catching them in flight is difficult work...nice work

  18. i have just one word....
    this was the first time i visited ur blog...i gonna come back!

  19. hey! i loved one of ur pic so much... tht i am using it in my profile in orkut... hope u don't sue me for copyright infringement!..

    (can u believe it... ppl recognised tht it is from ur blog!!)

  20. @restless :
    pls go ahead and use it :) which pic did u use?

  21. pretty much like restless me too visited ur blog for the first time... its a joy man.. just seeing those snaps.. makes u wish there was more green around..

  22. OMG>
    Dear Anoop
    Have u ever entered ur pics in a photo contest? Ur pics r like those in readers digest or something. U have a great talent. U have an eye for detail. These pics r simply simply awesome.
    Ok. Do u teach photography ?;)
    If yes, uve just found a student and an avid admirer.:)
    One more request. Can I use one or two pics for noncommercial purposes on my blog.
    Im surely showing these pics to my mom. She too has lotsa interest in wildlife.
    God! this blog roccks

    also pls giv me d details of d camera dat u hav used, i mean is it available in india or is it a firang model. i was toying wid d idea of photography for quite a few months. but now i am sure i want to get started. Thank u for being the inspiration ;)

  23. @ajay : i am still a novice here..u need to check out some of the photoblogs on blogger to understand what i mean..
    U can use my photos on yr blog by all means..Is yr mom a photographer too?
    btw i use my friend's Canon S2IS.It costs around 30g in yet to buy one for myself...will probably save up n buy a SLR

  24. Doing great work, Anoop. You need your own camera, my friend!!!

  25. @ajay:
    thanks for visiting and leaving these kind and nice words.thats a lot of really nice stuff that u have said...most of it is undeserving :)
    u shud start shooting sure u will get hooked on to it :)

  26. damslefly one is the best shot.....very well taken.....others are good too spl the drangonfly in motion........
    having S2IS must be helping a lot with 10x of optical zoom....right ? happy cliking :)

  27. I liked the damsel fly and the last one. Beautiful pictures. Take more!

  28. Keep Going dude.. GREAT SNAPS...

    It's kinda different, like Your blog.

  29. Brilliant!!! That spider photo is outstanding!

  30. I loved the snap of the spider and its web!