May 9, 2020 | By: Japan Dreamscapes Photography Tours
Today, we're posting an update from our veteran photo workshop leader regarding his experience with birding and photography.
I love photography and birding, and I have over 30 years of logbook entries of bird species spotted globally. When I was a hardcore birder, I used a pseudonym for my pro photography due to my commitments as a rescue specialist traveling worldwide. I was also keen on landscapes, and now today, these same locations are just becoming available for NatGeo and the common adventurer for safe travel, maybe a little less safe at present due to the spread of covid-19 and the occasional headhunter in PNG.Over the course of my life as an pro visual artist, I have seen many friends, colleagues, and clients who are birders become photographers, and I am thrilled to welcome them into the field of visual artistry.And some are achieving gallery quality hanging prints from there birding adventures.
Unfortunately, in Japan, I have never offered an exclusively birding open group photo workshop; however, I do lead private birding adventures several times a year. And I enjoy myself with my fellow birders, but during many of my multi-themed group photo adventures, I play tongue-tied from time to time when asked what species of bird we just spotted. And to tell you the truth, the reason why I don’t identify the species is because in some cases, I am not 100% positive, but my accuracy is between 85% to 95%. If you know birders, you know the reason I stay tongue-tired.If you are wrong, you are damned if you do and damned if you don’t, so I prefer to be damned that I don't.
Birding photography is a noble pursuit, but as the zen master, D.T. Suzuki said, “I like zen because everything is zen.” Everything is zen, not birds exclusively.My vision is to explore and always experience life with the beginner’s mind. A beginner sees myriad possibilities in each theme and pursuit, and that is the mindset I bring to each project, so I broaden the scope of my photo adventures to include several different themes, not only birding as a focus.While many colleagues who are fellow photographers feverishly hold onto their pride and feel they are experts in birding, but there are so many other types of photography to bring the beginner’s mind to that are arguably as beautiful and spectacular as birds.I do carry a decent set of binoculars for spotting in my pack, and I use them from time to time.
At one time I swore I would be a birder for life, but my sensibilities have evolved.There’s much more to hang on my walls than birding photos and I have a become a renowned photographer of birds, wildlife, landscapes, culture, flowers, architecture, and virtually any type of photography.Join me in Japan in the near future on a different kind of adventure, birding including, and maybe I won’t be quite a tongue-tied post pandemic.
The photos in this newsletter are exclusively birds.I’ll always have birding in my blood.