My first impression was this is another coffee table book
with beautiful bird photographs in living color expertly captured. But you do not get very far into the book to realize
that it goes much deeper than this. The
authors, three talented bird photographers from Finland, have successfully combined
their knowledge of the techniques of field bird photography. While there is a section on the equipment you
need, a major part of the book is about what to do once you have cameras and
lenses. The descriptions of field
techniques and how to capture those awesome images are most revealing. For
example the authors explain how to be at the right place at the right time. How to create the right place and time. How to get close to
birds that normally can be seen only from a distance. How and
where to build blinds, anticipating the actions of birds, and the best angles
to photograph them. They stress the importance of listening to birds and
the need for perseverance by the photographer.
Other subjects covered include: focusing methods, exposure, natural and
artificial lighting, and how to deal with movement. Post processing of
photographs is not included.
While at times I wanted more detail there is more than enough information to get you started researching a topic on your own. Lots and lots of ideas to draw from because now you know how they did it.
My biggest problem was actually reading the book. I kept finding myself reading the captions on all those awesome photographs and thinking about how I could use their ideas in my own photography. Then I have developed this intense desire to own a 500mm F4 lens. Even if you never get beyond the pictures it is still worth the price.
J Mike Kell
West Pasco Audubon Society