Street Photography in Chicago

I have been looking for a small, compact full frame camera for a long time.  I wanted a camera that I can take with me on a short vacation and still allow me to capture good quality images.   I did not have much luck until I decided to pick up a Leica M.  Since then, I have been exploring the Street aspect of photography.  I have been reading and studying images from the well known photography sites.

I just got back from a week vacation from Chicago.  When I am not sightseeing, I had my Leica M around my neck walking around town, practicing and capturing scenery from The Windy City.  The city is an amazing town for Street photographers to practice.  It was full of interesting people and moments.  It is a big learning curve especially for someone who is used to photographing with a DSLR.   I hope to continue improving my eye for Street photography.  Here are some of my favorite images from this trip.  Enjoy!

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RBWP Feeding

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The same pair of RBWP have returned to the same nest box again this year.  Last year, none of the babies survived and appeared to have been killed by squirrels.  This pair has been working very hard.  The first clutch from this year failed earlier this summer.  Since then, with the help of my friend Mark, we have trimmed away a lot of the palm frond to keep the squirrels away.  This is the second clutch and I could hear the constant screaming of the babies begging for food everyday.   I am happy that they finally produced some young ones that will be leaving within the next few days.

1Dx | 200-400mm L | 1/320 | f/8 | ISO800 | Fill Flash | Manual

Tender Moment

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I was fortunate enough to be able to photograph this Barred Owl nest along many great photographers early this year.  Owl is my favorite raptor among the all the Avian species.  After spending over a month monitoring and photographing their progress, this image was by far one of my favorites from this nest.  It was one of the best days for photographing at this location: not only we did not have the typical cloudy day with dull lighting,  we also had one of the best moments one could have asked for.  The sun lit up the background perfectly and the baby barred owl popped up and peeking through the mother, checking out the action going on among the photographers to my left.

1Dx | 1200mm | 1/160 | f/9 | ISO4000 | Fill Flash | Manual

Branching Owlet

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Screech Owlet landing in Fern Lake. I was only able to capture one late afternoon of branching baby owls at this nest before they moved higher into the grand oaks. I feel especially privileged to witness the fledging of several screech owl nests this year. Side lit by the light bouncing off a small stream of water, beamer was use to balance the shadow.
1Dx | 200-400L | 1/1600 | f/4.5 | ISO8000 | Fill Flash w/ Beamer | Bradenton, Florida

Baby Barred Owl

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During the early part of the nesting season, there was a period of about 15 minutes where the golden afternoon light would shine upon the nest.  I had been hoping to  capture the baby owlet during that time.  Unfortunately, by the time the baby was old enough, the angle of light had changed and would only light up part of the nest.  This image was captured during the first Saturday the baby made an appearance.  It was looking up at the female barred owl that was preening high on a perch.  I love how the light illuminates the baby barred owl, giving it a mysterious sense to the image.  I opted not to add fill flash in this shot.

1Dx | 1200mm | 1/320 | f/8 | ISO6400 | Manual Mode

Feeding

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March 5th, 2014

The feeding activity has increased within that week.  This image was captured after the female barred owl has left the nest for a short period of time.  She came back with a prey and stood on the edge of the nest.  After starring at the owlets for about a minute, she slowly stepped into the cavity.

1Dx | 840mm | 1/160 | f/8 | ISO3200 | Fill Flash | Manual | Full Frame

4th of July

Happy 4th of July to all of you.  I hope you are having a great day.  I went out to downtown area a few hours before the fireworks display this evening.   I came back with this image.  This lady was busy selling beer to the crowd outside the restaurant.  When I first noticed this scenery, I opted for zone focusing and fired a few shots from my side as I was walking by.  The expression on the worker on the left was very interesting.  What is your interpretation of this image?

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M240 | 35mm Summilux | 1/350 | f/6.8 | IS3200

 

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M240 | 35mm Summilux | 1/500 | f/9.5 | IS800

Off To See Fireworks

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Happy 4th of July

I just recent picked up my first Rangefinder.  I have been learning about the camera and have taken this shot.  I figure I would share this image with all of you to wish you a Happy 4th of July!

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M240 | 35mm Summilux | 1/90 | f/2.4 | ISO200

Whoo is next?

Shortly after the first one has left, it climbed a little higher.  It stayed there for a while before taking off to join its sibling.

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1Dx | 200-400L | 1/200 | f/8 | ISO2000 | Better Beamer

Eastern Screech Owl – Gray Morph

This was my first gray morph Eastern Screech Owl pair that I photographed early this year.  It was also the first nest that I got to witness the entire fledging process.  Adult flew in and posed next to the nest on this branch and was staring at the photographers.  One by one, the baby left the nest and flew into the palm tree to join the parents.  It was an amazing experience to have witnessed the entire process.

Here is an adult looking back at the photographers.

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Adult landed on the side of the nest trying to encourage the owlets to take the first step.

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Frontal pose

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1Dx | 200-400L | 1/160 | f/10 | ISO10000 | Better Beamer