WHILDEN’S POND 4 © 2002Big Cypress Gallery
During the winter, so many birds visit the pond, it’s like having the Discovery Channel outside the cottage window. Achieving the correct exposure to photograph birds with a large format camera is difficult, so I set up Niki’s Pentax 6×7″ camera, with a 1200mm lens, in a position where I would only have to open the window to take a photograph. My ideal way of shooting birds is from our sunroom . . . in air conditioning. The Great Egret The great egret stands in stark contrast to most of its wetland habitat with its jet-black legs, keen yellow eyes, regal pose, and suit of brilliant white feathers. There are 17 wading bird species in the Everglades, and each has a unique method of capturing food. A great egret stands still atop a branch or walks stealthily through shallow waters searching for fish, frogs, freshwater eels, and even young snakes and alligators. When it finds its prey, the egret delivers a deadly jab with its dagger-like bill. When surrounding wet prairies have dried up, and fish have retreated to the only remaining water holes, ponds such as this become opportune vistas for observing wildlife and their distinctive behavioral patterns. Whilden’s Pond 4 was taken with a Pentax 6×7 camera on Ilford XP2 film. This photograph is hand-printed in Clyde’s darkroom on fiber-based paper, selenium toned, then mounted and matted to current archival standards. The photograph is a limited edition and signed by Clyde. Camera settings f/22 | 1200mm Takumar lens| 1/4 second Disclaimer – Cropping, contrast, and image density may vary. To learn more about the darkroom printing process, click here.