Photographers Odder than Anything Living in the Rain Forest

Still Lifes Belong in the Diorama
  |  Gorp.com
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What to Know Before You Go

Costa Rica Tourist Board
1101 Brickell Ave., No. 801
Miami, FL 33131
Telephone: (800) 327-7033

The Professional Photographer's Guide to Shooting and Selling Nature and Wildlife Photos, by Jim Zuckerman (Writer's Digest Books, 1991).

Designing Wildlife Photographs, by Joe McDonald (Amphoto, 1994).

Beyond the Basics: Innovative Techniques for Nature Photography, by George D. (Lepp and Associates, 1993).

The Quetzal and the Macaw: The Story of Costa Rica's National Parks, by David Rains Wallace (Sierra Club Books, 1992).

Costa Rica: The Last Country the Gods Made, by Adrian Colesberry (SkyHouse Publishers, 1993).

Guidebooks:
Central America: On a Shoestring (Lonely Planet Publications, 1995).
Costa Rica: A Natural Destination, 3rd ed., by Ree Strange Sheck (J. Muir Publications, 1994).
Costa Rica Handbook, (Moon Publications, 1995).

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When I got back to the park entrance, I found Lars and Jens in the restaurant. We took a short walk over to the hummingbird feeders to watch the high-speed birds in action. Tom and Susan arrived shortly after and I introduced them to the Danes.

Susan began explaining the challenge of photographing a hummingbird. The object, she said, was to capture the hummingbird's wings without motion. I snapped a few shots, which Susan announced would turn out blurry. So what, I said, that's how they look in real life. If I wanted to take a picture of a bird without blurry wings, I'd go to a natural history museum.

As Tom and Susan set up their synchronized flash, I realized nature photographers love the hummingbird because it's a "gearhead" bird. You need about $10,000 worth of equipment to get the perfect shot.

All five of us were watching the same hummingbird and thinking different thoughts.

I was trying to capture the natural blur of the wings.

Tom was probably shooting an amoeba on the bird's head.

Susan was trying to make the wings stop flapping.

Lars was poised with his net, dying to catch one of those buggers just to test his speed.

Jens was probably wondering what they tasted like.


Follow acclaimed travel writer and out-there humorist Doug Lansky  as he continues his Vagabond Adventures.

Published: 30 Apr 2002 | Last Updated: 15 Sep 2010
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication

Best Hotels in Costa Rica

$83
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Volcano Lodge and Springs
$193
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Costa Rica Marriott Hotel San Jose
$105
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Pumilio Mountain and Ocean Hotel

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