Can I just say? I am no expert, but I have learned a few things in my efforts to capture the birds of my own backyard.

Journaling: Stand still, or sit still. Pay attention. Be alert to the sounds and sights. See how the downy woodpecker lands on a tree trunk and then always works his way up the trunk, never down, before flying to the next tree. Notice the way the red-bellied woodpecker lands on the upright trunk. The chickadees and tufted titmice--they flock and feed together--take a single seed from the feeder and then fly to a nearby branch to eat it before returning for one more. The house finch parks in the feeder and munches away. Simply watch and you learn all this and more--the calls, the behaviors. Have the camera at the ready, with the longest lens you can afford. Focus on the eyes. Take a lot of shots. Watch for backlighting that will throw your quarry into silhouette. Try not to cut off tail tips. Learn to see them in the trees, in flight, rustling in the underbrush, and guess where they'll go next. Mostly: Enjoy.

Katie's chat freebies, plus staples and twill from Botanist No. 21 and Bird Watcher Collector Cards. Fonts CK Becky and 1942 Report.