11 February

Bird Meditation, Something New. I Don’t Know What I Want, But I Like What I am Doing

by Jon Katz

Life seems remarkable to me sometimes,

I know little of flowers and less of birds, yet I somehow think this helps me to sense how I want to photograph them, almost everything they do is a surprise to me, fresh and exciting. Maria came into my office to tell me she had just put more feed in the bird feeder in case I wanted to come out and take a picture with my new lens. I did, and I was rewarded for my trouble.

I don’t know what these birds are, but I decided to sit outside with my new lens, I can be far enough away so that I don’t disturb the birds.

Two or three showed up right away, and I got the photos I wanted, quiet, contemplative images that were almost a meditation for me. I loved sitting out in the yard holding the camera up – next time the trip-pod. I love bird photos that show them in their natural world. They remind me of chickens, only they move much faster. I didn’t want to shoot through glass, I wanted to sit outside and wait. I want to get a feel for birds in their space, their speed, thair energy, their herky-jerky ness.

It was a sweet half an hour or so until it got darker and colder. I’ll be back in that seat often. This feels so peaceful and restful to me, it’s almost like a meditation. Perhaps it is a meditation.

I don’t know where I’m going with these pictures yet, but I like what I am seeing so far. As with the flowers, they touch something deeply inside of me, something that wants to come out and is coming out. I’m so lucky to be open to these things at this point in my life.


The birds are athletes, amazing in their ability to dive, move and twist. This one wrapped itself all around the feeder to get to the suet. I’ve been around birds all of my life, yet I’ve never really seen them. It’s true, photography helps me see the world anew. The lenses I trade for are helpful.


  1. The black and white ones are Downy Woodpeckers, the third picture looks like a Nuthatch, and the first picture looks to me like possibly a Black-capped Chickadee

  2. I like what you are doing too! You are progressing? (using that in lieu of any other appropriate word) very quickly and nicely……….lets say…..you are *growing* into your bird photography and I’m loving the process!
    Susan M

  3. So nice to see you coming alive to the magic of birds. Good pictures, and wonderful that you have found a new way to see the natural world. One of the great things about birds is that you can find them practically anywhere there is a little bit of nature.

  4. These are wonderful pictures. I love watching the birds also. I love seeing the hummingbirds I get in the summer. They are very fast, but I was able to get a couple of pictures last summer.
    You and your new lens seems to be doing an amazing job

  5. I am LOVING your bird pictures! They bring me such a sense of calm. So glad you’ve added these to your gifts.

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