DT6C2814I I like this photo. For many people that might be the end of the thinking process. Not me.

Much to my wife’s chagrin, I am constantly asking why. To me, that’s the most interesting question that really gets to the core of the issue. How am I going to over analyze things if I don’t ask probing questions?

So why do I like this photo? Seven words come to mind.

Beauty. I see beauty in the intricate feathers curving gently at the tips, the hooked beak and the overall form of the hawk. I also find a different sense of beauty in the hawk’s stern look and purposeful flight.

Power. I love the sense of power as the hawk spreads its huge wings and powers its way up into the air. What must it be like to do that?

Action. Still photography allows me the incredible opportunity to freeze a split second a time – I never tire of that. Those extended wings and trailing bits of straw will be forever captured in time. Or until my hard drive crashes.

Light. In this case, I like the light coming from behind, creating shadows on the wing and the bale. The light almost seems to be propelling the hawk forward.

Setting. I like the natural setting with the out of focus trees in the background – it even sounds quiet if a photo can. OK the bale has a little human influence but it is the natural spot where I look to find hawks.

Familiarity. All through the late summer and fall, this scene gets repeated thousands of times and I have the good fortune of catching a few. The repetition only serves to increase the appeal and gives me a sense of home and familiarity.

Composition. I like the open space the hawk is flying into, the shape created by the hawk crowning the bale and the overall positioning of the elements in the photo.

I could go on about texture, colour and other elements but I’ll leave it there before losing the remaining readers.

So you may ask why I’m making such a big deal about this hawk photo and not all the others in my collection. OK I confess, it’s really all about those bits of straw trailing the hawk – nothing else. That just seemed like too short a post.

Latest Comments

  1. hannele says:

    I love the opposite shapes the hawk’s wings and the hay bale make. Also, very good way of sharing a photo and your view on it without just writing a sentence. 😀


  2. Scott Marshall says:

    I love how you broke down the post – with all the elements coming together to create – nature for me is telling the story – i get the power through the curve of the wing and agree with Phil the straw moving is the icing on the cake


  3. artsifrtsy says:

    It’s a great shot – what’s not to like? I sometimes get attached to the experience I had taking the shot – it sometimes overrides the other factors.


  4. Cornel A. says:

    Love this photo!
    Beautiful bird!


  5. Steve Gingold says:

    The image of the hawk taking off in flight is excellent, Lyle. But your observation of the scattering hay is what sets it apart from other images. That is something most non-photographers might not notice and would be easily missed in real time, but you’ve captured and pinpointed what makes it special.


    • Lyle Krahn says:

      Thanks so much. I find it enjoyable to step back and try to figure out why some photos seem better than others when they appear to be quite similar. I think I still have a long way to go but progress is good.


  6. Jeff | Planet Bell says:

    Great photo, and I agree with all the reasons you like it. For me, action is the best. I love how photography can capture that split second, or split 1/1000 of a second. Photography allows us to see what we can’t see in real life.

    Great job on taking a photo and turning it into a post. You are a real blogging pro.


    • Lyle Krahn says:

      I think I might be losing hair scratching my head for ideas on posts sometimes so I’m happy to hear you think this one turned out OK. I like the way you phrased your comment about seeing what we can’t in real life. We have the capacity to see so much more than just reality.


  7. Mike Powell says:

    I have one word for why I like the photo–it’s all about the hawk. The light is beautiful, the setting is perfect, the bits of straw are wonderful, but without the hawk, you have nothing. For most of us, hawks are unusual and exotic creatures,not part of our normal lives. We may not have the luxury of shooting hundreds (or even thousands) of shots of a hawk, searching for a perfect shot. The shot is incredible for all of the reasons that you enumerated (and more)–you’ve shown the power and beauty of the hawk in a dynamic way. Wow!


    • Lyle Krahn says:

      Glad you liked my hawk. It’s funny because whether it’s taking a photo or putting together a post, I know it’s important to get the basics right so I have a foundation to build on. However, it’s the final touches like the straw in the photo or the added twist to the story that give me the most satisfaction.


  8. derekevens says:

    Great Capture, Birds In Flight always a challenge. Like your narration.


  9. melodylowes says:

    Ha! I like the power and movement and bale – and yes, the straw fragments. But of course, I would never just say that, because that’s far too simple, and then I don’t get to use up my word quota for the day. 🙂 Lovely all round – very, very Saskatchewan. Perhaps the October calendar version?


  10. Honie Briggs says:

    The pieces of straw have an almost cartoon effect. If the hawk had a sly grin or its eyes were bugging out it, you could caption it “That’s the last straw, man. I’m outta here!” I like this shot too.


  11. sagescenery says:

    You’re funny…and the photo is beautiful…perfect combination in a blog post!! I enjoyed learning about what you love about the photo!!!


  12. Phil Lanoue says:

    Ha! That is excellent! And you have hit the nail squarely on the head. Those bits of falling straw absolutely make this shot!
    Good eye not only to observe and photograph this scene, but to notice and be pleased by this key bit of image interest.


  13. Deb W. Trotter says:

    Oh you kidder!! It’s a beautiful photograph, and I like it for all the reasons you mention (several of which I would not have come up with on my own), but also …. the symmetry created in the curve of the bird’s wings above the apparent curve of the hay bale (marred ever so slightly by the trailing bits of hay :)).


  14. Terry Brown says:

    One of the difficult aspects of wildlife photography I find is showing the animal any way other than static. The motion of the wings and the trail of straw falling form the talons is an excellent indicator of motion that makes this image come alive. Excellent job Lyle, I really enjoy seeing your work.


    • Lyle Krahn says:

      And I really enjoy the fact that you stop by and comment! I completely agree about the static shot though sometimes it’s hard enough to get that. Sometimes it’s just the little things that make a huge difference and turn it into action.


  15. foresterartist says:

    It is a fantastic shot.


  16. anotherday2paradise says:

    Seven very good reasons. I also like it. 🙂


  17. Victor Rakmil says:

    Great post! Wonderful picture I love the light on the straw, its texture and colour.


I'd love to hear what you are thinking ...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s