A wild hybrid Scarlet/Great Green Macaw flies against a forest on a farm in northern Costa Rica
A wild scarlet macaw (Ara macao) swoops through a rainforest on a dark and cloudy day during Costa Rica's rainy season. I used a slow shutter speed combined with flash for this artistic rendering.
Valpariso in Chile is a city of contradictions. It has a distinctly Old World vibe but is set squarely in Latin America. And the colonial architecture contrasts with the ultramodern port and high-rise buildings just around the bay. In my first attempt at city photography, I had a lot of fun taking this image from a hilltop marketplace just after the sun set. A flashlight placed inside a century-old cable car provided the light lines on the bottom left of the frame.
Canon 5DsR, Canon 16-35 mm f/4 L IS zoom, polarizer, 6 stop neutral density filter, f/16, 30 seconds, ISO 160
Torrent ducks frequent that fast moving streams of the Andes Mountains in western South America. I had always wanted to see one and dreamed of a shot that would use a slower than normal shutter speed and have a nice composition to give viewers an artistic look at where this fascinating bird lives. I was thrilled to be able to pull this off in my first ever encounter with this species earlier this year in the mountains of Ecuador. I had to work quickly as the duck was gone after a minute or so!
A Wire-crested Thorntail humminbird hovers in a rainforest in Ecuador
Some nature images are spur of the moment. Others are pre-planned. This is an example of the latter. I knew that cattle egrets and a few other heron and egret species would fly up the Baru River just inland from Costa Rica's Dominical Beach every morning just after dawn. I aligned myself with a dark stretch of forest on the opposite riverbank and used a slow shutter speed and just a touch of flash to convey the ghostly silence that I felt watching these birds fly in the faint light of dawn.
Olive Ridley sea turtles (Lepidochelys olivacea) return to the Costa Rican beaches where they hatched every year by the thousands. Driven by atavistic evolutionary traits, females makes this epic effort as they have done for millions of years in order to pass on their genes to a new generation. Emerging at the edge of light, the female turtles struggle to near exhaustion while laying the eggs. Two months later, hatchlings emerge and though as few as 1% may survive, a new generation is born, and the cycle continues.
A wild red-eyed tree frog (Agalychnis callidryas) leaps through the forest in the lowlands of Costa Rica. It took a setup with multiple flashes, a bit of creativity, and plenty of patience to capture this action!
Canon 5DsR, Sigma 150 mm macro lens, tripod, f/16, 1/200, ISO 640, 2 flashes off-camera
MOTMOT IN MOTION
An Amazonian Motmot (Momotus momota) speeds through the cloud forest in front of my house in Costa Rica. This image is an in-camera blur combined with flash; the effect is not a product of Photoshop.
One of my few non-tropical images, I used a slow shutter speed to capture the famed moment when hundreds of snow geese take flight just after dawn at the famed Bosque del Apache in New Mexico. I thought the sense of motion mixed with the static geese on the bottom made for an image with a lot of potential and kinetic energy.
Costa Rica's Llanos de Cortez waterfall is a little-known gem. Strong sunlight, the use of a netural density filter, and a little trick with a small piece of black cloth allowed me to take this dramatic image of the falls.
A combination of flash and slow shutter speed accentuates the motion of a scarlet macaw flying through the rainforest canopy in Costa Rica.