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Hello, my name is Stasiek, I live in Warsaw but once in a while I like to take refuge in nature to take a break from the bustling, busy city. I mainly travel to the Mazury lake district in the north-east of Poland, however I also love the mountains and seaside. I’m not an early riser so I mainly photograph in the afternoon hours capturing the last rays of sun. I like shooting landscapes and animals however I especially like to photograph birds as they embody a sense of freedom and connote tranquility.

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Herring gull (Larus argentatus)

Seagulls, although commonly treated as pests or disregarded, are very intelligent creatures with a complex social structure and highly developed communication methods. I like shooting birds in this pose as they can be shown in all their glory. Although, it is not the best idea to take photos in strong, direct sunlight, I think in this case the backlight helps to add a more majestic and serious look to the gull, by highlighting each individual feather and casting a shadow on the rest of its body.

Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs)

This is a Chaffinch, even though it is the second most common bird in Poland (after the lark) it is far from being ordinary as the male bird boasts a beautiful plumage with a vibrant orange on their chest and belly. I took this photo in May, in the Mazury lake district, after hearing the bird's beautiful song. I like this photo because of the warm hues and composition enhanced by the flowers of the Mirabelle tree.

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Nuthatch (Sitta europea)

This bird is a nuthatch. These small birds have a unique ability to climb down trees and rocks facing down. This photo was taken during the Covid-19 pandemic. The winter of 2021 was harsh, with temperatures reaching -20 °C. Nevertheless, animals thrived as the amount of human interference with their natural habitat drastically decreased (mainly thanks to travel restrictions). It also made it easier to observe them as they came to areas that would normally be crowded with people. I like this photo it portrays the aerodynamic silhouette of the bird just before takeoff with a tiny sunflower seed and because you can see the bird's tongue (which I didn’t even know they had!)

Grey Herron (Ardea cinerea)

 

Everyone says that in order to photograph birds you need a lot of time, patience, and dedication, and although this is sometimes true it is not always the case, and this photo is the proof. I took this photo of a grey Herron not on a lengthy wildlife observation but during an online school lesson. The key to capturing the “perfect” shot is to take your camera wherever you go and having it ready to shoot at all times (not somewhere deep inside your bag), even if it’s a short stroll in the park, as you might encounter something unexpected along the way. I like to photograph Herons as they always display a graceful and elegant posture.

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