Friday, August 14, 2009

I have Unagi

Anyone that's visited here for more than 15 seconds, knows without a doubt, that I love nature photography. My dream job would be working for National Geographic traveling the world taking macro photos of stink bugs and hairy spiders. (but not centipedes because I have my limits). I'm sure I'd get about 12 feet into the Congo before I found something interesting and used up two memory cards on a fly or something, only to miss the rare albino, one-eyed velociraptor.

Sadly (maybe not?) we don't have any velociraptors in these here parts, so I have to settle for what I can find in my own back yard.

(Stupid cast. Stupid adventure.)


These dragonflies have been nearly as elusive as the velociraptor the past couple summers. They don't seem to want to let me get very close to them. But a couple nights ago, I was outside taking pictures of Gene as he installed my new windshield (I'll share that sometime soon... I can feel you twitter with excitement), and this dragonfly landed on my lilac bush.

Wait, tangent! To be fair, my lilac bush could more easily be described as a small assortment of bare lilac sticks. I planned on pruning it in the spring. It'll be fun to watch as I kill one of God's lovely creatures.

Anyway, I spotted him from 20 feet and said out loud. "I'd love to get a photo of that dragonfly, but he'll take off as soon as I toddle over there." Keeping in mind, I have my camera around my neck, 2 mismatch crutches and a neon pink cast on my foot.

I move rather slow and lumbering.

Don't be shocked if I end up on some funniest home videos reel at some point.

So anyway, I wanted to share how I got such a nice close up shot.

I think it's because I have unagi.

What is unagi (besides sushi?) Well, watch the video from friends below and you'll "get it". Gene and I always joke about how we have unagi stealth like movements.


I start out taking a few steps in the direction of the dragonfly. Every few steps taking his (her?) photo with the idea that I can always crop it and get a "close up" that way. Yes, I just revealed my secret.

I am ashamed.


Each couple steps, I raise my camera and steady the shot, getting the best possible photo I can get, figuring at any moment he'll take off.


About this time, he did take off, but I waited quietly for a few moments, and he'd come back and land in the same spot.


It was around here that I realized he was eating something, and quite interested in that. I could see his "jaws" chomping away. I could also see his eyes moving to watch me. God knows what he thought when he saw my pajama wearing self walking up to him. I'm sure he thought "well that thing is crippled, I doubt it's gonna be able to lift it's lumbering foot to stomp on me."

Heck I can't do that when I have two GOOD feet.

I was happy at this point, because even with a little cropping, I could still make a 16 x 20 if I wanted. Did I mention I have a large print addiction?



This photo was taking just a few inches from the dragonfly, one handed, with the camera held out a couple feet from my head. I'm hella impressed with myself.

So, I guess my question is, do you have Unagi?

Video disabled, go HERE to see Unagi

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