In Amongst Bees

When I snapped my tendon in my ankle last year my ability to get out and film birds was hammpered by where I could go. So Ruth would drive me to locations where I could sit down with my plaster on. On one of these outings we found a cafe and next to it a wild garden full of beautiful flowers.

A new challenge hit me as I looked at all the bees and wasps flying in to collect nectar from the flowers. I made my plan but looking at my lens choice was difficult and I needed something I could get in really close with.

It was then I thought of the Sony 90mm 2.8 Macro lens, a lens they say is the sharpest lens have made. Well the plan was made and with my foot in a protective boot I was dropped off by Ruth and left to find a place where I could film.

Sounds easy but as I wanted to be as close as I could I had choice other than to sit bang in the middle of the plants and shrubs. Then it was a case of watching where the bees came from and left. The moved from plant to plant very fast and it was then that I realised my shutters speeds were going to pushed to the limit if I was to capture the body and small fragile wings all in focus.

Being in amongst nature listening to the high pitched buzzing was just brilliant and at no stage did any insect come near me, sitting in their world. Just shows you that you can invade their world and they don’t feel threatened. I quickly learned this was a challenge that would take a few visits to Nail one in flight.

Using my Birds In Flight techniques I set my shutter speed to 1/3200 and my aperture wide open at 2.8 but this was when I learned to get the whole bee in focus my aperture had to be at least f11 meaning the ISO had to be pushed to enable me to get the bee in focus.

Using High Speed Burst Plus gave me my maximum 10 frames a second and after an hour it looked like I was getting a few in focus so it was time I headed back to look at my images and see where I could improve.

Sony 90mm 2.8

So as the week went on there were a few tings that I came across with this one of hardest challenges to date.

First was the light as most of the shrubs were overhanging so the sunlight never reached the flowers where the bees were collecting nectar. So with light a massive issue I found shrub that had good light on and just waited for the bees to visit it.

Birds in flight.

Using the same principle as I do for birds in flight I used a panning motion to capture the bee in flight but I will disclose that it was frustrating at times as you thought you got the image in focus

Sony 90mm 2.8

Sony A7R4 Sony 90mm 2.8

So after 5days I reckon I got 10 good images from about 500 images. But the ones I got I was over the moon with as this was my attempt.

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