For this interview we have been invited on a virtual visit to the home of Donna and Jeff Knodle on 11 acres out in the country in South East Michigan. Donna relates, “I can wander around in our woods or through our overgrown field to find interesting flora and fauna begging to have their picture taken…or not.” Their home is surrounded by over five acres of mainly large oak trees. She reports that in the wilder areas of the acreage, “I walk around find a spot and wait. There are lots of white-tailed deer trails, small birds, pheasants, rabbits other critters that also love this type of cover.”
Donna literally caters to the bird visitors. “There are six pedestal birdbaths and five ground-level birdbaths in our yard. My husband makes the squirrel and raccoon barriers on the feeding stations.”
It is a great advantage doing a shoot at home “…I can easily change my camera or lens depending on what I find…I carry one camera and keep another camera/lens on my deck table where I can quickly grab it.” Donna also has a unique way to get around, “When I’m out in the field, I drive one of our tractors with a carrier on the back to hold my tripod and another camera/lens. It never fails that I’m looking for dragonflies and a beautiful bird lands near me.”
Though Donna enjoys the wonderful raptor and waterfowl images on Nikonians, those images are not possible in her immediate area so she focuses on practicing Birds in Flight shots with smaller birds in her yard. Not an easy feat when they move so quickly.
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