Interesting Wing Positions

This article shares some photographs of chickadees that feature interesting wing positions. All were captured handheld during a recent visit to Hendrie Valley.

NOTE: Click on image to enlarge.

Olympus OM-D E-M1X + M.Zuiko PRO 40-150 mm f/2.8 with M.Zuiko MC-20 teleconverter @ 300 mm, efov 600 mm, f/8, 1/3200, ISO-640, Pro Capture H mode, subject distance 5.8 metres

I love the feeling of anticipation in the above image. The chickadee’s wings are fully extended and its left leg is raised in preparation for it to launch into flight.

Olympus OM-D E-M1X + M.Zuiko PRO 40-150 mm f/2.8 with M.Zuiko MC-20 teleconverter @ 300 mm, efov 600 mm, f/7.1, 1/3200, ISO-4000, Pro Capture H mode, subject distance 3.4 metres

The details that are visible on the underside of the chickadee’s wing is what makes this image interesting to me.

Olympus OM-D E-M1X + M.Zuiko PRO 40-150 mm f/2.8 with M.Zuiko MC-20 teleconverter @ 300 mm, efov 600 mm, f/8, 1/3200, ISO-800, Pro Capture H mode, subject distance 5.8 metres

The posture of the chickadee leaning forward as it is taking flight has a sense of drama to it. I love how the flight feathers are spread in anticipation of being airborne. Notice how the digits on the bird’s left foot are just leaving the deck.

Olympus OM-D E-M1X + M.Zuiko PRO 40-150 mm f/2.8 with M.Zuiko MC-20 teleconverter @ 300 mm, efov 600 mm, f/8, 1/3200, ISO-1000, Pro Capture H mode, subject distance 5.8 metres

The image above captures another nice extension of the chickadee’s wing feathers. There are feelings of anticipation as well as how delicate small birds can be. I find the most interesting wing positions are when they are fully extended. Either showing the underside when the wings are pointed up, or the outer wing surface when they are pointed down.

Olympus OM-D E-M1X + M.Zuiko PRO 40-150 mm f/2.8 with M.Zuiko MC-20 teleconverter @ 300 mm, efov 600 mm, f/8, 1/3200, ISO-2500, Pro Capture H mode, subject distance 6.1 metres

A lovely circular wing shape captured in the image above.

Olympus OM-D E-M1X + M.Zuiko PRO 40-150 mm f/2.8 with M.Zuiko MC-20 teleconverter @ 300 mm, efov 600 mm, f/8, 1/3200, ISO-2500, Pro Capture H mode, subject distance 5.7 metres

The forward wing position in the photograph above reveals nice details as well as illustrating the semi transparent nature of flight feathers. Notice how the curled digits of the bird’s feet are barely visible through the extended wing feathers.

Olympus OM-D E-M1X + M.Zuiko PRO 40-150 mm f/2.8 with M.Zuiko MC-20 teleconverter @ 300 mm, efov 600 mm, f/8, 1/3200, ISO-1600, Pro Capture H mode, subject distance 6.1 metres

An interesting moment just before a chickadee lands on an outstretched hand.

Olympus OM-D E-M1X + M.Zuiko PRO 40-150 mm f/2.8 with M.Zuiko MC-20 teleconverter @ 300 mm, efov 600 mm, f/8, 1/3200, ISO-640, Pro Capture H mode, subject distance 5.9 metres

Wonderful, full wing extension as the chickadee lifts off from the deck. The wing positions of birds can make or break an image. Technologies like the Olympus Pro Capture mode add important capabilities to a camera system as they open up new photographic opportunities.

Technical Note:
Photographs were captured handheld using camera gear as noted in the EXIF data. All images were produced from RAW files using my standard process.

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2 thoughts on “Interesting Wing Positions”

    1. Hi Oggie,

      I am also ‘eternally fascinated’ by watching birds fly! Every time a bird takes off, flies past, or lands I am in awe. No wonder so many people love to capture images of birds in flight. It is one of our everyday miracles!

      Tom

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