While biking home from the ARC late at night, I passed trees on the corner of Hutchinson and Dairy which, as many students know, are home to hundreds of crows. During my freshman year, when I lived in the Tercero dorms, I had always wanted to photograph the crows filling the trees. Finally, I decided to give it a try.
I did not have my tripod on me, so I positioned my camera on a cemented structure nearby and set the shutter speed to 20 seconds in order to make any movement of the crows look blurry and to add to the overall hazy look of the photograph. In order to ensure that releasing the shutter would not contribute to the blurriness of the photo, I set a 10-second timer which would prevent any motion blur due to manually releasing the shutter. Despite my low shutter speed and my low aperture of f/1.4, it was so dark that I was forced to work with a high ISO of 3200. The long shutter speed caused a nearby streetlight to be blown out, as can be seen in the right hand corner of the photograph.
Although I had originally wanted the photo to encompass more crows, I only had my 50mm lens with me at the time and therefore such a wide angled shot would be impossible given my distance from the crows and the focal length. So, instead of trying to shoot a landscape shot, I decided to focus on a dying tree whose own silhouette added to the overall eerie mood of the photograph. I’ll be back soon with my wide angle (10-22mm) lens to give it another go.
– Jasna Hodzic