Creating the perfect photo montage

A PHOTO montage image, such as this, before the digital era would have been practically impossible.

In the world of press and media photography it’s always best to try and come up with an image that has, as far as you know, not been done before.

Cut and paste are two words banded around all aspects of photography and editing, which is exactly what this image is, with birds all coming and going from the same feeder in approximately one hour.

Always aiming for perfection and the correct way of creating such an image, you need to practice to iron out any technical problems before you arrive with an image that has so far sold thousands of greeting cards in the UK alone.

There are several vital things that need to fall into place, most vital being a good place to hang a bird feeder and a good selection of birds to be regular visitors. In this image the bullfinches with their brilliant red feathers give warmth to the picture and as always a good selection of blue tits and great tits.

A bright but not sunny day, at least 25 meters of empty space behind the feeder, a camera which shoots at 1/4000 of a second and an expensive telephoto lens, plus, watch for the birds’ body language especially when they fly away from the feeder, trying to guess the take-off means over 1,000 photographs were taken.

In this picture the central bullfinch and the birds below were just one photograph, all the other birds were added to give an idea of how popular a bird feeder is when giving away sunflower seeds.

Woodmead Halls

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