Pelicans Gliding On Serene Waters


Sometimes, the Oklahoma winds create fairly strong waves on the state’s many lakes. Then, on certain mornings, there is a serene silence on the liquid surface. The circles of fish breaking the surface to feed. The wake of waterfowl and even the occasional beaver scrawl their lines. Everything seems peaceful and quiet. And then you see pelicans gliding on the serene waters.

Incidental Timing

Pelicans in Oklahoma are not unusual, but they are not always so close or so well-timed. It was a rare moment of accidentally being at the right place, at the right time, with the right lens, and a rising sun at a nice angle. While not ideal for proper bird photography, art likes contrast. The golden colors of the water provided it in spades.


Pelican Briefs

It was a fleeting moment. Or so it seemed. I jogged back and forth as the pelicans tacked one way, then another, as they moved further away. The image was in my head and the birds were not cooperating. It was an ignoble battle in the hopes that the feathered beasts would do me one simple favor. With every turn of course, they would also turn their heads…the wrong way. Every time.


Fitting the Bill

In a final jog to the left, I planted my feet, focused on one of the birds, and snapped the shot. Everything had lined up just right for a split second. I had missed a fish leaping out of the water earlier that morning by a hair. This shot, I managed. Of course, I had no clue about the former. The latter? I had been watching for several minutes. Still, I feel out of practice and the nuances of my current camera still feel foreign to me. I simply haven’t been shooting as much as I would like. Circumstances such as these catch me off guard. I need to fix that.

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