3 Tips on How to Take Photos of Birds

Have you just recently mounted a camera to your spotting scope? Then you must be hyped to use it when you bird watch! But before anything else, check out these three tips that can help you become an expert bird photographer. Add these to the tips on how to become a pro bird watcher, and watch yourself produce inspiring, gorgeous photos of birds! These tips are useful in whatever season, so you better keep them in mind.


Lights, camera, action!

1st Tip: Learn how to do framing

This useful technique is the use of objects or patterns near the bird or the photographer as the frame of the photo. There are tons of shapes outdoors you could use such as the fences, branches, and even walls like in this picture:

Brown sparrow framing

It might be difficult to apply, but you’ll love the result especially because it’s unique. This is where your resourcefulness and creativity are tested too. Remember, you’re not just trying to take a photo of the bird, you’re trying to give more drama and tell a story too.

This tip usually places the bird at the center, around the unique frame. It’s a challenge, sure, but it’ll make you more observant of the things around you and the bird. You’ll know you’re a good photographer when you can utilize the objects available during your shoot.

2nd Tip: Experiment with Rule of Thirds

Haven’t you noticed? Placing the birds in the middle of the photos are too common. Sure, they emphasize the bird, but sometimes the angles can become dull and monotonous, especially if all photographers are doing it. So what should you do to be different? Apply the rule of thirds. I’m not saying positioning the birds in the middle is wrong, but as a photographer, you should try to be more creative than you were the last time.

Rule of Thirds

Let your photo stand out using this technique. It’s the application of aligning your actor with the guidelines and their intersection points, positioning the horizon on the top line or bottom line, or letting linear attributes in the picture flow from one point to the next. In short, it’s the art of not placing your subject in the middle.

Take this photo for example:

Bird photography rule of thirds

This technique is ideal for bird photography because it allows the viewer of the picture to see what the bird was doing in the picture or where it’s headed. Others cheat by cropping the photo just so it could give the impression that it followed the technique, but they’re only fooling themselves. It’s better to keep practicing until you get used to the method.

3rd Tip: Study Depth of Field

This is an excellent way to focus the bird even more, especially if the color of the background is too lively that the bird can barely be noticed. It gives more emphasis to the subject (foreground) by blurring the background. It requires a lot of practice, but it’ll all be worth it.

It usually isolates the bird from the environment, allowing the viewers to identify the subject faster with ease. Remember, it’s important to include the environment so you could “tell a story” with your photo, but if the backdrop isn’t much to look at, then it’s best to just concentrate on the bird. Check out the picture below to see what I mean.

Bird photography depth of field