Dr Jörg Kretzschmar is one the digiscopers that I respect the most. He has a passion for photography and a remarkable eye for photographic art. And I love his creations.
The photo at the top of this post beautifully plays with depth, movement and colour. I love the way the lines of the bird in focus highlight the bird in the background, even though the latter is strongly out of focus. But this unusual focus really makes the photo for me. What is most remarkable about this top photo, and the photo of the single Eurasian Griffon (Gyps fulvus) above, are that they were both taken free hand (ie without a tripod) – tracking the birds as they circled us at the Castillo de Monfragüe (see some of my photos here).
Jörg’s flying Eurasian Black Vulture (Aegypius monachus) is wonderfully sharp and captures the species really well. That morning, we took hundreds of photos between the two of us; with a continuous supply of Griffon and Black Vultures drifting and coasting in the wind that filled the kloofs and hills of Monfragüe National Park (Extremadura, Western Spain) we had a jolly time picking our photos and trying to capture something of the essence of these beautiful creatures in our photographs.
While out in Extremadura, we took a series of photos of Jörg (and I) with the new Swarovski Optik EL50 Swarovision binoculars – I think pretty much any birder will find the view through these new binoculars absolutely incredible – but now I am drifting.
Jörg did his PhD on the biogeography of birds in Fiji and has accumulated a wealth of knowledge on the fauna and flora of Fiji, and in 2008 he was part of the team that rediscovered the Fiji Petrel (Pseudobulweria