Most bloggers on Okinawa know him as Ryukyu Mike and he caught the photography bug shortly after I began writing for a local English language rag. I enjoyed that stint for a few years until they hired a new editor who started cutting up my stories and limiting the photos due to what he said was "in the name of content." When I and most of my fellow freelancers went from earning a couple of grand a month to only a few dollars, we realized what he really meant by content.
But my good friend and I still enjoyed getting out with our cameras a couple of times a month just to see what we could shoot and post it on line for all to see. If you've been following this blog, you know that we've covered lots and lots of festivals. But Mike's first love with photography is still shooting wild life. As he likes to put it, "you don't need a model release from a bird to post it online or sell it to a magazine."
Over the years he's studied the art far more studiously than I and has garnered a good deal of respect. He's even had quite a few of his photos published both online and in print, had galleries exhibit his work and even though it's nothing to write home about, he's even made a little money at it.
so it was really nice for both of us to be able to get a day off during the week and go shooting wildlife again. We started not far from his home in the early morning light just to see if there were any birds feeding along the shore. The area near his house has a beach where it is not uncommon to see egrets feeding or Osprey's soaring overhead.
(Click on the photo to enlarge)
It wasn't long before this fellow landed on the beach nearby and did what he does best, catch fish. fortunately we were on the retaining wall for the boat harbor and had the sun to our backs. Mike had his 500mm Sigma lens already attached and took quite a few photos of this fella in action. Unfortunately all I had was my 18-200mm Tamron lens mounted on my Pentax K200D so this picture had to be cropped down quite a bit to bring it in to view. Still, that's the beauty of digital photography. With a few mouse clicks you can take a picture that you couldn't hardly see a bird in, crop, frame, adjust the exposure and blow it up to a decent image.
Mike's already posted some of his stuff from this shoot in his gallery at his website as well as online with his blogs. But I was really shocked today when I went to visit his blog. It seems as though Mike has taken the concept of shooting wildlife and gone in a totally new direction. All I can say is that you'll have to see it to believe it! It's available right (HERE).