Saturday, May 30, 2015

Welcome Guest Photographer, Janet Stutzman

My good friend Janet Stutzman agreed to be my guest photographer this week.  I met Jan soon after moving to Northport and we have been on similar paths developing our photography skills during retirement.  I'll let Jan tell her story about how she got into photography and what kinds she enjoys most.
My  thanks  to Karen for the invitation to share some of my favorite photos with you.  I enjoyed choosing them and I hope you enjoy viewing them.  My love of nature and wildlife dates back to childhood.   I was a country kid and for years my best friend was the boy next door.  Together, we climbed trees, hung out at a neighboring farm and roamed the nearby woods.   I got my first camera when I was around 12 years old and have been taking pictures, off and on, ever since.   However, it was only after moving to Northport in 2004 that my love of nature and wildlife jelled with my interest in photography. 

Many of my favorite images were shot through the living room window.   This macro image is of a katydid that was on the outside of the window.   After I posted the image on Flickr, one of my favorite ways to share my photos, a Flickr friend asked if I could just send him my window and asked if it was magic.  BTW, my love of getting up close and personal with the critters I shoot has resulted in an interest in macro photography.  It is amazing what you can see through a macro lens!!  

Our house is on a wooded piece of land that attracts all sorts of birds and wildlife.   From the front window, we see squirrels and deer on  a daily basis. We’ve also seen foxes, coyotes, raccoons, an opossum, a bobcat, and even a bear.  One of my joys is to capture special moments of animals and birds in interaction.  This is one of last summer’s fawns nuzzling its mom.

 Our feeders are regularly visited by chickadees, finches, crows, nuthatches, blue jays, mourning doves, and various woodpeckers – Piliated, Downies, Hairies, and Red-Bellies.   Indigo buntings and hummingbirds are cherished summer visitors.   Wild turkeys are regular visitors, too.  They used to come in large flocks of 40 or more during the winter, but now we see a few of them all year long.  Currently, an old tom, two jakes, and a young hen are daily visitors. This is a shot of a male pileated woodpecker feeding  a fledging.

Like Karen, we put food out for the deer to help them get through the winter.  I caught these deer feeding during a snow storm early last February.

 This little red squirrel avoided snow drifts by tunneling beneath them.  It was very entertaining to  watch it dig under the snow and then come popping up to take a look around. 

I love chipmunks.  They have little fear of humans and  I’ve been able to “make friends” with two or three of them each summer, even getting them to eat sunflower seeds out of my hand.  I’ve found they are willing models as long as peanuts or sunflower seeds are in the offing.  I’m always a bit sad when they leave in the fall to go into hibernation and overjoyed when they return in the spring.

Recently, a friend and I were photographing a family of Sandhill Cranes when a pair of them flew off. They circled around and flew right over our heads so fast that neither of us got a good shot. Many minutes later, they returned.  This time I ended up getting a series of shots as the cranes came in for a landing.  This is my favorite.

Visiting national wildlife refuges provides the  opportunity to see animals and birds that may  not  be native to Michigan.   This image of a male great egret in breeding plumage was taken last March at the Harris Neck Wildlife Refuge near Savannah, Ga.

 Lovely, Jan; all of them.  Thanks for sharing your wonderful images with my readers. 


  1. Janet, you've taken my breath away.

  2. Thanks for your visit, Pamela. They are indeed breathtaking images.