Help Jim Decide!

Quail Family

Jim is considering entering a photo in a little contest for bird photos. He’s narrowed down to four choices, but isn’t sure which might have the most appeal.

Can you take a look at the four I’ve posted and put your vote in the Comments? If you want to say why you chose it, I’m sure he’d enjoy hearing that, too.

Meanwhile, I’m busy catching up and all the things I let lie fallow while I finished up work on my two “Over Where” novels: Library of the Sapphire Wind and Aurora Borealis Bridge. Enjoy the pictures!

Cedar Waxwings
After the Dustbath
Sandhill Cranes Reflecting


31 Responses to “Help Jim Decide!”

  1. @JayDzed Says:

    Dustbath, definitely.

    Family is nice but static, Cranes feels picturesque but static, and despite the moment in Waxwings, it still feels rather still.

    Dustbath captures the moment and feels energetic.

  2. Heather Says:

    Delurking to say that I’m obsessed with the Dustbath picture!

  3. Fred Bartholomaeus Says:

    After the dust bath! So cute. And full of action

  4. Jason Etheridge Says:

    “After the dustbath” Capturing the dust in the air after what I’m assuming is a shake is intriguing. Second would be “Cedar Waxwings”, as they’re pretty birds apparently enjoying a friendly drink together.

  5. Beverly Martin Says:


  6. Alan Allinger Says:

    Alll good photos, but I feel that Sandhill Cranes Reflecting has the most interesting composition. I would enlarge that one and hang it.

  7. Dame Trouble Says:

    Please give Jim my compliments – those are all awesome photos!

    My favorite is After the Dustbath – you can see the dust flying and the puffed up feathers make him look both fierce and cute at the same time.

  8. Michelle Says:

    I chose the Cranes because of the way the reflection of them against the water is so beautiful! All are great photos, and seeing the Cedar Waxwing my favorite birds( with their dark mask and sandy coloring!) almost made me chose them, but the composition of the Cranes and water and the reflection of the birds, I would be putting that on a canvas!

  9. Jacqueline Moore Says:

    These are all amazing photos! I would choose After the Dustbath as well. Cedar Waxwings would be my second choice – it looks like they are griping about the one that is arriving late.

  10. Josh Gentry Says:

    The cranes. It’s the color, the reflection, and something about the grouping is just pleasing.

  11. Lauren C. Teffeau Says:

    All awesome, but have to go with dustbath as well!

  12. Chris Krohn Says:

    While quail are cute, the chicks are too low-contrast. My short list is cedar waxwings and after the dustbath.

  13. Carolyn Kemp Says:

    I love the crane picture – great composition and color. However, I think the Dustbath photo is unique, active and would have a better chance of winning

  14. Annaka Says:

    They’re all lovely, but I especially like After the Dustbath. It’s unusual, dynamic, and beautiful.

  15. Beth Says:

    I love them all, but my vote is probably for Waxwings, with Dustbath a crazy close second. I love the depth of the wax wings picture, and the movement of the dustbath ❤

  16. amandajoyr Says:

    I’ve been thinking about my answer all morning. Because I actually love them all, they all have great qualities.

    My ultimate favorite is the After a Sandbath.

    There’s action, the subject is crisp and clear. Aslo, I think the sandbath is a more unusual action shot. A lot of people will probably be submitting bird in the water, or birds at a bird bath.

    Let us know which shot he chooses to submit!


  17. Jtspi Says:

    Amazing pictures!! But I am partial to quail and babies.

  18. HelixRook Says:

    Hmm I’m at a tossup between the After the Dustbath and the Sandhill Cranes Reflecting. For more subjects, the cranes would be good, but I feel like the dustbath draws the eye more and has more character in it. Not just in terms of color, but the character for the quail as well shines through much more than with the cranes.

    But what do I know? I also like pictures of fat cats and silly faces. Haha

  19. Barbara Says:

    Torn between the quail family, all those babies just add something special to the picture. To say nothing about the dignity of the adult quail, watching over the brood. On the other hand, after the dust bath is just so neat. Not only is the picture a delight to look at but to think of JIm’s ability to get so close with his subject is too me amazing. Barbara L

  20. Nea Says:

    I’m not much of a help because I can only narrow it down to two – I like the action in Cedar Waxwings, but Dustbath is unusual.

  21. James Mendur Says:

    After the Dustbath – the detail and resolution and composition are best in that photo.
    The quail chicks are a little fuzzy and blend in a bit too much.
    The waxwings photo was excellent except that one bird flying in for a landing sort of disrupts the composition of the shot.
    Similarly, the one “headless” crane throws off the cranes photo.
    The dustbath photo has sharp focus, is well composed, and has no distracting elements.

  22. Dolores Candelaria Says:

    Definitely between the first two. Love how beautiful the Mother is and the markings on the babies show up. As I type, I decide the family. The second is also stunning with all the different directions of the birds.

    *Enjoy a blessed day,* *Dolores Candelaria*

    * *

    *I center myself in Spirit; I ground myself in Gratitude.*

    On Wed, Jul 7, 2021 at 2:00 AM Jane Lindskold: Wednesday Wanderings wrote:

    > janelindskold posted: ” Quail Family Jim is considering entering a photo > in a little contest for bird photos. He’s narrowed down to four choices, > but isn’t sure which might have the most appeal. Can you take a look at the > four I’ve posted and put your vote in the Comme” >

  23. Deborah Daughetee Says:

    Sandhill cranes reflecting. This picture inspired a sense of peace and wonder.

  24. julirew Says:

    All wonderful, but liked the sandhill cranes best

  25. Jane Says:

    I love the cedar waxwings, but for a bird photo contest, Dustbath is a winner. Even at low resolution, you can see the dust specks so clearly.

  26. Louis Robinson Says:

    I have a feeling I’m outvoted, but:

    The Waxwings. Cranes second, Dustbath 3rd.

    All these photos have technical issues that may or may not matter, depending on the photographic level expected for the competition. It appears to me that Jim is using large apertures and fairly short lenses, so they all have depth-of-field problems that popped out at once for me [disclaimer: not a pro, have had some pro training far in the past]. The Waxwings is one where that actually works in favour of the composition, however.

    The contrast and DOF effects on the others leave you peering at them asking ‘what is that?’, for one or more elements, like the crane furthest from the camera – I was looking longest at that one, trying to confirm that it was indeed looking directly at the camera, and never noticed that there was one in front that wasn’t all there. For part of the main subject group, the cranes at the back are just too soft-edged. The waxwings on the bath pop in a way the cranes don’t.

    For me, the face of the quail in Dustbath disappears in the background – I had to look at it 2 or 3 times to be sure he even _had_ a face, and it wasn’t until trip 5 that I realised that the black swoosh was his topnot. All in all, you need the title to have any hope of figuring out what is happening in this picture – fashionable in modern art, I know, but not a plus in my view.

    • janelindskold Says:

      You might be interested in knowing that all of these are handheld, often grabbing the camera because we suddenly noticed interesting birds outside. NOT taken at a zoo or park or preserve where the birds are more static. The face of the quail actually doesn’t vanish. he has his beak tucked in and down.

  27. King Ben's Grandma Says:

    Oh, sheesh🤦🏼‍♀️ They’re ALL so good!
    The Quail family is adorable, though they do blend in.
    The waxwings picture has great motion capture, as does the dustbath.
    The cranes is very evocative.

    I’m gonna go with the wax wings as my favorite because I can imagine little conversations between the birds. It has a lot to see in one photo.

    I would suggest Jim look for three other contests to enter and then he could use all the photos😉

  28. None Says:

    Tough one. My immediate reaction was After the dust bath followed by Cedar waxwings. I like the way the bird is framed by the vegetation and wall in Dust bath, and the overall colors work the best. The dust flying off is also interesting and different.

    But Cedar waxwings is the sharpest picture. The composition is good too, with one bird drinking while the rest look around. You get a sense of action as someone else said. This seems like the most “professional” photo.

    So it’s a toss up between these two…

  29. janelindskold Says:

    Thanks to everyone who has weighed in. Feel free to keep responding because Jim won’t decide until a few days, at the very least, on. We’ve loved all the responses…

  30. Ashby Albright Says:

    I’m torn between the dustbath and the cedar waxwings!

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