As a photographer you know you will just make a few ultimate shots in your career. The rest might be good, more than average, but there are only a few ultimate ones you will make. I think I just took my ultimate nature shot today.
I’ve done my ultimate portrait a couple of years ago. Working on a book about breast cancer I took a photo of Danielle. She was about to have her breast removed, because she had this gene which will cause breast cancer almost (85 percent) for sure. To ‘prevent’ getting cancer she had her breast removed. I took her portrait a few weeks before surgery. We went to an old leather factory in Oisterwijk. Shooting there, suddenly my eye caught the light, coming in from the ceiling and a little extra light coming in from a dirty window. I had seen a little ladder, crabbed it as soon as I could, we ran over to the light and Danielle stroke a beautiful pose. Everything was just right. I’ll look the portrait up as soon as I’m home and will publish it here.
Today was just a day like that. I’ve travelled Australia, I know they have humming birds (kolibri) there, but I never spotted one. Here in Nicaragua they have them as well. I was on an assignment to take photos from birds for postcards. Suddenly I saw this humming bird about five meters away. I couldn’t believe my eyes. So close. In real life. I just stared, not able to take a shoot.
A few hours later I was back at the flower garden to take some extra shots of butterflies. A loud noise crossed my ears. It went too quick to see what it was. Half an hour later I could not only hear it, but see it as well. Maybe a meter, a meter and a half was a humming bird, sucking the nectar out of a flower. I stared, swallowed, but this time I was able to get my camera and take a shot. Which I think is my ultimate nature photo.
The humming bird hang around for almost ten minutes, then took off again. Leaving me alone, with tears in my eyes, being able to watch such a beautiful, tiny bird, from so close by.