Cedar Waxwing

1/1000s, f8.0, ISO 1250, Canon EOS-1D X Mark II, EF800mm f/5.6L IS USM +1.4x III

Here is what it took to make that image. When I want to make an image using my car as a blind, both front windows are down. The sunroof is open. My shoes are off, which enables me to step on the seats without any damage to the upholstery. I place one beanbag in the window opening on the driver side, the second one in the corner of the open roof. The camera is checked and ready. As I drive slowly along a narrow road, I make sure that there is a wide enough shoulder should I have to pull over to the side without blocking traffic. At about 300 feet in front of me I spotted a tree with perhaps 10 to 12 birds perching on various branches. As I very slowly now drive to my target I begin to recognize 2 different species, Cedar Waxwings and Western Bluebirds. The Bluebirds were actually easy to photograph since they are for the most of the time sitting at the end of a branch. The Cedar Waxwings prefer to perch closer to the center of the tree among many smaller branches. As I moved closer, some birds flew off, others choose different positions within the tree. One of the Cedar Waxwings made it possible for me to get a clean shot without any branches in between my lens and the bird. To be able to make this shot, I used the beanbag in the corner of the open sunroof.
Along the Salt River