Ok, I’m finally getting around to a request that I’ve received a couple of times … an image of me in my trusty kayak, “Rubber Ducky”. If you follow my photography, you probably know that most of my local (west-central Missouri) photography is done by kayak. A friend of mine introduced me to kayaking about 5-6 years ago, and it has grown on me ever since! And photographing from a kayak is a lot of fun. Not only do I get a different perspective of the wildlife (in a kayak, you sit at about water level), but I’ve found it easier to approach much of the wildlife. There are still some awfully skittish wildlife there, but there also some awesome experiences! Such as last summer’s river otter that grabbed Rubber Ducky’s rope handle and began dragging me backwards in the water … such playful creatures!
As you view the images below, please be aware that I am not wearing a life jacket in the kayak. The location I’m shooting at is a unique area. A number of years ago, it was man-made as a local duck hunting club (and since taken over by the Missouri Dept of Conservation). Since a lot of ducks are “bottom feeders” (eating plant growth that grows in the water), the area was dug out to a maximum of about 2-3 feet deep. So, in the event I were to fall in, I would likely be sitting on the bottom … on my bottom! But rest assured that I do wear a life jacket if the depth is unknown, or if is over 3-feet deep … and I recommend anyone else in a canoe/kayak wear one, also.
On to the photos! As the title explains, these photos were taken by myself. When I completed my kayak/photo shoot for the morning, I set up a tripod on the bank and placed my backup camera on the tripod. I configured the camera for a large depth-of-field (f/22) and then focused within the area where I would be paddling . I then attached up my timer-controller to the camera and programmed it to continuously shoot, at 5 second intervals, while I paddled the area and “posed” for the camera.
By the way, this morning was very, very slow with wildlife. So, I guess I was “it” for the day! :o)
You might have noticed that Rubber Ducky is pretty beaten up! The areas I kayak are all wooded creeks/ponds/lakes that have a lot of trees and shrubs growing around the edge and I’m paddling into the brushy areas a lot. One of my normal winter jobs is to refurbish Rubber Ducky … sanding her down, priming her and giving her a fresh coat of army-green flat paint. Definitely will be needed this winter!
And here is the setup for making the above images: