Julie Simpson loves nature and takes an active interest in bird rescue. We are asking her a few questions about her photographic journey and tips for everyone interested in "capturing" birds!
Julie, can you tell us a little about yourself and your journey into photography? I am in my early 70's and came to serious photography in 2011, having broken my back in an accident and no longer able to play golf. My husband suggested I take up photography because it would be something I could do with my back the way it was. Little did we both know, the passion for the art that would emerge!
As of 2017 I have been attending Northtec (Whangarei Polytechnic), part-time, to study photography. Through the excellent tutors there, I am now also passionate about film photography and am enjoying new skills in the darkroom. Also through the encouragement and teachings of the tutors I am embarking upon setting up exhibitions of my work, which will be my next exciting chapter.
I read that you're interested in bird rescue, can you tell us a little about that? We have a local Bay of Islands lady who cares for hurt birds until they are able to be released back into the wild. Around our property we have at least 40 Barbaray Doves coming in to feed at our place each day. During the last year we took an injured Barbary Dove to her to care for, then released it back into our area when it had recovered. We also took three other Barbary Doves, that she had helped to be strong again, and released them back into our area. We help where we can.
Do you have a favourite species of bird? I adore all birds, equally, and couldn't pick a favourite species.
We did, however, recently attend a Kiwi release into the wild and I must say how enchanted I have become with New Zealand's icon bird. It was the first time I had seen a Kiwi up close in daylight and I was very taken with their beauty.
What tips can you share on photographing birds?
To take photos of birds you just need a very fast shutter speed. 99% of my bird photos are taken from our deck. It's pretty easy - Have a go!
What else should we know about you and your photography? Photography has been a passion that grew slowly and just keeps growing. There is a lot to learn and I love learning.
I love trying different cameras and lenses, and getting a feel for them. I love trying new techniques and ways to make improvements to my pictures. My favourite photography types are Macro photography (especially butterflies and small insects), Bird photography, Street Photography, Buildings, Landscapes and more. There are just so many photographs to take - I'll never run out of subjects!