There is never a grass hopper when you need one..


So last evening around 7pm, I thought I would go out to the local park and see if I could photograph the sunset in an open field. Looking at my Nexus 7 at the 'What time does the sun go down in London?' app, it told me to hurry as it was setting around 8pm. For once there wasn't that many clouds in the sky so I should get a decent shot.

Ahh better get a move on! Picked up the Slingshot, checked the camera was actually in it and this time with fully charged batteries and headed towards the bus stop. I checked the 'What time is the bus coming' app only to see the bus roar past me.

Damn... OK seven minutes to the next one, about 25 minute ride, this will be close. Weaving through traffic the big friendly bus deposited me at the local park and I walked towards what I hoped would be a good spot.

It wasn't. The tree line was already obscuring the sun too much and the clouds had decided to follow me and get in the way too.

So there I was standing in the middle of a field slowly squelching the grass down, a pigeon and a blackbird pointing and laughing at me when I heard the noise of a large number of insects quite close by.

OK so maybe this hasn't been for nothing after all. Swapping lenses to the 50-250. I crouched down in the grass and waited to see if anything would hop, crawl and jump around. Nothing did. So I tired the often used 'wake up you lazy insects' move and swung my Slingshot around through the grass.

Like the opening scene from Armageddon, chaos erupted. Butterflies, grasshoppers and crickets jumped out of the way. Even the pigeon and the blackbird stopped laughing, knowing that I was now serious.

Catching the movement of one of the insects I carefully moved forward making sure not to disturb the grass around it.

Pointing the lens at him the auto focus had a hell of a time trying to lock on as there were blades of grass that it found more interesting to look at than the insect, which by now I knew was a cricket.

Switching to Manual Focus for the second time this week I focused on the cricket and stated to shoot frames off. As it was getting darker I used the built in flash but this didn't really help and I might have blinded the poor fellow as he fell off the grass stem he was holding onto.

However I did manage to get this shot of Buddy before he plunged to the floor.

ISO3200, 250mm, f9.0, 1/50sec