Like many of us, Stan Maupin found himself with a lot of free time in the summer of 2020.
He made the decision to take up photography as he was choosing to spend his days at home rather than at work.
After being inspired by the hummingbirds that often visited his lawn, he was inspired by a challenge from his son that would test his creative limits.
Maupin’s son challenged him to take similar photos to that of Christian Spencer, who captured the sun beaming through a hummingbird’s wings, creating a rainbow appearance.
So he put his head down and went to his backyard to give it a shot.
“I moved to the chair, took a wild guess at settings, lifted the camera when a hummer approached the feeder, looked into the lens, and fired away,” he tells My Modern Met.
“When I looked at the 200 or so photos I took in the next hour, I saw one with the tiniest hint of colors coming through the bird’s wings. I didn’t know it that night, but I was hooked.”
It would be another 10 months before Maupin had another opportunity to get this right because the hummingbird season lasts only two months in his region.
Maupin spent that entire year honing his photographic techniques and mastering the technical elements necessary to pull off this kind of image.
The weather was a problem the next summer, and for this kind of photo, clear skies are essential.
Despite the disappointment, Maupin was able to enhance the non-technical components of the picture session as a result.
When summer 2022 arrived, Maupin was prepared.
His efforts produced amazing results, showing that his patience and commitment were worthwhile.
We can plainly see a lovely rainbow in the hummingbirds’ wings throughout the entire sequence.
His accomplishment is a stunning example of how, with a little bit of self-discipline, anyone can take up a camera and produce something unique.
“I cannot hope to add very much to the photos taken by Christian Spencer, but I think I can share that you don’t have to have the unique talents and dedication of a world-famous artist/photographer/naturalist to create images that you will be proud of and that others will enjoy,” Maupin shares.
“I hope this helps others stretch their expectations,” he continues. “I was inspired to stretch even my most optimistic hope for what I could accomplish in photography, and I have continued to tackle projects that challenge me technically, physically, and artistically.”