Cindy Knoke JD Award

There are a number of birding photo blogs that I view everyday, but one in particular makes my jaw drop with every post. Cindy Knoke says that she lives in the outer limits of no-wheres-ville in a place called The Holler. It might be known in some parts as the boondocks, backwoods, wilderness or hinterland. Visit her About page to discover more about the place she calls home.

Cindy’s blog is not exclusively devoted to birds, but the images she captures are among the finest I have seen. Linked are three of her posts because, frankly, it was impossible choose just one sample.

Magic on Wings
Colorful Creatures
Birds of the Far South (pt. 1)

Cindy does not solicit awards — Award Free Blog — but that is the beauty of the JD Award. You don’t have to respond, answer 20 questions, or nominate ten other blogs. Who has time for that? You’d rather be out taking pictures. The Jaw Drop Award is simply a stress-free way to recognize our fellow artists for their passion and skill. I’d love to add your name to the Jaw Drop gallery.

Keep on snapping!

Copyright © In Pics and Words


Anna’s Garden Fences

In Pics and Words visits a minimum of 50 photo blogs every day. Occasionally, I see a picture that makes my jaw drop. I literally gasp and think to myself, “I wish I could take a shot like that.”

Anna is a self-proclaimed amateur photographer living in the Netherlands. She likes shooting macro with a Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L IS USM lens attached to a Canon 7D body.

The name of her blog is Tuinsprokkels van Anna (which translates in English as Anna’s Garden Fences). Please take a moment and check out her work. I know you’ll be impressed.

The Jaw Drop Award is something new I created to recognize fellow photographers and their creative skills. Unlike other WordPress awards where the recipient has to answer a lot of questions and nominate ten other bloggers, you don’t have to do anything to receive a JD Award, but take great pictures.

There are a number of WP photo blogs that are in line for recognition, but I am always scrolling for more. If you’ve seen a photo that makes your jaw drop, please leave a link in the comment section below.

Keep on snapping!

Copyright © In Pics and Words


Bikini model, blonde in bikini Bikini model, blonde in bikini Bikini model, blonde in bikini Bikini model, blonde in bikini

Portrait, action and zoom are my favorite photographic styles. There is some amazing macro photography on WordPress, but that is a skill I never developed. On that note, I would like to acknowledge Reed Andariese. His nacro work is among the finest I have ever seen. Please take a moment and check out his blog, Photo Art Flight. It has a Jaw Drop rating of 5-stars.

And thank you, Heather, for making these photos look so good. The portrait shots were taken with a Vivitar SLR camera using 35mm film which is the equivalent of a full frame sensor.


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I wanted to be a glamour photographer so I took a course at the local community college, but the class assignments were so irrelevant. I mean, we were instructed to take black and white photos of stop signs and cracks in the sidewalk. Where are the models? I didn’t last the semester. Of course, the instruction was designed to teach us about lighting and composition which all seemed instinctive to me. Photography became a hobby rather than a profession. I discovered that with a little bit of skill, and a decent camera, anyone can take a good picture though a photogenic subject can often make the difference.

Copyright © 2018 In Pics and Words


portrait, pretty Filipina portrait, pretty Filipina portrait, pretty Filipina portrait, pretty Filipina

portrait, pretty Filipina

I once did portrait work, but have since invested my time and money in telephotography. However, the macro shots I see on WordPress are so impressive that I am tempted to buy a lens and try it out. Money has always been the prime consideration so I had to make a choice between macro/micro and tele. A dedicated macro lens can be expensive, but it most likely will produce images that are superior to a kit lens.

All-in-one lenses (for example, 18-250mm) often display barrel distortion or chromatic aberration; and even though they might be used for macro-tele photography the results can be underwhelming — not wide enough on the micro end nor crisp enough at length.

I spend two hours a day researching gear, comparing photos and specifications — and I still don’t have a clue. What camera and lens do you use for macro work? Please share in the comment section.

Copyright © 2018 In Pics and Words