Thanks, Tabbie. Sometimes the dragons will stay put for a photo and sometimes not. I’ve found that if I station myself in an area they seem to be interested in and remain motionless, often they will land near and sit awhile as these did. The trick then is to remember to photograph them instead of just looking in fascination!
These were taken in two locations about 30 miles apart, and I was lucky to find patient dragons! I thought the little guy with wing damage might have had a battle with the Red Baron (or Snoopy). Whichever, it didn’t seem to bother him at all, or at least not to my untrained eye.
I wish I knew the practical reasons for their colors. The blue on the one and the yellow patches on the others are almost florescent.
The first three “dragon” photos were taken at a large pond on the edge of a big ranch. The rancher draws water from it for irrigating his hay fields and that dragon was resting on a large hose from the pump area to the irrigation lines.
I do have an “action” or “sport” function on my camera but I very seldom use it unless I expect to get a chance to get a shot at an animal and need the speed of the auto functions. For nearly all flower photos (and the dragon flies) I use a semi-manual macro function that I really like. It lets me use the auto-exposure setting in a “spot” mode, or a very tiny area in the center of the frame, a “selectable” focus area, again in a very small area, and an over-ride on exposure so I can go darker or lighter than the auto wants to. I guess it’s true for everything, but for close-ups, the right exposure means everything.
Don’t feel bad, Silken. It took me a long time too to figure out the best way to get the camera to do what I wanted. Lots of experimenting, but that’s feasible with digital, where it would be far too expensive with film. I also feel that the instructions/manual with my camera is very poor.