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Nature close up with the Bird Photo Booth

When I visited the L.A. Art Mobile Arts Festival in Santa Monica a few months ago, one group of photographs really caught my attention, striking close-ups of birds. Normally nature photographs aren’t that unusual, but these larger-than-life blowups were taken with an iPhone.

I haven’t had much success getting any birds close enough to get photographs worth mounting on my wall. There must be a trick for photographer and inventor Bryson Lovett’s success, and, of course, there is, the Bird Photo Booth.

I knew photo booths at parties and nightclubs have become the rage, but a photo booth for birds? After trying out a booth recently at a party, I think the photo booth for birds makes a lot more sense. I know there’s a lot of nostalgia for fuzzy quartets of  low-quality snapshots of you and your friends making funny faces, but really are you going to enlarge and frame them? Is they really high-quality pictures?

High-quality photographs of birds in nature are far more interesting. Lovett’s Bird Photo Booth invention also fits a GoPro camera. Equally as fun is the video you can shoot.

The Bird Photo Booth is made from  precision CNC metal and sustainably harvested white oak with special inserts for your iPhone or GoPro. He has it listed on Kickstarter, which raises funds for inventors’ creative designs using the public as investors. I was sold going for the $149 price, which includes the Bird Photo Booth, a macro lens and a polarizing filter.

Lovett created Bird Photo Booth because he wanted to bring birds close to people, to be able to see the expressions and personalities of birds up close with great detail. Because it comes with a macro lens, the iPhone focuses on the subjects, not the background.

He says it enables you to get close without the birds flying away. His idea was to have the birds come to you by making it easy to capture the moment instead of having to figure out complicated camera settings and equipment.

Remotely snapping the shutter works over the camera with Wifi or Bluetooth and an available iPhone App.

This was my first Kickstarter purchase. I’d been tempted before but had never made an investment to support a new invention.

After watching birds on one of the prototypes, I knew I was sold. If Lovett makes his goal, the Bird Photo Booths are due out in March. I look forward to seeing one on display capturing close-up photographs of wild birds in my own backyard.

Photos, from top, of close-ups of birds by Bryson Lovett, Bird Photo Booth, bird at the feeder and prototype version, by Robert Lachman

robert.lachman@latimes.com

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5 Comments

  1. November 15, 2012, 10:21 am

    I LOVE This!!! Where Can We Purchase One?

    By: enigmanetx@yahoo.com
  2. November 15, 2012, 2:25 pm

    You can click on one of the Kickstarter links in the story or use this web address: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/591095948/bir

    By: Robert Lachman
  3. November 16, 2012, 10:42 am

    Simply add a $30 macro set adapter to any good quality wildlife camera on the market, and leave it all day in automatic. Fun idea with Iphone, pretty wood, and creative touch. How much for his box and macro filters though? Seems that what this is a feeder box with filters… $40 bucks costs maybe…

    By: mmcamera@gmail.com
  4. November 16, 2012, 1:14 pm

    @ mmcamera– I think you are missing the point entirely. Yes you could do that with a $30 macro set, but there's no control over when the shutter would be activated to capture the wildlife- it would be hit or miss.
    This thing allows you to use all the apps available on iOS and android which can do everything from motion activated shutters, sound activated shutter, time lapse, etc. The list goes on. Also this seems to be really about live interaction, not simply setting up a rig and leaving it be. There are other products sold on Amazon that already do what you describe- They average $100+ and they have crappy lenses that get outdated every 6 months, have terrible picture quality , limited storage and all the other pitfalls of cheap electronics. While this thing is just an enclosure, It capitalizes on what many people already have in their pockets. That said, it could also accommodate anything that may come out in the future, plus, it looks cool.

    By: ccamerlkhkn
  5. November 21, 2012, 3:47 pm

    Great idea and the pic's are so great.When can I get one?

    By: ccu92111@yahoo.com

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