Professional wildlife photographers can make their craft seem far too complicated. They study animal behaviour, deck themselves out in camouflage and spend days or weeks bored in the bush.
If only they would discover the art of choreography, it would make their lives so much easier. With just a few secret tricks, suddenly wildlife photography is easy.
I don’t like to brag but take these geese for example. A couple of fly overs and we had the alignment nailed. Though after a second look I’m at a loss to explain how the colour scheme got scrambled. I suspect some adlibbing by the talent.
And it might look like I took this shot of Rocky Mountain Sheep after hiding in a blind waiting for them to show up. We actually practiced for only half an hour before all three could march in perfect step. The key was to make it look natural.
Probably the easiest choreography was getting these elk to look like they were fighting. They were itching to perform so just an “OK boys” was all that was needed to lock antlers. The location had been carefully chosen in front of the mountains.
Just when I thought I had this choreography thing nailed down, I got fouled up by a duck of all things. You would think that after many tries, a duck could figure out how to stay inside the lines. But no, it wandered around wherever it pleased leaving an obvious trail in the algae. I impatiently endured more adlibbing and had to settle for this photo of the duck cruising all over the place.
It turns out choreography may not work with all wildlife. And I haven’t actually tried it with bears yet … maybe I’ll save that for later.
Outlier Babe says:
I look down at the ducks in the Los Angeles “river”, who, during this drought, are now swimming often in shallow pond-scummy water, and I think “Yuck!”. You see the same algae and see what one imagines the ducks see: Something filled with life, and, if viewed the right way, beautiful. Loved that photo most particularly.
Lyle Krahn says:
The longer I watch and photograph wildlife, the more I tend to see which really makes me think I’ve barely scratched the surface. Sometimes a fertile imagination helps. I appreciate you wandering back through my posts and commenting. I hadn’t looked at this one for awhile.
You make it look so easy. Someday we may have to shoot you! 🙂
Btw. I’m not sure you’re aware that if you use more than 12 tags on a post it won’t appear in the topic reader, though your followers will still see it in “blogs I follow”. Sorry, if I’ve said so before, I tend to warn people about this all the time.
That’s funny. Maybe if I pretend it’s easy it will actually be easier for me next time which would be nice.
Thanks for the tip on the tags – I reduced the number and the post showed up. So much to learn about blogging too! I’m still puzzled why there seem to be so few posts on wild animals from others in my reader.
I’ve never found a list of “suggested tags” from wordpress, so I guess everyone makes up their own… There are quite a few posts under animals, and under wildlife, though. And masses under cat, cats, dog, dogs etc.
Stephen G. Hipperson says:
‘ course, it depends on your definition of ‘professional’.
I used to think it was somebody who got paid for what they were being ‘professional’ about – their only source of income, in fact – with ‘semi-professional’ somebody who only got some of their income from whatever. However, over recent years people have tried to convince me that ‘professional’ is something to do with quality, ethics, and the way one chooses to conduct oneself. So while I accept you may not fall into the category of ‘professional wildlife photographer’ in the sense of earning all your income from it – I can’t see how you can exclude yourself from the latter description!
Thanks for the vote of confidence. The definition you describe is interesting in that it takes income out of the equation. Usually I don’t think in those terms but just strive to get better.