In some respects every subject for a nature photographer, carries with
it the same hurdles to overcome, and the same tools to solve them.
Light, focus, exposure, contrast, stop action, motion blur,
composition. Still, every subject also presents itself to us with
different combinations of those challenges, and different rewards for
the choices we make.
Graceful, long necked birds make great subjects for peace work
photography. Featuring one part of the body over all others can tell
us something about the subject, and it can also be artful. These are
The arch of the neck is in an of itself a subject.
These large dabbling birds often collect stains on the face and neck.
They are no less a subject than the “clean” ones are.
The closer you can get to eye level with a wild subject, the more
viewers will feel like they were right there with that subject. This
female Common Goldeneye was bobbing up and down like she was in the
rolling hills of Ireland, or better yet, Wyoming.
Young kit foxes, like all children, are curious and spend a lot of
time exploring. Like a human kid alone in the a kitchen, food is often
the subject of their curiosity and exploration.
There is nothing that creates mood and atmosphere like the very first,
or the very last light of day. This was the first light and the lake
and the hills are in Yellowstone N.P, Wyoming.
Exposure, along with where you compositionally place the lighter and
darker parts of the scene, I think is the key to powerful images of this kind.
Your exposure here is subjective. You use your metering to create
what you want the image to look like, which in my case is almost
always exactly what I see with both my eyes and my heart.
I did use multi segmented metering. I (primarily) metered off the sky
above the hills, but did so with a minus compensation of 1.3 stops of
light. How do I remember that when I have forgotten where I have even
made a fairly high percentage of my images? Well, I looked at the
exif data in the file, but in addition, I do know through experience
that I can always can see where that would leave the brightest portion
of this image. The original raw file for this jpg looks just about the
same as this.
This image was made a long time ago in the American southwest. At birth, it was a film image.
Landscape photography can be very complex as to how to create images that do not confuse the eye. Wherever I created this, I am pretty sure it took some time for me to
separate out and simplify the combination of rock forms, plants and
I love doing this sort of photography. God, through nature, provides
us with a powerful but potentially visually confusing pallet, and we make
it neat and simple by using what He gave us.
Also take note, this is another one of my “land of sun and shadows”
pictures. There are steep contrasts between the sunlit portions of
the scene and the shadows. There are also warm (Sandstone rock and
sand) and cool (the sky) color contrasts. It is those contrasts of
both light and color, that add vibrancy and dimension to this image.
Man does make roads through nature, but there are roads, and then there
are roads! This one in Utah, is my kind of road.
Seeing is the key. When we “look” and “see”, we realize that
everything is a potential subject.
This could be anywhere on earth, from a large city, to a wilderness.
From bears to owls and from deserts to mountains, every subject, no
matter how seemingly spectacular or mundane, is worth our time.
Flowers are one of photography’s “power subjects”. Every flower
presents us with an uncountable number of compositions and personal
statements to be made.
Make everything you do personal. Cloning is for digitally reproducing
parts of an image, and for movies. It is not for people.
We are all different, and friends will come to appreciate our uniqueness.
Faithful are the wounds of a friend, but even the kisses of an enemy