Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Photographing Park Whitetails

Making good wildlife photographs is challenging but it certainly helps to have acclimated subjects to work with.  Its one thing to take a snapshot of a deer but to make a good photograph is an entirely different matter.  Having acclimated animals for subjects allows one to move their shooting position to take advantage of lighting angles and backgrounds.  These images were captured in Shenandoah National Park where the whitetails are accustomed to being around hordes of tourist throughout most of the year.

A nice buck passes by a fellow photographers.  At times the animals may approach the photographer too closely and backing away is in order.  Rutting bucks cannot be trusted; a healthy distance of twenty or more yards should be maintained.

Photographers working a large buck.  Notice the big glass they are using?  It is best to uses telephoto lenses that allow the photographer to work an animal from a comfortable distance that does not intrude on the animals personal space.  By doing so one can capture the animals doing what they do naturally instead of photos showing them reacting to the photographer.

Pressing an animal too closely will result in unnatural photos.  This lady with her point and shoot has invaded this doe's personal space.  The does is trying to move to a more comfortable distance but is being followed very closely. Situations like this will likely only result in butt shots and perhaps a stern warning from park personnel.


Montanagirl said...

You're fortunate to be able to get so close. That first shot is excellent - love the lighting.

TexWisGirl said...

the lighting in that first shot is great!

Brad Myers said...

Hey I know that guy in the second photo, LOL. And I think it was taken when the two bucks were sparring in the back of the meadow while I was working two cameras.

I was waiting for the 4 x 4 to jump up and get that woman in the last shot. It just never happened.

When you started about backing away I was expecting to see the 4 x 4 from the north side of the meadow. Now he was a little scary.

Coy Hill said...

Brad, So right you are, he put us in reverse a couple of times :)