Monday, August 27, 2012

Better Lucky than Good Revisited

Occasionally things break my way. Otter have been a problem species for me, not that they are so hard to find, but they are so uncooperative photographically. It is definitely a whack-a-mole sort of proposition. Low water conditions concentrate wildlife and make these pictures easier.

I got a family picture recently. 4 otter fed in a pool in front of me for an hour, then mysteriously lined up in a posed shot, with three little ones and mom (at water level).

These sorts of shoots are what wildlife photographers live for. Too many otter pictures are not in a natural setting. If you have to good fortune to stumble on a group of otter, it is a real treat. Of course, you can depend on lousy light very often so ISO 2000 might be required.

Otter Family
Otter Family, Buffalo National River August 2012
What is the lesson here? Pay attention. I got these guys while seeking elk photos. I would prefer to have everyone believe that I plan all these shoots. The truth is I am very opportunistic and look for the unexpected chance.

Experience has taught me to concentrate. I turn off the radio while shooting and I scan for opportunities. One reason I work alone most of the time is because I need to concentrate. The habit of paying attention (and being determined) has given me pictures I would not expect to get. Like most things, the most important tool you have is your brain -- keep it in gear.

Wild turkey crossing at Big Hollow, Buffalo National River
While Waiting for Elk, Wild Turkey Crossed the Buffalo
Trumpeter swan and raccoon on Beaver Dam, Boxley Mill Pond
Perhaps My Best Photo, The Result of Observation and Grinding (and Luck)

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