Going Into Hiding

Going into Hiding

I shot this several weeks ago after a morning out photographing.  I had seen this buck around, but had been unable to get in a good position to get a shot of him.  As I was leaving the park I saw a doe standing in a grove of trees.  As I was taking some pictures of her I saw something move out of the corner of my eye.  I got this shot just before he disappeared into the woods.  I have not seen this buck since.

Wildlife photography often involves as much skill as luck and time.  I have spent countless hours in the woods and walked away with nothing.  Then there are times when you least expect it that you get the opportunity to get some great shots.  A good lesson is to always be prepared and be persistent.

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“Rhea Spring”: Shooting in the Morning

Rhea Spring

One of my favorite times of day to photograph is early in the morning, especially when I visit a National Park.  Many people prefer sunset because of the convenience, but at sunrise there are often fewer people.  As the sun comes up the land begins to come alive.

This was a morning a couple of weeks ago at Shiloh National Military Park near Rhea Spring.  The sun was coming up and the water was running well from all of the recent rain.  I don’t always shoot toward the sun, but use the light that is cast over the landscape to photograph scenes.  The fog was rising from the water due to the warming of the landscape and the light highlighted it showing a mist.  The ISO was lowered and shutter speed slowed in order to create the effect with the water and capture to light right for the breaking sun.

Don’t be afraid to try shooting from different positions to get different perspectives.  As the sun rose I spent about an hour capturing the scene before the fog was gone.  I moved around along the creek bed standing, sitting, getting closer and further from the bridge.  The idea was to not only frame the scene the way I wanted, but to work with the natural light of the rising sun.

It’s All About Perspective: Using Depth of Field

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This was taken this past summer when I was visiting Yosemite National Park.  This is a picture of the iconic Yosemite Falls.  We often see pictures trying to highlight the massive size of the waterfall.  Sometimes size is all about perspective.  Sometimes a closeup with other things in front create the same feeling of size.  The attempt was to highlight the size of this massive waterfall, but to give a perspective that is often not seen.  This was taken with a 300 mm lens and using depth of field to highlight the falls.  Although the whole waterfall does not appear in the picture the trees in front and the fact that the waterfall disappears out of the picture at the top and behind a hill in the front give the idea that there is something massive.  It is all about perspective and sometimes getting away from the norm.

 

Bryce Tree

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A trail curves around a tree and along the hoodoos of Bryce Canyon in Utah.  I love early morning hikes, especially in national parks.  It often offers the best opportunities to enjoy the parks before all the people begin to come.  Mornings offer the chance to enjoy the quiet of nature, but also on special mornings the sunrise creates spectacular light shows.  This was taken as I was heading further down into the canyon just after the sun appeared over the horizon.  At the top of the canyon it was cold and windy, but as I made my way down the wind died down and the light created some great photographic opportunities around the rock formations.  If you take a trip to Bryce Canyon I highly recommend getting up early and heading down into the canyon.  Get in a short hike and some pictures, then go enjoy a nice warm breakfast.

Moment’s Rest

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A reflection of a bridge over the river that runs through Yosemite Valley.  I took this early in the morning as I was walking along the river shooting in the early morning light.

Yosemite Bear

Bear

“When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the universe.”

John Muir

A day after hiking up onto a bear in Yosemite I had a little more comfortable encounter with a male cinnamon black bear.  While driving the upper back country on our way out of Yosemite National Park we went on a little used back road this bear walked out in front of the vehicle.  I rolled down the back window and took a couple of shots as the bear slipped through the shadows of the forest.

Piece of Heaven

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 “On earth there is no heaven, but there are pieces of it.”
Jules Renard
Sunrise from the North Rim of the Grand Canyon.  I have seen many things in my life, but I still cannot get over the sunrises that I have been fortunate to witness and enjoy.  One of the most amazing places to enjoy the sunrise and the view is Grand Canyon National Park.  This was only a five minute walk from the lodge at the North Rim.