Whenever we purchase a new camera, the only thing we want to do is play around with it.  It’s our new toy and everything about it is great.

Nothing is sacred at that moment.  Photos WILL be taken of absolutely anything and everything.  Parents, better halves and children all get their fair share of being a model for a while.  Then we tend to venture outside where flowers, insects and the street we live on all get a go.

The odd bird that just happens to land on a nearby branch can create some excitement followed by some slow and stealthy movements to see if we can get any closer.  And this is where I’m heading… Wildlife photography.

We’ve all tried to capture great shots of wildlife before, but often our photos don’t seem as good as the ones we see other people take.

So what can we do about it?

The first thing to do is to get a dedicated tele-zoom lens.  200mm is good, 300mm is better, and anything longer is really just showing off (but you WILL be the envy of every other photographer in the street).  A longer focal length means you can get those frame filling shots from further away.  So no more slow and stealthy moves or scared animals running away.

The second thing to do is to fill the frame with your subject.  No one wants to have to search around the photo just to find the bird because it is too far away and small.  Fill the frame with your subject.  If that means zooming in a little more, or getting a little closer, do it.

The third thing to do is to get the focus right.  ’The eyes are the window to the soul’ is something all photographers should remember.  Get the eyes in focus and your shot will look right.  Preferably try to get the whole animal in focus, but if you are going to take a shot with a shallower depth of field, aim for the eyes.  It is the natural place for people to look and they all look there first.

And lastly, preview you shot on the cameras LCD screen.  You don’t have to preview every photo, but just make sure you have a good look at every few shots to make sure your focus and composition are right.  The worst thing in the world is taking a bunch of shots only to get home later and find they are out of focus or that you’ve cut off the head.

So what are you waiting for?  Get out there and find that wildlife!

Happy Shooting!

Pics By Nick - Pelican

Pics By Nick - Alligator

Pics By Nick - Hermit Crab