Wildlife and Nature Photography

Photographically documenting the intimate lives of wild animals and striking moments in the natural world requires a blend of natural history knowledge, technical skill with your equipment, and an understanding of the artistic elements of lighting, composition, and visual flow. Most excellent wildlife photographs require careful planning and execution to produce.

A flock of snow geese in flight avoiding a Bald Eagle. Puget Sound, Washington.In this field based class we will explore how to create engaging photographs of wild animals and natural landscapes. Topics covered include:

  • Methods for finding wildlife and how to set up for photographing them.
  • Composing photographs to tell the story of an animal, its behavior, or its relationship to its environment.
  • How to use natural light to create dramatic effect in your images.
  • Research and planning for a wildlife photography trip.
  • Exposure and camera settings to create engaging images.
  • A basic introduction to development techniques and post-field work flow.

Participants must come with their own digital photography equipment including wide angle and telephoto lenses to practice with (or a camera which integrates both of these elements into the body of the camera). Cameras with manual control functions for setting exposure strongly recommended. For participants that want to get the most out of discussions around development and workflow, a laptop computer with the photo-management and editing software of your preference loaded on it is highly recommended for our evening session.

Please contact David if you are considering purchasing equipment for the class to discuss what options might serve you best.

Sample Schedule

Day 1: Equipment review, discussion of how to use and care for equipment in the field, Field etiquette and ethics. Practicing composing images. Working with exposure and depth of field. Observing and documenting wildlife behavior.  Using evening light for wildlife and landscape photography.

Evening: Review of images captured during the day. Discussion of image development. Prep for morning photography session.

Day 2: Early start to capture wildlife and morning light images. Midday wrap up with Q and A and reviewing images from the morning.

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