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“The best way out is always through.”

Monday, November 17, 2008

Expect the Unexpected in Nature

Great nature photos are often the result of brief surprise happenings that no one could predict, and capturing them with your camera is one of photography's biggest challenges. As with most things in life, luck tends to favor those who are prepared and those who are in the right place at the right time. For nature photographers this means two things: be ready to shoot all the time and spend a lot of time observing nature. I was thrilled enough to be getting very close shots of alligators while photographing from a boardwalk in Florida, but when a small reddish dragonfly landed just over the alligator's eye I knew I'd have a unique photo. Fortunately I was already focused on the gator's eye when the dragonfly landed and all I had to do was press the shutter button. (And lucky for me the dragon fly flew away and came back several dozen times, so I got many shots of the unlikely pair.) But the reality is that I was in the refuge with my camera on a nice day and I was prepared for this surprise moment. Be prepared: have your cameras out and your shutter finger waiting!

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