Where the wild things are

You may have guessed by now that I am partial to photography. It’s true; I love photographic images of all kinds. I tend to focus primarily on nature as that is what inspires me, although superb architecture and character-filled faces will also get me grabbing for my camera post-haste. However, the most satisfying photographic endeavour for me is the attempt to capture images of wildlife. It is also the most time-consuming. There is no rushing this type of photography; it requires a stillness, both inner and outer, the patience of a saint and above all, the willingness to fail. There are no guarantees; it is possible, and often probable, that you will spend hours upon hours waiting, watching, willing and come away with nothing to show for your time other than glimpses of shots that might have been. It is character building on a monumental level.

The greatest joy is when you feel the click of the camera at exactly the right moment, and you know, you just know, that you’ve captured something really special. I had one of those moments this weekend with the bottom image in this post. It doesn’t have to be special to everyone, what matters is that it’s special to you. One of my favourite quotes about photography is attributed to David Alan Harvey. “Don’t shoot what it looks like. Shoot what it feels like.” You’re the photographer; you are there in the moment; you know what it feels like.

When I’m photographing wildlife I try to capture images that either suggest the personality of the subject or tell a story in a single moment. My other favourite quote about photography is attributed to Henri Cartier-Bresson. “Of course it’s all luck.” Here are a few images I was lucky enough to capture yesterday at Pelham Bay.


12 thoughts on “Where the wild things are”

  1. Ailsa,
    Glad you commented on my site so I could find yours. Very nice shots and I love your quotes about photography – especially about “shooting what it feels like”. We recently returned from Alaska photographing the brown bears up close and what I tell everyone is that you can’t imagine the feeling you get looking through a viewfinder and seeing nothing but bear!

    On a second note, it always nice to see a “city dweller” focus on nature photography. I originally came from NJ and I think being in the urban or commuter regions gives you more of an appreciation when you get the chance to be out in nature. Keep up the great photos!

    1. Ooh, Scott, I just had to go back and look at your bear photos. I would love to see nothing but bear through a viewfinder, sounds like quite an adrenaline rush! Your peeking duck made me laugh out loud. Yes, I’m presently a city dweller geographically, but the polar opposite instinctively, intellectually and emotionally 🙂 Thanks for popping by my blog, I’m sure we’ll e-meet again on our travels. x

  2. Thanks for commenting on my bluebottle pics, they are far easier to capture than the living wildlife you have stalked …. great photos, and I love your fun titles …it makes me smile, thanks so much!

    1. Thanks Susie, I couldn’t quite believe my luck with that shot. That flutter in the wing and the beautiful light in the eye just fill me with wonder. x

    1. Ha ha, fantastic, you know, until last weekend I might have agreed with you, but this guy was definitely bashful….unless it was all part of a cunning plan to lull me into a false sense of security….

    1. Thanks Nathan. I’m enjoying following your adventures in the Grand Canyon, I shall have to make a point of seeing it for myself sometime in the very near future. x

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s