Mile High Wildlife Photo Club

October 2009 Meeting Summary

< Previous Meeting | Index | Next Meeting > The October meeting began with a discussion of “The Wildlife Experience” (TWE) show for 2010. TWE wanted a scenic focus for our exhibit, to better fit in with other exhibits running simultaneously. During the meeting, club members discussed possible themes for this exhibit that would be keep in mind TWE’s request for scenics, yet be wide open enough to allow for interpretation. The best idea for a theme was “Nature’s Glory,” but the membership decided to continue the discussion online via e-mail. Any further discussions or suggestions about this theme should be directed to Chuck Winter.

December meeting: the club membership voted against holding a formal December meeting at TWE. A smaller portions of the club membership may decide to get together on their own.

The October presentation featured Gordon and Cathy Illg discussing “The Nuts and Bolts of Nature Photography.” Gordon’s presentation focused on finding and establishing a vision as a photographer. He also gave examples of ways to overcome obstacles that would prevent a photographer from realizing his or her vision. The first step is to know your story and what you want to say.

Some ways to establish your vision include:
• Experiment with cropping and zooming (in/out) – these relatively simple techniques can make your photo tell different stories.
• Try different lenses. Note that the animal itself can dictate what focal length lens you need to use.
• Simple environments can help animals stand out in the photo.
• If it’s possible, spend time composing your shot.
• Keep in mind that small animals, even mice and insects, can make interesting subjects.
• When bad weather strikes, do the best with what you’ve been given – experimenting with scale might help.
• Don’t get caught up in an expected way of doing something – be open to the unexpected.
• Make the best of photographing animals at night – use multiflash setups and blinds if necessary.
• Try fill flash in scenic photography – use it to add light to the foreground.

Gordon also gave some great tips on night photography of stars, the moon, and the aurora borealis. He preferred star photography using less than a 25 second exposure. Aurora borealis looks beautiful with a 20 second exposure, especially with a little moonlight to highlight the landscape.

Everyone at the meeting got some great ideas for creating great photos and establishing a vision for their photography. < Previous Meeting | Index | Next Meeting >
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