Tips That Make Your Wildlife Shots Just a Bit Easier

It turns out that taking quality images of animals is actually quite challenging. Grab a telephoto lens and check out this video for some tips that make getting a strong shot just a tad more reliable.

If you've tried taking photos of wildlife, you realize very quickly that it's way more difficult than you may have originally thought. Getting a sharp image of anything that moves as sporadically and quickly as an animal is no small task. This past week, I went to the closest zoo (seemed as good a place as any for a test run) and tried my best to get some strong images while testing a borrowed 70-300mm lens. Having come home and found this video on YouTube, I can say that host Brendan van Son raises some great points, some that we probably don't consider as often as we should. 

His point about our tendency to humanize animals I really found to be especially interesting. Whether you agree or disagree, it's certainly worth discussing the point. Does an effort to humanize when photographing wildlife detract or add to the image? Obviously, gorillas, chimpanzees, and other simian species come to mind immediately. Their facial expressions alone make is easy to transfer our own emotions to an image, for better or for worse.

Watch the video and leave a comment below. If you have any tips of your own for photographing animals, I'd love to hear them. Do you agree or disagree with van Son's tips? When it comes to animals, is there a particular animal that you'd love to get an image of? I think that any animal in its natural habitat would be more ideal than a zoo or wildlife refuge, but we do the best we can with what we have access too. If you're like me and want to give it a go, your local zoo would be a great place to start. 

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6 Comments

Fristen Lasten's picture

Wildlife photography is easy. Ask any crested black macaque.

lee arthur's picture

One last tip... Make sure you know what side of the camera the Monkey is on.

jonas y's picture

Here's a tip: bankrupt PETA.

Jon Kellett's picture

The more you know about an animal, the better you can capture the essence of that animal. You can capture more emotionally connecting images if you understand the animal.

Also, knowing the animal allows you more safety. Simians can bite and scratch and aren't the cleanest animals on the planet.

Also, don't let the animals take selfies ;-)

Evan Kane's picture

Good points all around :)