Whether you’re trying to capture a photo of a cheetah hunting or a flying pigeon in your city, the most important thing is to be prepared and be ready for anything. You have no control over what happens in the wild. You can’t ask a bird to fly a little slower so you capture the shot you want or a lion to roar in front of your camera again because you were not ready the first time.
You have to use what’s around you and have your camera set and ready. You can spend hours without seeing or capturing anything, but once you do… you will witness something incredible!
Wildlife doesn’t ever disappoint us!
Character and Environment
Another thing to remember when photographing wildlife is the old “push/pull.” Animals have personalities, and you want to show that. But you don’t want to be working really tight with long lenses all the time. You need to show their environment too—habitat says a lot. Back off and use wide-angle lenses to give viewers a sense of where the animals live.
One More Thing
When you’re out photographing wildlife, don’t just pay attention to what are called the charismatic mega fauna—the big animals that get most of our attention. Of course we all want good photos of the big guys, but there are many other forms of life around. Some of them are really beautiful, and all of them are interesting. Whenever you’re out there, whether hiking or sitting in your car waiting for something to happen, look around. You’ll be amazed at what you might discover. Photograph that too!
Practice, Practice & Practice
While everyone would like to be clicking Wildebeests on the Serengeti, you really don’t need much to start practicing wildlife photography. Before you go to a safari, make sure you know how to use your camera. Go to the park and practice until you feel confident. Know your settings.
Make sure you pay attention to what’s surrounding your main subject in the frame. Try to have clear and simple background so the viewer can really focus on the bird itself.
When you focus your lens, focus on the eyes of the bird.
Wildlife photography shooting, try to tell a story. Some birds fly. An elephant dig in the mud. Some birds eat fish, some eat seeds and wild dog during their social hunting (co-operative imperative). You can share all that information with the viewer through your photographs.
Good luck, and Happy Shooting!