How To Stay Warm on Those Cold Days

Adult Bald Eagle sitting on a snowy tree limb

Bald Eagle in Snow / Photo by Jim Braswell

Ironically, as I write this post, I’m sitting in a motel room in the Colorado Rockies, waiting for the temperatures to warm up. I arrived here a couple of days ago, to shoot the bighorn sheep in the rut. Although I love to shoot nature in the winter, you also need to use common sense.

When temperatures are record-breaking lows (like right now), or wind chill advisories are in effect (like right now), it may be best to stay indoors. What makes the frigid temperatures I’m encountering on this trip even more of an issue, is the fact that I have to hike back into a canyon for about 3 miles to find the sheep. Then, of course, 3 miles back out. But tomorrow’s forecast is for warmer temperatures (in the 30′s), so I will be getting out tomorrow! So how do you prepare for shooting in cold, winter weather? [Read more...]

How To Prepare For An African Safari Trip (Part II)

Photo by Jack Dausman

Photo by Jack Dausman

Last week, Jack talked about how to prepare for an African safari trip. This week, in part two of his post, he talks about how to capture the moment once you’re there.

Early Morning

Landscape photographers enjoy the early light of pre-dawn. Be sure to explain this interest to your guide, well in advance, as it will take some extra planning. Game reserves have a lock-down policy against any night time excursions because there are still incidents of poaching. To leave before dawn will require some coordination. [Read more...]

How To Prepare For An African Safari Trip (Part I)

Photo by Jack Dausman

Photo by Jack Dausman

The lioness bared her fangs and we took the moment. Click. We had tracked three lions for about an hour in the Kenyan Samburu Game Reserve, waiting until the senior lioness had relaxed near the road. It had required another 20 minutes of patience before she had looked in our direction and grimaced.

Safari photography is a unique blend of sports and landscape vision. Animals don’t pose. And, the lighting can’t be set. You have to be prepared for the moment. Sadly, I’ve seen many instances where people have traveled thousands of miles to show up at a game reserve with only a smartphone or point-and-shoot camera; after which they are somewhat disillusioned with the end result. The opportunities for once-in-a-lifetime imagery demands forethought. Here are my favorite tips for capturing the magic of an ancient world and its animal citizens. [Read more...]

New eBook – 53 Tips For Nature Photography

53 Tips For Nature PhotographyIn the last six years, we’ve published over 240 posts here on PhotoNaturalist. With each new post, it gets harder to dig through the older posts and find the ones you might be interested in. It’s one of the most common comments I get from new readers.

So, I thought now was a good time to create a “best of PhotoNaturalist” eBook that contains all of our most popular posts (but only including posts written by me, because I do not have permission to resell other writers’ posts).

The eBook is 108 pages, and has 53 of my top posts. I determined the “top posts” by looking at traffic, and how much each post was shared on social media. I also tried to include a nice balance of subjects, so I separated the posts into four sections: general, landscape, wildlife, and close-up. [Read more...]

The Most Useful Filters for Nature Photography

When photographing nature, there are many times when a photographic filter on the end of the lens can help improve the image, or give the image a different effect. Such is the case when I captured Maroon Creek (Colorado) with a Neutral Density filter:

Maroon Creek landscape, Colorado

Maroon Creek / Photo by Jim Braswell

Kind of like “creativity in a can.” What filters are most useful for shooting nature? [Read more...]

How To Photograph The Lunar Eclipse

Lunar Eclipse (2011) / Photo by Steve Berardi

Lunar Eclipse (2011) / Photo by Steve Berardi

On October 8th (this Wednesday), there will be a total lunar eclipse. It’ll be visible from much of North and South America, Australia, and much of Asia (see map).

In a total eclipse, the moon turns red (due to the way the light from the Sun is scattered as it passes through our atmosphere), and it’s truly a beautiful sight!

Here are some tips for photographing the eclipse: [Read more...]