Thursday, June 30, 2011

Fawn in Thick Grass

This is a whitetail deer fawn that is resting in a meadow with knee-deep grass. I had been shadowing this fawn for some time as it traveled with its mother, trying unsuccessfully to work close enough for photographs. The fawn decided to lay down and the mother wandered away. I decided to sit down and wait for the fawn to get up and provide photo opportunities. The fawn was in no hurry, though, so I busied myself by slowly creeping closer. The fawn was not nervous but it kept an eye on me. This photograph was an experiment to see if anything attractive could result from shooting through the thick grass.
I wanted to stay close to eye-level but knew there would be no chance to get a clear view. The fawn's ears were alert so I figured the animal would be recognizable even if one couldn't see the whole face. I focused manually on the ears and took this frame. This is not my usual style as I usually strive to include a sharp image of the eye in my animal photos. However, this image appeals to me and I'm glad I tried it.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Whitetail Deer in Sunbeam

Very exciting to get this photograph of a whitetail deer resting in a sunbeam. The lighting is quite dramatic. This forest has a thick, heavy canopy that prevents most of the sunlight from penetrating. When I first spotted the doe she was in the deep shade and there wasn't even enough light for a photo. But a shaft of sun penetrated the canopy and tracked over her. I had only a few minutes to get into position and take a few frames before the sunbeam was gone.
The original image was shot in RAW format and there was even more contrast than shown here. I brightened the shadow area to show a little detail in the surrounding woods.
1/250 second at f/6.3, ISO 1600, aperture-priority with minus two stops exposure compensation, 400mm lens.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Whitetail Deer Fawn-2

This is the same whitetail deer fawn that is shown in the previous post. The tiny sunbeam is gone and the light is very even because of the deep shade. I moved to the side because I wanted to see both eyes but couldn't do any better than what is shown here. The deer was hiding on a slight rise and this enabled me to move downhill enough so that I could shoot near his eye level.
The shade was so deep that there wasn't much light to work with. This photo was shot at ISO 10000, 1/250 second at f/5.6, 400mm lens, handheld with image stabilization on the lens.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Newborn Whitetail Deer Fawn

This is a recently born whitetail deer fawn that I spotted in the deep woods. The fawns instinctively lie motionless to avoid detection. After a couple days or so they are strong enough to run away from danger.
The fawn was in deep shade when I first noticed it but there were shafts of sunlight penetrating the canopy in spots. I waited at a respectable distance until a sunbeam tracked onto the fawn and got this image.
The mother was not in the immediate vicinity but it is common for the does to forage farther away and return later to nurse the fawns. I also figured that a twin might be nearby so I looked very carefully but never saw another one.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Hunter/Jumper Horse Show

This photograph was taken at a recent hunter/jumper horse show as a young rider jumps a fence. I like the excitement that is generated by the head-on approach so I often position myself directly in front of a jump. The height of this jump was only two feet so the horse was only in the air for a split second. I got lucky with the timing because this is the peak. Also, I dropped to my knees to get a lower angle and framed tightly so the bottom of the jump is not visible. This allows the viewer to think the jump may be higher than it actually was. The low angle also gives us an uncluttered background behind the rider.
The image was taken late morning with the sun fairly high. The girl's face is visible but I would have preferred that there wasn't so much shadow under her helmet. We can't control the sun or the schedule of the horse show so we shoot regardless.
100-400 lens at 320mm, 1/1250 second at f/5.6, ISO 200.