Mark Sisson says, "These days, I am increasingly drawn to revealing texture in backgrounds as opposed to reducing the area behind my subject to a classic uniform colour. I still use a shallow depth of field to emphasise the subject, but I include texture to provide a sense of place. This image of a great-spotted woodpecker screams pine forest when you look at it. The subject is small in the frame, allowing plenty of background to be included. There is an out-of-focus tree in the distance, and the light on the pine needles leaves no doubt as to the location. The longer you look at the background, ...." (www.marksissonphoto.co.uk)
Plan your shoot well
John and Tracy Langley (www.ourwildlifephotography.com) say, "One of the first things to do when planning a photoshoot is to research your subject fully to understand where you might find it and the behaviour it might exhibit. You can use books, the internet, TV documentaries, or you could just spend some time watching them in the field. The knowledge gained from these sources will help you to anticipate their behaviour and allow you to previsualise some of the images you'd like to capture. A good exercise is to create a wishlist of shots, either written down or carried in your head...."
Capture fast-changing details
Jason Steel (www.jasonsteelwildl ifephotography.yolasite.com) says, "The most striking images of snakes often depict the snake's tongue flickering back and forth. To capture this you're going to need a fast shutter speed of at least 1/400sec - the faster the speed, the greater your success rate. Shooting image bursts with the camera on high-speed mode will greatly improve your chances of capturing the flickering tongue in perfect position."
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