Continuing the series of posts based on Channel 5 Broadcastingâ€™s â€œHow To Take Stunning Picturesâ€ series, this one looks at photographing animals (previous posts have covered portraiture, celebrations, landscapes and sport).Â The expert photographer in this episode was Tim Flach and, whilst Channel 5â€²s website has some tips to go with each programme,Â they donâ€™t exactly match up to the advice in the programme itself so, here are the tips from the fifth episode:
- Know your animal – be interested in your subject and try and find out a little more through a journey of enquiry, researching the subject, including people closest to the animal (e.g. a farmer).
- Develop your idea – what’s the purpose of the image – i.e. what are you setting out to do and what do you want to explore? Think about what is special about the animal and use that to consider how to communicate its character through pictures.
- Use details and textures – get in tight and explore details and texture in animals – you can even create new meanings by leaving details out… (e.g. a part of one animal may look like something else entirely, when viewed out of context). The closer you get in, the more dramatic an image will look.
- Be sensitive to the animal’s needs and be prepared to adapt your ideas. Have a plan/strategy but be able to see other things that develop as it may be chaotic and nothing is ultimately controlled.Â It’s important to observe and let go if what you thought was gong to happen if it didn’t and be ready to capture something else if it reveals itself ! You never know how large (or small) a window of possibility will be.