Photography

Hero shots

I, Dave Williams, am back again for another #TravelTuesday on ScottKelby.com. I’ve been busy settling into this van of mine and trying to work out where everything goes whilst still working hard on my many projects. My plan to hit the road out of the UK is still in track and, as of today, there are 66 days to go to departure day. It’s all very exciting and I can’t wait to go, but I need to be patient and make sure everything is exactly as it should be before I leave to save myself from any nasty surprises.

These past few days I’ve been tucked away in the New Forest, one of the UK’s few National parks. It’s on the south coast not far from the city of Southampton and it’s famous for its roaming horses and deer. Whilst out exploring I came across some of the local wildlife.

I was prepped for horses so the donkeys came as a surprise and I just had to go and say hi! A little herd of them were hanging out and as soon as I parked up they wandered over and immediately tried to make friends, probably in an attempt to get hold of whatever goodies I had in the van. They seemed to like it and I was surrounded. They were rubbing up against it, licking it, chewing it, and clearly having a great time. Herein lies the first tip for taking photos of animals.

When we shoot images of animals it makes a huge difference if we change our perspective and get to their level. When we shoot from our usual perspective, which is usually straight down, there’s not a lot in the photo to grab people’s attention or be interesting enough, whereas when we get to the animals level and shoot them from a different perspective we’re onto a winner. So that’s tip one – stick it in the bank – get to their level.

The next day I was busy minding my own business, as I usually am, when I was surprised to see another animal I wasn’t expecting. A hairy highland cow! I hope you’re ready for tip number two, because it’s coming!

This time I opted for a different technique. Do you notice how this cow looks larger than life, almost like a hero? Well that’s all down to getting lower than the subject. It applies to humans just as much as it does to highland cattle – if we get a perspective that’s lower than the subject and makes us look up at them, breaking the horizon by a long way, we make the subject look like a hero. Think about it – superman standing with his cape flapping in the wind with his gaze fixed on the distant scene of impending doom that he’s no doubt about to resolve… it’s seen from below.

Here’s the difference:

Ok, maybe there’s a bit of exaggeration there, but hopefully you get the point. Changing our perspective and making the subject a hero can make a massive change to our images.

Much love

Dave

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