I am based in Huddersfield in West Yorkshire, U.K. and have always had a strong affinity with nature and particularly animals in their natural environment.
My earliest photographic experience with a camera was borrowing my father’s Zeiss Icon film camera to photograph school geography projects (in black & white). Both his camera and the Balda belonging to my Uncle [see panel] had leather bellows, which despite their somewhat primitive technology worked remarkably well.
The first camera I owned was a Yashica Minster III camera http://bit.ly/2gGrICe with its fixed standard lens which enabled me to capture limited images of wildlife, for at that time all photographs were taken on film and pressing the shutter was an expensive business, taking into account the cost of film and processing. What a change from today when half the world seem to be walking around with mobile phones all capable of producing far better images with their built in cameras than I could ever have hoped for.
With the advent of digital SLR cameras and the huge improvement in technology, I have now been able to further indulge my passion and also to travel to exotic places for wildife like Tanzania, Norway, Finland, Botswana, Zimbabwe, South Africa and Iceland. While it costs almost nothing after the initial investment in equipment to fire off shots to your heart’s content, the expense of visiting these far flung corners of the world is not insignificant.
I have had the benefit of guidance and tuition from some of the finest wildlife photographers which has included not only the technical aspects of photography but also the fieldcraft to locate and get close to the subjects without disturbing them. [Some are included on my “links” page]
I am indebted to them all for their patience, friendship and tuition. Key attributes for wildlife photo success are being up early or late when the wildlife is most active, patience and silence, none of which come naturally to me. Often outings prove fruitless but the successful ones make it all worthwhile and compel me return another day.
One of the most useful pieces of advice I have received remains “enjoy yourself” irrespective of equipment, technique or proficiency. For me, the pleasure comes from seeing and capturing a sometimes fleeting moment of animal behaviour, a rare species or situation and being able to record that and re-
Sometimes it’s just the sheer exuberance of being in the presence of these wonderful animals or sharing a special moment with them.
And a sage piece of advice I received; “You never show anyone your second best photograph”!