The Background Makes it Work

Gerry van der Walt All Authors Leave a Comment

Eagle - Gerry van der Walt

Nikon D3s, 600mm, 1/800, f/10, ISO 250

Kgalagadi Frontier Park, South Africa

It’s amazing how many photo opportunities come up if you ‘think photographically’.

When we are in the field I always find myself looking around for possible images, different backgrounds, interesting compositions.

During a photo safari on the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park we spent some time photographic this Black-Chested Snake Eagle as it sat perched on a dead tree.  Nice shots but let’s be honest – the same as a million other Black-Chested Snake Eagle sitting in front of a blue background images.

After firing off a few keepers we noticed the moon a little to the left and up from the raptor.

Done… we had ‘found’ our shot.

We slowly made our way forward – very slowly to not chase the eagle away – and positioned our vehicle so that the moon was lined up directly behind the large bird.

I played around with a few different aperture settings and ultimately this was my favorite image.  The moon is not so soft that it looks like an accident and not sharp enough to detract from subject.

Make sure to not get too stuck on the subject and make sure to look around for options.  Quite often the background can take your images to a new level.

Until next time.

Gerry van der Walt

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