Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Jonathan North: Animal Photographer

In my photography class we are supposed to be narrowing down our focus to one area that we really want to photograph, so we can put together a final themed portfolio. I love animals and wanted to do animal photography for my final project, but there is not much for animals around Harlan. A friend of mine from work posted on facebook that she was going to be buying a membership to the zoo, and that got me to thinking about getting my own membership. With a membership I would be able to get into the zoo whenever I want. It would be so much easier to get enough pictures for a final project if I could go to the zoo whenever I wanted.

I e-mailed my cousin Shaina and told her about it, and how I wanted to go to the zoo to take pictures for school. After I e-mailed her I went to facebook again where I have “Like”d the Henry Doorly Zoo, and I get their updates on my wall. They had just posted that they were starting a photography club on the 2nd of April. Talk about a coincidence! (I don’t believe in coincidence, though. Smile This was God’s doing.) The club is not open to the general public. To join, you first have to be a member of the Henry Doorly Zoo itself. That clinched it. I bought a membership. I had to join this club.

The first meeting was just kind of a get together to see what people wanted the club to be. There had apparently been a photography club in the past, but whoever had been in charge hadn’t done much with it. They basically had treated it as something they had to do for an hour each month. They want this club to be different, something that will be fun for the members, but also something that can be put to good use for the zoo. If any of our photos are good enough they may be used in promotional materials for the zoo. Also we may be called upon to photograph special events for the zoo, and we also may be used to chronicle the zoo’s upcoming massive reconstruction project.

I am so excited about this! I can not wait till next month when I can go back and take more pictures! I have always loved animals. When I was little I always said I wanted to be an artist, but I would also tell people I wanted to be a zookeeper. This club seems to be the perfect opportunity to explore the possibility of being both. Maybe not a full on zookeeper per se, but something involving animal photography.

I will close with one picture that I consider one of, if not THE best picture I took on Saturday. When I took the pictures off my camera I had 1,045. Of course most of them are worthless. Most times I took many rapid-fire pictures all in a row, hoping for one good shot. This picture however, was a one shot deal. It happened so fast, and I was so far away that I am surprised it turned out at all. There were some children feeding the peacocks a great distance from me. I switched my lens to a zoom lens as fast as I could. Their mom was calling them back, but I managed to get one shot of the little boy before he ran off. I was so happy when I got home and looked at my results. It’s a great picture, if I may say so myself. Smile I plan to submit it for consideration to be used for the zoo.

Zoo 936

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