At the beginning of Autumn, a large majority of the nations wildlife photographers main focus will be to capture exciting images of the glorious stags rutting and roaring within our countryside. Although social media becomes flooded with Red Deer images and by the end of October we maybe sick of the sight of another misty morning image, I personally still enjoy it. I enjoy working on a project for a significant length of time without the time restraints that you can sometimes feel when working on images overseas. For me the knowledge that I only have a couple of days at a certain location to take an image I like can be intense. When working for a few weeks locally on a project such as with the annual Deer rut the intensity is lessoned. If the conditions are not right that morning, or the deer are not in that specific spot at the right moment, you are safe in the knowledge that there is always tomorrow, or the next day….or even the week after that.
This was my third year photographing the rut. I was keen to improve on last years images with my upgraded equipment of a Canon 1DX coupled with the 500mm lens. The weather was grey and overcast in the first few weeks of the month which resulted in some different images of the stags in heavy down pours. I enjoy shooting in the rain as this can provide atmosphere to the image with different textures.
During the second and third week in October the weather conditions improved. On this particular evening the dark clouds broke to let the last rays of sunlight through, lighting up the foreground with the Red Deer hind still taking shelter under the tallest tree.
If ever the opportunity arises, I do love shooting against dark backgrounds. For me it really makes the subject stand out in the frame. With the beautiful early morning light and shady trees as a backdrop, there were a few occasions where the conditions were just right.
Within the few weeks that I was focusing on photographing Red Deer, there were a handful and mornings where the conditions were fantastic. A thick mist would hug the lowest part of the open plain and as the sun started to rise, the thick mist would turn golden. This light would only last a matter of minutes but these were the mornings where the early starts seemed worth the effort!
Although I did not have as many days as planned to work on producing new images this year what with exhibitions and running Kingfisher workshops, I am still pleased with the progress made on building my Red Deer Portfolio. I think it is important to remember that if the conditions suit, it is not only October which is good for photographing Deer and if we are lucky enough to have any snow this winter, I will be certainly trying to use this to my advantage! I have just returned from my last trip of the year to the island of Komodo where I have been photographing dragons for the last couple of weeks. From now until Christmas it is the busy selling season so hopefully I will see some of you at my exhibitions and shows in the coming weeks. If you unable to make the shows and you would like to find that perfect Christmas gift, you are welcome to click on the link here to look at my shop page: https://tomwayphotography.co.uk/shop/ Thank you.