I was recently contacted by the Eden TV Channel and asked to contribute to a competition they’re running called Eden Shorts. Judged by Michaela Strachan and Nigel Marvin, Shorts aims to find the very best 1 minute videos of the natural world with the best being shown on the Eden channel itself.
To that end, they have posted several blogs to provide hints and tips and provide inspiration for budding film makers and, I’m humbled to be one of those that they’ve generously requested to write one such article along with provide some illustrative images.
Here’s an excerpt from that, ‘Capturing wildlife on camera’, which contains tips on lighting, composition plus referral links to sites of interest. Below that, you’ll find a link to the competition itself as well as details of more prizes to be won:
Tracking down wildlife and catching it on camera can seem like a bewildering idea, especially when looking for those more elusive species. But the truth is, the UK is alive with animals of all shapes and sizes, and in the correct light, even the more common and overlooked species can provide just as wonderful imagery as any other…
…It’s also important to remember to include shots that not just fill the frame but also place the subject small within it so you are telling the story of the environment and habitat. And, if you’re in the (often unusual!) situation where you’re too close to the wildlife you’re viewing, try picking out a smaller detail. Maybe twitching ears coming up out from the bottom of the frame or the beak of a bird as it prunes it’s feathers. The bottom line is experiment.
Once you have the ‘safe’ images in the bag, start getting creative. It won’t always work but when it does, you’ll be glad you tried! And whenever possible, get your camera at eye level to the subject as it will always produce more visually appealing and imitate feeling, especially when the subject is filling the frame. That will often mean getting low and dirty. But those who get dirty get the best images!
To read the full article, see what other prizes are on offer and if you’re a budding natural world cameraman or documentary maker, enter the competition itself – head to the Eden Channel’s Eden Shorts competition page.
It’s open NOW with a closing date of the 26th September 2014.