I have been trying to tell myself when I am out photographing wildlife that I need to get different shots than I am used to taking. One of my favorite photographers is Thomas Mangelson, the one thing that sets him apart from others is his ability to incorporate the environment into his wildlife photographs. Often I find myself filling the frame with the wildlife and not enough of the environment that tells the story of what the animal is doing. I also have a bad habit of wanting to take those portrait type photos. None of these things are bad as long as I take in the whole picture and photograph the wildlife and its surroundings and habitat. While in Shenandoah National Park earlier in the month for the whitetail rut I attempted to do just that many times. Sometimes I was successful other times they found the delete button with me wondering what I was doing. These are just two of the examples that I kept, what do you think. Should they have found the delete button also? In the first photograph this nice nine point buck was driven off by another nine point numerous times, on this occasion after running aways through the big meadows he decided not to try it again. In the second photo this buck was working one doe in the back part of the Big Meadows one cold morning, I spent a fair amount of time alone with him and her snapping away.
You will notice a difference in the photos even though they were both taken in the same general area. This is attributed to the lighting. The first was taken on a warm sunny afternoon and the second on a cold morning after the sun came up and went behind the clouds (ISO 1000). Lighting is so important to photography and the natural light and time of day can drastically change what an image looks like.