Let's talk amphibian photography

sde

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 5, 2012
Messages
1,891
Reaction score
34
Points
48
Location
Seattle area Washington
Country
United States
Display Name
Seth
Hi all,

I just wanted to bring up this subject as I really love photographing my herping finds! And I want to see what you guys are doing as well. I also want to find out what kinds of composition and tricks/methods you guys like to use. Also, feel free to share some of you're best photos!

So for composition I try and keep the head centered, and am kind of a nerd when it comes to getting REALLY close, I love they eye shots :D Sometimes I take a step back ( if I can get out of the trance of close ups ) and when I do this I usually curl their tail around one side, and try to get them in a 'interesting' position. I try to let them to the 'interesting' position part themselves so I don't have to move them but occasionally I have to 'help' them out. I also try to get their full body when I am farther back. I also try and put them on moss and moss spores for added color, and try to pay attention to the background colors. Occasionally I will put them on rocks if they are a colorful species.
For pictures that are really close up, I try to focus on the eye. Some species make much better eye shots than others. Rana aurora, for instance, has a very detailed and colorful eye, whereas Ambystoma gracile is a more plain brown.
With blander subjects ( like Ambystoma gracile ) I try to incorporate a more colorful background, like green trees, fall colored leaves, mosses, or colorful plants. Sometimes if I am on a bare hill or cleared area I will try to show the sky, or a bit of a view in the background.
I also try to take photos from interesting angles, for instances I love taking photos of herps from below, so that you have an interesting angle and so you get the sky and trees in the background.
I also try to give the animals as much character as I can, and shooting from in front of the subject ( head on ) I think does this quite well. Each individual has a different look from the front, so it gives uniqueness as well.
Taking a lot of photos helps to get better photos as well, simply because the animal is usually moving so it allows you to get lots of angles and poses.
Typically I don't use the flash unless I have to because I don't want to stress the animal too much.
I constantly am changing the aperture depending on the scene, sometimes I want the background to show, sometimes I just want it to be focusing on the subject.

So folks, that's my techniques and methods, feel free to share yours!

Here are some of my favorite shots. ( By the way, sorry the post is so long ).
 

Attachments

garfield188

New member
Joined
Dec 22, 2011
Messages
27
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Country
Netherlands
Nice photos!, but try not to always have the head of the salamander in the middle of the photo.
 

auntiejude

New member
Joined
Apr 18, 2013
Messages
3,685
Reaction score
50
Points
0
Location
England
Country
England
I often find it easier to take a wider shot and then crop it afterwards. It's sometimes easier to work that way than wait for your subject to strike the right pose right in front of the camera. It helps that I'm married to a professional digital photo expert though..... ;)

Wildlife photgraphy is an art few can master, but you're certainly doing a great job Seth!
 

sde

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 5, 2012
Messages
1,891
Reaction score
34
Points
48
Location
Seattle area Washington
Country
United States
Display Name
Seth
Nice photos!, but try not to always have the head of the salamander in the middle of the photo.
OK I will try to take photos from different angles, it'll be good to mix things up.

I often find it easier to take a wider shot and then crop it afterwards. It's sometimes easier to work that way than wait for your subject to strike the right pose right in front of the camera. It helps that I'm married to a professional digital photo expert though..... ;)

Wildlife photgraphy is an art few can master, but you're certainly doing a great job Seth!
I would take it from farther back but my camera isn't that nice, if I did that I would lose some focus. I will give that a go anyway and see how it goes, maybe it will turn out great! Thanks for the tips!

Great tips, i am lucky if i can get the salamanders in focus!:p
I can still occasionally have that problem....if I forget to turn my camera on to macro....:rolleyes:

Thanks for the compliments guys :happy: -Seth
 
General chit-chat
Help Users
  • No one is chatting at the moment.
  • Murk:
    Hi Nerdybirds - open a thread, that usually gets more views and also allows you to post pictures and give more background information: water parameters, age, etc.
    +1
    Unlike
  • Roadrunner:
    My axolotl can you all take a look at that thread, I am freaked out about my axie
    +1
    Unlike
  • MVM1991:
    His gills seem kinda small, I don't think that's normal but I'm not a huge expert on axolotls
    +1
    Unlike
  • Roadrunner:
    Yeah his gills is kinda small and it can be caused by nitrate level, I am taking care of it atm, I am worried about his weight, is he only overfed or are there any kinds of problems there ?
    +1
    Unlike
  • MVM1991:
    Well, again, I'm no expert. But I did just read axolotls are supposed to have a body about as wide as their head. The gills I'd say are the biggest problem, which could reduce oxygen intake, which could make a whole mess of problems.
    +1
    Unlike
  • Roadrunner:
    Thanks for the help then, I will deal with his gills in no time
    +2
    Unlike
  • Chat Bot:
    Bri the axolotl mom has left the room.
    +1
    Unlike
  • Chat Bot:
    Bri the axolotl mom has joined the room.
    +1
    Unlike
  • nerdybirds73:
    Any one have advice on feeding a tubbed axolotl?
    +1
    Unlike
  • nerdybirds73:
    mine hasent eaten in weeks and im not sure what to do
    +1
    Unlike
  • LauraLobster:
    Hello, I am a new owner of a 3 month old axolotl, and although I have done a lot of research on axolotls, I can barely find any for babies. If anyone can help me with these questions, I would be super happy. How many hours do baby axolotls tend to sleep per day? How many times should I feed it and what would be considered too much (it's current diet is freeze-dried brine shrimp and blood worms, and I currently feed it around 3 bloodworms since they are not that big)? How many times a week should I change the water and how? I have a good filter and use Prime as my conditioner to remove the chlorine and other chemicals, but I still need to figure out how to deal with ammonia and such in the water. How do I clean it's waste (should I use a dropper to easily pick it up)? I need a better cooling system because currently I use ice packs on the side of the tank and I make sure to angle my ac so that it hits the tank.
    +1
    Unlike
  • LauraLobster:
    I also leave the lid open during the day so that evaporation can cool down my tank. I want to buy a fan, but since winter is coming I won't have to buy one yet. Lastly, what water testers are effective and affordable for a broke student like myself? Please, if anyone has any advice I will love to hear it. I care for this creature too much at this point, but I have no one to help me with caring for it other than the internet :,)
    +1
    Unlike
  • EmilyP:
    Hi LauraLobster I am a new owner of axolotls myself and have been getting advice from things like this, I feed mine twice a day on blackworms and brine shrimp blood worms are more of a treat food, a question on where you are keeping you axolotl are you keeping it in the main tank or in a tub also if in the tank did you cycle it first? and if not i suggest tubing it until the tank it cycled, mine are still tubed since I was given bad advice by the shop people about cycling my tank and am still in the process of cycling it. I use pipettes to clean up the mess of my axolotls. I use the API mater test kit for freshwater tanks I am also a student and had to look around to find it the cheapest I could.
    +1
    Unlike
  • AnimeDan:
    Hi LauraLobster, like you I got my first ever Axolotl back in July. Iv found that he has enjoyed and eaten red wigglers well. They are a good source of protein and help provide the nutrients a young lotl needs to grow up big and strong. You will probably need to break it up into smaller pieces until they get bigger but they are what I have primarily fed my buddy since I got him. He’s actually so picky that he won’t even eat his pellets anymore and will hold out till he gets his favorite wormy.
    +1
    Unlike
  • Readysalted:
    Hi I would like to know how you treat nea
    +1
    Unlike
  • Readysalted:
    Hi I would like to know how you treat newt inflamtion I've got one and recently it's started to develop an inflammation on its throat can someone please tell me how you treat this I've also checked if he had something stuck but I didn't se anything
    +1
    Unlike
  • Cjbond:
    Anyone have any Notophthalmus viridescens for purchase to a loving home?
    +2
    Unlike
  • Grantsky:
    Hi, I’m not sure if this is the right place to post this as I am new to the site, b
    +1
    Unlike
  • ltoloxa-:
    Hey, can anyone recommend a good fan/cooler in UK?
    +1
    Unlike
  • Nycolebayne:
    I’ve got proven female axolotls available if anyone is interested.
    +1
    Unlike
  • Mark.H:
    Hey, does anyone know if shale is ok for long-toed salamanders?
    +1
    Unlike
  • MVM1991:
    As long as its cleaned yeah! You can even make overhangs if you have enough pieces to make nice caves and platforms
    +1
    Unlike
  • Mark.H:
    Ok, thanks!
    +1
    Unlike
  • MVM1991:
    My pleasure! River rocks work well too, and go rather well with all kinda lung less salamanders,
    +1
    Unlike
  • Mark.H:
    Great! I'll use some of those too. Thanks for the help. :)
    +1
    Unlike
    Mark.H: Great! I'll use some of those too. Thanks for the help. :) +1
    Top