I came across this beautiful rattlesnake on a remote mountain road in the middle of nowhere, and as with most snakes, it was not in a friendly mood. As I got my camera ready, I checked the bushes and area around me to be sure he or she did not have any unexpected friends hanging out nearby. If you decide you want to try to photograph a snake or any other small creatures for that matter, it always makes a better photograph if you can get down on its level, rather than taking a picture from above. Have fun and don’t be afraid to experiment.
As a wildlife photographer, sometimes danger can be part of the game. Just don’t put yourself in any unneeded danger. Know your limitations and be cautious. There is danger in every day life, even the every day task of simply driving down the road.
When taking photographs of dangerous creatures or situations, it is handy to have a zoom lens. Though it may appear in this photograph that I am face-to-face with this poisonous snake, I am actually well out of striking distance. But also remember, in situations like this, to be aware of what is going on around you. And always keep in mind that objects in lenses may be closer than they appear!
Canon Camera ~ Hand held (for a quick get away)
F/10 ~ ISO 250-Exposure time 1/500 (left camera on automatic mode/ action in case “maybe” it would strike out I could get the shot)
Focal length 363mm (Not nearly enough considering how fast these little creatures can move on a hot summer day)
Other technical information: I had my husband standing by to keep the snake sidetracked and from running away – and to yell at me if I got to wrapped up in the photo session and let the snake get too close!
Stacey Huston is an outdoorswoman to the core, and would much rather spend time in the high country than in the local shopping mall, and feels more at home in heavy timber than in a salon. She is an accomplished photographer and is the staff photographer for Journey With Red Hawk T.V. series. Stacey is also a licensed falconer and raptor rehabilitation volunteer, helping injured raptors to once again soar on open skies. She resides with her husband of 18 years and their two boys in the mountains of western Wyoming. To see her photography, go to http://www.staceyhuston.com/