On Snake photography…

I find it’s hard to take a great snake photo. One of the main issues is that there elongated body shape is not naturally conducive to the aspect ratio of a photograph, unless you are shooting panoramas. My personal opinion is that going in close for just a headshot of wildlife often yields great detail, but may also remove artistic longevity from the final image. Alternatively, it is very difficult to compose a compelling wideangle photograph of most wildlife for a variety of reasons. One being that their habitat is often simply too cluttered to create a compelling frame. Another reason is obviously that most wildlife is generally on the move, so you aren’t typically going to have the chance to to compose something grandiose.

Snake

Black Ratsnake; juvenile

I am fairly satisfied with this photo, because the snake coiled in a way (striking position) that allowed me to get close enough to eliminate a largely distracting background. At the same time, I was not only lucky enough to get a bit of its body in the frame, but I was also able to shoot a frame where the snake’s head was in profile. This was also difficult as this wary and aggravated snake really did not trust me to take its eyes off of me for very long.