By now you have all heard a million and one rules of composition, capture etc.. you surely have been beaten over the head like I was with the head angle police, rule of third guideline, f/ 8 for wildlife, blah, blah, blah.
When photographing wildlife don’t forget that the one key element in photography is the artistic expression of the photographer. Don’t get so caught up on getting everything tack sharp that you forget that the end result is suppose to be a pleasing photo-it is not a sharpness contest.
Shooting with the best gear and using the right aperture does not make you a photographer- it makes you someone that takes pictures with expensive gear and knows how to change the camera’s aperture- period.
I see lots of photogs who think getting down low is the only way to photograph an animal. In some situations, doing so will put the horizon line straight through the animals head. They have been so brain washed into believing that getting low is the key to a good photo. I admit that sometimes it can help to create a more intimate feel but it has to be right for the given situation.
Another thing I hear lots of folks saying is- be sure to get the eye looking at you with the catch light. I have also heard some say that if you don’t get the catch light don’t take the picture. Who comes up with all these rules and why are people still listening to them?
It is important to listen to guidelines with a grain of salt, there are no hard rules that should apply to art and photography is art. The only thing that matters at the end of the day is to “create an image that someone cares about”, and that someone can be you <wink>.