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Posted November 30th, 2014

Laughing Bull

The Whitehorse Photography Club held its annual autumn photography workshop on the last weekend of October, with the focus being on wildlife photography this year. The event culminated in a field session at the Yukon Wildlife Preserve, which is where this image of a bull moose was taken. This lone animal was said to be not well adapted to the presence of people, yet it turned out to be quite a cooperative model for our group of 20+ photographers. That said, and notwithstanding my anthropomorphic interpretation of his expression for the title of this photo, I didn't really perceive him to be laughing. His tolerance of us undoubtedly had much to do with the placement of feed just inside the corner of the expansive enclosure. Yes, I shot this through a sturdy chain link fence. While I enjoy photographing wildlife, the title may reveal that I do not take myself too seriously as a documentary wildlife photographer; I prefer making more interpretive images. However, while I carefully composed this image to exclude any man made elements, I refrained from making any post-capture edits that would in any way reduce the representation of the reality of the scene. I did have to make substantial tonal adjustments to manage the high contrast between the dark animal and the landscape, which was much lighter even on this overcast day with some light snow falling.
Pentax K-5, Tamron AF 17-50mm f/2.8 XR Di-II LD @ 24mm, 1/60 sec @ f/4.5, ISO 800