Bear

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Nikon DSLRs over the years: From the Nikon D1 to the Nikon D4

ma_griz_32111I was fortunate enough to be able to shoot with a Nikon D4 on my recent Alaska photo safaris. It was a blast, and allowed me to get some great images that I probably wouldn’t have gotten with previous DSLRs – especially those requiring High ISO shooting. It gave me the chance to reflect back on the last 12 years of my photography of bears in Alaska, starting with film and progressing through the D1 and nearly every other Nikon DSLR since. I put my thoughts together in an article for Extremetech on how the improvements in DSLRs have enhanced our ability to photograph. Read more »

The Eyes Have It

_djc0509If there was one thing I could impress upon wildlife photographers, it is the importance of eyes. As humans, we are programmed to key in on eyes, whether they are human or animal. Sharp, interesting, focused eyes can make a photo. Bears clamming is no longer unusual, but bears clamming and looking up enough for a good view of their eyes, is. Here the eyes are tack sharp, and are clearly focused on a subject of interest to the bear (in this case another bear, which might prove an ally or rival in its clamming project). Read more »

Wildlife photography: Eye level matters

_djc8687Once we reach the age of about twelve, it stops becoming fun for most of us to drop down to the ground and pop back up. So there needs to be a good reason to get down low and haul ourselves back up – especially with a lot of photo gear. Shooting at eye level is one very good reason. We relate much better to animals at our own level. This goes for every critter, from birds to elephants, but is most important for mammals, and especially large predators. Lions, leopards, and bears just don’t look as imposing if we are staring down at them…


Alaska Brown (aka "Grizzly") Bear & Puffin Photo Safari 2015 (2 sessions)

Dates: 
2015-07-08 18:00 - 2015-07-21 14:00

Session 1: July 8-15, 2015 (only 1 opening)
Session 2: July 14-21, 2015 (only 1 opening)
 
2015 is shaping​ up as another great year for Bears & Puffins

It seems like just yesterday, but 2015 will be my 16th year returning to the Cook Inlet in Alaska to photograph America's most spectacular animals. And even though I'm just back, I'm already excited to announce I plan to head back again in July 2015. 

Spending a week [6 nights, giving us 5 full and two partial shooting days -- longer than other trips to the area] with Alaskan Coastal Brown Bears, often called Grizzlies, is truly a life-changing experience. Unlike the bears at Brooks Lodge in Katmai, which are stressed out and offer very limited viewing, we'll be able to see bears in their native and un-stressed environment.

One day the bears will be grazing on the nutrient rich grass and the next they'll be up to their shoulder digging in the mud for clams. Without question these are my favorite weeks of the year.

We're guests of an exclusive small lodge -- the unique Silver Salmon Creek Lodge -- catering to small groups and accessible only by plane, and the bears are right in the area, so our shooting opportunities are maximized.

Click on the bear above to visit our gallery of images from 2012, 
or you can see some of my favorite images from past trips (some from our traditional photo safaris mixed
in with some from custom "family" trips we've put together to the same location):

Mother Brown Bear & Cub: NWF Photo Contest Winner

As the old saying goes, “f/8 and be there.” That can be just as true of wildlife photography. Even after 12 years of photographing Alaskan Coastal Brown bears every summer, I am surprised with new opportunities each time. This photo of a sow (mother bear) playing “hide and seek” with her cub just won 1st place in the Professional Mammals (I think that means that the photographer is a professional – not the animalsSmile) category of the National Wildlife Federation 2011 photo competition. I’m frankly really honored, as the other winning images are all amazing. A special shout out to fellow bear watchers and dedicated biologists Laura Romin and Larry Dalton, who took first place in the Amateur Baby Animals contest. The images are all showcased on the NWF website and in the November issue of their magazine. Read more »