Useful tips for zoo photography
Recently, I had an opportunity to visit the zoo in Jamshedpur to take a few shots of the animals. Often, a zoo is deemed as good location to practice photography as they present great variety of subjects and compositions. At the same time, zoo photography also presents some challenges, but by following a few tips, one can take reasonable shots of animals.
It is always good if you have a long zoom lens, a macro lens and a tripod for great zoo photography. However, if you cannot afford these, at least carry a camera hood with you.
First, look for the point of interest in the animal like a funny pose or expression or surroundings for compositional elements. Secondly, tightly crop the animal’s face or body to eliminate distracting elements. Thirdly, get down low at their level for creating a sense of closeness and intimacy with your subjects and giving your shots some punch. Fourthly, if the animal is close, focus on the eyes of the subject and give it a prominent position in your shot by switching to the portrait mode - a mode that uses a wide aperture and narrow your depth of field.
Since zoo animals are often on the move, consider shooting with a fast shutter speed. Moreover, patience is necessary to wait for the animal for the right pose or expression.