Avoid the Familiarity Trap

We’re blessed in Florida with wildlife we can easily photograph. Alligators are common, and many kinds of birds too.  But how many photos do you need of a Great Blue Heron, or an Alligator basking in the sun? If you live here for a while you may get jaded with our common animals.  So much so that you don’t even bother taking a photo of one when you see it.  “Familiarity breeds contempt” and it’s a real risk in photography – one you must not fall into!

I have plenty of Anhinga photos but I was still excited to make this recent one.

Wet wings and itchy back
Wet wings and itchy back – An Anhinga dries its wings and preens its back at Viera Wetlands

 This isn’t close enough for a “record” shot of the bird.  The Anhinga’s just one element of the composition.  But I like the light, the reflections, and how the bird’s pose echoes the tree’s shape.  If I had glanced at this and only seen the bird, I’d have missed the photo-op.  To be a better photographer, you have to really observe things you glance at all the time.  Watch for good light and backgrounds.  Keep an eye out for unusual behavior, poses, or patterns.  And of course pay attention to new life birds or rare animals to help keep things interesting.  Avoid the familiarity trap.

I’ve put a few other examples in this set on Flickr.

Thanks for stopping by and reading my blog. Now – go make some photos!
©2014, Ed Rosack. All rights reserved.

3 thoughts on “Avoid the Familiarity Trap

    1. Thanks, Jim. I believe that’s true almost everywhere. We all get used to things where we live. Maybe that’s one reason why travel is so enjoyable.

      1. You have a point there Ed. Recently I talked to a couple that moved from Florida to another state. They said the thing they missed the most about Florida was the birds.

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