|Hugo the Hedgehog, in the Autumn leaves|
Last week I saw that the trees not he edge of our picnic area had created a nice covering of fallen autumn leaves. A few years a go now I took a photo of a hedgehog in the yellow leaves, nicely back lit, and it went on to be one of my better known images. Having not taken any photographs for a while, I thought I would spend a bit of time int he leaves again... and it just so happens we have a willing hedgehog model in Hugo, hand reared by Tom earlier this year!
You will probably be bored of hedgehogs and leaves by the end of this post, the photos are quite similar, but I was pleased with what I got and wanted to share a few. The above two are possibly my favourites.
The top one is kind of what I had in mind when I started. Head on, looking straight at the camera, and with the golden colours completely surrounding him. The one above a bit more wide frame... those that know me, or know my photography, know that I like space in my pictures. Close crops are great, and I do my fair share of those too, but I don't know why, I just like space around the animals to allow them to breathe within the frame.
I had two attempts at this. The first day when I first saw the light on the leaves, we had twenty minutes before Tom had to rush off to do a talk. The light was great and I got some nice photos, but the leaves where not quite how I wanted them for the photo I had in mind.
Still got some nice ones though, and this one above is one of my favourites from those twenty minutes. I tried to do some backlit ones too, but the angle was just not quite right and I didn't get anything I was happy with.
I got a few strange looks from some of the visitors as we were open to the public, but it mean't they were able to get a close look at one of our hedgehogs enjoying himself in the leaf litter.
This one a bit of a different feel with a bit of grass coming through the leaves.
The second day I spent the morning looking around the Centre, getting a few strange looks from the keepers as I stood in several spots just looking into thin air... actually not too many strange looks, they are used to this sort of thing now :-)
I was looking for a better place to get the background I wanted... colour! Once I found it, I moved the leaves from the picnic area and created the set. The light was not as strong, and went completely after a few minutes hence why the leaves look less golden yellow and more autumnal... but I quite like that.
Izzy helped me this morning, and again we only had about twenty minutes... but Hugo was on form and gave me a few good goes.
We just put him in the leaves and let him do his thing! He loved it, foraging around and walking through them all.
I took several photos. Some closer up, some wider for a bit of variety.
But for each one I tried to fill the frame with the colour of the leaves. That was the intention of the whole shoot.
Lots of nice photos, I was pleased with what I got.
Thanks for looking :-)