TIP 1: RESEARCH/PLAN BEFORE SHOOT / by Akhil Menon

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It is imperative to do some research before you make a trip to a new place or plan to shoot a new subject. This applies to all types of photography -wildlife, landscape, portrait, fashion or even wedding photography. It is always good to review similar images on google to draw inspiration or to try something not done before your shoot.  This research could be anything from learning subject behavior and interests, best shooting vantage points, the time of day to shoot, position of the sun at different time of the day etc.  A lot of photogs have dream frames in their head before they attempt a shoot. Proper research and plan can go a long way to getting that perfect shot.

In my recent trip to Papua New Guinea, we had the challenge of shooting the Raggiana Bird of Paradise. These birds are canopy birds meaning they are always perched high up in the trees and they are only active for a certain time in the morning and afternoons. The only way to shoot them is upwards through thick trees. The first day was a total disaster for me in terms of images as I was unprepared. Shooting through trees and the birds erratic movement was difficult to follow. But on observing the birds behavior, reviewing my bad images from first day, moving around the forest floor and spotting good vantage points of the birds perch helped me nail this amazing shot on the second day. Being able to have a good presence of mind and thoughtful nature always helps with photography