Being a Nature Photographer - Be Respectful

Be Respectful

Image by Robert Chaplin.

Sometimes we photographers focus on the image we are trying to create and we forget about others.  The others can be our families, tourists, workshop participants, other photographers, or even the wildlife.  

With all of the negative press we photographers get we are starting in the hole already and you would be amazed at how a little courtesy goes a long way.

One day I was out at the Anhinga Trail looking to take some bird photos and came across and individual who had a nice 500mm lens on a gimbal head and he was all set up at a popular point.  This point has enough room for two, maybe three people to stand and observe the scene/wildlife.  He was plopped right in the middle with a large bag on his left and another camera on his right.  He was taking up the entire area.  I attempted to make general conversation but was completely ignored.   Worse than that are the tourists who had come to enjoy the park would stand way back and try to peer from a distance for a glimpse of the wildlife.  

Being a photographer and on the board of directors of a photography club I have had the pleasure of knowing many photographers and I can tell you that this guy is NOT the norm.  But many of those tourists will translate their experience to other photographers.  

We should not just be thoughtful and kind to other folks because we are ambassadors to the natural world...  We should do it because it is the right thing to do!