Saturday, December 31, 2011

March 21-23 / South Florida Wildlife Photo Adventure

Lead by Marvin Bouknight and Eric Horan. This will be the second photo adventure we have done in this same area of Florida and I suspect will do more in the future. It is that good! :) To see a gallery of images from our last two trips to south Florida please visit Eric's Facebook page "Lowcountry Wildlife Photo Safaris".

We will arrive Wednesday evening the 21st, get acquainted see a short program on wildlife photography, field technique and the flora & fauna of South Florida, and have dinner, not necessarily in that order. In the morning we will grab a pre-dawn continental breakfast and head for "Devils Garden Bird Park" where we will explore and photograph from ATV's all day with a mid-day lunch in the field. Back at the hotel we'll have dinner and possibly a group critique of images from the day. Friday early after another pre-dawn breakfast we'll head by carpool, for "Dinner Island Game Preserve" where we will explore the 640 square mile preserve by auto and on foot. We will officially be done by mid-day and you can head home or in a direction of your choice, including staying in the park for the afternoon. Or Marvin & I will take all those interested, with us to "Viera Wetlands" for the afternoon (northeastern direction) for more explorations after grabbing lunch on the road. We will plan on being there around 2:30pm so we'll have time to view the afternoon's wildlife activity.

Please contact Marvin to make your reservation and pay a deposit.  You can email Eric or call him @ 843-524-3037.  More information on both of us can be found at our websites… and For a complete species list of the possible sightings @ these three locations click here.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Dec 2011 "Photo of the Month"

Shrimp Boat at Sunrise / Hunting Island      
Photo of the Month / Eric Horan
December/ 2011 Lowcountry Calendar

There was a light drizzle falling on my morning photo plans to visit Hunting Island.  Often rainfall provides me an excuse to sleep in, but clearing skies were on the forecast.
Everything about Hunting Island that morning was dark and ominous. The sand was heavy with rain, a ceiling of black clouds filled the sky and appeared to hang over the working shrimp boat along the horizon. I was taken by the sole shrimp boat dragging his nets in defiance of the threatening skies – much as the SC shrimp industry is doing, for their fair share in the marketplace against a flood of competition - now global.  I raced down the beach to frame the boat with the storm clouds to create balance and hopefully, a story with the composition.

Photo Tip: Matching lighting conditions with available subject.  The difference between good photography and excellent often leads to how the photographer used light in the finished capture. Even when light conditions are not favorable, there is usually something interesting to grab our attention. Overcast skies are useful for shooting portraits and direct light provides options for different effects whether it’s front, side or backlit. In this image I was working with not much available light at sunrise but I also took advantage of the sky drama and bright horizon behind my subject to create this silhouette. Getting outside in nearly any weather condition, to explore the natural world is an outdoor adventure and can pay dividends.

For more information about Eric Horan Photography, Inc., Lowcountry Wildlife Photo Safaris or to order your 2012 Lowcountry Calendar visit

Photo Adventure- South Florida w/ Marvin Bouknight & Eric Horan

Here are a few of my favorite images from our 2 day workshop at The Devils Garden Bird Park and Circle B Bar Ranch. These images will help convey the  immense diversity of bird life in these areas. From the Crested Cara Cara to the Meadow Lark this photo adventure offers opportunities to see and photograph images of 60 species of birds or more in just a couple of very focused days of exploring. After a few trips to the area Marvin & I are now very familiar with the habitat and wildlife movements and each trip adds to that knowledge base. This allows our workshop attendees to just come along, enjoy the ride and have a unique outdoor adventure that won't soon be forgotten.
 First wading bird we saw "Great White Heron" (not an Egret : )
 The "Swallow-tailed Kite" - several birds flew right overhead
 The endangered "Snail Kite" are a species we were especially interested in observing (here with snail)
 "Red-Tailed Hawk" (flew overhead as we were shooting Sandhill Crane)
 "Barred Owl" I scared him from his perch driving the ATV, then he stayed here for several minutes
"Red-Shouldered Hawk" busy feasting when we first spotted him, let us get close (full frame 500mm)
"Burrowing Owl" @ Devils Garden Bird Park (ATV & approached on foot)
 Sandhill Crane (next four shots)

We watched three on the ground feeding for a few minutes, then several more birds landed, headed right toward the cameras
 "White Ibis" (environmental portrait - I loved the perch)

Plenty of large gators
 "Northern Shrike" (shot from the vehicle)
 "Eastern Meadowlark" (ATV & approach on foot)
 "Belted Kingfisher" not an easy bird to get close to but we sat near one of his favorite perches in ATV
 "Anhinga" drying wings @ Circle B-Bar Ranch
 "Black-bellied Whistling Duck" because of hard 45degree, rather contrasty light I choose to make this single image HDR combining (3) exposures
"Little Blue Heron"
 "Cattle Egret" and white-faced steer
Big Bull @ Devils Garden

All three scenics @ Circle B-Bar Ranch - Lakeland