Spring gobbler hunts are an incredible photo opportunity that most hunters can take advantage of, thanks to the incredible pixel-snatching ability of today’s cell phones. Almost every hunter has in his or her mind’s eye some image that they wish they had captured on film but managed to miss. Today, carrying a camera around is commonplace; you can take great stills and videos with little effort. I just returned from a five-day turkey hunt in South Dakota and humbly share some of my best “captures.” Hopefully, they’ll remind you to save those special memories in digital form.
Rule number one is to get close. Bring the camera close to capture the things that are most important, namely the face of the hunter and that beautiful bird. Shoot your pix in the shadows if possible. Notice that the sun is just touching the top of the hunter’s cap. Use a fill flash to eliminate shadows.
Look for a great photo location. The log that these happy hunters are sitting on allowed their turkeys to be displayed in all their natural glory. Get your gun and bow in the picture, yet always be sure to unload before snapping images. Lighten up. Usually getting happy hunters to smile is not a problem, but a natural smile can’t be faked. Kim Cahalan and Bob Swanson, at right, took these two gobblers on a single morning hunt and were ecstatic about the adventure, as you can see.
Catch the action. Keep your phone or camera handy so you can bring back those exciting and challenging times. It’s okay to stage them. Here, at left, I asked my buddy to allow me to cross the stream first so that I could take the picture. Finally, Since many turkey hunters use a vest, why not dedicate one zippered pocket for your cell phone or camera? This way, you’ll always know where your camera will be and the zippered pocket will keep it from getting lost. You won’t always bring home a longbeard this season, yet you can be assured of great pictures to share regardless of the weather or your luck.
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