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AnimalsPlantsNature

Your Home for APN Photography!

Welcome!





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AnimalsPlantsNature group is a home for all APN photographers on DeviantArt. Find great artwork, features, resources, and contests. Meet and engage fellow nature photographers.

Join today and share your art with us!
(what are you waiting for?)

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What We Do





:bulletblue: APN Photography Features: Each Wednesday, we will post an APN feature showcasing some of the amazing artwork that was recently submitted to the APN gallery. The name of the feature is "APN Adventures".

:bulletblue: Interviews: This interview series will post once or twice per month. We will be asking questions of some of DA's talented nature photographers to get their thoughts and opinions on what is it to be an APN photographer and how the subject became their photography passion.

:bulletblue: Contests: The group will be holding regular contests every month. The themes will vary and the prizes will be fantastic! The contest journal will go live the first Sunday of the month that is runs. Entries will generally be open for three weeks, giving you plenty of time to come up with an idea and execute it for a chance at victory!

:bulletblue: APN News: One of our main goals is to bring DeviantArt's APN news to the forefront along with news we find off DA. We'll create a profile widget with links to helpful tutorials, interesting articles, and handy tips to help you improve and stay engaged with this dynamic category. Have news you would like to contribute? Send us the link via note.

:bulletblue: And More! We're always thinking of new ways to unite the APN community so stay tuned for future ideas from the team. And of course, if you have an idea you'd like to see us implement, send the group a note so we can take a look!

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Welcome to May at AnimalsPlantsNature





:butterfly:

With 13 subcategories, Animals, Plants, & Nature is the second largest photography category on DeviantArt. To bring our members full coverage of this massive and beautiful corner of DA, our group will showcase the nature photography community with contests, feedback challenges, features, interviews, and tutorials EVERY MONTH!

Happy May!


Here is what you can expect to see from us this month:

:bulletblue: Interviews with deviants who represent this category with beautiful artwork
:bulletblue: Features to showcase some of the category's best deviations
:bulletblue: Tutorials to help you create your own photography


May: Intro and Feedback FrenzyWelcome to May at AnimalsPlantsNature!
Here is what you can expect to see from us this month:
Interviews with deviants who represent this category with beautiful artwork.
Features to showcase some of the category's best deviations.
Tutorials to help you create your own photography.Oh... And a Feedback Frenzy! More details on that below.We hope you're as excited for this as we are!
Participate in our Feedback Frenzy to Win Prizes!
We understand it can be difficult to get feedback on a website as large as DeviantArt! 
AnimalsPlantsNature group would like to help our nature photographers get some advice and so we're going to be offering this Feedback Frenzy event, now being shared with the awesome people over at PhotographyGuide too! And best news is... while the Feedback Frenzy offers real prizes, everyone receiving feedback is a winner :la:
H

Enter until May 26th!


Submission Guidelines




:bulletgreen: Deviants will be able to submit up to 3 pieces each week. Deviations will require 3 Yes votes to be accepted.

:bulletgreen: You may only submit photography that has been submitted to one of the APN photography categories. Deviations submitted to any other category except those listed below will be voted "No" by our gallery moderators:

Aquatic Life
Birds
Domesticated Animals
Flowers, Trees, & Plants
Fungi
Geology
Invertebrates
Landscapes
Other
Reptiles & Amphibians
Waterscapes
Weather and Sky
Wild Animals

:star: Not sure where to submit? Check out:

Where to Submit Your APN Photos!Greetings, everyone!
Anyone who has spent any amount of time browsing the Animals, Plants, & Nature (lovingly and commonly referred to as APN) photography category on DeviantArt knows there are quite a few subcategories of all different subjects! Some are very specific and some can easily overlap one another. You may even have a photo that fits in an APN subcategory but fits an entirely DIFFERENT photography category too! Remember, your photo may fit more than one category but you can only choose one! You have to decide what you think the best fit is based on the subject matter and your artistic intention.
This guide was created to hopefully shed some light on where you should be submitting your APN photographs (and therefore where you should be submitting to the AnimalsPlantsNature group!). Each subcategory below will include the name, commonly overlapping subcategories, the description for the gallery, and a couple examples. Let's dive in

:bulletgreen: Featured Folder: You may submit here but please be aware that we only accept the best quality work into this folder!

:bulletgreen: We have a corresponding gallery folder for each APN subcategory. Please submit your pieces to the same category you submitted to on DA! For example, a photograph submitted to the Waterscapes category should be submitted to our Waterscapes folder. We may vote "No" on your submission if it is not sorted correctly.

:bulletgreen: Quality standards: We are not going to be elitist about quality! Again, we understand the nature of the APN gallery and that it is a category with a frequently-wide range of skill levels. That being said, we may reject photographs that we feel have excessive issues such as heavy blurring or over emphasis on man-made objects in the photograph (outside of the Domesticated Animals category).

If your photo is rejected, you're welcome to ask us for a brief reason in the submission comments. :) Please respect the admin's decisions; however, if you disagree with the reasoning given, you are welcome to send us a note and JenFruzz will look into it.

:butterfly:


Resources






Creative Flower Photography w/o Macro EquipmentMany associate flower photography with macro equipment, including myself. However, there are many creative ways of photographing flowers without the use of specialist equipment. This tutorial will give you ideas of how you can use ordinary lenses that you already own to get stunning shots of even the smallest flowers! It's meant to give both beginner photographers encouragement as well as providing inspiration for more experienced photographers to try something new. I have divided the tutorial into three types of focal lengths, wide angle, normal, and telephoto and I'll show you some examples as well as a few guidelines to help you try these techniques on your own. This tutorial won't go into technical depth, but rather look at the visual and creative aspects of photography. Cameras of any quality will work, but cameras with interchangeable lenses such as DSLRs are to prefer.
Wide angle lenses
When I first tried out wide angle photography for flowers I was a bit skepti
The APN Guide: Shooting Flowers, Trees and PlantsSpring is a beautiful time of the year. You only need to step outside to see trees budding, plants basically growing in front of your eyes and flowers starting to bloom. Even when you're not a proficient photographer, you might have felt the urge to grab hold of a camera and snap a few quick pictures.
But what if  you want to take Flowers, Trees and Plants Photography a bit more seriously?
Here are some of the basics to get you started.
Know your camera.

Make sure you have a good-quality camera - I'm not talking thousand of dollars worth, a fancy DSLR and dozens of lenses. A compact camera is a good enough way to start - but make sure you know it's limitations and where it allows you to be creative. However, when you've really  gotten into the joy of it, it might be wise to invest in something worth-while.
Come prepared.
Flowers, trees and plants come in many different sizes and shapes. Before you start scanning the area, prepare yourself th

The APN Guide: How To Shoot Flowers Big or small, with many shapes, sizes, and colors. Flowers can be an amazingly diverse subject matter to shoot. You can find them just about anywhere. Around your neighborhood, at a local park, or your front yard. You can even visit a local plant nursery.  Because flowers are easy to access they are a great subject to practice learning how to set up composition in your photos.
Here are a few tips to help you get started.

Picking your flower

One of the most important parts of floral photography is picking your flower. You will want to think carefully about this question. Does the flower you choose have petals missing? Does it have little holes from a bug eating it?  Do you want to highlight these imperfections or are you looking for a more pristine flower to shoot?  If you are in a place with many different types of flowers, you might be a little overwhelmed at what to choose.  Think about what part of the flower you l
The APN Guide: Grounds in Landscape PhotographyWhat is the first thing you look at in a photograph of a landscape?
When you decide to pick up your camera as a hobby, you’ll soon learn that one of the key points to “getting it right” is to consider composition each time you press the shutter.
You probably know all about the rule of thirds.
It’s the most commonly used guide for photographers. Instead of situating your subject in the center of your frame, you divide your image into thirds – horizontally and vertically (a handy option on nearly all cameras these days). The interesting points in your photo can be found in the section where those lines intersect.

Examples of photographers optimizing the - horizontal - rule of thirds, including foregrounds.
This might be the point where a mountain peak touches upon the sky, or where the sun crests the ocean. Choosing these focal points in your

The APN Guide: Water in Photography
Why do we try to photograph water?
Water is, as everyone knows, the source of life. This is precisely why it has a fascinating effect to us since the beginning of time. In Religions (to the baptismal), essence (source of life), as well as in art (E.g. gargoyles) one could repeatedly see our fascination with water. Water encourages Farming, economy, and development; it is therefore the origin of sustained prosperity. There are also thousands of other reasons, why water attracts us, and why we feel comfortable while watching it. One of the biggest Reasons for this is probably the unique dynamic off liquids. The dynamic component is, what we are trying to photograph and what the following tutorial is about.
How Water is used in Photography:
When we take a closer look on water as a dynamic element, we see several conspicuous features. Rapidly moving water forms small droplets, which are then being moved in random t
The APN Guide: Interesting WaterscapesIt doesn't matter how often it happens to you, but there are probably occasions where you find yourself walking around outside and thinking:
"This would make an amazing photo!"
During the Summer on your days off, you may find yourself at the beach, on a deck or near a stream. When the mood strikes, you take out your camera. And that's when you realize that photographing animals, flowers or trees is very different from shooting a waterscape.
Moving Water
Water moves. It flows, crashes and trickles. A storm might be brewing, ebb could be changing into flood. Those circumstances will affect your photo. Fast shutter speeds freeze the action, while slower speeds create soft, nebulous effects.

Golden Hour by Vitaly-Sokol
To create these stunning waves, Will used a shutter speed of 1/1000 second - in this millisecond he has frozen the motion.  This allows you to see the individual motion and droplets.

The APN Guide: How To Shoot Aquatic LifeWith vibrant colors, dazzling textures, and many different shapes and sizes. Aquatic life can be some of the best subject matter to shoot, but also one of the most challenging. For this tutorial we will be sticking to shooting on land.
Here are some of the challenges of aquatic photography and how to overcome them.
Lighting / What settings should I use?
Most places you can shoot aquatic life are found indoors, such as pet stores and aquariums.  These places more times then not have no natural light and are very dimly lit.  The first thing to keep in mind while shooting is that the glass and water you will be shooting through will reduce the light even further.
To get the most out of your light source I find it best to use a wide open aperture such as f2 or f4. This will allow you to use a faster shutter speed and will blur out anything distracting in the background. Next you want to  have a shutter speed that is low enough to help with y
The APN GUIDE: Reptile and amphibian photographyReptiles and amphibians (or “herps”, for short) are a diverse and fascinating group of animals that provide many wonderful opportunities for photographers. Almost anywhere you go in the world, you have a chance of encountering some of these animals in the wild!
    
    
      
Taking photos of reptiles and amphibians has much in common with other forms of nature photography, with a few unique challenges of its own – the greatest of which is simply finding and approaching the animals in the first place. In this article I'm not going to talk about gear, settings, lighting or any of that technical stuff; I'm just going to talk about how to find the critters so you can take t

The APN Guide: Cats in the StreetsNot everyone is fortunate enough to have pet cats, but you can always still have a chance photographing stray cats around your neighborhood and city! Here are a few tips and tricks to get you started.
Finding cats:
In some countries there are many stray cats. In Israel- where I live and photograph stray cats- There are quite a lot of cats. If you don’t know where to find cats, it's best to take note of every cat you see day to day. For example, if you are walking to work, or to a bus stop, and see a cat, or a large amount of cats then you should remember where you saw these cats and return later. Though the cats may leave the place, stray cats usually stay in the same area. Remember, they might be under cars!
Getting cats to cooperate:
Street cats are very shy and hard to photograph, especially if they run away when you come near them! Here are a few tricks to get a perfect shot without scaring the cats away.
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The APN Guide: Working with Dogs and HorsesMost of the time working with dogs and horses as animal-models isn't quite as complicated as you may think - all you need is a little empathy and patience.
To make your start into pet photography easy here are a few tips for you.
Finding your first models
It's pretty easy to find people who are willing to let their dogs and horses be photographed by you - just ask some pet owners, either friends or try to use a local facebook group. The best thing would be to start with a friend's pet so you can concentrate on working with the animal and you and your friend will feel comfortable in this situation.
For the first few sessions I would recommend to work with well trained animals so you can focus on your image and the mood you want to create.

The Owner
Yes, we are talking about working with animals as models but the most important person during the photoshooting is the owner of the pet. If he or she feels uncomfortable the animal will feel

The APN Guide: Photographing Farm AnimalsWhen you think of domesticated animals, most thoughts tend to lean towards pets. But when we put "domesticated" into a different perspective, it's a much broader subject, including not just the traditional rabbits, dogs and cats, but also horses, cattle, pigs, sheep, and even llamas.
But how do you photograph these animals that are most commonly found around farms?

Where to start

Some areas are far more urban than they are rural. So depending on where you live, either put on your boots, climb on your bike or get in your car and find the closest pasture with some kind of livestock. These are most likely to be found in the countryside. In case you don't even know where to begin looking, some farms are available to visit; so there's also the option of getting on your computer and searching for nearby farms that allow you to pay a visit, and contact the farmer.
The APN Guide: How to photograph small animalsPhotographing your pet is fun to do and you create beautiful memories to hold on to. The benefit of domestic animals is that they are used to humans being around. Here are a few tips for how to make outstanding photographs of your precious pets. In this tutorial I will be focusing on smaller domestic animals such as: bunnies, hedgehogs, guinea pigs, mice and hamsters. Of course some tips will be useful for photographing larger pets as well, so do not hesitate to read this if you would like to photograph other domestic animals. 

#1 Take your time
Just like with very young children your pet does not understand what your intentions are. In general  you cannot tell them to look that way or pose like that. You will have to ''go with the flow'' and just see what your pet is up to. So be patient and monitor the behaviour of your pet. If you notice or feel it is not going to work: too bad, pack up your stuff and try again later. Do not push y

The APN Guide: How to Identify Birds Crow flying Hello and welcome! Since it is Bird Photography month at @AnimalsPlantsNature, we are presenting to you a new tutorial by Lunnika-Horo:

                                                                How to identify bird 
 Hi! I'm a young photographer-naturalist but I don't only take pictures of animals and birds - I know exactly what species I have photographed! Today I will share with you a self algorithm - the best ways to understand what bird species you meet =) (Smile) So let's get started!
Section 1: What you should do if you have heard a new bird so
The APN Guide: Photographing Different BirdsEvery time I step outside and cock my ears to listen, I am amazed by the number of different bird songs I hear around me. Plenty of birds are harder to hear than to see, but once you pay enough attention to the world outside you'll soon notice there are far more types of birds than most people think of.
Here's to taking a look at four of the prime subjects you'll come across as a starter wild bird photographer.
Wildfowl
Amongst wildfowl, we count birds such as ducks, geese and swans. They're relatively big, somewhat tame (especially in an area where feeding them isn't prohibited) and rather slow moving - giving you enough time to anticipate their intended path - whilst also being photogenic.
Get in a location that allows you to get close to the birds at water level. A day with calm weather is best, for their feathers won't be too ruffled, and the water will give better reflection. Make sure your chosen spot is sunlit, but not overly so that the lightin

The APN Guide: Setting Up for Bird PhotographySpring and Summer are the seasons of the year that offer a lot of color for your photography. Flowers and blooming, birds are singing... This is when you need to start paying attention as a bird's song often means the bird is near - hopefully near enough to photograph.
Photographing Animals
Anyone who's ever attempted to photograph animals can tell you, it's not as easy as it may look.
Animals don't actually realize you're trying to take a picture of them. Don't expect them to do what you want them to do. Make use of any opportunity that comes your way - it may be over in the blink of an eye, but you might just catch it if you're paying attention.
When you're dealing with wild animals, please respect their wild nature.
Don't approach them, don't look for physical contact, and don't feed them. Lives could be at stake.
Wild animals might spook easily, running away, or birds taking off in flight. Make sure you find a location where you can sit still with
APN Guide: What it takes to be a Zoo PhotographerThere are differenent places one can come across wild animals. The first being, of course, the wild. The second, zoos.
Though zoos are a controversial subject to some, I will not get into this discussion on their  importance when it comes down to education on wild animals and conservation efforts.
This APN Guide will focus on the opportunities zoos have  for photographers.
What does it take to be a Zoo Photographer?
Back in June, I had the privilege to interview eight awesome zoo photographers from DA's outstanding zoo photography community. Having picked their brains before, I would like to offer some insight and basic necessities based on their and my own experiences on what it takes to be a Zoo Photographer.
Get your hands on a decent camera.
You don't actually need a thousand-dollar worth camera. Of course, if you have the money, go for it. Most importantly though is to know your camera. A decent camera will allow you to choose you

The APN Guide: Without a Telephoto Lens

Good Day dear watchers of AnimalsPlantsNature group! Today we present to you a review by Lunnika-Horo called 
 "How to take photos of wild animals without telephoto lens?"

This is a review of several methods you can use to create amazing photos of wild animals if you do not have a telephoto lens for your camera. :) (Smile) Go on!

1. To gain trust on site (small animals)
This method can also be used with big animals but usually if you are taking the photo in a place where hunting is forbidden. And don't forget: a good photo doesn't have to be a strict portrait of an animal - you can take amazing shots by playing with silhouettes on landscapes or capturing the daily life of animals as well!
First rule: Be quiet. Don`t draw attention to yourself.
Second rule: Relax. It isn't necessary to greedily pee
The APN Guide: Photographing Wild AnimalsWhen thinking of going out to photograph wild animals, many of us are not able to just go out in our back yard to do so. This is one of many compromises that we who choose city dwelling must make. However, there are still opportunities for us to dive into this category of APN photography and these opportunities lie within the confines of zoos and animal sanctuaries.
Now if you want to find out what some of the "forces of evil in zoo photography" may be, go check out Mouselemur article here: APN Guide: What it takes to be a Zoo Photographer
Here are a few tips and tricks to use when going to your local zoo
First thing you need to do, is get to know your local zoo.
  You may or may not even want to bring your equipment with you on this first trip to your zoo. Your goal is to find special nooks and cr

The APN Guide: Weather and Sky  Adding a weather element, or sky into a photo can be a no brainer, or a severe challenge. As a primarily landscape oriented photographer, I can't do without either. They are the backbone of any good photo. They set the mood, emotion, and drama to any scene. I won't make this a tutorial in how to set up your camera or anything like that. Given that every scene will have its own set of rules to follow, and challenges to overcome. There is no hard fast rules when it comes to weather. Instead I would like to show a bit of what I look for, how I like to see a scene play out, and what to look for when you head outside. 
  Lets get this out of the way right now. I love clouds... I know that probably sounds pretty dumb, or silly even :o but I really can't look at a photo that does not have some pretty awesome clouds going on. I had a friend in Australia actually buy me a book about clouds cause he thought I was pretty obsessed. I don't care. You have to start looking at clouds
The APN Guide: Temperamental Weather and SkyEvery time you go outside to take a photo, the most important natural aspect you consider is  the natural light. This does not simply depend on the time of day you choose to photograph - the weather is the largest factor. It can be cloudy, sunny, foggy, rainy or stormy; each and every one of these weather conditions will influence the kind of sky - and often the light it allows to shine - on your subject.
But what if it you're focusing on weather and sky?
Whether you're shooting Flowers, Trees and Plants, Landscapes or Waterscapes, you'll have to angle your camera just right so as not to get a shot of the sky in. You'll often see sunbursts and clouds - let's say, good weather photos. However, we've all encountered those days when the weather just won't turn in your favor. Or does it?
Here's to taking a look at what you can do, as a photographer, with temperamental weather conditions and a moody sky.
Here Comes The Sun
The sun is, without a doubt,

The APN Guide: Macro vs. Invertebrate PhotographyWhen you take up your camera to start photographing, there's an incredibly large number of topics to choose from. It takes a special kind of person to truly appreciate the little things in life. And those "little things" aren't the ones you're probably thinking of, because I'm talking invertebrates.
That's right, the regular creepy crawlies.
The many-legged creatures that are - to some - the stuff of nightmares. To others - like Macro Photographers - they're beautiful and a favored subject.
But you don't need a Macro lens to capture these amazing, small animals on camera. In fact, there's a special category called Invertebrate Photography, allowing you to use your regular camera in your own way.
This begs the question though, what is the difference?
In this APN Guide, we'll be taking a look at what makes Macro Photography special, and Invertebrate Photography different.
Macro Photography
When you think of Macro Photography, its about


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:iconendag:
endag Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2018
Thank you very much for inviting me.
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:icontarquinius-superbus:
Tarquinius-Superbus Featured By Owner Apr 28, 2018  New Deviant
Hey there, thanks for inviting me
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SeptimusStuff Featured By Owner Apr 28, 2018  Hobbyist Photographer
Thank you very much for the invite! ^-^
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Missy-MooMoo Featured By Owner Apr 28, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you for inviting me into your group, much appreciated! :hug:
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Annimax Featured By Owner Apr 21, 2018  New Deviant Hobbyist General Artist
0000Huhu by Annimax  
Thankies for inviting me :D 
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Bissy-M Featured By Owner Apr 17, 2018  Hobbyist Photographer
Thanks for having me :) 
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Redsterfish Featured By Owner Apr 15, 2018  Professional General Artist
You invite to decline shtt  sshls never see you again :rage:
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Deepzekrom Featured By Owner Apr 14, 2018  Student Artist
Thanks a lot for the invitation, happy to be part of a great community like this one!
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Yami-Sofopue Featured By Owner Apr 8, 2018  Hobbyist Photographer
Thanks for the invitation, I feel honoured to be part of this group!
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Sparkle-Photography Featured By Owner Apr 5, 2018  Hobbyist Photographer
Thank you very much for accepting my request! :D :hug:
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