A month or so ago, my family and I went to the Hogle Zoo. We had a great time checking out all the animals, taking some of my favorite pictures I’ve ever taken, and learning a bit more about zoo photography. This post is going to be about a few of the pictures that I took, a few notes about the animals, and some important things to know if you’re wanting to take some pictures at the Zoo!
Up first is the lions. If you’ve ever been to Hogle Zoo, the Lion exhibit is pretty close to the entrance. It’s fairly open, and the Lions seem to have enough room to roam around a bit. A pretty important thing to note is that there are several viewing angles. When we went the first viewing angle you couldn’t really see much about the lions. They were facing away so you just couldn’t get that money shot. However, as soon as you walked around to a different angle. BAM there was the lion. I was lucky enough to get there when the Lion had his head off the ground, giving me a pretty majestic shot of I do say so myself. This photo was shot through zoo glass, with one of the lenses that came in the kit with my T7i.
Up next we’ve got the elephants. Here too it’s important to know that there are multiple viewing angles, and there are a few different places that you can get some really great shots from. A lot of their area is shaded, so there is plenty of time to grab a great shot of them. You can usually miss a lot of the crowds if you wait for a few minutes as well. Lucky for us photographers, elephants aren’t super mobile animals so you’ll usually have a bit of time to get the shot.
I LOVED taking these photos! This big cat was sitting in her little home when we walked up, and there were a TON of people. My wife and I waited in the back for the crowd to move on, and I’m so glad we did! As soon as the crowd moved on this beautiful cat came out of her home and sat right where we could see her super well! On top of that, there was a super nice zoo employee who told us all about the snow leopard.
He told us a bit about the cats that live at Hogle Zoo, and he told us that it wasn’t until 1971 that anyone was able to capture the snow leopard on camera! The first pictures were captured in Pakistan, by National Geographic (go figure right). It’s pretty interesting just how hard it is to see these cats. National Geographic did an article on it here.
Hogle Zoo Photography
With that in mind, I did a little additional googling and came across this forum post. There were a few different interpretations, but one that I found the most interesting was the one near the bottom. Someone commented that commercial photography has a clear and defined meaning, which doesn’t include the selling of prints. I think it’s an interesting take, but I’m still unsure if that’s what it really means. A quick google does report that most posts call commercial photography taking pictures with the motive of selling something.
What are your thoughts? Is it okay to sell photos you took at a zoo privately? Or are they just for your personal enjoyment. Let me know in the comments below!
Also, check out this cat that was also at Hogle Zoo. No idea what type. But it’s adorable…
For more of my photos, check out the gallery pages!