July: Costa Rica 1

July 28, 2019. So,,, I’m sitting in Corner Coffeehouse in West Monroe, La., drinking black Costa Rican coffee and reveling in re-visiting a true highlight of my year. And…. since I arrived in Costa Rica in late July and left in early August, I get to do TWO posts about it! Wohoo!

I went to the Osa Peninsula of Costa Rican with a handful of other photographers for a wildlife photography workshop organized by Out of Chicago™. And although I have long done a lot of creation photography… wild monkeys in their natural habitat? Not so much.

Howler Monkey (Alouatta palliata)

I learned a lot, among other things to get over my scorn for certain technological aids! Moving wild animals in low-light conditions high in the shade of trees make things like auto-focus and “burst” (multi-frame) shooting essential.

Using those technological aids, the photographer still must keep the center of focus on the animal’s eyes, keep moving to follow the creature, keep hot spots and distracting elements out of the background, and not trip over a vine, fall into a ditch, etc., etc. Oh, and keep an eye on the look out for one of Costa Rica’s many snakes, crocs, huge spiders, etc., etc.

It’s extremely low percentage shooting. No surprise there. And that’s why I’m really proud of this beautiful, contemplative howler monkey. It’s my first modestly successful shot and I made it late afternoon of our first full day there, several hundred frames into the experience.

Checking the metadata digital cameras provide, I see that the monkey posed for me like this for about 30 seconds, but only one frame has this great expression. Thank you, Sir Howler.

#YearInReview #BestOf2019

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