Double Your Pleasure

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17

Double
Your Pleasure

MARQSCOUT

Sponsored by: The Archery Hall of Fame

By: M.R. James

Carrying a camera on my bowhunting adventures is almost as important as toting extra broadheads and my skinning knife. Here’s why you shouldn’t leave home without one!

           I KILLED MY FIRST WHITETAIL BUCK on the final
day of the 1963 Indiana archery season. Hunting alone on rugged, reclaimed, and
overgrown strip mine land located between the small Hoosier communities of Lynnville
and Spurgeon, I stumbled onto a rutting buck and his lady love more by blind
luck than stalking skill. The fact is he was so focused on his winsome
girlfriend, he let me ease within 20 yards, overcome the shakes all greenhorn
deer hunters know, and shoot him though the lungs.

          Though I didn’t know it at the time, that milestone moment from 55 years ago would forever change my life. The magazine article I later wrote about the unforgettable experience launched my career as an outdoor writer, thanks to Roy Hoff and his Archery Magazine. It also educated me, because when Roy asked for a field photo of me and my buck to include with my published feature, I had to admit I only had a couple and only one picture that showed me with the buck. To make a bad situation worse, that hastily posed black and white image was pretty poor quality.

            Live and learn!

            By the end of the 2018-19 deer season in January, I’ll
have taken a total of between 12,000-13,000 photographs during the past year. When
I recently bought a new laptop, the transferred photo files amounted to well
over 100,000 photos. And that doesn’t count the tens of thousands of
photographic prints, negatives, and color slides stored in a fireproof file and
dozens of huge boxes in a home storage area.

            SO, AM I SUGGESTING YOU DO THE SAME? No way! I need to
have a large photo inventory because I have to illustrate my books, magazine
features, and columns. The more photos I can offer to an editor, the better. It’s
part of what I do to make a living. But what I am strongly suggesting is that you
carry a camera with you on all your
hunting excursions, whether in some nearby Back 40 treestand or that bucket
list bowhunt in a Rocky Mountain elk camp or on a fly-in moose and bear
adventure in wild Alaska or some roadless northern Canada wilderness.

            While I-Phone cameras will do the job, are better than
nothing, and may produce excellent results, I still prefer cameras. To me and
my generation, cameras are for taking pictures and phones for calling others.
Besides, modern cams are increasingly amazing tools. Honestly, you don’t need
to know much about photography to take professional quality photographs. And
even better, they’re affordable, easy-to-use, no-fuss recording devices that preserve
moments in time you want for yourself, your family, friends, and hunting
buddies.

            Although I own and use SLR cameras with a variety of
lenses from wide angle to telephoto and several in between for my wildlife
photography, I prefer the smaller cameras with built-in zooms and even the
capability to shoot video footage. My current “hunting cameras” are a Nikon
Coolpix and a Canon Power Shot. Add a 64GB photo disk and I’m ready to take
several thousand photos by simply recharging the camera’s battery between
hunts.

            My computer allows me to review and edit photos, then
send them to my office printer if I need a photo. Most often I simply attach
the edited photos to my manuscript package and send everything to an editor
once I’ve completed my work. In return, I receive a check that helps pay the
bills. However, since few of my readers will routinely write books or magazine
articles, they frequently share online photos and emails with buddies and
hunting websites.

            Whether you elect to use a standard camera or your
phone’s camera, the message I have is to take pictures. Lots of pictures.
Regardless of their ultimate use, you’ll have them on file to complement your
memory of a specific hunt, a camp, a buddy or guide, the scenery, and – with
luck — your trophy game animal.

            In past columns I’ve offered solid step-by-step advice on
how to get the best possible hunting photos. Space limitations preclude
repeating such advice here. The idea is to convince you to augment your
personal recollections with photographic proof of an adventure. Telling others
about your hunt is a given, and certainly words inspire interested listeners;
however, showing pictures gives others concrete images and adds meat to the
bones of your story.

            Speaking generally, I repeat the suggestion to take
plenty of pictures and I urge taking more than you believe is necessary – than
snap a few more. Get close to your trophy when possible and fill the frame with
the subject (cropping the photos as you take them, rather than afterwards). Here
are a few more tips:

*
Avoid shooting down at subjects; take a knee and get on the same level if you
can.

*Be
aware of the background. Use a natural setting, not the back of a pickup truck
or inside some garage. Grass, shrubs, and trees are ideal; concrete, vehicles,
and buildings are not the natural habitat of wildlife.

*Use
a fill-flash or ask hunters to raise cap bills and hat brims to eliminate
shadows cast by these sun-blockers. Never shoot into direct sunlight. Shady
areas are better than harsh sunlight.

*Move
the animal’s head slightly with each photo snapped. This helps find the best,
most impressive view of horns or antlers. When possible take a few photos of
sky-lined headgear; avoid cluttered background which can detract from the
subject.

*Take
time to clean blood from the nose and mouth of animals. Make sure there are no
lolling tongues or gaping, bloody wounds visible in at least some of the
photos. Such sights spoil good field photos and may offend non-hunters who see
the pictures.

A
final thought: Practice indeed makes perfect. So, start shooting. Someday you
or your family will be glad you did. #

Double Your Pleasure

December 2018 MRJ Column

Double
Your Pleasure

Carrying a camera on my bowhunting
adventures is almost as important as toting extra broadheads and my skinning
knife. Here’s why you shouldn’t leave home without one!

           I KILLED MY FIRST WHITETAIL BUCK on the final
day of the 1963 Indiana archery season. Hunting alone on rugged, reclaimed, and
overgrown strip mine land located between the small Hoosier communities of Lynnville
and Spurgeon, I stumbled onto a rutting buck and his lady love more by blind
luck than stalking skill. The fact is he was so focused on his winsome
girlfriend, he let me ease within 20 yards, overcome the shakes all greenhorn
deer hunters know, and shoot him though the lungs.

          Though I didn’t know it at the time, that
milestone moment from 55 years ago would forever
change
my life. The magazine article I later wrote about the unforgettable experience
launched my career as an outdoor writer, thanks to Roy Hoff and his Archery Magazine. It also educated me,
because when Roy asked for a field photo of me and my buck to include with my published
feature, I had to admit I only had a couple and only one picture that showed me
with the buck. To make a bad situation worse, that hastily posed black and
white image was pretty poor quality.

            Live and learn!

            By the end of the 2018-19 deer season in January, I’ll
have taken a total of between 12,000-13,000 photographs during the past year. When
I recently bought a new laptop, the transferred photo files amounted to well
over 100,000 photos. And that doesn’t count the tens of thousands of
photographic prints, negatives, and color slides stored in a fireproof file and
dozens of huge boxes in a home storage area.

            SO, AM I SUGGESTING YOU DO THE SAME? No way! I need to
have a large photo inventory because I have to illustrate my books, magazine
features, and columns. The more photos I can offer to an editor, the better. It’s
part of what I do to make a living. But what I am strongly suggesting is that you
carry a camera with you on all your
hunting excursions, whether in some nearby Back 40 treestand or that bucket
list bowhunt in a Rocky Mountain elk camp or on a fly-in moose and bear
adventure in wild Alaska or some roadless northern Canada wilderness.

            While I-Phone cameras will do the job, are better than
nothing, and may produce excellent results, I still prefer cameras. To me and
my generation, cameras are for taking pictures and phones for calling others.
Besides, modern cams are increasingly amazing tools. Honestly, you don’t need
to know much about photography to take professional quality photographs. And
even better, they’re affordable, easy-to-use, no-fuss recording devices that preserve
moments in time you want for yourself, your family, friends, and hunting
buddies.

            Although I own and use SLR cameras with a variety of
lenses from wide angle to telephoto and several in between for my wildlife
photography, I prefer the smaller cameras with built-in zooms and even the
capability to shoot video footage. My current “hunting cameras” are a Nikon
Coolpix and a Canon Power Shot. Add a 64GB photo disk and I’m ready to take
several thousand photos by simply recharging the camera’s battery between
hunts.

            My computer allows me to review and edit photos, then
send them to my office printer if I need a photo. Most often I simply attach
the edited photos to my manuscript package and send everything to an editor
once I’ve completed my work. In return, I receive a check that helps pay the
bills. However, since few of my readers will routinely write books or magazine
articles, they frequently share online photos and emails with buddies and
hunting websites.

            Whether you elect to use a standard camera or your
phone’s camera, the message I have is to take pictures. Lots of pictures.
Regardless of their ultimate use, you’ll have them on file to complement your
memory of a specific hunt, a camp, a buddy or guide, the scenery, and – with
luck — your trophy game animal.

            In past columns I’ve offered solid step-by-step advice on
how to get the best possible hunting photos. Space limitations preclude
repeating such advice here. The idea is to convince you to augment your
personal recollections with photographic proof of an adventure. Telling others
about your hunt is a given, and certainly words inspire interested listeners;
however, showing pictures gives others concrete images and adds meat to the
bones of your story.

            Speaking generally, I repeat the suggestion to take
plenty of pictures and I urge taking more than you believe is necessary – than
snap a few more. Get close to your trophy when possible and fill the frame with
the subject (cropping the photos as you take them, rather than afterwards). Here
are a few more tips:

*
Avoid shooting down at subjects; take a knee and get on the same level if you
can.

*Be
aware of the background. Use a natural setting, not the back of a pickup truck
or inside some garage. Grass, shrubs, and trees are ideal; concrete, vehicles,
and buildings are not the natural habitat of wildlife.

*Use
a fill-flash or ask hunters to raise cap bills and hat brims to eliminate
shadows cast by these sun-blockers. Never shoot into direct sunlight. Shady
areas are better than harsh sunlight.

*Move
the animal’s head slightly with each photo snapped. This helps find the best,
most impressive view of horns or antlers. When possible take a few photos of
sky-lined headgear; avoid cluttered background which can detract from the
subject.

*Take
time to clean blood from the nose and mouth of animals. Make sure there are no
lolling tongues or gaping, bloody wounds visible in at least some of the
photos. Such sights spoil good field photos and may offend non-hunters who see
the pictures.

A
final thought: Practice indeed makes perfect. So, start shooting. Someday you
or your family will be glad you did. #

Carrying a camera on my bowhunting
adventures is almost as important as toting extra broadheads and my skinning
knife. Here’s why you shouldn’t leave home without one!

           I KILLED MY FIRST WHITETAIL BUCK on the final
day of the 1963 Indiana archery season. Hunting alone on rugged, reclaimed, and
overgrown strip mine land located between the small Hoosier communities of Lynnville
and Spurgeon, I stumbled onto a rutting buck and his lady love more by blind
luck than stalking skill. The fact is he was so focused on his winsome
girlfriend, he let me ease within 20 yards, overcome the shakes all greenhorn
deer hunters know, and shoot him though the lungs.

          Though I didn’t know it at the time, that
milestone moment from 55 years ago would forever
change
my life. The magazine article I later wrote about the unforgettable experience
launched my career as an outdoor writer, thanks to Roy Hoff and his Archery Magazine. It also educated me,
because when Roy asked for a field photo of me and my buck to include with my published
feature, I had to admit I only had a couple and only one picture that showed me
with the buck. To make a bad situation worse, that hastily posed black and
white image was pretty poor quality.

            Live and learn!

            By the end of the 2018-19 deer season in January, I’ll
have taken a total of between 12,000-13,000 photographs during the past year. When
I recently bought a new laptop, the transferred photo files amounted to well
over 100,000 photos. And that doesn’t count the tens of thousands of
photographic prints, negatives, and color slides stored in a fireproof file and
dozens of huge boxes in a home storage area.

            SO, AM I SUGGESTING YOU DO THE SAME? No way! I need to
have a large photo inventory because I have to illustrate my books, magazine
features, and columns. The more photos I can offer to an editor, the better. It’s
part of what I do to make a living. But what I am strongly suggesting is that you
carry a camera with you on all your
hunting excursions, whether in some nearby Back 40 treestand or that bucket
list bowhunt in a Rocky Mountain elk camp or on a fly-in moose and bear
adventure in wild Alaska or some roadless northern Canada wilderness.

            While I-Phone cameras will do the job, are better than
nothing, and may produce excellent results, I still prefer cameras. To me and
my generation, cameras are for taking pictures and phones for calling others.
Besides, modern cams are increasingly amazing tools. Honestly, you don’t need
to know much about photography to take professional quality photographs. And
even better, they’re affordable, easy-to-use, no-fuss recording devices that preserve
moments in time you want for yourself, your family, friends, and hunting
buddies.

            Although I own and use SLR cameras with a variety of
lenses from wide angle to telephoto and several in between for my wildlife
photography, I prefer the smaller cameras with built-in zooms and even the
capability to shoot video footage. My current “hunting cameras” are a Nikon
Coolpix and a Canon Power Shot. Add a 64GB photo disk and I’m ready to take
several thousand photos by simply recharging the camera’s battery between
hunts.

            My computer allows me to review and edit photos, then
send them to my office printer if I need a photo. Most often I simply attach
the edited photos to my manuscript package and send everything to an editor
once I’ve completed my work. In return, I receive a check that helps pay the
bills. However, since few of my readers will routinely write books or magazine
articles, they frequently share online photos and emails with buddies and
hunting websites.

            Whether you elect to use a standard camera or your
phone’s camera, the message I have is to take pictures. Lots of pictures.
Regardless of their ultimate use, you’ll have them on file to complement your
memory of a specific hunt, a camp, a buddy or guide, the scenery, and – with
luck — your trophy game animal.

            In past columns I’ve offered solid step-by-step advice on
how to get the best possible hunting photos. Space limitations preclude
repeating such advice here. The idea is to convince you to augment your
personal recollections with photographic proof of an adventure. Telling others
about your hunt is a given, and certainly words inspire interested listeners;
however, showing pictures gives others concrete images and adds meat to the
bones of your story.

            Speaking generally, I repeat the suggestion to take
plenty of pictures and I urge taking more than you believe is necessary – than
snap a few more. Get close to your trophy when possible and fill the frame with
the subject (cropping the photos as you take them, rather than afterwards). Here
are a few more tips:

*
Avoid shooting down at subjects; take a knee and get on the same level if you
can.

*Be
aware of the background. Use a natural setting, not the back of a pickup truck
or inside some garage. Grass, shrubs, and trees are ideal; concrete, vehicles,
and buildings are not the natural habitat of wildlife.

*Use
a fill-flash or ask hunters to raise cap bills and hat brims to eliminate
shadows cast by these sun-blockers. Never shoot into direct sunlight. Shady
areas are better than harsh sunlight.

*Move
the animal’s head slightly with each photo snapped. This helps find the best,
most impressive view of horns or antlers. When possible take a few photos of
sky-lined headgear; avoid cluttered background which can detract from the
subject.

*Take
time to clean blood from the nose and mouth of animals. Make sure there are no
lolling tongues or gaping, bloody wounds visible in at least some of the
photos. Such sights spoil good field photos and may offend non-hunters who see
the pictures.

A
final thought: Practice indeed makes perfect. So, start shooting. Someday you
or your family will be glad you did. #

Read more: bowhunting.net