WEEK 29: Up Close With Urban Nature and Wildlife

Eric just got us to step outdoors and I feel it’s a great time to do so if your local stay at home orders permit you to do so.

Some of you may remember the 2016 Halloween challenge where I introduced the month long Photo Challenge with a video. At the time it was suiting as the end result, hyperlapse was an animated video of your images.

With vlogging getting more and more popular, I decided to give it a try. It’s full improv, I just wanted to let my creative side flow within the Urban Nature setting of my Photo Challenge. I admit it’s a little long being the first and that the following ones will be shorter 🙂

FILMED WITH THE DJI OSMO ACTION CAMERA

As some of you know, I’m no fan of city living and I get to experience city life enough to really know I don’t like it. However urban nature is often more abundant than we tend to realize. In fact urban settings can be rich in biodiversity from plant life to insects and even mammals like the Red Fox, bobcats and elk. Larger predators such as the mountain lion and bears are more common than we’re made aware of in North American Urbanized Areas.

This week I want to get close up and personal with nature in an open theme. It doesn’t have to be macro or close-up photography, I want you to fill the frame up with nature whether you’re using a wide-angle lens, a macro lens or a high power telephoto lens.

Tempus Aura Studio - Eugenie Robitaille - Steve Troletti Photography: MAMMALS / MAMMIFÈRES &emdash; Portrait of a Juvenile Red Fox / Portrait de renard roux juvénile

RED FOX PORTRAIT – NIKON FX WITH NIKKOR 300mm f/2.8

Nature, to me, is simply wonderful. The Red Fox fascinates me as it is capable of living in cold environments and feeds its family in winter as the female gives birth late January in a den.

Tempus Aura Studio - Eugenie Robitaille - Steve Troletti Photography: HERONS, EGRETS, BITTERNS / HÉRONS, AIGRETTES et BUTORS (Ardeidae) &emdash; Portrait of a Tricolored heron

TRICOLORED HERON – NIKON FX WITH NIKKOR 400mm f/2.8

The Tricolored heron fascinates me as well. It seems to adapt to varying environments better than other herons and egrets. I’ve experienced them mainly from the Low Country Coastal South Carolina all the way down to the everglades. They’re always represented in large numbers and a pleasure to observe. They’re just so much less grumpy than the GBH.

Tempus Aura Studio - Eugenie Robitaille - Steve Troletti Photography: HAWKS and EAGLES / ÉPERVIERS, BUSES ET AIGLES (Accipitridae) &emdash; Portrait of a Red-shouldered hawk

RED SHOULDERED HAWK – NIKON D810 WITH 300MM f/2.8 + TC1.4x

The Red-shouldered hawk is a very capable bird of prey. I find it very well adapted to a wide variety of environments and a successful predator. In Coastal Georgia you tend to find them in almost every little urban park.

Tempus Aura Studio - Eugenie Robitaille - Steve Troletti Photography: PICTURE OF THE DAY / PHOTO DU JOUR &emdash; Mute Swan / Cygne tuberculé
MUTE SWAN – NIKON D300s WITH 300mm f/4

The Mute Swan is just as graceful as a large bird can be. After being exposed to them in Europe for so long, I was happily surprised to find them in Coastal Georgia. In fact a friend of mine who camped in a local campground literally had them in her backyard.

Tempus Aura Studio - Eugenie Robitaille - Steve Troletti Photography: PICTURE OF THE DAY / PHOTO DU JOUR &emdash; Swiss Mushrooms / Champignons Suisse
MUSHROOMS – NIKON D3s WITH MICRO NIKKOR 200mm

Mushrooms come in so many sizes shapes and colors. Just when you think you’ve seen it all, you find a new mushroom that just redefines fungus. As I was setting up to take this picture, a small rodent passed by and took off with a mouthful of my mushroom 🙂

Tempus Aura Studio - Eugenie Robitaille - Steve Troletti Photography: PICTURE OF THE DAY / PHOTO DU JOUR &emdash; Cerf de Virginie - White-tailed deer 3
WHITE-TAILED DEER – NIKON D810 WITH 300mm f/4

The white-tailed deer is always a pleasant encounter, especially when you encounter a fawn. This little boy was curious and spent a great deal of time observing me.

Tempus Aura Studio - Eugenie Robitaille - Steve Troletti Photography: PICTURE OF THE DAY / PHOTO DU JOUR &emdash; Parasitized Sphingidae caterpillar - Cross Polarized Macro
Sphingidae caterpillar – NIKON D810 WITH MICRO NIKKOR 200mm Cross Polarized

The insect world itself can be pretty cruel, here’s a Sphingidae caterpillar parasitized with cottony wasp cocoons. Not a happy ending for the caterpillar used as a host by the wasp.

DEFINING YOUR CHALLENGE:

  1. Choose a nature subject in an urban nature setting and photograph it filling the frame or portrait style.
  2. It has to be nature in an urban nature setting. There can be man-made objects but the subject itself, especially if plant based has to be a natural plant and not created by man through an horticultural process. (EXCEPT IF YOU CAN’T GET OUT OF THE HOUSE)
  3. Post your one image and accompany it with storytelling if necessary. Optional storytelling can be a video if you wish.

Here’s an example, if you’re going to photograph a flower, the example on the right is what we’re looking for VS the on on the left. You may even want to get in closer…

The friendly community guidelines are pretty simple:

  • Take a new photo for the current weekly theme, not something from your back catalog or someone else’s image.
  • Post your photo each week to our active communities on Facebook or Flickr (or both). Tag the photo:  #2020photochallenge #photochallenge #tempusaura
  • Don’t leave home without your camera. Participating in the 2020 Trevor Carpenter Photo Challenge is fun and easy.

THANK YOU FOR BEING PART OF

THE TREVOR CARPENTER PHOTO CHALLENGE

About Steve Troletti

I'm a Location Scout, Editorial, Nature, Wildlife and Environmental Photographer based in Malibu, California. I specialize in Nature and Urban Nature photography including Infrared Landscapes. The Bulk of my work takes place in the Los Angeles, California area, Greater Montreal Region, Canada, Switzerland, France and Varese in Northern Italy. Ethical wildlife photography is the main priority and focus of my work. A minimum disturbance of the animals, their habitat and the environment is my top priority. This applies as much to total wilderness areas as it does to urban nature environments. Ongoing education of environmental issues and building awareness for the protection of wildlife and wilderness areas around the world is what drives me to document the beauty that surrounds us.

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