Wildlife portrait photographer, Brad Wilson captures stunning studio portraits of wild animals. The unusual animals reaches the planet, no matter whether it is a mammal, a bird, or a reptile in the backdrop.
After 12 years of photographing musicians, models and celebrities, he decided he wants to photograph a little more of something unpredictable and it was wild animals. He started visiting animal sanctuaries, zoos, and studios to capture the photos of chimpanzee to lion. He says it is not easy to direct animals like people. Shooting animals requires you to wait for them to do as they wish. You can pick your moments only by being patient and this taught home to look at photography in a different way.
Brad Wilson says in his series ‘Affinity’ about exploring human relationship with animals and highlights each subject’s fragility. He says, ‘In the modern human civilization and all the complexities, yet there are animals remaining stark symbols of simpler life, while the wilderness disappears.’ These images are the testament to the fading world and despite the isolation as pronounced feeling, there is contemporary existence that characterizes we are not separate and belong to this interconnected, rich, diversity of life.
Portrait of wild animals is associated in the natural habitat, but Brad Wilson adds a new perspective. He exhibits clos-up portraits of animals taken in his studio in his series ‘Affinity.’ Brad is in New York for many years and is taking with human models professional photos. He is switching to different species and is feeling the connection of experiencing these majestic animals as he is taking the photos.
Brad Wilson says, he found animals engenders a wonderful sense of relationship and it is profound. It is the same as us, the humans who use to be present completely in the moment, who were aware of their immediate environment and lived through intuition and instinct.
About his wildlife portrait photography, he says there were fear-inducing, awe-inspiring moments with Tigers in the studio. He also felt strange standing with a camera facing the Tigers, and felt these animals are dangers. Though it was an illusion, the purpose served was right.
He says the male baboon was the most dangerous animal as interpreting direct eye contact was challenging. The shoot had five trainers on the set. The big cats are equally difficult to work with and are the top predators in the studio. Getting an image from their random activity is not easy. Food rewards keep their attention for a short time, as they are interested only in sleeping. They are not fearful, and do not fear humans. They lay down in the photo set middle and go on with their nap. Once their napping starts, whatever is your idea, the shoot comes to an end.
Brad works towards the composition and mood of each photography. He looks for a unique connection with his subject showing some intimacy and deeper feel to viewers. He gives equal treatment to animals, and showers dignity and respect that he would give any person standing before his camera. His series on animal photography is valuable and he does not encourage expressions from the wild animals. He found animals inhabit in the space they are in and pull you into them. There is a sustained sense of awe all the time you are with them that you forget the entire world behind you.
He has spent his better part of life snapping animal’s pictures. He works with wildlife sanctuaries and zoos, brings creatures to his studio and sets a black background while capturing the wildlife photography. Wilson brings animals into his studio and allows them behave naturally and only then the magic occurs. He spends 99% time observing them and clicking the shutter is just 1% of the time.
Wilson is discern to fleeting moments, but uses a plain backdrop to capture an animal portrait. He captures each animal soul. Portraying wild creatures is his passion and he does it with the same respect that he gives to a human. The image is a powerful sense of intimacy and authentic encounter.
Wilson pins on people to get deeper understanding of the animal’s complexity and wishes the book is useful in reminding we are not alone or separate, and are interconnected to diversity of life.
Inspire yourself with his images and for more work check his Instagram.
Wildlife Portrait Photography-Brad Wilson
#1 Black Leopard
#2 Cheetah Cub
#6 White Tiger
#7 Portrait Of Wild Animals Mandrill
#12 Palm Cockatoo