Q & A With Nature Photographer Mark Bridger

We were thoroughly impressed with the photography done by Mark Bridger. We couldn't help but share his work with you. Check out his answers to our questions and enjoy his amazing work!


What type of photography do you prefer and why?

I love all nature from the smallest of bugs to the largest of beasts. As a kid I remember the hours I used to spend on the beach in Dorset England hunting for fossils or collecting all sorts of beetles and bugs in my back garden so when I decided about four years ago to buy my first camera, I was naturally drawn to nature photography. The first subject I photographed on my new, shiny Canon 40D was a group of fallow deer at a place called Knole Park in Sevenoaks UK. The pictures were no more than snap shots but this really sparked my interest in wildlife photography. Soon I found I needed to purchase a longer lens and a macro and then a flash etc. This led me to a website called Photography-on-the-net which is mainly a Canon shooters forum. On there I have learnt just about all I know about photography and also made some really great friends.

The other subject I love to take photos of is my son who will be 4 at the end of August. This is what led me to purchase a Canon 5Dmk2 and some fast glass and in a way got me ready for the next stage in my short photography life, weddings. I now shoot about a dozen a year which helps pay for the kit I use for the wildlife part.

What tip(s) would you give someone just starting out in photography?

Well, I think you take the best pictures of a subject you love. For me it's wildlife, which hopefully shows in my work. For a friend of mine, airplanes are what he loves and his shots are just awesome. It's also important to learn from other people. I have found and learnt so much from the forum I comment on. Just talking to others while you're out and about is good too. Most people will give you tips if they can.

 Where is your favorite place to travel and to photograph?

Quite often before work I go to Knole park in Sevenoaks England. I can get there for dawn spend a few hours walking around hopefully getting some nice pictures before sitting in an office all day. Another place I love is Norfolk, which is a bird spotters paradise. My shots of wild barn owls are from there. There is so much wildlife I could spend my life there quite easily.

Who is a photographer you have looked to for inspiration?

There are a lot of great photographers out there that I like. Danny Green, Andy Rouse, David LLoyd, Lee fisher, and the list goes on. I follow a lot of photographers on Facebook so I don't really have a favourite photographer as there are just too many to choose from.

What made you decide to get into photography?

I work in Pre-press for my day job so I work with thousands of images every week, editing them and making up designs. I have always wanted to have a camera but just never got around to buying one. So as my 40th birthday was approaching I told my wife that I wanted a camera and she bought me a Canon 40D with a 17-55 f2.8 IS lens. 

What is one of your favorite shots?

One of my favourite images is of a captive owl called Gandalf. He lives with his owners at Knowsley Safari Park in Liverpool who run a photography business from there. I went up to attend a workshop for frogs and reptiles last year and stayed the night in the large old farm house. When I came down in the morning for breakfast I saw out the corner of my eye something staring at me from across the courtyard. There was Gandalf the great grey owl sitting in a window watching me. I just had to take his picture; he looked like a little old man watching his neighbours from behind the curtain. I asked Janet, his owner, if I could take his photo and of course she said I could. She also told me that he lives in there because when they moved up to Knowsley, while making his aviary, they placed him in that red brick outbuilding as a temporary home but he loved it so much in there that the building become his aviary. The odd thing about Gandalf and the reason he loves his house is that he is a bit of a wuss and doesn't like flying in large open spaces. He is an agoraphobic great grey owl and so he feels very safe watching the birds and people from his window.

You can find more examples of Mark's photography at: www.bridgephotography.co.uk.

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