Nature Photography of the White Mountains

Shaun Terhune

August 11, 2022  7pm

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Venture with Shaun Terhune on a visual journey through his world of nature photography. Experience hiking in the pre-dawn to remote forests off the beaten path to search for wildlife, or to the mountain’s edge for a magical panoramic sunrise. Feel the wonderment in that particular moment when the light is perfect, a subject appears in the lens, and that magical shot is captured.

Shaun will share about his work in the White Mountains, key strategies, and useful tips for those interested in nature photography, as well as the essential gear and how he has simplified it over time. You’ll also see a number of exhibits of how he has transformed his photos into art, both visually and poetically.

Bio: Shaun Terhune is a full-time wildlife and landscape photographer in the White Mountains as well as a passionate conservationist. His creative talent has been published or featured in books, magazines, and publications such as Wanderlust USA, National Geographic, and others. He now owns and operates the Shaun Terhune Fine Art Photography Gallery on Main Street in Littleton. Growing up in a log home in the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont, Shaun’s love for nature and the outdoors became deeply engrained in his passions and professional pursuits.


After college, his professional life as a geologist provided opportunities to work in the Canadian Arctic, the North Slope of Alaska, and the American Southwest where he employed some of the most advanced imaging cameras in the world. Still, his personal camera always accompanied him. In the course of time, photography in all of its artistic expressions became a full-time pursuit, and eventually Shaun became a guide for National Geographic in Yellowstone and Yosemite National Park. Today, Shaun’s focus is exclusively on the White Mountains, and his gallery at 39 Main Street in Littleton features many of the landscapes and wildlife of the region.

photos courtesy of Shaun Terhune

 

Event Report

Nature Photography of the White Mountains

Shaun Terhune

August 11, 2022  7pm

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Nature Photographer Shaun Terhune came to the Park to share his expertise for finding and photographing wildlife along with capturing landscapes.

 
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Shaun had examples of some of his impressive work on display.

 
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He began by showing a 7 minute film that featured him in action photographing and hiking in the area. It was made for Northface and entitled: The Wild White Mountains.

 
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Shaun then talked about the challenges of photographing wildlife in NH as opposed to the wide-open spaces of the West. Although we have a lot of wildlife around, it can be more difficult to locate.

Regarding bears, this slide offers tips such as looking for locations where bears find food. For example, blueberry fields are a favorite food for bears at this time of the year.

 
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Shaun explained about nursing trees and how to find them. It's a good place to spot cubs.

 
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He next talked about moose and tips for locating them. Imitating the sounds of a cow moose, for example, can sometime attract a male moose.

 
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Shaun emphasized that there is a way to walk in the woods that could enhance your chances of spotting wildlife.

He also talked about foxes and offerred a tip: if you're looking to find kits, it's been his experience that they appear more readily on sunny days.

 
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So far as obtaining good views of water birds, kayaks and canoes put you in a great position to photograph them because of the low level that you're at.

He aso talked about owls and how ebird is a good source for locating a particular species.  In his experience he's also found that cemeteries are a good place for finding owls such as the screech owl.

 
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After giving the audience many examples and tips for finding wildlife, Shaun then changed the scope of his talk towards working with an image and the composition of a photograph.

 
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The previous slide was cropped from an even wider view than this one. With the greater resolution of today's digital cameras you're able to retain a quality image even though you have a cropped to a much smaller area. 

Shaun also offers a tip here about using  panoramas.

 
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Shaun discussed composition and how to draw the eye "into" the picture by using curves or, as in these examples, by lines in the foreground coming in from the corners of the photo.

 
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In this photo, Shaun's main subject was the pickup truck which he obtained by placing the wagon and its wheels in the foreground.

 
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Shaun talked about a general rule of not placing your main subject in the center of a photo but off to the side by about one third as in this image of a fox.

But, he cautioned, don't be afraid to break those rules if in your opinion the scene calls for it. Let the scene dictate how it is to be handled.

Thanks so much for a wonderful presentation, Shaun, and for generously sharing your expertise with us at Weeks State Park.