Of all the benefits of working for Deer & Deer Hunting, one of the best
is that you get to live in the deer-rich central agricultural region of the Midwest.
Consequently, one practice of mine is always being on the lookout for photographic
opportunities — deer, turkey and other wildlife within photo-range of the road —
as I drive about. A camera always rides shotgun.
On my way home last week, one such opportunity availed itself: The sun was low, and
the light was just right, casting a nice hue across the field onto a doe and yearling
that were spotted not far out into the field. I pulled off to the side of the road
and snapped the cap off the big 400mm lens. As always, my attention was focused on
adjusting for exposure and steadying the camera on the deer. Several photos were taken
until suddenly the two deer became nervous and started looking behind me; they finally
A peek in the rear view mirror revealed what had spooked the deer: A local had pulled
up behind me in a mini-van and was nervously writing down my license plate number!
If there were any doubt whether the life of a photographer is filled with danger and
adventure, this puts it to rest.
Just for the record, my pulling over was done safely and was completely within the
law. The man in the vehicle continued to make obvious gestures that he was “taking
notes” about my vehicle. Would he call the authorities on me for photographing deer?
Had I committed a Class III Misdemeanor Deer Observation?
Indeed, this was all quite curious. The man could clearly see that I was using a camera,
so there should not have been any reason to infer poaching might be going on. Perhaps
it was all about teritorial posturing: Could this be more symptomatic of people in
ever-decreasing acreages getting more and more possessive of “their” deer?
So, these photos are warmly dedicated to the nervous fella in the blue mini-van —
may you enjoy seeing these photos as much as I did taking them.