Few things to consider when taking animal shots

When I bought my first DSLR three years ago, I had no clue about composition, photography technique, lighting and nothing. I just bought DSLR camera because I had interest in photography and enjoyed taking pictures. I still remember I took a shot of a deer from back side and was very happy with the result. It had shallow depth of field, well focused and good light. I couldn’t find anything wrong with my picture and thought to share within serious armature and pro photographer community. Guess what, my composition was completely wrong which I found after experts gave me comment about. And you probably have already guessed what went wrong. Yes I took that deer shot from back and composition wise that shot had no value whatsoever.

I started learning from my mistakes and here in this article, I’m trying to point out those mistakes so that you don’t have to go through and waste your time but use that time for taking creative shots instead.

When shooting animals, there are few important camera settings and composition tips which you may want to follow to get great result in all aspects.

1. When shooting birds or animals, you may want to use spot metering so that camera meters exposure based on your focus point.

2. Use Continuous-servo (AF-C) autofocus mode (after you press shutter release button, camera focuses your subject whereever you select focus point and continues to monitor subject to refocus if subject moves) along with single point AF (helps you to focus in particular area like an eye for example) or Dynamic Area AF (helps to track moving subject if it goes out of focus in frame) autofocus point. If you are shooting flying birds or fast moving animals, you may want to use Dynamic AF points.

3. Use the widest aperture (smallest f number) possible so that you will get faster shutter speed to freeze the motion of moving subjects.

4. While shooting animals, try to focus on eye as much as possible because it naturally draws viewer’s attention to your photograph immediately.

Shooting Animals

How to take animal shot

I hope those tips help you to take some good shots.

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About UM3$H

UM3$H is the founder and editor of Daily Photography Tips. Learn more about him here.


  1. I have yet to master animals they seem to be the hardest to capture,
    but there are a few tips here that I will have to try this afternoon…

  2. Harry Perez says:

    I’m just a little confuse i thought in order to freeze the subject you have to increase your shutter speed.

    • Yeah that’s true. Please read my point No 3 again where I said smallest F number (aperture number) so that you get widest aperture and more shutter speed.

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