• "MEET A MEMBER" #5 Paul Randall

    Paul Randall is an extremely passionate bird photographer residing in Victoria. Werribee Treatment Plant is Paul's home away from home and when he's not helping members on the forum you will most likely find him down on the "Poo Plant" building on his extensive collection of photographs of resident or visiting Melbourne birds.

    What is the first thing you think of in the morning?

    Do I have to???? Get out of bed I mean, I love to sleep in.

    What attracted you to avian photography?

    I wanted to share with friends and family what I had been observing through my binoculars. I found birds and their behavior fascinating and thought that others would too.

    What was the first bird you photographed? Did you know what species it was?

    The first bird I photographed was a New Holland Honeyeater and I knew what it was as I had been birding extensively for two years before getting a camera.

    What is it about avian photography that keeps you coming back for more?

    I guess the fact that you never know what you are going to find when you go out taking photos is a big factor for me. The combination of bird/ light/ settings/ behaviour etc means that there are infinite possibilities to explore.

    Which nature photographers are you most inspired by? Why are they such an inspiration?

    Andy Rouse is one of my favourites because he takes very unique images and Art Morris is also a big influence. He literally "wrote the book" on bird photography and his willingness to pass on what he knew/knows to others is an inspiration to me and something I strive to achieve myself as well.
    As for Australian photographers, I am a big fan of the work of Raoul Slater, he has a great eye for unique images and his knowledge of birds is absolutely extensive having grown up with birds around him for all of his life.

    If you could choose anyone to join you on a shoot who would that someone be?

    My favorite people to join me on a shoot are my partner and son. Some of my favorite spots are those where they can be close by and I can shoot some birds, walk back and muck around with them for a bit and then go shoot some more.

    What was the first camera & lens combo you used for avian photography?

    First camera was a small Kodak point and shoot with 10x optical zoom. It did me quite well for about two years.

    What is your current kit? Why did you upgrade?

    Current kit is the Canon 5D (mk I) with either the 600mm f4 or 400mm f5.6 attached. Upgraded for total control over image parameters...something that a point and shoot camera has trouble with.

    Do you prefer to shoot in the morning or afternoon? Why do you prefer this time portion of the day?

    I do like morning shooting because I feel a little less rushed because the light gets better (until it gets too harsh) but as I revealed in my first answer, I like to sleep in.

    When the light turns bad do you end the session?

    Never, my camera will always stay out until I get home and I will still be on the lookout for interesting photo opportunities.

    Have you any interests beside birds when it comes to photography?

    I do enjoy trying my hand at fashion photography and macro photography is another style I try quite often.

    Do you have a dream location where you would love to spend a week (or longer) photographing the native animals?

    Florida sounds amazing and that would have to be at the top of my list though there are several places in Australia that would rate highly also.

    Do you have a favourite location? If so where is it?

    It would have to be the Western Treatment Plant here in Melbourne. It never fails to supply interesting bird photography opportunities no matter the light or weather conditions.

    How often do you get out to photograph birds?

    At least twice a week depending on my schedule.

    What are you trying to portray in your work?

    It differs from photo to photo. My main aim is to capture something unique and hopefully to develop a style that is my own.

    This article was originally published in forum thread: "MEET A MEMBER" #5 Paul Randall started by Chris M View original post