" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Article">

Color to Attract! Hot

Comments (1)

As wildlife and outdoor photographers, we want the viewers of our work to be immediately attracted to our wildlife photography images and there is nothing like using the elements of color to grab a viewer’s attention.

Color is an important sensory input that the brain uses to interpret important elements of your surroundings and used in photography, color excites, draws focus and provides emphasis so as to enlighten and engage a viewer.

Scenes with color keep a viewer locked onto the image making them want to explore every fine detail. Contrasting or opposing colors also hold attention and even subtle differences in texture and contrast can be successfully used to gain attention to your imagery.

However, as a caution, too much color can also confuse the viewer so try and keep colors simple. In the images below, I used the magic hours close to dawn and dusk to maximize when color saturation is at its best to “pop” and warm color.

Shooting in the middle of the day creates glare, robs a subject of its rich colors and makes it flat and uninteresting.

Cape Buffalo Bull after wallowing by wildlife and conservation photographer peter chadwick

1. The pale blue and pinkish background help accentuate this Cape Buffalo bull that has just emerged from wallowing in the shallow waters of Lake Nakuru in order to escape the heat of the day.

fairy tern by wildlife and conservation photographer peter chadwick

2. Contrasting colors help focus attention on your subject, in this case a Fairy Tern hovering against a blue sky.

purple swamphen wading through water by wildlife and conservation photographer peter chadwick

3. The vibrant red bill and eye of this Purple Swamphen focus attention on the head of the bird.

southern right whale mother calf surfacing by wildlife and conservation photographer peter chadwick

4. Black subjects are best photographed against a pale uniform background. Here a mother and calf Southern Right Whale surface for a breath of air in the shallow protected waters of De Hoop Marine Protected Area.

Yellow daisy amongst blue flowers by wildlife and conservation photographer peter chadwick

5. This yellow Namaqua daisy stands out against the pale blue and deliberately blurred smaller flowers that immediately surround it.

ladybird climbing out yellow daisy by wildlife and conservation photographer peter chadwick

6. Ladybirds that are already very colorful immediately "pop" out against contrasting colors as is the case here with the ladybird climbing out of a bright yellow daisy.

Pincushion flower detail by wildlife and conservation photographer peter chadwick

7. The ring of yellow anthers balanced on red stalks lead the eye to the center of this pin cushion flower.

Augrabies Falt Lizard male by wildlife and conservation photographer peter chadwick

8. Male Flat Lizards use vibrant coloring to show status and health that attracts females for breeding. 

Silhouetted African Black Oystercatcher by wildlife and conservation photographer peter chadwick

9. The paler background colors of dawn make this African Black Oystercatcher silhouette easily stand out, making this an eye catching image

Rock Hyrax stretching by wildlife and conservation photographer peter chadwick

10. The magical hours of dusk and dawn help saturate colors making them more vibrant as is showcased with the golden coloring on this relaxed Rock Hyrax. Later in the day this color fades to a drab brown, making the subject flat and uninteresting.


User comments

jrHidden 0/color-to-attract.html0
Please enter the security code.
Stunning pics Commented byJulianaApril 11, 2014


Stunning pics

Was this review helpful to you? 
Peter Chadwick
Author: Peter ChadwickWebsite: http://www.peterchadwick.co.zaEmail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
As a dedicated conservationist, Peter Chadwick has 30 years strategic and operational conservation experience in terrestrial and marine protected area management. He has worked within all of the major biomes in southern Africa as well as having provided expert conservation advice at a global level. His conservation and wildlife photography is a natural extension to his conservation work where he has numerous opportunities to capture photographs that showcase the beauty and complexity of the outdoors. Peter’s photography is internationally recognized, with this work appearing globally in a wide range of print and electronic media.