Natural Art: The Photography of Brad Hill

Misty Morning Dip

Availability: Limited Edition Print; RM Stock (??)

Previous Gallery Next Gallery

In the Field

Misty Morning Dip. Khutzeymateen Inlet, BC, Canada. June 4, 2006.

This is, without a doubt, my favourite animalscape* from 2006...

Everything pretty much came together for this shot: it was a misty morning and the light rain had just stopped; the sun was just beginning to burn through the dream-like fog; the tide was high enough to virtually stop the current of the Khutzeymateen River and produce a mirror-like surface on the estuary; and we had a beautiful blond grizzly female with 3 cubs lazily swimming across the channel! I couldn't have staged a better opportunity! As we approached the bears in our zodiac the mist-muted sun struck both the bears and their now glistening wake - I knew it was time to shoot! Photeus (the ancient pagan god of digital photography) smiled on me this morning!

Here's a higher resolution (2400 pixel) version of this tranquil scene:

Misty Morning Dip: Download 2400 pixel image (JPEG: 0.65 MB)


1. This image - in all resolutions - is protected by copyright. I'm fine with personal uses of it (including use as desktop backgrounds or screensavers on your own computer), but unauthorized commercial use of the image is prohibited by law. Thanks in advance for respecting my copyright!

2. Like all wildlife photographs on this website, this image was captured following the strict ethical guidelines described in The Wildlife FIRST! Principles of Photographer Conduct. I encourage all wildlife photographers to always put the welfare of their subjects above the value of their photographs.

3. This image was captured during my "Grizzlies of the Khutzeymateen" photo tour in late spring of 2006. Each year I offer trips into two different parts of the Great Bear Rainforest as well as one to photograph aquatic mammals and oceanscapes near the northern tip of Vancouver Island. And, in selected years, I also offer photo tours to locations to capture other highly sought-after subjects, such as various owl species of the boreal forest and wildlife of Canada's Arctic. Details about these trips can be found on the Photo Tours page of this website.

*4. For a discussion of the image types I call animalscapes and enviroscapes (and the subtle distinctions between them), just go here...

Behind the Camera

Misty Morning Dip. Khutzeymateen Inlet, BC, Canada. June 4, 2006.

Digital Capture; Compressed RAW (NEF) format; ISO 200.

Nikon D2X with Nikon 200-400 mm f/4G ED-IF AF-S VR lens @ 280 mm (420 mm effective focal length equivalent) hand-held (VR turned to "On" and in "Active" mode).

1/640s @ f4; -0.67 exposure compensation from matrix-metered exposure setting.

At the Computer

Misty Morning Dip. Khutzeymateen Inlet, BC, Canada. June 4, 2006.

RAW Conversion to 16-bit TIFF, including first-pass sharpening and initial contrast enhancement (with exposure curve tool), using Phase One's C1 Pro.

All further digital correction on 16-bit TIFF file using Adobe's Photoshop CS2, including selective mid-tone contrast adjustment (using Photoshop's Shadow/Highlight tool), selective saturation enhancement, and selective sharpening for web output.


Misty Morning Dip. Khutzeymateen Inlet, BC, Canada. June 4, 2006.

Ten percent of the revenue generated by this image will be donated to Raincoast*.

Species Status in Canada**: Special Concern (May 2002).

While Grizzly Bears (Ursus arctos) are not technically listed as "Endangered" in Canada, they have been extirpated from most of their historical range. Grizzly Bears are far more sensitive to intrusion/disturbance in their habitat than are Black Bears and are being increasingly forced into marginal habitat by human encroachment. The Great Bear Rainforest along the central and northern coast of British Columbia is one of the last strongholds of the Grizzly Bear in Canada, and even this population is coming under increasing pressure.

On December 18, 2017 the government of British Columbia banned grizzly hunting across the entire province. This major conservation victory came after decades of tireless work by many dedicated conservationists and ecologists and, most importantly, it reflects the opinion of the vast majority of British Columbians. And, it means that AT LEAST while the current government remains in power grizzlies are finally "safe" in British Columbia.

Now that we've at least temporarily won the battle to save grizzlies in BC, it's time to re-focus our efforts toward protecting ALL of BC's carnivores, including Gray Wolves, Black Bears, Cougars, Wolverines, and more! Simply put, there are no ecological, economic, or ethical arguments supporting the trophy hunting of carnivores.

In a great first step towards ending the hunting of carnivores throughout BC the Raincoast Conservation Foundation has developed a program designed to protect ALL carnivores within the Great Bear Rainforest. Details about this program can be found on this page on Raincoast's website. Check it out and, better yet, make a donation to help Raincoast purchase the remaining commercial hunting tenures in the Great Bear!

*The Raincoast Conservation Society (and Foundation) is an effective and efficient organization that has been fighting for protection of this unique habitat. If you are looking for a meaningful way to contribute to the conservation of this amazing ecosystem, Raincoast will provide maximal "bang" for your conservation dollars.

**as determined by COSEWIC: The Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada