Natural Art: The Photography of Brad Hill


Availability: Undetermined - Enquiries?

In the Field

The POLLINATOR. Findlay Creek, BC, Canada. June 5, 2005.

I caught this unidentified bee species in the act of grabbing a quick slurp of nectar and, unintentionally, performing a pollinating act all at the same time. Pollination is one of those critical activities to human life that goes on around us all the time but we rarely notice. It's been estimated that bees pollinate (and therefore contribute to the production of) a full third of the food supply of the United States. Alarmingly, bee populations throughout the world have been plummeting for almost two decades. In the UK for instance, the diversity of bee species has dropped by 80% since 1980. And, the wildflowers that are dependent on them have dropped in diversity by nearly as much - 70%.

So...if you like photographing bees and other insects you better do so fast! Most "how-to" photo guides tell you that critical equipment for photographing insects includes a "macro" or close-focusing lens. I'd add a little to this advice - not only do you need a close-focusing lens but you need one with a long enough focal length to provide you with a comfortable working distance. If you have to move within 2 inches of a flower to make it large enough to fill your frame, you're not going to have much success capturing insect images! My favourite tool is a 200 mm "micro" lens from Nikon, which gives me the equivalent of a 300 mm lens (in magnifying power) when paired with my digital camera bodies. Besides giving me critical magnifying power, this lens has great bokeh - it throws the distracting background beautifully out of focus.

Behind the Camera

The POLLINATOR. Findlay Creek, BC, Canada. June 5, 2005.

Digital Capture; Compressed RAW (NEF) format; ISO 100.

Nikon D2X with Nikon AF Micro 200 mm f/4 ED lens (300 mm equivalent with digital conversion factor) supported on Gitzo G2220 Explorer tripod with Really Right Stuff BH-55 ballhead. Sigma EM-140DG Macro flash. Nikon MC-20 cable release.

1/250s @ f7.1; -0.33 stop compensation from matrix-metered exposure setting; balanced TTL flash exposure with -0.67 stop compensation on EM-140DG.

At the Computer

The POLLINATOR. Findlay Creek, BC, Canada. June 5, 2005.

Details to follow.


The POLLINATOR. Findlay Creek, BC, Canada. June 5, 2005.

Ten percent of the selling price of this image (Limited Edition Print or Stock) will be donated to Wildsight.

Information to follow.