Comedy Wildlife Photo contest shows ‘a completely different side of animals,’ says finalist.
Sometimes, that means capturing a creature’s inherent grace, majesty and ferocity. Other times, it means showing them being downright goofy.
“For me, it’s really about capturing all the wonder that these animals bring to our lives and to ask people to see them, to protect them and to fight for them,” Hadley told As It Happens host Nil Köksal.
“That’s really what I go out to do. And sometimes, of course, you get some funny moments.”
Two of the photographer’s shots are finalists in the Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards, an annual contest that “uses humour as a tool to bring audiences in on the wider story about sustainability, and crucially wildlife conservation.”
Getting the kind of shot that gets you nominated for a Comedy Wildlife award “can be very tricky,” Hadley said.
“You never know when something is actually going to happen. So you have to be patient or wait for the moment. You also need to know some animal behaviours and be able to anticipate something happening,” she said.
“And a lot of times, it’s just luck.”
Check out some of the other finalists:
But in reality, Hadley said, it’s just being clumsy.
“They’re penguins from two different species, but they occupy the same beach areas. And they’re actually very comedic little penguins,” she said.
When they’re swimming, they’re incredibly graceful. But when they emerge — not so much.
“And these two had been swimming, and they came crashing on to the beach in a very ungraceful way. And as the little penguin on the right, the gentoo penguin, shook off, he gave his little friend there the fin,” she said.
“I didn’t even realize I had captured it until I got it home and looked at the pictures, and then really saw his expression and the fin in the air, and just had a good laugh over that.”
Big clumsy kitten
Her other contest contender captures a similarly clumsy moment, from a creature known for its agility.
Not so cat-like reflexes shows a three-month-old lion cub face-planting into the side of a tree in Tanzania.
“He was in a tree with another sibling of his that was sleeping and he clearly wanted to get down from the tree. So he walked around a lot and kept harassing his sibling, almost asking for help. And, eventually, he decided to make the descent,” she said.
“Never in my mind did I kind of imagine that, you know, cats would be falling out of trees. So, yes, he just kind of suddenly made the move to come out of the tree, and I snapped away. And, sure enough, he went tumbling all the way down.”
But don’t worry, Hadley said. The little lion was unscathed — except, perhaps, for a bruised ego.
“He was OK, and he walked away with some other cubs,” she said.
The contest runs online until Nov. 27, and anyone can vote. Winners will be announced on Dec. 8.
Every year, the contest partners with a different conservation organization. This year, it says it’s donating 10 per cent of its revenue to the U.K.’s Whitley Fund for Nature.
Hadley says she’s honoured to be included among so many amazing pictures that showcase “the laughable side of wildlife.”
“It just shows you a completely different side of animals,” she said. “With all the bad news in the world, I think this is just what we need to kind of lighten the mood and have a good laugh.”
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Sheena Goodyear is a web journalist with CBC Radio’s As It Happens in Toronto. She is equally comfortable tackling complex and emotionally difficult stories that hold truth to power, or spinning quirky yarns about the weird and wonderful things people get up to all over the world. She has a particular passion for highlighting stories from LGBTQ communities. Originally from Newfoundland and Labrador, her work has appeared on CBC News, Sun Media, the Globe & Mail, the Toronto Star, VICE News and more. You can reach her at email@example.com
Interview with Jennifer Hadley produced by Kate Swoger and Katie Geleff.
Credit belongs to : www.cbc.ca