Michael Nichols Uses Technology and Daring to Catch Animals in His Camera Trap
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From jungles to the everglades, the ice of the arctic to the mouth of a volcano, the photographers featured in "Extreme Exposure," on display now at the Annenberg Space for Photography, travel to the edges of the planet to create images of true wildness.
To capture animals in their natural habitat, photographer Michael "Nick" Nichols uses some highly specialized equipment and techniques that are, themselves, wild.SLIDESHOW: From Smiling Seals to Exploding Landscapes, Photographers Journey to Earth's Most Dangerous Places For "Extreme Exposure"
Camera traps, commonly used by conservationists to survey the populations of hard to find wildlife, are one of Nichols' favorite tools. Of course, setting up a camera to take the perfect photo the instant a trigger is tripped is no simple task.
Just getting to the location for the trap is sometimes a challenge. To capture a tigress bathing in a pool of water, Nichols and his team had to descend a steep cliff face, using ropes, bolts, and other hardware, to get to the site.
Nichols draws on his extensive experience to make sure the system has the best chances of producing a quality product. Even so, it ultimately comes down to perseverance and a little luck. It can take a thousand exposures, Nichols explains, before the one perfect photograph is made.
As fascinating as his methods may be, the process is not what Nichols considers most important. "At the end of the day, I don't want it to be about my cameras or about how I do it," Nichols says, "I want people to see my pictures and say 'Man I never saw that before.'"
WATCH VIDEO: Pushing the Limits of Extreme Nature Photography
Read more about camera traps:
Rare Otter Spotted for the First Time in 100 Years
Wildlife Trapped by Global Biodiversity Surveillance System (Photos)
Tiger Cam Captures the Destruction of a Forest (Video)