For a wildlife photograph to be truly successful, it should strike an immediate connection with the viewer. In almost all situations, the effective use of lighting is critical in achieving this. Light is the medium, the camera is just the paintbrush. Light is the photographer’s chief resource, his best friend and his worst enemy. But when exploited to the full, it can be used to turn a relatively mundane scene into something truly captivating.
The good news is there is always a way to make the best of whatever lighting conditions you find yourself in. However, unlike the controlled environment of a studio, you have to adapt to your environment, understand the light, and decide what to do to harness its particular qualities and potential that day. It’s worth taking time to notice and study the light around you, even when you’re not going out to shoot photographs. You’ll gradually come to appreciate its subtleties.