Cute Field Mouse – England, UK – John Gooday
This cute little field mouse is the epitome of why we started our website. We wanted to pull back the curtain so to speak to show what goes into an award winning photograph. In this case this one is staged and John is very honest and tells us so below. More importantly if you wish to take a photo similar to this one, he doesn’t tell you to find a mouse infested wheat field and wait for weeks on end for a cute little guy to become acclimated to humans and crawl up a wheat stalk in perfect light directly in front of your macro lens and smile. No he creates a simple, but very effective stage and nails the shot in an hour or so. What does he do in those two weeks he saved not waiting for the wild mouse acclimation you ask? Well he heads to Africa and takes more amazing shots that can be found here on his website www.johngoodayphotography.com
And if you like that then please ”Like” him here on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/john.gooday.
I’d gone to photograph water voles at an ecology center for an agency, but when I found that they also had field mice, I decided that it was too good an opportunity to miss.
We placed a glass tank on a table and used a clamp stand to hold the wheat ear, which was cut from a nearby field. The mice were placed into the tank and were soon running up and down the wheat. Lighting was entirely natural. The table was put into an open-sided agricultural polytunnel (the sort that farmers use to grow salad crops in) which acted as a giant diffuser and gave a nice soft light (it was a bright, sunny day). The background is a large piece of plywood (6×4) painted roughly with matt wall paint – an assistant held it up about 4 feet behind the mouse. I used a 100mm macro with IS handheld on a full-frame camera. The aperture was set at f 9 and I got in close to get the wheat and mouse’s head in focus while keeping the background soft. I sharpened the mouse and wheat a little in Photoshop and used a square crop for impact.
Camera: Canon EOS 5d Mark II
Aperture: f / 9.0
Shutter speed: 1/320 sec
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