Outdoorsman John Williams Captures Nature’s Beauty Through Photography
By ANDREA O’NEILL
Correspondent
BEAUTY OF NATURE-John Williams, an avid outdoorsman, has been capturing the wonders of nature through his photography for the past five years. One of John’s favorite photos is that of a dragonfly he captured last August.

John  Williams  has  lived  his  entire  life

 in  Rice  Township  as  an  avid  outdoorsman.   Hiking,  hunting  and  fishing  were  always  something  he  enjoyed,

 but  for  the  last  several  years,  he  has  added  photography  to  the

 list  of  ways  he  enjoys  the  beauty  of  nature.

For  the  last  five  years,  John  has  been

 taking  photographs  of  the  many  interesting  moments  that  happen  in  nature  throughout  the  year.    While  he

 originally  started  with  a  film  camera,  John  jokes  that  digital  technology

 made  it  more  affordable  to  take  more  pictures,  and  that  is  what

 really  started  motivating  him  to  photography.   He  invested  in  a  good  camera,

 a  good  lens,  and  some  of  his  time  and  the  results  of  his  work  are  now

 captured  forever. “The  digital  easier  to  deal  with,”  explains  John.  “If  you  don’t  like  it,  you

 just  delete  it.”

After  years  of  photographing  random

 moments  on  random  days,  Williams  now  waits  for  the  right  moment

 – often  heading  into  the  woods  during  snowstorm  or  other  key  moments

 in  the  year.   Spring  is  one  of

 his  favorites,  and  he  particularly  enjoys  water  areas.

“Spring  is  a  great  time  with  all  the  new  animals  being  born.   There  is

 so  much  color  when  things  are  blooming,”  remarks  John.

Unless  you  are  the  wildlife  whisperer,  it  isn’t  easy  to  catch  those  beautiful

 moments  between  a  doe  and  her  fawn,  a  robin  chick  hatching,  or

 an  entire  brood  of  rabbits  leaving  their  den  for  the  first  time.  John  admits  that

 some  of  it  is  the  technology,  but  for  the  most  part,  it  requires  skill.   

“The  300mm  lens  helps.  Most  come  with  image  stabilization  which  helps  stop  blur.   As  long  as  the  animal  isn’t

 moving  too  much,  the  chip  stops  the  animal  in  motion,”  says  John.

All  the  years  he  was  a  hunter,  John  says  that  he  learned  certain  skills  that  allow

 him  to  be  very  quiet  and  get  very  close  to  an  animal.   That  ability,  plus  the  lens,  allows  John  to  capture  moments.

 “I  used  to  hunt  with  a  gun,  but

 now  I  hunt  with  the  camera,”  he  says.

One  of  John’s  favorites  is  a  dragonfly

 which  was  taken  in  the  early  morning  chill  in  late  August.   Unable

 to  fly  on  his  approach,  John  was  able  to  get  within  a  few  inches  of

 the  insect.   

“Its  blue  eyes,  and  clear  wings  are  stunning.  The  dragonfly  takes  up  the  whole

 picture,”  remarks  John. His  second  favorite  is  a  photograph  of  a  praying  mantis  taken  in  a  pine  tree

 on  a  cool  October  morning.   Again,  he  was  able  to  get  closer  than  usual.

  

For  as  much  fun  as  he  is  having,  John

 says  that  photography  is  still  very  much  a  hobby.   Currently  he  works

 with  DCNR  as  a  seasonalemployee  looking  to  go  full  time.   

“I  still  don’t  know  all  the  settings,” he  jokes.  “I  mainly  use  the  auto  focusbecause  animals  do  not  wait  for  youto  focus.   I  would  love  to  make  this  abusiness  if  I  can,  but  there  is  a  reasonthey  coined  the  term  “starving  artist”.

You  can  see  some  of  John’s   photoson  display  at  PD  Pet  Supply  on  Rt. 309.