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
“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.