Photo Series-Animal Expressions

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Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 Generic | Source

Who mimics who is something we find ourselves asking at one time or another every time we happen to notice certain behaviors or facial expressions in our pets or other animals.

We even assume that these expressions are the same as ours, often forgetting that they may not be quite the same as what we assumed them to be.

This particular project can prove to be quite an interesting undertaking. Quite simply the project itself involves studying animal subjects to seek out behaviors and acts that closely resemble human behaviors and acts.

Simple acts such as eating, sleeping, resting are performed by almost every living thing on the planet. The objective of the technique is to record behaviors in humans and similar behaviors in animals.

This project is rather simple in scope but not so simple to accomplish. Recording images of humans while they go about their every day activities is easy, what is not easy is to record behaviors in animals that can be equated to those found or done by us.

Their photographs are mostly captured by sheer luck and being in the right place at the right time but this should not be an obstacle that prevents you from pursuing the theme, it should rather be faced as a challenge worthy of your efforts.

Once you captured all of the required images you can feel confident that you did a good job.

Concentrate on photographing animal behaviors first since this is probably going to present the biggest challenge. Your friends, acquaintances can afterward model the behaviors for you. Focus on one behavior at time but be open for any opportunistic photographs that present themselves to you.

There are some animal behaviors and expressions that can become apparent quite quickly and your local zoo can present many subjects readily available to be photographed.

There are some behaviors such as smiling that animals seem to display very frequently although most scientists claim that they are not the same as when a human does them.

Our goal is not to debate the reasons for the expressions we witness but just to photograph them. Some expressions are also the result of the animal's physique such as a crocodiles permanent "smile". Keep in mind that if the look fits the mold then record it.

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Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0 | Source
Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0
Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0 | Source
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Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-SA 2.0 | Source
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Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-SA 2.0 | Source

Once you are ready to begin seek out the easiest sources for subjects. Pets and local wildlife might be a quick alternative, if subjects or the expressions and behaviors that you are looking for do not seem to be readily available, then seek other sources like the zoo mentioned before.

Do not be in a rush to complete the project. Sometimes the best images will appear just when you least expected them thus you should always be ready with your camera.

Take as much time with this theme as you need until you have enough images to make a good size montage.

The images should be presented in a thumbnail type format but larger with alternating images of a human behavior/expression followed by an similar one in an animal subject.

© 2011 Luis E Gonzalez

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