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Story & Photos by Jay Beyer | 11.26.2019

#DIVERGE8 Challenge: The Wild

  • Pursuit: Big Game
  • Environment: Subalpine, Open Country

Each month we have a new challenge within the #DIVERGE8 Photo Contest. The challenge for the month of December is the wild. So show us photos of the wild animals, the wild places and the wild conditions hunting takes you and you’ll be eligible to win.

Prizes for this month include #DIVERGE8 Limited Edition hats and a $100 gift card to B&H Photo. We still want you to submit any and all photos relative to the contest. This challenge is for additional giveaways within the month of December. Read on to hear some tips from our #DIVERGE8 Judge Jay Beyer on how to uniquely capture moments around the Wild.

#DIVERGE8 Judge Jay Beyer:

A hunter poses with his ram after a strenuous hunt.

Tip 1 - Play With Your Horizon

There are two ways I use the horizon as my friend when making my images look wild. Using the horizon for depth and using it for imagination. In this first image, I chose to cut out the horizon for a couple of reasons. First, I didn’t want to give away the location of the ram or the hunter’s location. When shooting hunts in high-pressure areas protecting your hunter’s privacy is paramount in being a successful hunting photographer. Secondly, it leaves the horizon to the viewer’s imagination to come up with the rest of the photo. Sometimes only telling part of the story intrigues people to get out and make their own story.
Packing out a ram in rugged terrain.

In this image, I chose to use the actual horizon. I like layering multiple mountains and hillsides compressed in the background to give that extra wild place feeling. This paints the picture that we are thousands of miles from anything and we have a long way to go.
Hunters amongst mountains and hillsides.

Tip 2 - Limit Human Interaction

These images were easy to limit human interaction because we were in such a wild place. Sometimes you want to create the feeling of being in the wild and your not very remote. In these situations, I try to limit human presence in my image. I do this by keeping roads, buildings, cars, signs or anything else that would remind you of civilization out of the shot. Doing this helps portray the sense of escape we achieve while hunting even if we’re not in the middle of nowhere.

Hunters in Optifade Subalpine scale some rocky terrain. About Jay: 

The origin of Jay’s photography was a 6-month rock climbing trip. His wife bought a camera to document the trip, and according to Jay, “By the end of the trip, the camera was mine and I carried it on every adventure after.” Jay’s niche is to not have a niche but still crush it. He brings wide diversity in his photography. From skiing big lines to trail running, surfing to packing out a Dall ram in Alaska, he is consistently snapping shots of action sports and the outdoors. Now, his work can be seen in Powder and Backcountry magazines, and with clients like Patagonia and YETI.

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