Went to the Zoo with my family on the weekend. I haven’t been since I was a kid and I can safely say, it is awesome!
There are some awesome animals around which I haven’t seen before, let alone up close. I knew right away that I wanted to go and see the Silver Back Gorillas as they are my favourite. But the other had other plans. So we walked around checking out the beautiful and the strange that the zoo had to offer.
I am really glad I brought a long focal length with me (Canon 135mm f/2 L USM if you were wondering). I really wasn’t sure what I would need when photographing the animals but my gamble paid off in the end, it allowed me to reach right up close to the animals and birds. None of these images have been cropped!
Getting to the zoo early was also a big bonus, it meant there were less screaming excited kids with chocolate smeared all over their faces to scare off the animals but screaming and banging the glass. This allowed us to wait for the right shot.
Although it would have been great if I could have spent more time at the Gorilla enclosure as they were pretty active, you should have seen it when they kicked off! Such power behind them.
One of the challenges from shooting there was getting used to shooting through glass as it caused quite a few reflections which made it hard to get a clear shot. Much like the shot of the Tiger above. I wish he wasn’t so content with posing for pictures behind the glass.
Also going into the reptile enclosures was cool, so weird stuff in there. It was also the temperature of the sun in there and dark as night. A new challenge when using long focal lengths (without IS) with slow shutter speeds. Still learning the “Sniper technique” helped quite a bit.
SO to sum up; London Zoo is worth a visit, just make sure you find a way to get some discounted tickets as they aren’t cheap. I will say this though, they are worth it. A side from the animals, London Zoo is full of some Iconic Architecture, I couldn’t help of be reminded of Jurassic Park whilst walking around. I would love to go back to do a photoshoot in there. Some of the buildings have these amazing natural pools of light. There are some great bridges and canal paths as well. The aviary by the canal provides a really cool back drop. So yeah I would recommend you head down!