You’ve spent hours either afield on the water. The culmination of your efforts lay before you. For many, the photograph that follows will be only historical record of your quest. There are a number of techniques that can be used to improve the quality of your pictures.

1) Always make sure the sun is at your back. Front lighting will help eliminate unwanted shadows, and show more detail in the subject.

2) When possible, try to eliminate as much blood and gore as possible. While as outdoorsmen it may not be offensive to us, many of our photographs will be placed in our homes and offices. It is important not to add to the myths and stereotypes that plague many hunters and fishermen.

3) Use a flash. Many would argue that a flash is not necessary in the sun; however, a flash will help separate the subject from the background, drastically improving the quality of the picture.

4) Get closer. Either use a zoom or move closer to the subject for a better view. Alternately, take more photos including the background to show the animal in its natural habitat.

5) Avoid distracting backgrounds. Don’t let the subject blend in with the surroundings. (Important note: The more background that shows, the greater the likelihood someone will find out where your favorite hunting or fishing spot is.)

6) Include support materials. Use props such as firearms or fishing gear to add to the ambience of the scene.

7) Smile! The photos we take while hunting and fishing will always provide a moment of reflection to remember the outing, the friends, and the hunt.