Everyone's path to success is different. There is no set formula for how to become a successful wildlife photographer (or artist or writer or anything for that matter) but there are some steps you can take to make sure you use your time productively.

Getting started in wildlife photography mostly begins with a lot of questions. What kind of equipment do I need? What species should I photograph? Where do I find x species? What's the best way to show off my work?

The answers to these questions are important but highly varied depending on your situation and no one approach will suit everyone. Take just one fundamental example: where you live.

The majority of my work happens within a 20 mile radius of my home. This happens to include the majority of the Peak District as well as many other habitat types giving me access to a range of environments without having to travel very far. On the flip-side, I'm about as far away from a coastline as is possible in the UK so coastal photography takes a lot of time and planning and is generally reserved for specific trips.

Unless you have the freedom to be based anywhere, you can see why concentrating your efforts locally and exploit what you have available close by is a good idea.

In this series of posts I'll share my advice on some of the big questions I was asking when beginning my career. I hope the answers will be generic enough to be utilised by anyone starting out in wildlife photography but not so general that you don't learn anything.

Like all creative professions, there is always more to learn so leave any comments, hints or tips you have in the comments.

Check out the other articles in this series:

  • Buying the best you can afford - you're going to need a camera and at least one lens but with so many to brands and options to choose from, which one is right?
  • Shooting locally - one of my most important lessons was not to obsess over exotic, foreign wildlife but to immerse myself in what was on my doorstep.
  • Plan a project - finding you're getting into a creative block or a bit of a rut? Build a project to structure your efforts.