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Interview with Barry Forbes


Please introduce yourself, where are you based and where do you photograph wildlife?


I’m Barry Forbes and I’m based in Fife Scotland. I do most of my photography close to home as I live in an area enriched with wildlife. However I do travel all over Scotland for specific species.


How did you get started in wildlife photography?


I’ve always had a passion for nature and the outdoors and spent many hours watching wildlife. I learned so much during that time about different species, behaviour, habitat and field craft. I wanted to do more with this knowledge and i wanted to capture my experiences and eventually share them with others. So I took up photography in 2008.


Can you share a particularly memorable experience or encounter you've had while photographing wildlife?


I’ve had so many fantastic wildlife experiences since then. One of my most memorable experiences was finding and photographing all 4 species of Scottish Owls in a 2 hour period in a  3 mile area. Shorteared , tawny , barn and long-eared Owls.

It was quite remarkable and probably a once in a lifetime experience.


Where is your favorite place to photograph wildlife and why?


My favourite place to photograph wildlife is the Isle of Mull. The wildlife there is incredible with Golden and white tailed eagles, hen harriers , otters , red deer , shorteared owls and much much more. The Treshnish isles , just a short boat trip from mull is the best place in the uk to photograph puffins one of my favourite birds.


In what ways has your approach to capturing wildlife changed as you've developed your unique artistic vision?


Over the years my approach to making an image has changed and developed a lot, I  enjoy the challenges of creating beautiful and interesting nature images now. I try to see the potential image more as a piece of art now and shoot accordingly. I pay particular attention to backgrounds which for me are as important as the subject in many cases, whether it’s lovely bokeh or beautiful habitat I want it to be pleasing to the eye. Looking at the resulting image I ask myself “would I hang that on my wall” if the answer is yes I’m happy. It’s also still possible to be different and experimental but still keep to your style.


How do you enrich your passion of wildlife photography?


I get inspired and learn from many other wildlife photographers, viewing different styles of work, reading blogs and watching YouTube channels. I hope through my work I can also inspire others.


I’ve also been fortunate enough to have received awards for my work, the latest being 1st in the Scottish Nature Photography Awards National Competition behaviour category. It can be very inspirational to see how your work stands up within an extremely high standard of nature photography and it’s important to learn from your successes and failures. Above all else I do this because it’s fun , it’s enjoyable, it’s good for the soul and I hope that in some small way I can bring the beauty of nature and a better understanding of wildlife to others.



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