Natural Art: The Photography of Brad Hill

Of Two Minds

Availability: RM Stock (??)

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In the Field

Of Two Minds. Findlay Creek, BC, Canada. May 21, 2006.

When I captured this image I considered sending it to the National Enquirer as proof that two-headed deer existed! This shot was a "lucky grab" - these two mule deer had been hanging around while I was working with a pair of Mountain Bluebirds. When the Bluebirds flew off I looked up and this scene literally presented itself to me. Just another little reminder that it always pays to be ready to shoot (and to be REALLY looking at your surroundings).

Behind the Camera

Of Two Minds. Findlay Creek, BC, Canada. May 21, 2006.

Digital Capture; Compressed RAW (NEF) format; ISO 200.

Nikon D2X with Nikon 200-400 mm f/4G ED-IF AF-S VR lens @ 400 mm (600 mm equivalent with digital conversion factor) supported on Gitzo 1348 carbon fibre tripod with Wimberley head. VR turned to "On" and in "Normal" mode.

1/80s @ f4; no compensation from matrix-metered exposure setting.

At the Computer

Of Two Minds. Findlay Creek, BC, Canada. May 21, 2006.

RAW Conversion to 16-bit TIFF, including first-pass sharpening and tone curve adjustment, using Phase One's C1 Pro.

All further digital correction on 16-bit TIFF file using Adobe's Photoshop CS2, including additional tone curve adjustment, selective saturation enhancement and selective sharpening for web output.


Of Two Minds. Findlay Creek, BC, Canada. May 21, 2006.

Ten percent of the revenue generated by this image will be donated to Wildsight.

Species Status in Canada*: This species is not designated as at risk.

The Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus) is the most common deer found in the western mountains, forests, brushlands, and deserts of North America. In most mountainous areas the Mule Deer exhibit an annual altitudinal migration, spending the warmer months at high elevation.

Mule Deer resemble White-tail Deer quite closely, and the two species overlap in distribution in western North America. The Mule Deer is distinguished by dichotomously branching antlers (in the male), smaller and less erectile tail and larger ears. When alarmed, Mule Deer hop or "stot" (with all four feet simultaneously hitting the ground) while whitetails "gallop" from hind to front feet.

This adult female mule deer and its offspring was photographed in the Columbia Valley of the East Kootenays. While this species is not currently not considered at risk, many ecosystems within the Columbia Valley face development pressure, including pressure from logging operations. Wildsight is an effective conservation organization that protects biodiversity and promotes sustainable communities in Canada's Columbia and Rocky Mountains. Support for Wildsight, through donation or becoming a member, will help ensure that they remain effective in their efforts to conserve threatened or endangered species and ecosystems.

*as determined by COSEWIC: The Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada