In Hannu's Footsteps - The Hannu Hautala Nature Photography Centre
In Hannu's Foot steps - The Hannu Hautala Nature Photography Centre

NATURE PHOTOGRAPHER’S MOMENTS OF HAPPINESS


’IN THE STUDIO’015770
Posio, Korouoma, march 2003

There is an expression among nature photographers, the ’studio’. Normally a studio is a work space, where portraits and product pictures are taken. A nature photographer’s studio is a set build in front of a hide. Rowanberries, tallow, sunflower seeds, some picturesque branches, logs or other suitable sitting spots for dinner guests. The location of the hide has been carefully selected. Lighting is the key. Usually away from the sun at midday, and counter light in the evenings and mornings. Over the years, the studio is constantly changing. I brought this log broken by snow from quite a long way back. One day I caught a lucky break. A black woodpecker couple were in a spring flurry as a Siberian jay came to visit as well. The true moment of joy was when a grey-headed woodpecker showed up for a brief visit.

 

 THE SUPERLIGHT AT KOROUOMA CANYON006131 ice
Posio, Korouoma, february 2004

In the 1980’s, after moving to Kuusamo I discovered the unique scenery of the Korouoma canyon in Posio. It gave me an important counterbalance to the nature of the large river valleys of Kuusamo. In the early years I was almost the only wanderer there in winters. I kept the route open there with a snowmobile from January-February. The approximately 15 kilometers long canyon, stretching from southeast to northeast offers endless ideas for photographs at all times of the day. What truly interests me is combining detail and landscape in one photograph. A wide-angle on a tripod, launched with a remote control from a hide. That is the secret behind this picture. The black woodpeckers came to the feeding spot year after year. I have a lot of versions of this event. This picture of the black woodpecker in Korouoma is a result of many years of hard effort..

 

CONTROLLED CHAOS008156 ice
Kuusamo, february 2003

There are many kinds of happy moments in nature photography. There are no two similar moments. Usually the common denominator is uniqueness. You do not take these moments, they are given. In autumn, when a big flock of bohemian waxwings gather to feast in a rowanberry tree, it is a one big flurry. A big rowan can be empty within half an hour as hundreds of waxwings binge on the berries.

 

 SPRING AT THE ARCTIC OCEAN002329
Norway, Storsteinnes may 1996

I was in Norway on my annual trip in the 1990’s. Every spring I took a break from photographing the swans to spend a week at the Arctic Ocean. One of my subjects was the Red Knot on the beaches of the Tromso fjord. Veikko Neuvonen and I often travelled together. I also did many trips with Petteri Törmänen and Paavo Hamunen. More than one pair of eyes always catches more.

 

 A TRUE RARITY008133 ice
Kuusamo, Murtovaara january 2008

I got a tip from Olli Lamminsalo, that there was a peculiar visitor on a bird feeder of a house in Murtovaara. I went there. There was a lot going on at the bird feeder, and soon I spotted also the guest I was waiting for. I gathered it was a crossbreed of a Siberian tit and a crested tit. The general coloring resembled a crested tit, it had a short crest but it clearly had the brown color of a Siberian tit in its plumage. I got the close-ups I wanted and was happy. As I studied later on I found out that there had been an earlier observation of the same kind in the 1950’s near Vaasa. Only afterwards I have realized, what a stroke of luck it was, to be able to observe this true rarity. I have no recollection of the bird’s voice. I was just ecstatically filming.