The Lake Project: Raymond’s Big Day

On Friday, I ventured down to the lake around 4:15 with my gear to meet Raymond Powell and T. Tim Mountz. T. Tim’s knowledge of the plants and birds around were extremely helpful, but ultimately it was Raymond who made the trip very worthwhile. First, five minutes into our walk around the lake, Ray almost stepped on a small Wood Frog. He bent down, gently scooped it up, and showed it to me.

Quickly, I was able to snap this picture:


If you want to learn more about the Wood Frog, click here.

As I continue to work on the project, I want to improve my skills as a photographer. I like this shot a lot because of the way it is composed. The aperture I set made the depth of field very shallow. The frogs eyes and face are in perfect focus along while the back legs of the frog are out of focus. This draws your attention straight to its eyes. While the lighting is not perfect, that is always something I can fix later.

After we walked the majority of the way around the lake, T. Tim and I stopped to look at a Green Heron (I did not manage to capture any good photos worth sharing) and Raymond called out that there was a turtle hanging out in the shallow water. After I tried to get a couple of photos while it was in the water (way too dark), Raymond said, “I’m gonna get it.” He reached in, and the turtle, without a care in the world, just let Raymond grab him.

I was able to take this photo of Raymond holding the turtle, a Midland Painted Turtle, before he put him back in the water:


If you want to learn more about the Midland Painted Turtle, click here.

Unlike the frog picture, I do not love this picture. The colors are vibrant and nice, but the turtle’s right hand is partially cut off and the way the light plays on the shadows on the turtle’s right side make it look a little weird to me. Plus, you can barely tell where his left hand is. That said, I think Raymond’s hands in the picture tells an interesting story, and I won’t beat myself up about it because we did not want to keep the turtle out of the water for long.

Until next week,


P.S- While putting the turtle back, Raymond fell into the pond 🙂

4 thoughts on “The Lake Project: Raymond’s Big Day

  1. ainsleybruton

    Hi Dexter! I think your project is so interesting, and I love seeing the photos that you post here every week. I agree that the frog picture is fantastic and that the one of the turtle isn’t quite as strong, but I still love the photo of the turtle a lot. The expression on the turtles face is fantastic, and while there are some weird things happening with shadows and his arms, overall I find the picture to be oddly hilarious.

  2. yanwenxu

    I find your project intriguing and do want to read more about your adventures. Also I think it will be great for you to add some basic information about the species you caught so that readers can have a better sense. 🙂

    1. dexcoengilbert Post author

      That’s a great idea Yanwen! I was trying to keep the post light and not bore people but I will definitely include some information next time.

  3. Sophie Xi

    Hi Dexter! I really like your project. Is it possible that you can videotape the species you observe by the lake? I would like to know how they look like in motion.


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