Picture of the Month


June 2012


Ring-tailed Lemur

(Lemur catta)

Berenty Reserve



Visual balance is difficult to achieve, but it can make the difference between a pedestrian portrait - and a compelling one. This Ring-tailed Lemur, resting in a tree, is not placed directly in the middle of the frame for one glaring reason: to have done so would have thrown off the picture's balance. What's more, placing the lemur smack in the middle would have meant sacrificing the handsome curve of the branch he's sitting on.

Try, for a moment, to imagine the picture with either one missing : the animal or the branch. In their current positions, both lemur and branch appear off-center and imbalanced when pictured by themselves. Together, however, they balance one another. This is how balance works: by organizing different objects within the frame into a composition that is stronger than the individual elements.

I was thrilled when this lemur perched himself on this graceful branch - I knew immediately that it would create a harmonic arrangement. The addition of the thin layer of leaves at the top was a bonus - not critically affecting the design, but adding another element that helps place the animal in his habitat. The soft background, meanwhile, worked perfectly to highlight the foreground; sharp detail in the bushes behind the lemur would have been an unwelcome distraction.

All in all, a simple, but effective portrait of a marvelous animal.


Nikon F100 with Nikkor 70-200mm lens



Life, Color, Drama, Reality .... No Digital Manipulation


Kevin Schafer Photography : HOME



Review a previous Picture of the Month:

Wandering Albatross, 5/2012

Kit Fox Puppies, 4/2012

Palm Crow, 3/2012

Nene Goose, 2/2012

Pack Ice, 1/2012

Maleos, 12/2011

Armadillo, 10/2011

Anhinga, 9/2011

Lava Tube, 8/2011

Blurry Cassowary, 7/2011

Mud Maid, 5/2011

Roadkill. 4/2011

Light and Shadow, 3/2001

Aurora, 40 below, 2/2011

Petra, 1/2011

Cassowary Family, 12/2010

Antarctic Storm, 11/2010

Yellow-eyed Penguin, 10/2010

Harebells in Wind, 9/2010

Coy Polar Bear, 8/2010

Bathing Beauty Bear, 7/2010

Maned Sloth, 6/2010

Sarus Cranes, 5/2010

Black-winged Stilts, 4/2010

Macaque/Gibbons, 3/2010

Cormorants, 2/2010

Silky Sifaka, 12/2009

Amazon Dolphin Polo, 11/2009

Yucatan Bats, 10/2009

Gulls and Flies, 8/2009

Callanish Stones, 7/2009

Amazon Dolphins (2), 6/2009

Golden Langur, 5/2009

Island Foxes, 4/2009

Puget Sound, 3/2009

Border Fence, 2/2009

Amazon Islands, 1/2009

King Penguins, 12/2008

Darwin's Fox, 11/2008

Blacktip Shark, 10/2008

Greenland Fisherman. 9/2008

Ladyslipper Orchids, 7/2008

Wild Cassowary, 6/2008

Painted Hands, 5/2008

Zion Park, 4/2008

Marine Otters, 3/2008

Mt. Hood Sunset, 2/2008

Mountain-Biking, 1/2008

Tent Bats, 12/2007

Nunbird, 11/2007

Alaskan Otters, 10/2007

Amazon Dolphin, 8/2007

Madagascar #2, 6/2007

Baja California, 5/2007

Pelicans, 3/2007

Darien Gap, 2/2007

Grey Whale Calf, 1/2007

Galapagos Sea Lion, 12/2006

Rockhoppers, 11/2006

Hummingbird, 10/2006

Madagascar, 9/2006

Whales, 7/2006

Sea Lions, 5/2006

Tiger, 4/2006

Jaguar, 2/2006

South Georgia, 12/2005

New Generation, 11/2005

Childhood, 9/2005

Penguins, 8/2005

Sea Palms, 7/2005

Aster Flower, 6/2005

Siskiyou Mountains, 5/2005

Humpback Whales, 4/2005

Christo GATES , 3/2005

Eucalyptus Leaves, 2/2005

Alaskan Aurora, 1/2005

Nesting Turtle, 12/2004

Autumn Berries, 10/2004

Costa Rica, 3/2004

Aurora Borealis, 10/2003

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