Canon wildlife photographer Nigel Chester-Buckley is based in the East Midlands of England and enjoys several photo opportunities close to home as well as through his travels. Nigel creates unique and exceptional images from a variety of subjects and viewpoints. Nigel’s body of work is quite expansive and his passion and drive for photography speak for itself. As you browse through some of the photographs from his collections below, I think you’ll agree that he is quite an accomplished artist.
Thank you, Nigel, for spending the time to share your story with us. Your body of work is truly inspiring.
Can you please tell the readers a bit about yourself?
I’m an electrician by trade from leaving school to the present day and worked primarily in the injection moulding business for most of it until I came made redundant last March. I now work for ULHT Lincoln County hospital as an electrician.
Where do you call home?
I am from Boston, Lincolnshire originally but moved to a village near Lincoln 26 years ago when I got married to Sarah.
After browsing through your website, I see that you have built up an extensive collection of wonderful photography. When did you first become interested in photography and how long have you been involved with it?
I have always had an interest in photography from an early age due to my uncle having a darkroom in his loft and he was always an avid Canon user!
Are you satisfied with your choice of getting involved with this industry? Is there anything else you would rather be doing?
I love going out and about to see what I can find and a lot of it is unplanned and this is what I think makes it. If I could make enough money out of the industry I would give up my day job.
When shooting subjects, what do you find most challenging?
The biggest challenge especially with lockdown is to keep yourself motivated and always look locally to find new subjects, it’s all about finding what is around you to find.
The challenge is to get out there and find something new to photograph in a different way.
What would you say your most remarkable wildlife encounter has been?
The most remarkable encounter was a couple of years ago when I was taking images of deer when I felt like everything clicked into place.
What is your favorite part of heading out to a new location?
Is to find new areas and new birds etc. Especially when on holiday like South Africa to expect the unexpected.
What has been the biggest source of inspiration in your work?
Inspiration comes from reading and Youtube about location and gear to use.
Individuals who have inspired me, include Danny Green, Simon King, and Andy Rouse. I have picked up little tips from them over the last few years to help me think differently about images and composition.
What do you hope viewers take away from your images?
I hope viewers think I have thought about the image rather than just a snap.
Do you have any tips for new photographers who want to take better wildlife photographs?
For new photographers learn about the basics first instead of jumping in feet first and spending thousands on equipment, it’s the person behind the camera, not just the equipment, and get to know your gear inside out.
What type of camera(s) do you shoot with? What is your favorite lens?
100 400 L
70 200 2.8 L
24 70 F4 IS
16 35 F4 IS
600 MM F4 I.S.
What is in your camera bag?
GITZO 5 Series with fluid head
Gitzo Traveler Series 1
And various other ones
What is your favorite photography accessory?
Favourite lens 600mm – it’s so sharp.
The best accessory is the 5 series Gitzo its a beast but is ultra-stable.
What piece of equipment would you most like to get but don’t have yet?
I have had many cameras but I might venture into the mirrorless world one day when they are good enough.
I have had the eos R and was great for most things but it was the lag in the viewfinder maybe I will get the R6 someday.
How important is Photoshop or other image editing software in your final images?
I mainly use Lightroom on my macs and rarely use Photoshop unless there is something that needs addressing.
Was there a point in your journey when you started to feel really good about your work? If so, what did it feel like to get past that “tipping point?”
Getting my 600mm I.S L and couple of years ago really was a turning point in image quality for me. It’s all about the lens, not just the camera body.
Do you have any projects that make you look back and shake your head? What made the experience so unpleasant?
Unpleasant experience none at the moment.
What do you think the future holds for you? Where do you see yourself in the next few years?
Future projects are ospreys and deer photography when we can finally be allowed out.
Some favourite UK destinations are:
Rspb Frampton Marsh
Rspb Freiston shore
(L) Nigel Chester-Buckley with Simon King (R)