Arrangement of swans
Stefano spent six weeks at Lake Kussharo, in Hokkaido, Japan, before he found the perfect conditions to portray the winter gathering of whooper swans. One night, wind swept the snow across the surface of the frozen lake. The resulting snow crust was so hard that, though the 150 or so swans had walked all over it, their footprints could barely be seen. 'I wanted the swans to look as though they'd been 'painted' on top of the snow,' says Stefano. Lying on the ice for several hours, he experimented with compositions using parts of their bodies against the white canvas as graphic elements. The final touch was to increase the contrast and brightness slightly during processing.
Nikon D3 + 24-70mm lens; 1/320 sec at f16; ISO 1000.
Lake Kussharo, Hokkaido, Japan
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Stefano Unterthiner, Italy
Stefano works with his wife Stéphanie, with whom he founded the publishing house Ylaios and created The Little Wild Gallery, his personal photography gallery in the Forte di Bard (Italy). He was recently chosen by the Valle d'Aosta region to endorse their ecotourism project VIVA. Since 2009, he has regularly collaborated with National Geographic magazine.