I Took 64 Pictures Of Different Foxes That Tell A Lot About Their Personalities

“Don’t you have enough fox pictures yet?!” A question I get asked regularly. And my answer is always the same: “Not by a long shot!”

In a “former life”, I used to be a (web)designer. Not the worst job in the world, but in practice, however, this meant staring at a computer 24/7. I missed something essential, fresh air, nature, and a new challenge. Back then, I was too much of a thrill seeker to just walk around a bit. My camera provided me a mission, a challenge, and turned boring walks into exciting adventures. And one of the first challenges was to find that animal that had fascinated me since the fairy tale books from my childhood: the red fox. So, armed with my DSLR, I went on a ‘fox hunt’, not realizing this would be the beginning of a long and serious addiction.

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And indeed, since then, I made literally tons of fox photos, but these are just great excuses to keep stalking these fantastic animals. And no, I still can’t get enough. In fact, every day I find them a little sweeter and more beautiful.

Sixty four foxy faces

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I like almost anything that breathes, not only foxes. New nature photographers are added every day, making it more and more difficult to create something original. I try to stay close to myself and take my own and personal photos. I find myself becoming more and more interested in some more abstract photography because the creative possibilities are endless and it’s a perfect way of self-expression. But I can never get enough of foxes either. They are such intelligent animals with so much individuality. Foxes have been able to fascinate and surprise me for more than ten years now and as long as that is the case, the photos and projects will follow naturally.

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I always try to be original when taking pictures. The Netherlands, where I live, is a very small country with relatively little nature and a lot of people, which makes it quite a challenge to find something unique. And with social media sometimes functioning like a large copying machine, originality can be hard to find. That individuality and authenticity is very important to me. Just as I write my own personal texts as a writer, I also want to make my own personal photos and not just another animal picture. I know this sounds ambitious, but I am convinced that if you create something from the heart and put something of yourself into your creations, it has something unique, as there is only one you.

I like to experience the moment when you really disappear and become one with your subject and your surroundings. That’s the best feeling in the world. I can remember laying in the snow at 10.4°F and feeling perfect. It wasn’t until I went home that I noticed how cold, tired and hungry I actually was. When you are really in that “flow”, all inconveniences disappear. And these are also the moments when really special photos can emerge because that’s when the magic happens. I often hear: “You really know how to capture the character, the soul of an animal.” I think that people mean that they experience something of the connection that took place while making the photo. You see that, you feel that.

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I don’t need to travel very far to take beautiful pictures. The magic is not in the distance. Miracles happen right in front of you and that can be fox cubs in beautiful light or “simply” sparkling dragonfly wings, beautiful beech forests in autumn, or flocks of starlings that make the most beautiful shapes by sunset. Magic is everywhere, you just have to see it.

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The Smiling Fox

I remember “my” first fox (2009) like it was yesterday. A beautiful lady who always seemed to be smiling. Enjoy could have been her middle name. The story goes that she was raised as an orphan fox by foresters. I don’t know if it’s true. I do know, though, that I was amazed at her trust in people.

Sometimes I was sitting in a dune pan when she would surprise me with a visit. Quietly she would come and sit next to me, look at me and squeeze her eyes with satisfaction. I looked back, did the same and… for a moment the world was perfect. She taught me the art of “being in the moment.”

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Flatheads and Longnoses

At the time, there lived roughly two types of foxes in that area. One group looked like every part of them came rolling out of a round mold: strikingly round ears, big round eyes, fluffy round bodies and round faces with a short nose. These foxes I lovingly nicknamed the Flatheads.

In addition, there was a second family with an almost opposite appearance. Beautiful orange-red, slender foxes with a natural elegance, long pointy ears and large slanted eyes that gave them an almost sultry expression. Inspired by their exceptionally long noses, I called them – how could it be otherwise – the Longnoses.

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The average fox

Although the Flatheads and Longnoses were rival clans, I suspect there must have been regular love affairs, which mixed the bloodlines against all the rules. Over the years I noticed both sharp and rounded edges slowly disappear. Longnoses and Flatheaded seemed to blend into what could be characterized as an “average fox”.

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Facing foxes

“How can you tell all these foxes apart?” By now I must have roughly met about 50 foxes. And yet the answer is simple: “Exactly like you keep 50 people apart.” Just as you don’t usually confuse your neighbor with your uncle, the fox in the coastal area looks different from the fox in the forest.

Each fox has its own face. One has chocolate eyes, the other golden yellow. Some foxes have the cutest little eyebrows or very long whiskers, beautiful eyeliner, or strikingly white cheeks. But above all, they all have different expressions. Some foxes are boundlessly friendly. Others are just a bit grumpier. There are exceptionally clever specimens and more clumsy variants. Some foxes seem almost shy. Others have a genuine swagger. And very occasionally I suspect foxes secretly have a sense of humor. Which could very well be my projection, of course.

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64 Personalities

Anyway…all these totally different personalities, are reflected in their faces. And very, very occasionally a new cub is born with a cute flat nose, extremely round ears and a fluffy round body. She looks at me, squints her eyes, I do the same and for a moment the world is perfect again.

Do you still think that a fox is simply a fox…? Take a deep look into these 128 beautiful eyes and… think again!

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Source: boredpanda.com

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