Henri Cartier Bresson “the father of modern photojournalism,” once said that “Photography is not like painting, there is a creative fraction of a second when you are taking a picture. Your eye must see a composition or an expression that life itself offers you, and you must know with intuition when to click the camera. That is the moment [when] the photographer is creative. Once you miss it, it is gone forever.”

This is especially true when the subject is not another human being, and you are trying to guess what they may do next, or to capture a unique expression. I remember how this raccoon studied me carefully, as I studied her, each of us trying to guess what the other would do next.

I could “see” the proverbial wheels turning in her mind as she was trying to decide how close to let me approach. So, in essence, this is the capture of the facial expression of another species during their “decisive moment” — the split second she took to decide whether to stay or run…

And then she, and the moment, were gone.