Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Serengeti Storm

As we were rushing to get to the site with the Leopard, I looked out my window and this is what I saw. The guide was kind enough to slam on the brakes and give us a minute to capture the scene. In a few minutes the double rainbow was gone and the sun was tucked away behind a cloud.

Technical: Canon 5D2, 24L II, f/6.3, 1/160s, ISO 200.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

King

The primary photographic goal during my trip to Tanzania was to make images that convey a sense of place. I tried to do this as much as I could by pulling back and incorporating as much of the landscape as possible within the image.

Of course when a Lion is looking right at you, its hard to not make the usual portrait.

But when the subject gets close to you, using a wide angle lens can help make a dramatic image which is as much a landscape image as it is wildlife.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Giraffes

Giraffes are probably my favorite overall subject to photograph. First they are an animal unique to the African continent, so when you see a picture with a Giraffe in it, you know where its from, especially when you see them running over the open plain as in the image above.

Then there's the face. One has to laugh when they see such a face.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

The Leopardess

I had missed a great opportunity to photograph a Leopard in a tree earlier during the safari. Fortunately, I did get the chance to work with this Leopardess on my last game drive.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Blessed Migration

Sometimes you just end up being at the right place with the right subject and the right light conditions. Our last game drive was just one of those times, I don't think its one I'll ever forget.

Technical: Canon 1Ds3, 70-200 f/2.8 IS II @ 200mm, f/6.3, 1/400s, ISO 400.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Thirsty

Both lions and elephants can be very interesting to observe while drinking. The elephants are great because they show so much joy when drinking, with both adults and children being playful.

Lions demonstrate an incredible intensity through their eyes when drinking. I find both very entertaining to observe.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Wildebeast Run

This was an image I was trying to make since the first time I saw Wildebeast run in the Serengeti. Each day, I took every opportunity when we saw Wildebeast run but I wasn't successful until the last day during the very last game drive.

Technical: Canon 1Ds3, 70-200 f/2.8 IS II @ 200mm, f/16, 1/15s, ISO 400.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

The Run

Zebra and Wildebeast run though Acacia trees while the run rises over the Serengeti. An aerial images gives such a wonderfully different perspective on these migrating animals which I like.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Lioness and Cub in Tree

This is the first image I've had to chance to fully work on since returning from Tanzania, its also one of my favorites from the trip. As we approached the tree this Lioness and her cubs were perched upon, she looked at us intently for a few moments. We must not have been that interesting to her, since it only lasted a couple of seconds and then he attention wandered.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

View from my Room

It was shortly after lunch and I was in my room, when I looked up, looked through the balcony window and saw this group of several elephants walking right across. This was taken with a 24mm lens, for the non-photo geeks, thats pretty wide, the elephants were only about 50 yards away.

I am now all packed up and ready to go. After breakfast, we catch a bush plane back to Arusha, then spend the rest of the day doing some shopping and just hanging out. The 25 hour journey home begins tonight. I go from Kilimanjaro airport to Amsterdam with a quick stop in Dar es Salaam. Wait a couple of hours in Amsterdam and then its a direct flight to SFO (thank goodness).

The Kill

Today was a spectacular last full day of safari. In the morning, we saw 3 lion kills in the span of about 40 minutes. We arrived in an area with a Lion Pride and quickly saw large masses of Wildebeast and Zebra coming to the area to drink. The third kill was the most spectacular with the female lion taking down a full grown Wildebeast (with a little assist at the end).

The evening game drive was equally spectacular with a Leopard coming down from a tree and posing for us followed by several cubs playing in the most beautiful light I've seen on this trip thus far. What a great way to wind down this safari.

Technical: Canon 1Ds3, 500 f/4 IS, f/5.6, 1/1000s, ISO 400.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Floating over the Serengeti

This morning, I woke up at 4 AM to take a hot air balloon ride over the Serengeti as the sun was rising. The ride was fantastic and I had the opportunity to photograph part of the migration from the air. In the afternoon, we saw a Leopard in a tree who came down soon after we arrived. We followed the Leopard until it went down for a drink, after which point we didn't see it again.

Technical: Canon 1Ds3, 70-200 f/2.8 IS II @ 200mm, f/4, 1/4000s, ISO 800.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Arrived in the Central Serengeti

We left Kusini today and drove north to Belila Lodge. The lodge is gorgeous, being recently built and seemingly without having spared any expense. In the afternoon we drove out to a hippo pond in the hopes of catching yawning hippos. You don't want to know whats in the water...

Technical: Canon 1D4, 70-200 f/2.8 IS II @ 200mm, f/4.5, 1/320s, ISO 100.

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

The Pride

In the first hour of the game drive today we ran into a pride of lions going down to the water for a drink. We followed them for about an hour and watched them, including standing off against several hyenas. For a while it looked there was going to be a fight, but it didn't happen. We also found about a dozen Giraffe on the open plain which I'm told is not common (they like to hang out by the trees for food).

Technical: Canon 1Ds3, 500mm f/4 IS, f/8, 1/1000s, ISO 400.

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

12 Hour Game Drive


Today was a long day. After a delicious hot breakfast, we left camp at 6:30 and began our journey northward looking for the migrating herds. Along the way we had great sightings of Giraffe, Elephants, Cheetahs and a beautiful lioness draped on a tree. We found a large herd of Wildebeast in the afternoon before heading back to camp. Today gave me an idea of just how large the Serengeti is and how diverse the landscape can be. At the start of the day the ground was green with new grass with it getting drier the farther north we went.

Technical: Canon 1D4, 70-200 f/2.8 IS II @ 200mm, f/6.3, 1/500s, ISO 200.

Driving to the Serengeti


Today we drove to the Serengeti National Park. Along the way we had several sightings of Giraffes, including a few that crossed the road in front of us. The Serengeti is just an incredible place and in the late afternoon we were hit by a rain storm unlike anything I've seen before. The next couple of days will be spent at Kusini Permanent Tented Camps.

Technical: Canon 5D2, 24L II, f/5, 1/1600s, ISO 200.

Monday, March 07, 2011

Ngorongoro Crater


Our first full day of shooting was in the Ngorongoro Crater. We headed out early since it takes nearly 90 minutes to get the bottom of the crater from where we were staying. As we were driving the rim of the crater, it was cloudy on and off giving the drive a sense of mystery. We got our first view of the crater as the sun was just coming up and the view was spectacular. We ended up a variety of light, first filtered through some clouds, overcast, and also direct sunlight. We also had fluffy clouds in the sky which I'm told isn't common, making for great photography. The Zebras were probably my favorite subject today. It was a long but productive and above all fun day.

Technical: Canon 1D4, 500mm f/4, f/5.6, 1/2500s, ISO 400.

Saturday, March 05, 2011

Made It To Tanzania

Both me and my baggage successfully made it to Tanzania yesterday. I'm still very much jet lagged, but hopefully it will improve tomorrow. Today was a driving and practice day. I wandered around the grounds of the cottage farm we are staying at looking for birds. I also had captured these two Giraffes on our afternoon game drive.

Technical: Canon 1D4, 500 f/4 IS, f/5.6, 1/800s, ISO 400.

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

New Image Release - Colorful Aspens

This image was originally captured and processed last fall during my trip to the Eastern Sierras. I recently reprocessed this image, mostly to tighten the composition with a little cropping. The image was originally captured with several images and then stitched in Photoshop CS5. The resulting panoramic has enough resolution to make a very well detailed 24" x 45" print.