22 Apr 2011

Earth Day: The Choice Is Ours

There are two ways we can leave behind earth to our next generations.

Etosha Pan, Namibia

Let us make the right choice - together.

Corcovado Nationalpark, Costa Rica

21 Apr 2011

Ready To Die? Risks In Wildlife Photography

How much risks should we as wildlife photographers take to obtain an image? I have had my share of critical and sometimes dangerous moments in my career. Looking back at some of those instances I realize that in the heat of the moment the passion and eagerness to get a great picture overcame any fear or caution I should have had. Observing wildlife for long periods I do have a good sense and may read their behaviour better than an average person, but ultimately wild animals are unpredictable. No wildlife image is worth loosing your life, better to count to ten and think again before you expose yourself to harms way.

This image with an eye to eye low level view with a young lion I took in Botswana's Savuti Marsh, a part of Chobe Nationalpark. A pride of about twelve lions where lounging on one side of a small waterhole. I knew they had been feasting on an elephant carcass not far off and choose to take the risk of getting out of my Landcruiser. I crawled under my vehicle and rested my 300mm on a small bean bag. The lions, especially the young ones, took an immediate interest in me and watched me intensely no more than six meters away. I must have not breathed the whole time and my heart was knocking like mad. I got some great shots and made it back into the safety of my car without incident.

Tell me about your risky moments.

Lion At Waterhole, Savuti Marsh, Botswana

19 Apr 2011

The Spirit Of Ancient Peru

Treasured by ancient people of the South American rainforest the ocelot almost looks like a dwarf leopard. One of the few captive animal shots of mine, taken within a big enclosure in Costa Rica. I don't shoot a lot of animal portraits, but this has a nice dreamy touch and show those long sensitive whiskers very nicely.

Ocelot, Costa Rica

17 Apr 2011

Broken Symmetry

While in Africa I remembered this great BBC documentary with a particular amusing scene; filming ostriches drinking at a waterhole the cameraman kept the framing steady at head level of the ostriches and in regular intervals they would pop their heads in and out of view. Sitting at a waterhole in Etosha and observing these quirky big birds that funny scene flashed before my eyes and I tried to catch it in a photograph - it didn't really work out. Still, I did get some nice shots of an ostrich trio, their long necks seemingly extended from one single body. While some of you may remark that the image could have been cropped/cloned to remove the out of focus zebras in the background I do prefer this version; I would always sacrifice symmetry for context.

Ostrich, Etosha Nationalpark, Namibia

16 Apr 2011

Scars Of Time

Erosion is the visualization of time. It takes decades, centuries and millenniums for a part of earth to evolve into an object of natural art. I found this beautiful specimen in the Namib Desert. A stone boulder in the midst of others spread over a sand dune shows deep scars of abrasion caused by the winds and sands. A mild winter sunset allows for full frontal light without too much contrast. Getting real close to the rock with my 20mm wide angle lens resulted in this dynamic composition.

Scars Of Time, Sesriem, Central Namib, Namibia

14 Apr 2011

Get Down On Your Knees

One could, and many blog-photographers do, write in great length about how to make great pictures. I sometimes find that good advice is often muddled up in to much decorative philosophy. So, without further ado, try to change your viewpoint when working on a subject - get down on your knees. As naive as this tip may sound, I bet many photogs forget the simple things in the heat of the moment.

Perigrin Falcon, Arizona, North America