Kenya photo safari

Virtual Photo Safari Epilogue - Thank You &Beyond


This post brings to a close my week-long posts on my recent photo safari to Kenya's wonderful Masai Mara. The adventure was organized by &Beyond - a leader in Africa travel and tours.

It was truly an amazing experience - made even more amazing by the entire staff at our base camp, Bateleur, and the adjacent camp, Kichwa Tembo.

Scroll down to see my other six posts about the trip.

I am currently planning a 2012 photo workshop/tour to Tanzania. Shoot me an email if you are interested.

A few special "thank you" notes are in order - in addition to thanking YOU for following along here on my blog. 


Above: Thank you Moses Kibet. Moses was our guide/drive/naturalist for six to seven hours each day. Thanks for sharing all your knowledge.


Above: Moses was also was our on-safari chef. Great yogurt/honey, coffee, buns, fruit, eggs and sausage! And, what a location . . right next to the Mara river that's filled with hungry crocks. :-)


Above left: Thank you Jackson Tunai. Jackson was our expert walking safari guide, who, along with Francis Nkulet, made our on-foot adventures a real, well, adventure. Click here to see Jackson and Francis in action. Don't worry, we out-ran the lions! Thanks guys for keeping us safe. In the photo on the right, Jackson, and his friend Johnston, pose for a photograph.


Above: Thanks to Milka Kerubo, operations manager at Bateleur Camp, and Joseph Masibo, Camp Manager, for keeping on the lights for us after a long day on safari. And, thanks for the room/tent service.  


Above: Thanks to the band/staff who gave us a special pre-dinner performance on the Mara. Even the chef joined the fun.


Below: One more thank you goes to Boniface Oduor (left) who made each and every meal a real treat. Boniface now knows all my best magic tricks, which is why they now call him the "Magic Man." Yes, that's Moses on the right.


Again, thanks to everyone at &Beyond, especially Tarryn Gibson, Market Manger at &Beyond in South Africa, for making our stay so very special.

If you'd like to join me on my 2012 photo safari to Tanzania, shoot me an email.

Explore the light,
Rick


P.S. One more tip, illustrated with a photograph from a previous trip to the Mara: Remember that "Composition is the Strongest Way of Seeing." Compose carefully. 

More on composition on my next Kelby Training class, coming December 4th, called: "Composition is the Strongest Way of Seeing." Stay tuned.

Virtual Photo Safari Part VI: See and Shoot Eye to Eye


Each day this week I will take you on a virtual photo safari to Kenya's Masai Mara. Each post will feature a safari tip and a photo tip - or two.


I took the images for the posts on a recent trek to the Masai Mara that was organized by &Beyond, a leader in Africa travel tours. Bateleur was our base camp for the eight-day adventure . . . and what an adventure.


The pictures in the post were taken with my Canon 7D and Canon 100-400mm IS lens.


Scroll down to see my other posts.


Shoot me an email soon if you want to get on the list for my 2012 Tanzania Great Migration workshop/tour.)


Safari Tip: Plan on downtime and download/back-up time between the very early morning and very late afternoon game drives – when most of the action happens. During the late morning and mid-day hours, most of the animals take it easy - some after having had a big, fresh breakfast.



Photo Tip: See eye-to-eye and shoot eye-to-eye. Get down as low as possible in the safari vehicle so you can shoot at eye-level to the subject. The person in the safari vehicle pictured below is in the top-most seat, which is good for viewing, but not the best for photography. The first row, which is lower to the ground, is a much better shooting position. Next to the driver is even better.


Also, try to book an open-sided vehicle, that is, one without glass windows. You'll get clearer shots.




Try black and white. It's fun and creative. Above: I used Nik Software's Silver Efex Pro to create this image of black and white animals - or are they white and black? :-)




Above: Here's a look at the Nik Software Silver Efex main window. For a discount on all Nik plug-ins, as well as some of the other plug-ins I use, click here.




Be prepared for the lions to come very close to your vehicle - which is thrilling. Don't worry, the lions don't recognize you as food as long as you are in the vehicle.


Explore the light,
Rick



Virtual Photo Safari Part V: Power Up


I took the images for the posts on a recent trek to the Masia Mara organized by &Beyond, a leader in African travel tours. Bateleur was our base camp for the eight-day adventure - and what an adventure. I took the image above with my Canon 5D Mark II and Canon 24-105mm IS lens.

Scroll down to see my other posts.

Safari Tip: Listen to your guide - very carefully. He or she will tell you when it's okay to shoot, and when it's time to move. Also, don't be bashful about asking your guide/driver to move the safari vehicle a bit left or right or backward or forward so you can get a shot. Guides are there to help you get great shots.


Photo Tips: Bring all necessary power adapters and converters for your cameras and computers (and hair dryer if you use one). Bring a surge protection power strip so you can charge several devices at once. Pack back-up battery chargers and a computer power charger. Ask when generators go off and on and unplug your computer during those times.

If you'd like to get on the list for my 2012 Tanzania photo safari, shoot me an email.


If you would like me to speak about my travels and photography at an event, see this link for info.

Explore the light,
Rick

Virtual Photo Safari: Part I - Behavior Shots


Each day this week I will take you on a daily virtual photo safari to Kenya's Masai Mara. Each post will feature a travel tip and a photo tip - or two. 

I took the images for the posts on a recent trek to the Masai Mara. The entire trip was organized by &Beyond, a leader in African adventure tours.

I used my Canon EOS 7D and Canon 100-400mm IS lens for most of the images in the posts. The wider-angle shots were taken with my Canon 24-105mm IS lens. All hand-held.

Safari Tip: You'll need three ingredients to get good photos: patience, luck and time. A great guide is also important. I was very lucky to get most of my keepers (80 percent) on the first four days of the photo safari. I also had a great guide!

Photo Tips: Go for behavior shots in addition to taking portraits. 

Use plug-ins to change the mood and feel of a picture. Above: I used the Full Dynamic Range Soft filter in Nik's Silver Efex Pro. Below I used the Yellow 1 filter in the same plug-in. I also added the image borders in Silver Efex Pro.

Remember, when you remove the color from an image, you remove some of the reality. When you remove some of the reality, your picture can become more artistic and creative.


Check out my plug-ins page to save a few bucks on Nik Software and other plug-ins.

Below is my original photograph.


If you'd like to join one of my travel tours/workshops, see the Workshops page of my site. Also, if you are interested in an exclusive, 4-person workshop to Tanzania in 2012, shoot me an email.

I will be giving a presentation on photo safaris at the Explorers Club (where I am a member) in NYC in the spring of 2012. Stay tuned for the date.

To see more pictures from Kenya, check out my friend Andy Williams' SmugMug site. Nice work, Andy!

Explore the light,
Rick

P.S. If you plan on going to Kenya, have been to Kenya, have dreams of going to Kenya, or simply want to read about a wonderful adventure, check out West with the Night.

One Week Virtual Photo Safari: Preview

 

Starting Monday here on my blog, I will take you on a daily virtual photo safari to Kenya's Masai Mara. Each post will feature a travel tip and a photo tip - or two. I can't wait to share the photographs with you! It was truly an amazing adventure, from start to finish.

I took the images for the posts on a recent trek to the Masai Mara. The entire trip was organized by &Beyond, a leader in African adventure tours. Bateleur, which is adjacent to Kichwa Tembo, was our base camp for the eight-day trip. The camps have, what many feel, are some of the best guides and service in the business. Our guide was Moses Kibet, who gets part of the credit for my photographs, because he got me into position to get the shots I wanted. Thank you Moses!

I used my Canon EOS 7D and Canon 100-400mm IS lens for most of the images in the posts. The wider-angle shots were taken with my Canon 24-105mm IS lens. All hand-held.

Speaking of Kenya, my friend Scott Kelby has a favorite charity, Springs of Hope Kenya. It's a worthwhile organization. You can make a donation - and a difference - by clicking here.
 
As a preview of photo safari week. . .

Photograph by Susan Sammon
Safari Tip: Go on a walking safari. It's a totally different experience from riding in and shooting from a safari vehicle. Here I am hanging out with Francis Nkulet (left), who was on the constant lookout for hungry animals, and Jackson Tunai, our Masai guide for the two-hour trek.

Photo Tips: Focus on the eyes. If the eyes are not in focus, you've missed the shot.

To sharpen this shot, I used Nik Software's Sharpener Pro. Check out my plug-ins page to save a few bucks on Nik Software and other plug-ins.

If you'd like to join one of my travel tours/workshops, see the Workshops page of my site.

Finally, thanks to entire &Beyond staff for making our trip a memorable experience!

Explore the light,
Rick

P.S. If you plan on going to Kenya, have been to Kenya, have dreams of going to Kenya, or simply want to read a wonderful adventure book, check out West with the Night.