Friday, September 12, 2008

Weekly High Five #16

There have been a lot of new images added to the Photo-Africa Stock Library this week and again featured quite a few images of lions. The 'king of beasts' will always continue to draw the attention of visitors to African Game Reserves and WIldlife Photographers alike. This week I have chosen two lion images along with a landscape, rhino and abstract image.

Here goes with the latest 'Weekly High Five'.

Image 1 - Arguing Lions by Gavin Tonkinson

This image makes great use of framing and solor to highlight the focal area. These two lions where sharing a wildebeest and, as always when the food runs out, had a few 'friendly negotiations' about who is getting the last bits. The females snarling face has been placed perfectly next to the male and the red color of the wildebeest's ribs heightens the emotion of the scene. If you have every seen a scene like this you will now how difficult it is to get great images as there is so much happening and a 'food fight' can start and end in a matter of seconds. Patience and a steady hand can make for great images like this.

* * *

Image 2 - Black Rhino and Calf by Grant Marcus

The very endangered Black Rhino (or more correctly Hooked-Lipped Rhino). Difficult to see and even more difficult to photograph. This image works very well and has a nice contrast of eye contact from the mother staring at you mixed with a dynamic feel of the youngster wanting to move away to the right of the frame. With these dull grey animals you can very easily loose impact but in this case the background has been blurred nicely through a good choice of aperture. Nice image of a rarely seen animal.

* * *

Image 3 - Eating Lion Close Up by Gerry van der Walt

When you see a lion feeding in the wild there are hundreds of different ways you can approach the scene from a photographic poiunt of view. This image shows just another way to capture the brutal beauty of nature at work. By getting in really close to the action you create a more surreal image rather than the full on blood and guts which you are always tempted to shoot during a scene like this (I mean this in a good way). The image works as the teeth and eye have been placed on the power points and creates an invisible diagonal line which make any image more appealing to the viewer. I also quite like the nose twisting very slightly to the centre of the image as the lion bites into the wildebeest. Interesting close up and different way of shooting lions on a kill.

* * *

Image 4 - River Landscape by Craig Muller

Where wildlife photography has a lot to do with being at the right place at the right time, landscape photography demands a bit more planning. You can take your time in finding the right scene, best angle and plan the image out - not always the case with wildlife photography. This image has been planned very nicely. There are two 'entrance points' which both leads you to the other. You can either start from the blue sky and follow the river down or vice versa. The two cliffs has also been placed in the correct position and creates a dynamic feel by your view going from the highest point down and to hte left of the frame. Nicely planned and executed landscape image.

* * *

Image 5 - Baboons in Leadwood by Gavin Tonkinson

I like this image as it is plain and simple. A lot of the times we try and do too much with an image and feel we have to keep on adding more elements to make it interesting. Not always the case. The two baboons in the dead leadwood tree gives the tree a little bit of life and the tree with blue background makes for a very striking image. Difficult choice this week as I like the landscape image a lot as well but I think I am going to go with this this one for my pick of the week.

* * *

As always I look forward to hearing your comments and choices of this week's images. It is always difficult choosing just 5 images from the many that are uploaded each week so for more amazing images make sure to visit the Photo-Africa Stock Library. You can also view more of the photographers work by visiting the Photo-Africa Home Page and then clicking on the link which will take you to their own personal page on Photo-Africa.

Update on Madikwe Fires

As you might have read in a previous post there have been serious wild fires running rampant through Madikwe. The wind has not been any help and has been swirling the fires in various directions.

By last nigh most of the major burns in the north western part of the reserve was under control. As we were sitting outside out house we noticed a orange glow on the horizon due east from the lodge. We jumped in the vehicles and immediately went to check it out. After checking with Parks Board we were told that they were aware of a fire in that area. We drove along one of the main roads where the fire would hopefully stop. Our concern was that if the fire jumped the road it would be heading directly towards our lodge. Luckily this did not happen and so far this morning everything seems under control.

Here are a few images I took with my small Sony T100 last night around 10pm as we drove around to check the wild fires.

It has been quite a stressful few days with all the fires but you have to deal with it and move on. Will keep you posted as the next few days go on and as we receive information on how much damage was caused.

As always I look forward to hearing from you!

Until next time.



Michael Palmer said...

Your lungs must be aching, We had some fires in FL that raged for a couple weeks and did I feel it in my chest. Mother Nature needs to clean house I guess. I like the Rhino's -

SAPhotographs said...

I am SO envious of those black rhino shots Gerry!! :) Great capture. Veld fires at this time of year are a pain. I know!! I once spent 3 days fighting one which came near the lodge I was at.

Mike - Fenphotography said...

Stunning high five Gerry and the fire pics look so dramatic not something I'd like to be too near.

luke said...

lucky enough we didnt have to fight the fires but pics are amzing