Summer is almost here. After months of short days and perhaps a mood that matches staying indoors (if your winters are wet and cold), shed those winter blues and head out on safari with these 5 handy tips to help you with your summer photography.
Wet Weather Protection
The weather at Londolozi in summer features high temperatures with the chance of afternoon thunderstorms. Rain gear to protect your camera is a good idea. I would advise having a camera rain jacket, which is great for when you still want to carry on shooting but the rain is not too heavy. To protect your gear on the journey back to camp, pelican cases are hardy and so your gear is sure to stay dry. If a pelican case is not convenient (they can be quite bulky and heavy) a dry-bag is great to wrap around your camera bag.
Don’t Stop Shooting in the Rain
Most modern DSLR cameras and lenses are pretty robust and can handle being out in light rain. My advice: Keep shooting!
Animals behave differently in the rain, so the chance that you will be able to capture a really interesting shot increases. Storm clouds add a dramatic background, leopards and lions will shake themselves free of water, and a slightly slower shutter speed can accentuate the falling rain drops. Think outside the box, and more importantly, if the rain isn’t too heavy, keep your camera out of the box as well!
Watch Out For Condensation
In often-humid conditions, it is important to try and prevent condensation on your lenses. Condensation can form when your gear is exposed to a dramatic change in temperature and moisture content in the air; this will most often occur when you bring your camera from a cold and dry environment (eg. air-conditioned house or car) out to the hot and humid air. The best way to avoid this is to expose your bag to the humid air for some time before heading out on safari. The warm air will slowly seep into the bag, giving the camera equipment time to adjust to the different air temperature.
If you find that it is too late and the condensation has occurred, don’t panic, it can be fixed. Do not wipe the lens, this will only give you streaks on the filter – just leave it to dissipate. Do not detach the lens if it’s attached to your body; you do not want to expose the gear to more condensation. If you find that the condensation is taking awhile to dissipate, putting the lens in an airtight bag along with something that draws out the moisture can also help. Uncooked rice works well. Don’t use the camera or lens until all the condensation has dissipated.
With summer and all the new beginnings come vibrant colours and humming activity. Bring your Macro lens, or rent one from us here at Londolozi. In the summer months all the small and wonderful creatures come out; it is the perfect time to go out on safari and see what all the buzz is about, especially in the insect world. All manner of butterflies and beautiful beetles are to be found if one looks closely, and the stunning array of flowers that bloom at this time of year can offer incredible photographic opportunities with the right lens.
Use a Filter
Filters are ideal for shooting scenic and landscape images because they can increase overall colour saturation, add contrast to clouds for dramatic skies and eliminate unwanted glare from water and glass surfaces. In summer the days get longer, and the golden “hour” is usually a lot shorter.
If you have any questions about photography in summer (lenses to bring, extras to pack etc.) feel free to contact me in the Londolozi studio…