Go wide or crop tight. Show the animal in it’s surrounding (if you can get down to ground level you’ll add impact) or go for the head shot and try and get a memorable expression.
Once you have photographed all of the Big 5 to your hearts content, you will find that there are so many other images begging to be captured. I have seen many repeat guests to Londolozi who have a desire towards creating unique photographs across a diverse array of subject matter. So here are a few ideas to keep in mind for adding unique elements to your pictures.
Great light does not only occur in the early morning and late afternoon when the sun is about to set. Often you get amazing colours once the sun has gone down which allows you to create images with striking silhouettes. One such trick is to find a bare tree and front light it with a flash. These pictures are often stunning as they have a beautiful background but also an interesting foreground image which is well lit up.
Light also works well when photographed through drops or across sheets of water. The unpredictable movement of water can create interesting shapes that couple well with sunlight.
Look for the Macro
Spiderwebs, flowers, insects and reptiles are so easy to overlook when driving and walking around the wilderness. If you are in camp, choose a small area and see how many things you can photograph in this area. I guarantee that you will be very surprised at the images you get of things such as the bark on trees, dew drops, colorful petals and camouflaged agamas.
Get Your Knees Dirty
Take the time to kneel on the ground, lie on your stomach and find different positions to take pictures from. An low-level photograph of a python will look far more interesting that one taken downwards. A gap in the long grass provides a nice frame for another subject matter. You will also discover that new things suddenly appear when you look at them from a different perspective. Most animals pictures look much better when photographed from eye-level
Involve Contrasting Subjects
A great photograph can be comprised of many things. Some are amazingly simple whilst others intriguingly complex. I have found that the combination of interesting and contrasting subject matters provide for brilliantly unique pictures. In the bush this is as true for thing such as cloud patterns, tree shapes and seasonal colors of the plant life. If you mix and match textures, shapes, patterns, colours and animals you will find that your images suddenly have many different elements and the photographs become that much more interesting.
Let me know what other ideas you have for creative wildlife photography in the comments section below. The more ideas we throw together initially, the more we will be able to try out in the field.
Filed under Photography
I suggest bringing a 100 – 400mm Canon Lens as this is probably the most versatile lens to use on safari.
Many people will also use a standard 70 – 300mm telephoto lens and if they have a large budget will also bring a fixed 500mm lens.
If you are into landscapes then bring something a little wider like a 16 – 35mm lens which you can use as well. If possible bring a camera for each lens so that you dont have to keep changing the lenses off the same body.
Does that answer your question or would you like some more information?