Dawn and dusk provide the most spectacular colours in the bush. There are so many different wild and natural features out here which have the potential to provide perfect opportunities to capture an incredible silhouette. Currently the bush is still lush and green but although most trees are still well foliated, the dead ones offer relatively uncluttered photographic settings.
This week I have based TWIP on two different themes which I have really been enjoying trying to capture in the last few weeks; Silhouettes and Night Photography.
Sometimes fortune just smiles on you and you are in the right place at the right time, with the shot just lining up for you, and other times you need to recognize potential in a scene and work hard to try and realize it.
Enjoy this Week in Pictures….
A perfect sunrise from a few mornings ago. Here you can see how wide the spectrum of colours can be, and by careful positioning you can use natural features like dead trees to frame the sun. f9, 1/640s, 125 ISO.
As the sun rose we were watching a herd of elephants moving across a clearing. The first rays of sun hit the disturbed dust of the I was able to capture the young elephant playing with a sub adult with some soft backlighting. f5.6, 1/250s, ISO 640.
The morning also offers a very soft gentle light. As this female leopard was moving through the thicket she momentarily paused to scan as the backlighting of her body was accentuated by the simultaneous backlighting of the foliage. f5.6, 1/500s, ISO 200.
The Tamboti female inhabited the south-eastern sections of Londolozi, having a large part of her territory along the Maxabene Riverbed.
An owl which is only ver rarely seen at Londolozi. Luckily Shadrack spotted this barn owl about 50m off the road perched in a tree. We have started to hear a Barn Owl calls above the Londolozi camps at night, so maybe there is even a pair nesting nearby. f6.3, 1/100s, ISO 2000
We had just left a dinner stop where we had been talking about the animals one could see at night. Snakes are some of them; usually more active during the day but some species are actually predominantly nocturnal. The bright luminous green of this boomslang made it very visible in the spotlight. f6.3, 1/200s, ISO 3200
As the sun was setting we could not miss this beautiful male white rhino moving along one of the crests, perfectly silhouetted as the sun was going down behind him. We waited for a few moments until he moved into the perfect position to capture both the sun and his magnificent features. f8, 1/200s, ISO 100
A lesser bush baby momentarily freezes allowing us to snap one picture before it jumped off. They are fairly common nocturnal primates but sightings are often fleeting as they leap readily between trees. f8, 1/80s, ISO2500
This was something I have been waiting so long to try and photograph. Just as we set off for drive we were heading along our airstrip when this pack of wild dogs rushed out of the thicket, scattering a herd of wildebeest. They then settled down on the northern end of the strip. As the tarmac is slightly raised at this point, it was possible to position ourselves at eye level with them with the rising sun behind. f5.6, 1/250s, ISO640.
One of my favourite owls is the Southern white faced owl. I couldn’t believe how calm this individual was, as we came around the corner we were met with its beautiful golden orange eyes staring us down. We sat in silence and listened to it calling in the stillness of the evening. f7.1, 1/125s, ISO1000
It was a very windy afternoon and we had been waiting for this Majingilane male to start moving. As it started getting cooler he sat up, facing head on into the wind as the sun started setting in the background; we managed to get into the right place to capture the different tawny colours of the bush. f5.6, 1/200s, ISO500
Waterbuck are often rather shy by nature and I personally have not had too many opportunities to photograph them in the fading light, until two days ago we saw this male scanning the surrounding area from the top of a termite mound. f6.3, 1/640s, ISO640.
I’m cheating here as this is an old photo, but I haven’t ever published it and thought it fitted the low light theme of today. This was a very memorable evening for myself and guests. The light was fading and we were about to leave the sighting when one of the cubs of the Tamboti female came around the corner and walked directly into one of the last of the sun’s rays. Seconds later the golden light was gone. f5.6, 1/250s, ISO640.
A spotted genet was perched up in one of the branches of a marula tree just outside of camp. These creatures are also nocturnal and we managed to see it before it scurried down the tree for an evening of activity. f5.6, 1/200s, ISO3200.
We were having drinks and admiring the sunset when a journey of giraffes came closer to inspect what all the laughter and movement was. We jumped at the chance to photograph the giraffe that close to us, little did we know it was going to come out a lot better than we expected; as we moved out towards them with our cameras, the golden light illuminated the clouds in the background. f5, 1/1500s, ISO400.
This last picture is a test for all the bird enthusiasts who read the blog. Shadrack spotted this beautiful bird with its crop extremely full a few nights ago as it was perched on the branch trying to digest what it had eaten. What do you think it is? f6.3, 1/400s, ISO200o