“It’s a beautiful thing when a career and a passion come together” …
I read this quote most mornings when I am in the back of Varty Camp. I am not sure who put the quote up but I find it perfectly fitting for the Londolozi family who live out here in the wilderness.
For me photography often reflects the passion I have for the bush and for being a guide. By sharing photos, others are allowed a glimpse into that passion and can hopefully experience their own version of it. It is not an easy task to reflect the passion I have for my job in nature through a single image and as I have mentioned in a previous blog this has led to me finding it difficult to know when to capture the moment with my camera or when to put my lens down and just enjoy the moment. However, as I slowly build on my photography skills I find getting this balance right a daunting yet enjoyable task. I don’t think one can ever quite master that perfectly, but I hope you enjoy these moments when I had my lens up.
Enjoy this Week in Pictures…
A combination of great morning light and a recently filled mud wallow allowed me and James Tyrrell to play with reflection as two Mhangeni pride members drank.
Seeing the individualistic markings on a wild dog make them one of the most beautiful species we get to see. Rightfully, often known as the African painted wolf.
We stopped to admire the colourations of this Nyala bull. He is in the process of showing his full darker brown colouration, from the far more lighter brown which can still be seen on his forehead.
The intense stare of the Ottawa male. I thoroughly enjoy the floppiness of his mane at the top. An impressive male lion to say the least.
A pair of Woodland kingfishers delivering their iconic call in the bush from November to April.
My first look at the Makomsava cub, as she stared intensely at hyenas in the distance. Both mother and cub were so relaxed. It was incredible to see the bond between them while grooming one another up in this Marula tree.
A rhino bull this size can carry up to 25 kilograms of mud as excess weight after mud wallowing. It is great to see the textures of the mud on their body, post mud wallowing.
With prominent black stripes, it was hard not to capture this zebra as he stared into the distance, scanning his surrounds before continuing to feed.
This leopard is fully stretched as he descends the tree. His landing wasn’t as elegant as the image suggests.
Two bulls tussle playfully; this is great practice for when having to compete against another bull for the rights to mate with females.
Always providing humour in a sighting, the Ximungwe young male sits in an extremely strange position whilst in the fork of a Marula tree.
The Ximungwe female waits patiently for the Senegal bush male to move off after being chased up a tree by him when she came too close to his kill.
Eggs and hatchlings make up a good portion of the Rock monitors’ diet. It’s likely that this individual clambered into the crevice of a Marula, where birds often nest, in search of an easy meal.
With good amounts of rain, elephant viewing has been at an all time high.
Not afraid to get dirty, a lion cub dips its chin into the mud as it drinks from a shallow pan. The early morning golden light provided a beautiful contrast to the dark black cotton soil. I love how it looks like the cub is looking at its reflection in the water.
This newly born elephant calf battled to even walk while following its mother, stealing the hearts of everyone on the vehicle.
A young hyena feeds on the stomach content of a fallen kill at the base of a tree, while providing an eerie shadow in the background.
Having lions flop down in the shade of your vehicle, literally within arms reach, provides you with the opportunity to view every detail on their body. To stare into this cub’s eyes from so close was a special moment and I was able to only just capture it, even though I had zoomed out fully. Usually I aim to capture more of the animal but I was limited here purely by how close the pride was. Not a bad problem to have I guess.
Wowzer, these are spectacular – a vintage week 11/10
Absolutely gorgeous pictures!
Wow! Love your pics this week Dean. Fantastic images of leopards and lions.
Hard to select a favorite this week! Great style & variety!
Thanks for some fabulous photos Dean, hard to pick a favourite. What a wonderful sighting you had with the lions so close up – I remember on one drive a few years ago, a wild dog pack also used our vehicle for shade. The adults slept while the pups fought over a regurgitated impala ear!
I will think of that mud covered rhino every time I do a bentonite clay facial mask from here on.
Dean, I loved all the photos, I saved cub, I saved baby elephant, cub drinking the water, I also saved leopard,🤗
Thank you, Dean. Spectacular close ups. Enjoyed every one of them.
Marvelous photos! Thanks!
Great time to be behind the lens Dean. My favourite was the Rhino covered in mud as it reminded me of a question I have never had answered, viz how does a Rhino, which I imagine keeps the eye shut during the dunking process keep all of that mud from getting in his/her eye once the eye is opened again? And when mud gets in the eye how does he deal with the problem. Same question goes for Elephant, buffalo, warthogs etc.
Dean, great pictures thi sweek. Having the pride lie down right next to the vehicle had to be some kind of special
Such beautiful pics
I love this blog and look forward to the daily special surprises
Magnificent photographs Dean! Please continue to share your passion…you are so blessed to do what you do and have the skill to do it! These stir up yearnings for me to return to Londolozi more than ever!
Said the rhino, “So I AIN’T neat!
What a beautiful photo of Makhomsava’s little one! And the Ximungwe young male…..when is he getting his proper name? I think that leopards sit that way to relieve pressure on their fat bellies!
It is indeed one of the best things you can have: to join your career with your passion.
Wonderful photos, all of them! The lion cub and the leopards are just adorable.
What a gorgeous series of images!!! Some have such beautiful light.
Wonderful images the week, Dean! I am a fan of ‘portraits’ and these are iconic! Love looking the animal in the eyes. The Makomsava cub’s eyes are awesome, the black surround emphasizing their shape – memorable! Thanks!
The nyala photo is fantastic. Nyalas always remind me of Freddy
Looks like a great week! Wonderful captures!
As usual some lovely photos.
Exceptional photos Dean..you have truly brought a feeling of being there on a game drive. So obvious in your choice of subject and lighting to see the passion in the job you love. 🙏❤️
Wow! I am used to extraordinary with Londolozi, but still! These are just amazing – to be savored over and over!
Stunning photos!!!! Immensely enjoyable and educational. Wishing all there Merry Christmas and a safe, healthy and joyous New Year.
Oh goodness wouldness! Your close-ups of the lions and cub are exceptional. They bring a much needed shift to prevailing thoughts and emotions.
WOW! Those were great – I saved so many to my favorites! Love the floppy mane of the Othawa Male – he looks so suave. I could go on and on mentioning every picture because I loved them all!
This may be a question for tech support but I can no longer share the blog via email. I hit the envelope button and nothing happens. It’s been like that for me for a few days, but before that working perfectly.
Dean, What an incredible set of images! Your photography is inspiring us to hurry up and get back to Londolozi!
Fabulous photos, Dean. You are really becoming a spectacular photographer!
You’ve outdone yourself this week in the photos/comments department. There’s no favorite for me this week as each has its own specialness, although the Makomsava cub and the Mhagene cub may just have tipped the scale. Do you use aperture priority and auto iso in quick moments?
Hello Dean, I very much enjoyed it! I loved your photos and the way you write! I agree it was a lovely and a humoristic photo of the Ximungwe young male! He is wonderful to look at! Thank you for sharing!
I very much enjoyed it! I loved your photos and the way you write!
I agree it was a lovely and humoristic photo of the Ximungwe young male! He is wonderful to look at! Thank you for sharing!
Perhaps the leopard had more of the last baboon/monkey it feasted and took in its spirit and, now, thinks its tail is prehensile.
What a wonderful array of superb images! The cubs and lions were captivating! Great job!
Absolutely spectacular pictures! What a thrill to have the cubs under your car… what a trust
A stunning collection of photos this week, Dean! Career meeting passion? Indeed!!
So glad you are falling in love with the dogs!