Wildlife

Harry Potter

OKAY, so I don’t really know what to say about this encounter in Namibia in January, except that if my fellow Scot J.K. Rowling was with me, she would also be in shock. These ears are beyond even her imagination.

It’s such a simple image and therefore needs a simple narrative.

We watch Game of Thrones, Harry Potter and all these fantasies, but the biggest visual disconnects lie in reality. Until quite recently we didn't seem to be aware of or care for the true diversity of the creatures on our planet. We must learn to respect the biodiversity of this planet before we destroy it. I think the winds of change now have momentum.

He cast a spell on me for sure.

Available Sizes (Framed Size)

Large: 71" x 76" (180 cm x 193 cm)

Standard: 52" x 55" (132 cm x 140 cm)

Available Editions

Large: Edition of 12

Standard: Edition of 12

WAKANDA

We don’t have many strong images of Black Panthers, but the three that I have from the last twelve years are all coveted. I don’t think there is another animal that tests our camera systems and indeed our camera work as much as these beautiful cats.

On this occasion I was flat on the ground in a purpose built cage. That gave me a chance, but they move so quickly. Everything is stretched to the limit - I need a fast shutter speed, I need some depth of field - well more than at F2 and I need low light and would prefer to work into it. It is very low percentage photography. But when it works...

Available Sizes (Framed Size)

Large: 65" x 63" (165 cm x 160 cm)

Standard: 53" x 52" (135 cm x 132 cm)

Available Editions

Large: Edition of 12

Standard: Edition of 12

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Kong

I have travelled north from Kigali to the Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda 6 times over the last 8 years and I have generally failed to come home with anything that does Africa's "Jurassic Park" justice. There are many reasons - including - of course - my own ineptitude.

A big issue is that these magnificent mountain #gorillas are only accessible in mid morning and if the sun is out, the rainforest floor is not an ideal canvas on which to work - it's a nasty cocktail of overexposed and underexposed. Then there are compositional puzzles - it is difficult to have a sense of proximity and a sense of place in the same image - the forest can be exceptionally dense and this works against offering a wider contextual narrative. In my experience it does not pay to be greedy visually here.

Thirdly, the encounter is so other worldly that it takes time to work out what to actually do with the camera - and every cameraman - no matter who they may work for - only has just an hour to work. It can be a battle against time with a troop of 22 or more gorillas to think clearly about what to do.

So before I arrived late notice on Monday, a few decisions had already been made. We would go when the chance of cloud cover was best and we would only focus on the lead Silverbacks. Most importantly I knew there was no point in deciding prior to the hike what lenses to take, as we would have no idea what sort of topography the trackers will find the gorillas in. But I knew I could leave some gear half way up the mountain and then work with whatever the layout dictated. In other words, this year the goal is to be spontaneous and not prescriptive.

Available Sizes (Framed Size)

Large: 71” x 77” (180 cm x 195 cm)

Standard: 52” x 56” (132 cm x 142 cm)

Available Editions

Large: Edition of 12

Standard: Edition of 12