We had a photographically slow morning, however we did see some amazing wildlife. The morning started off with a civet, followed by a pair of honey badgers fairly close to the vehicle. General game followed, however the morning was more slower than normal. Perhaps the full moon kept all of the animals up all night and thus they were inactive and lying down for the morning. During the slow times I like to work on photographic techniques with people, and help introduce new approaches to wildlife photography. One of the first things I like to introduce are the benefits of using the rear autofocus button on cameras. Another is working on lighting and how to position the vehicle to take advantage of the light.
Back to camp near noon, then a nice brunch, and then some down time for everybody. We typically meet up at 3:30 for afternoon tea, and today was no exception. We left for our afternoon game drive at 4:00 and we were ready to get our shutters working hard after a slow morning.
Phinley tracked a lone female leopard just outside of camp, who has the nickname of ‘Karuru Female’. This was the same leopard that we photographed yesterday, and she was still calm in our presence. Positioning the vehicles turned out to be a bit challenging, as the ground was littered with dead tree limbs. It actually made for a great teaching opportunity in how we get clean backgrounds and how to photograph a leopards in a tree with backlighting. The last vehicle position for me yielded a fussy background, however I enjoyed having rim lighting on her chin and lower leg and paw (see image below).
We stopped for a sundowner drink on the way back to camp, and there were smiles and high fives all around after 3 successful leopard shoots in 2 days. It is always great to have great leopard sightings early on in a safari, as this is something that all travelers look forward to.
Note: All images in these daily blog postings are very very rough edits of the things we have seen, and I often omit the photographs that take too much time to process. I don’t take much time off during the day, as I am working with people with their photographic needs. All of my images in these posts will have to be re-processed when I get back home, and they are only included in these blog entries for illustration purposes.
Nikon D700 + 200-400mm f/4 VR, 1/500 @ f/5.6, ISO 3200
Nikon D700 + 200-400mm f/4 VR, 1/200 @ f/5.6, ISO 6400