Social Networks and RSS Feeds
Instagram Instagram
About Andy


I am an avid adventurer, conservationist, teacher, and outdoor photographer whose photography celebrates the African landscape and its rich wildlife, people, and culture. My photographic safaris allow my travelers to not only enhance their understanding of photography, lighting, and wildlife, but to develop a life-long admiration for Africa ‘s beauty and culture.

Banana Republic recently used my photographs as the cornerstone of their Urban Safari campaign, and my images were seen in all 750 stores around the globe, as well as in their billboards, catalogs and annual report. I was also the winner of the BBC Wildlife Photographer of the Year in the ‘Wild Places’ category in 2008 and a highly commended in the ‘Creative Visions of Nature’ category in 2007.

I launched Gura Gear in 2008, in an attempt to deliver lightweight camera bags to the market. I was looking for a lightweight camera bag to hold all of my photographic gear, and there was nothing desirable on the market that suited my needs. After spending 2 years with many prototypes, the Gura Gear Kiboko bag was born. More products are now available on the Gura Gear web site.





Entries in Ndutu (5)


Photo of the Day - Drinking Elephants


Drinking Elephants

Near Lake Ndutu, southern Serengeti Plains, Tanzania. February 2012

Pentax 645D + 400mm f/5.6, 1/250 @ f/5.6, ISO 400


Photo of the Day - Cheetah and Her Cubs


Cheetah and Her Cubs

Ngorongoro Conservation Area, Tanzania. March 2012

Pentax 645D + 400mm f/5.6, 1/100 @ f/5.6, ISO 800


Serengeti Safari Update - Ndutu

Today was our last full day in the greater Serengeti ecosystem at a place we call Ndutu, and it was one of the most photgraphically rich days we have had on the safari. Read on!

Just outside of camp we stopped for bat-eared foxes, and unlike most I have photographed in the past the 5 individuals were curious about us and didn’t run away. Typically they are quite shy and skiddish, and these were a welcome sight for me, as I don’t have enough quality photos of them.

Cheetah were next on our sighting list, and we watched 2 adult males walk the swamp edges for more than an hour. With a respectful distance, we watched them jump across water, play with each other and rest when they needed to rest. It was a great hour of entertainment, and the highlight was watching them both drink at the water’s edge with their eyes looking our direction. Oh, and their reflection in the water was the icing on the cake.

When they sat down to rest in the shade, we waited for 30 minutes to see if they would give us another show, but it appeared to be it for a while. We moved back to the main area of the swamp, and located the lion pride with the 3 cubs again. They were happy to be sleeping, so within minutes we found our next photo op that would last the remainder of the morning: zebras at a watering hole.

We photographed zebras coming and going in and around a large watering hole, and every few minutes a group would get spooked and would run through the water back to the safety of dry land. What great photos can be had in these situations, and it takes patience to get the right shots. I think I burned 10gb of memory in 1 hour, which is a significant burn rate for me. I just don’t shoot that many images, and I had to seize the opportunity.

After our lunch and midday rest, Troy and I spent a few minute shooting video testimonials from some of our travelers, as well as short interviews with the guides. Troy is shooting all of the video, and I am just acting as producer / interviewer. We did bring along high quality Sony wireless lav microphones, which really helps with the production quality. Audio quality is very very important!

We found a pride of 9 adult lions out on the open plains, who were seeking shade underneath a large acacia tree. Not much happened, but we were able to shoot some 60p slo-mo video of lions yawning, which may turn out to be interesting to see. After a little while we moved on and saw another 2 adult male cheetahs. They were extremely skiddish, and we left within a few minutes, as they weren’t interested in being near us.

On the way back into the acacia woodland near Lake Masek, we watched 2 adult male giraffes fighting. I have seen many many sparring giraffes, however this scene was an aggressive fight that could not be considered sparring. Male giraffes yse their necks and heads to deliver blows to each other, and timing the best time to take photographs can be tricky.

A short trip around Lake Masek followed, and we stopped a few places to shoot the flamingoes in the warm afternoon light.


Serengeti Safari Update #5

Today was our first full day in the Ndutu area, which is technically part of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, however it is still part of the greater Serengeti ecosystem. The NCA has more relaxed rules when it comes to offroad driving, which is a double-edged sword. It works great when you are all alone and have found something you would like to photograph, however if there is a ‘high value’ subject like cheetah then it can be challenging. Why? Because the natural tendency is to have a clear view of a subject, and that can turn into encircling a subject with vehicles. Responsible safari outfitters, like Thomson Safaris, know better than to do this, however some of the other less reputable and knowledgeable guides may not know what the best practice is.

We met up with yesterday’s lion pride with the 3 young cubs, however they were in the tall green grass in the middle of the marsh and it was difficult to get a good view.

We continued out onto the open plains, and spent time scouting for cheetah. Our hard work paid off, and we located 3 adult male cheetahs. We sat and watched for the rest of the morning, or about 4 hours, as they would sit up and take notice of the surrounding game. It took some time, and the 3 boys walked off to investigate and mark some trees nearby. After that, one of the cheetahs jumped up into a dead acacia tree, and he surveyed the area from his vantage point. It was awesome. High fives all around, as it was a great view of such a beautiful and graceful cat.

After lunch we went back out in the afternoon heat, and went straight for the wide open plains to the south and east of Lake Masek. We spent the whole afternoon following the wildebeest, as the were lined up and moving in single file lines. This is the part of the Serengeti that I find thrilling: herds of wildebeest and zebra.

As far as photography goes, my main goal was to use dramatic light to illustrate the wildebeest, and backlighting or 3/4 lighting (the sun is 45 degrees off of coming straight into the camer) was the right tool for the job. Wildebeest have a light-colored beard that lights up like fire when backlit, so this was my approach. This means that I had to find wildebeest that were walking at a 90 degree angle to the sun, as I wanted them walking across the frame and with their bodies sideways to the camera. I only found a few good opportunities to shoot in this manner, but it was what I was after.


Serengeti Safari Update #4

Today we left our camp at El Makati, and made our way south towards Ndutu. The southern part of the Serengeti ecosystem is where the wildebeest calving season occurs, typically during the months of January and February, and also early March. The short grass plains in the area yields rich grass, which the wildebeest prefer when they are nursing their young.

We took the long way to our next camp, Ndutu Safari Lodge, which took us past the Masai Kopjes, vilima saba (7 hills), Naabi Hill, and the southern part of Serengeti National Park. We photographed a nice pride of lions at the Masai Kopjes, which were bathing in the morning sun, all on top of various granite rocks. The kopjes, or inselbergs, are excellent backdrops which help illustrate that these photographs were taken in one very specific location. It really helps with storytelling, which is what photography is all about. We have to use imagery to tell our stories, as we don’t often have words to explain what and where our images are all about.

We checked into Ndutu Safari Lodge, ate some lunch and headed back out around 3:30. We drove the swamps to the west of the lodge, as we had heard of a mother cheetah and her 3 cubs that was in that direction. We never found her, however we did come across a pride of lions in the middle of the marsh. There was one adult male, six adult females and 3 young cubs. The young cubs were quietly sleeping, and then all of a sudden they realized they were hungry and attacked their mother for some milk. CUTE is a good word to describe the moment. Dang these cubs were cute. We sat and watched for about 2.5 hours, as the show before us grabbed all of our attention. We saw a lone cheetah in the distance, but we didn’t budge, as we had a bird in hand, so to speak.

I look forward to processing some of the images from today, as I think I have a few keepers.