Boom! This is the big shot of 2017. It’s the kind of image you think back of when collecting your luggage from the conveyer belt.
Especially in 2017 it’s really hard to come up with a transcending image. And then again: the most dangerous thing you can do in life is play it safe and follow the premeditated rules.
I'd argue that wildlife photography is about technical excellence and luck. Logistical excellence and research outnumber the odds in favor of the artist. Luck is when timing meets preparation. And when great content, access, perseverance and research morph into one you'll get some visceral imagery. This all crossed my mind when preparing for the big shot in Chobe, situated in northern Botswana.
I wanted the image to emphasize the animals which take center stage in these characterizing wetlands. Yet again I didn't want yet another uninspiring, uncreative and unpersonal application for a "Big 5 checklist" image.
Though the Serengeti and Mara are magnificent, Amboseli consists of just flat and raw terrain without any distracting backdrops. This elemental starkness suits my clean style of photography and “Morning Commute” illustrates this in one distinctive image.
"Encounter" is one of my most powerfull image to date and the result of perseverance, patience, preparation and some horrifying moments close to her majesty.
The idea was to capture a lioness walking towards me in full-frame. Not with a 400mm telelens, the typical "machinegun style shooting", heavily cropped and from a high angle. This technique hints at an artificial encounter and doesn't translate to as much personality and intimacy as a made from nearby, from below eyesight and with a wide-angle lens. I believe I succeeded and the effort results in a truly transcending image.
Over the years I've wasted so much time photographing alligators. "Tinderbox" illustrates that time and effort eventually pay off. This image is the result of dedication and lots of trial and error. The world doesn't need another image of an alligator from an airboat or - god forbid - one of those alligator farms.
The sawgrass and proximity of only a few inches to this ancient predator change the whole dynamic. It brings a visceral sence of "Honey, I shrunk the kids"-perspective to the image with actually a selfie of me in her eye. This alone will make it stand the test of time. Only seconds after this image was made, she decided to release her full fiercefullness on - thankfully - my wide-angle lens.
“Out of Excile” has something biblical. It’s a visual representation of not only the zebras, but their state of being. Images like this have been done before and are often accompanied with a lack of broader visual context or an overload of distractions.
This image, taken in Hell’s Gate, Kenya, represents their state of being and lacks such distractions which is emphasized by the B/W treatment. Hence, it could’ve been taken anywhere between 2016 BCE and 2016.
The eyes convey intimacy and freeze time of a special one-on-one moment with a lean, mean but undoubtedly elegant killing machine.st
The clouds in this images, called “Genesis”, bring the feeling of the enormousness of this world. The ostriches in the background emphasize the enormousness of scale of this place.