Whether a novice or a pro, embarking on a photographic safari to Africa and capturing the wondrous wildlife and stunning scenery, allows one to create a unique experience. From the wilderness areas in the southern regions of the continent to the vast expanse in the east and everything in between, Mother Nature will surprise the observer.
Safari-goers intend on capturing that perfect moment, will have ample opportunity to create their own stories and individual view of all things wild and wonderful on the continent. Whether visitors choose to go it alone or make use of operators specialising in photographic safaris, this type of adventure will have a lasting and lingering effect.
• Camera bodies: Ideally two bodies should be safely packed on a safari of this nature. Not only as a back-up but should the unfortunate happen and one breaks down, it adds the advantage of not having to switch lenses should the action be happening thick and fast.
• Lenses: A telephoto lens of 300mm and more is of utmost importance to capture animals a bit further out. A short-zoom lens between 24mm and 100mm will add finer detail while a wide-angle lens is ideal for capturing the continent’s vast landscapes.
• Camera support: To give more stability and support when taking that perfect shot, there are a variety of options. Bean bags can be rested on the door frame of a safari vehicle, clamps can be attached to a roof bar, while tripods are handy for images with a long exposure.
• Memory cards: Make sure to pack at least three memory cards. This is not only for storage of an abundance of pictures but also acts as a back-up in case of failure.
• Batteries: Charging of batteries in remote wilderness areas are not always possible, so an extra battery (or two) will come in handy.
• Get to know the camera and how it operates before departure. This will ensure a smooth safari.
• Don’t hurry the shot. Patience is a virtue and the same accounts for shooting the wildlife and landscapes of Africa.
• Capturing images from different angles, like lower to the ground, will emphasise the grandeur of the specific specie – think elephants and rhino.
• Shots with a wide-angle lens will paint the perfect picture of the vastness of the landscape – endless grasslands and plains.
• When aiming at the big cats, primates, crocodiles and even species of the feathered kind with longer tails, make sure not to cut off these longer appendixes.
Taking to foot on a walking safari in the South Luangwa National Park or to the water in a canoe in the Lower Zambezi National Park will provide ample opportunity to capture wildlife from a different angle.