Africa is a place of natural beauty and mystery. It's the perfect setting to capture images that will last you a lifetime. But with so many different animals, landscapes, and people - all begging to be photographed - it can be difficult to know where to start. That's why we've compiled these photography tips for your next photo safari in South Africa or other parts of the continent.
"The goal is not just about capturing wildlife," says photographer John Hobson who has been photographing African wildlife since 1972. " It is many things combined. Lets have a look at my hot tips below.
If traveling by plane, the equipment you need will gobble a fair chunk of your weight allowance. That is why it is best to check your luggage allowance all the way through to your end destination. Often small bush plane transfers allow just a small weight allowance. Once you have established how much weight you can take with you we can have a look at the recommendations on equipment outlines.
A successful safari will require a few essential pieces of photographic equipment. A quality lens is necessary to capture the vast, beautiful landscape and wildlife. You'll need two tele-converters for your zoom lenses in order to get up close shots of animals from afar while still maintaining great image quality (you can also use these as filters). Wide angle lenses are important too because you never know when something fun might happen at ground level! Mid range zooms like 16mm f1.4 or 56 mmF1s2x with 35mm 1:4 should be on hand just in case there's an opportunity to take portraits or some scenic shots that need wider angles.
If you're going on safari, a burst shooting mode is an essential feature for your camera. This allows the shutter to be held down and shoot several frames per second so that critical wildlife moments are captured before they disappear into the undergrowth. As we all know, animals can move with lightning speed--they are also adept at camouflaging themselves as well! With short burst-mode photography you can capture those sudden movements or disappearing acts of nature's creatures in their natural environment before it becomes too difficult to find them again.
Having a spare memory card is always advisable so that you will have enough space for your photos. Burst mode can eat up the megabytes, and it's not uncommon to find oneself in an unfortunate situation of having to delete videos or images just because there isn't any more room on your camera roll.
Dust and smudges are inevitable when you visit a game reserve, but there is an easy solution. Some people invest in lens pens to remove dirt from their lenses while others use wipes for more stubborn stains like dust or fingerprints on the camera's LCD screen.
The telephoto lens is a must-have piece of equipment on any photo safari. With such a range, you can get up close and personal with the zebras without getting too much in their way!
A safari jeep is a one of the best places to capture wildlife. With open-air vehicle photo safaris, you'll have an unobstructed view and lens support so that your camera won't shake when capturing photos. It's essential for getting sharp photographs with zoom lenses as they are susceptible to blur without being well supported by something like a bean bag!
The African night sky is a blanket of brilliant diamond pinpoints, and you will never see it like this anywhere else. Nights are ink-black in the remote bushveld without pollution to obscure your view during trips or on safari or lodge stays. The stars outshine even the Milky Way that can be seen from some places back home – but only if you know how to find them! To capture these phenomenal views accurately for posterity I recommend using a tripod which means no more blurry images due to shaky hands.
It is important to wear neutral colors when exploring the wilderness during a safari. This will avoid disturbing animals and give you low profile visibility while roaming free in nature.
Just getting started, why not hop on a popular guided Johannesburg to Kruger Park Safari