Pangolin Photo Safari hosted at Jaci’s Sabi House July 2017

Hosting a family photo safari

This was Africa Photographic Services first photographic safari that I hosted on behalf of Pangolin Photo Safaris. I am sure their regular guides were unavailable and the nature of our photographic hosting service means that we are not competition with Pangolin. We facilitate the photographic experience just like their regular Photo guides would and how we have done for many other travel agents and safari lodges. We are able to do this because we are not travel agents or a booking office, our clients are the Pangolin’s, travel agents and safari lodges.

Our Time at Jaci’s Home

This photographic experience was for a small family, who had been on many safaris before and have traveled with Pangolin many times. So they were experienced on what to expect and allowed me to dive a little deeper on some photographic points. And refresh them on a few others. Its always tricky starting a photo safari, because you only really know where people are with their photography after the first game drive. However you don’t want to use the first game viewing activity too find this out. So I always offer my guests a quick (30 minute) crash course type presentation before the first activity.

We started with the fundamentals of exposure (ISO, Apperture and Shutterspeed). Once that is covered, I am comfortable talking with this photographic “language”. Also part of this first session is setting up their cameras for wildlife photography. Toby had arranged that I bring in two Canon 7D mk2, which were paired to the new generation 100-400mm. A great combination for the Sabi Sands.

Getting Ready

I am often asked how do I setup a camera for wildlife? Simplest answer is that the camera should be set it up for the unexpected. So your camera needs to be ready for when we come around a corner and find wild dogs chasing impala. All you have to do is pick up and shoot. Aperture priority works best for this. If we are at a more “relaxing” sighting you should have more time to setup the camera in a different way. My goal when hosting photographers is not to setup their camera for them and just tell them which button to press. Rather to empower the photographers, so that in essence you don’t need my help with your photography after my tutorship during the safari.

The experience

The game viewing at Jaci’s Sabi House, was much better than I expected. We had good viewing of general game and the larger mammals. With multiple cat sightings over the 3 nights I was there. The real treat was the flowering aloes in the Gardens, the were just a flash of colour in a other wise grey and brown bush. This locked in a lot of birds. So we spent quiet a bit of time between the game viewing activity just trying to photograph the fast and shy sunbirds.

Thank you

Firstly a big thank you to the Wallis family, I had a lot of fun and I hope you have been empowered to a point that you can problem solve all potential future photography situations. I wish Harry all the best with his A Level’s and I hope I have helped him enough with his landscape portfolio. Big shout out to the Team at Jaci’s Sabi House, you guys were great and made the whole experience very homely.

Finally to Toby from Pangolin Photo Safaris, thank you for trusting us with the Wallis family and I hope we could be of service in the future.

Regards

Etienne

 

Few Moments and Photographs