We host a number of specialist photographic workshop safaris every year. Partnering with famous and world renowned photographers and influencers to bring you truly unique photographic workshops & safaris where you can learn from the best – whilst being in the top wildlife or landscape locations in Africa. These are all exciting, exclusive and aimed at helping you grow your skills as a photographer and capture those one in a lifetime moments with expert mentors at hand.
Scheduled Photographic Workshops
WHAT IS A PHOTOGRAPHIC SAFARI OR WORKSHOP?
Photographic safaris/workshops are: special safaris lead by photographers – for photographers. The focus is mainly to ensure you, as the guest, have the best possible chances of capturing the photographs you are after. This entails that the whole tour is focused on photography concepts, angles, techniques, lighting and photographic opportunities – more than any other part of the safari. And if you are serious about your photography, then this is exactly what you need to get the most out of your time in Africa. Photographic workshops often include a wide range of daily activities and informal lectures on how to improve your photography.
These are often special tours led by expert photographers whom have a unique style and offer their personal insight and techniques of photography to their guests whilst on safari. These expert photographic tour leaders are often specialists in a certain field such as wildlife, landscape or travel photography and have built up a reputation for their work. We partner with world famous photographers and influencers to bring you some truly unique photographic safaris, only possible through us. Theres no better way to improve your own photographic skills than by learning in Africa’s practical classroom with such an expert mentor at hand! Sharing with you their spur-of-the-moment advise and tips to improve your skills in real practical situations. Often, the tour host is not driving the vehicle, allowing their hands to be free and all their attention to be on the guests at all times whilst a dedicated driver is behind the wheel. They will however use their insight into photography and direct the driver to the best possible position of the vehicle for photographic opportunities. This is enhanced even further if the photo host is an expert on animal behaviour and can predict animal moments so as to ensure the vehicle is positioned at the correct angle before the action happens.
Photographic safaris are perfect for those who are already serious about their photography, but you don’t need to be a professional with the biggest lens to participate. In fact all photography skill levels are welcome, and you would be surprised just how quickly your skills can be transformed and taken to the next level on such a photo safari. The basics of what you need to participate is an inter-changeable lens camera with hopefully a few lenses at hand. If you are wanting to capture wildlife with your photography, then a minimum focal length of 400mm is recommended along with some wider angles for other situations. You could get away with a 70-200mm lens as your maximum, but you might find yourself often frustrated when your subject is at a distance.
As a rough suggestion for a starter kit to bring on a photographic safari aimed at wildlife, we recommend the following:
- Inter-changeable lens camera (ideally 24 megapixel and higher)
- 3 lenses covering as much focal range as possible. Examples: 24-70mm + 70-200mm + 100-400mm
- Extra batteries & chargers
- Lens cleaning kit
- Camera bag
- Laptop with external hard drive – VERY IMPORTANT (for editing images on safari and backing up your images)
It’s definitely not needed, but some prefer to bring a monopod or travel tripod on a photo safari. If you intend to do landscape or night-sky photography, a tripod could be a must for you. Many of todays safari vehicles can be equipped with bean bags for photographers on request and these offer great flexibility for stabilisation. Some vehicles are also specifically designed and modified with photographers comfort in mind. See our vehicle the BEAST as a great example.
For those serious wildlife photographers, some gear suggestions (buy or rent for your safari – we can organise rental gear):
- A second inter-changeable lens camera with a shorter focal length lens attached (70-200 works well)
- 400mm f2.8 or 500mm f4 or 600mm f4 prime lens (200-400mm zoom with built in Teleconverter also great)
- Teleconverters: 1.4x or 2x
- 24-70mm + 70-200mm
One important factor for photographic safaris is: that they should ideally be small-group and exclusive allowing for more one-on-one time with the expert leading the tour. You also need more space and a window seat from which to manage all your gear and to reposition your body for the angle required to capture the shot. A good group size for starters is around 6 guests per 1 photo host and vehicle. Going smaller group, say 2 or 4 per host is even better although often very pricey. With the ultimate being 1 on 1 tuition from an expert – which can get very expensive, but for some, this is the only way to travel. You get what you pay for in this regard of exclusivity and personal mentorship.
Choosing which photographer to go on a safari with can be a tough decision. Many like to travel with well-known photographers who’s work their admire and would like to learn from. Whilst others (often more experienced photographers) aren’t as fussed who they travel with, so long as that person can guarantee them a photographic experience. A good example of this would be travelling with a host who’s both the photography workshop leader and the driver guide positioning the vehicle. They know that this individual will be able to position them in the ideal location and situations for them to get the photographs they are after. These photographic guides don’t necessarily need to be world famous or award winning photographers to ensure a fantastic experience and they can often be requested or included as part of a broader itinerary. Some lodges even get in house photographic training for their safari guides which allows for them to better facilitate photographers. If you would like to have a custom photographic safari designed just for you, don’t hesitate to get in touch- it’s what we do!
You want a photographic safari but the above safaris aren't for you?
Dont panic! We work with many specialist photographers and operators who are Africa based which we can use to build a custom photo-safari just for you! There are a number of lodges which have specially trained guides and facilities such as photographic hides, which enable you to focus on getting the right images. Alternatively we can arrange for a specialist photographic private guide to join you on safari for a personal one-on-one workshop.
Just make sure to let us know when you enquire that you are interested in photography and we take care of the rest.
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Contact safariFRANK to get started on your safari of a lifetime!