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About Andy


I am an avid adventurer, conservationist, teacher, and outdoor photographer whose photography celebrates the African landscape and its rich wildlife, people, and culture. My photographic safaris allow my travelers to not only enhance their understanding of photography, lighting, and wildlife, but to develop a life-long admiration for Africa ‘s beauty and culture.

Banana Republic recently used my photographs as the cornerstone of their Urban Safari campaign, and my images were seen in all 750 stores around the globe, as well as in their billboards, catalogs and annual report. I was also the winner of the BBC Wildlife Photographer of the Year in the ‘Wild Places’ category in 2008 and a highly commended in the ‘Creative Visions of Nature’ category in 2007.

I launched Gura Gear in 2008, in an attempt to deliver lightweight camera bags to the market. I was looking for a lightweight camera bag to hold all of my photographic gear, and there was nothing desirable on the market that suited my needs. After spending 2 years with many prototypes, the Gura Gear Kiboko bag was born. More products are now available on the Gura Gear web site.




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Canon's new 200-400mm f/4 L IS lens


Well, Canon finally did it. They are bringing a 200-400mm f/4 lens to the market, supposedly before the end of 2011. This is excellent news for wildlife photographers! I have been waiting for a Canon lens like this for many years, and the main reason why I switched to Nikon 2 years ago. What makes this lens so unique is that the new lens has a 1.4x teleconverter built-in. What you say? Yes, there is a small, mechanical switch near the top of the rear of the lens that can move a 1.4x teleconverter into place when needed. This makes the lens a 280-560mm f/5.6. Very very cool and a nice feature.

So, the question of the day: will I move back to Canon? Possibly. I have enjoyed my time with Nikon, however most of my customers are Canon shooters. I do love my Nikon D3x camera, which is a better camera than the Canon 1DsMk3, however neither of these two cameras shoots video. My intention is to shoot more video, and Canon does rule the roost in this area right now. We shall see. What pains me is that Nikon doesn’t have an answer to Canon’s 100-400mm, which was a workhorse for me for many years. The Nikon 80-400mm is extremely slow when focusing, which makes it a non-starter for my own needs.

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Reader Comments (6)

I heard that Nikon will be launching a replacement for the 80-400 this year (if it is as good as the 70-200 f2.8, VRII, I will definitely go for it!) and that it will announce replacements of the D300s, D700 and D3(s&x) in the summer. It might be worth the wait,,, I am starting to save my pennies already :)

February 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKarine Ardault

The Canon lens is long overdue. With the built in T/C, is should have wide flexibility while minimizing traditional issues like dust on the sensor while changing lens or to a T/C in the dry, dusty environment. I don't expect it to be cheap and I also expect it to be heavy, but still really nice add for the wildlife photographer.

I hope this (and maybe an upcoming 1Ds MkIV will lure you back from the dark side.

February 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBuddy

I love my Canon 5D Mark2.

February 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMGMason

This seems like a [potentially] game-changing offering by Canon. I have been "loyal" to Nikon for 12 years, including their 200-400 for about half that time, but hard to say at this point. The integrated TC seems like the correct - but heretofore unseen - path for a lens like this. Zooming equals convenience; the TC just expands that convenience. Nikon just updated [mildly] their 200-400, cranked up the price $1000, but it offers nothing like this Canon offering would in the real world.

Still, I think an improved 80-400 & 500 combo a better solution for the money, and It's where I'm leaning if I stay on with Nikon. Their ergonomics are better, and so is their flash system. Now that Canon's super telephotos have increased 30-40% with the new version II's, I think Nikon just got a lot more attractive. I think Nikon will have a strong body differentiation when 2011 closes out - stronger than the Canon line. A possible D400/D4/D4X, or D7000/D800(?) combo would be tough to beat, I think.

February 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLOU

With all of the new Canon L lenses being announced recently (300 F2.8II , 400 2.8II, 500 F/4 II, 600 F/4II, 70-200 F/2.8L IS II, 70-300L IS, I would imagine that this is a precursor to some very nice Canon bodies coming down the pipeline very soon. I just sold my Canon 5D II to subsidize the purchase of my next new Canon body...hopefully the long rumored Canon 3D, 16-18 MP full frame, 6 fps expandable to 9 fps with battery grip, improved video cabability, pro auto focus and the ability to surpass the Nikon D3s in the high-iso arena. Hurry up Canon...just dusted off my 20D as a stop-gap.

February 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDean

Awesome! About time.

February 11, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterChris Kayler

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