Cheetah on a Termite Mound
Olare Orok Conservancy, Kenya. March 2012
Pentax 645D, 300mm f/4, 1/1000 @ f/5, ISO 200
After a 3-week absence, I am back home with my family here in Houston. I had two amazing safaris, as I split my time between Tanzania and Kenya for each. The first safari in Tanzania was a published departure with 12 travelers, and the second safari in Kenya was a private safari that was not published online. I am sorting through my limited set of raw files, and I think I have some real keepers that I will be proud of. I mostly shot video on these safaris, and so I only came home with about 1,000 files from a borrowed Pentax 645D medium format camera.
There is a story in here that I need to tell about medium format digital for wildlife photography, and the short story is that the technology works perfectly for my needs. In the past year I have been seeking out a way to be able to produce bigger prints with more detail, better color and overall image quality. I have borrowed a Leica S2 system for my Antarctica trip, a Pentax 645D for these past safaris, and I will be using Phase One gear for one or more of my trips to Botswana and Namibia last on this year. I suspect I know what I will end up with in the end, but it has been a fascinating process so far.
I have the luxury of not having to shoot for anybody else but me, which means I can take a new camera system that might only yield 1 usable photograph per few days of work. That’s ok with me, because I would like to have only a handful of portfolio additions each year. Any more and it would exceed my expectations, but my expectations are quite low as it is. I would rather have a few amazing images that I can reproduce at any size that is requested than to say that a particular image can only be printed up to 16x24.
Time to get cracking on some raw files, a trip report, video footage and some sleep time in my own bed.