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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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Tuesday
Jun052007

Of online retailers and brick and mortar camera stores

In order to keep my photography business going, I need to purchase a decent amount of gear. And I expect my gear to fail from time to time, which also increases the frequency of my purchases. So what is better for me, a discount online retailer or somebody that I can call by name on the phone? For my larger purchases, I rely on Hunt's Photo. Gary Farber has been taking care of my needs for a while now, and he always comes through when I need something in a hurry or when I am away from home.

Have you ever tried to make a purchase online from a box-pusher, and have the delivery made to you at a motel in the middle of Utah? That will never happen, because of how those types of relationships work. Yes, the prices are often less expensive, but in the end does it really pay? For me the answer is no, but for your own needs the answer might be different.

If you need good service, try giving Gary at Hunt's a call. (800) 221-1830 x2332. Or email him at digitalguygary@wbhunt.com. A great guy, and always happy to help out. I know this sounds like a commercial, but it is true.

/End commercial
Sunday
Jun032007

Please do not feed the wildlife

I hesitate posting this entry in my blog, but I feel compelled to say something that I am passionate about. If you are going to visit Ngorongoro Crater, or any similar environment in Africa where there are birds of prey that have become habituated to humans, please read further. Ngoitokitok springs in the Ngorongoro Crater, Tanzania is only one of a few locations inside this collapsed caldera that we as human visitors are allowed to get out and stretch our legs and eat a well deserved picnic. Since the location is popular, we are bound to have wildlife that have become habituated to our presence.

One of the most common examples is that of the black kite, which swoop down from the sky to steal food away from humans. Ok. It is what it is, but I cringe when I see people deliberately feeding this bird of prey. The main reason I get so upset is that I once saw a young girl with a piece of chicken in her hand, and a black kite quickly swooped down to grab it from her hands. It was a close call, but she did have some scrapes on her hand from the bird's large talons. I can only assume that over time something much worse could happen to somebody, as these carnivores could easily take off a finger.

I don't want to sound like an old curmudgeon, but I feel like I needed to post my feelings on the matter. As the old adage says, "please don't feed the wildlife". The adage is there for a reason. Please respect it.


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Friday
Jun012007

Photo of the Day

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Canon 1DMkII, 100-400mm, 1/200 @ f/8.0, ISO 160
Ngorongoro Crater, Tanzania

Friday
May252007

June 21, 2008 Tanzania Photo Safari Announced

My summer 2008 plans are coming together, and I am announcing my June 21 - July 3, 2008 Tanzania Photo Safari. This safari will take place in northern Tanzania, and we will visit three very different and distinct national parks: Tarangire National Park, Ngorongoro Crater and Serengeti National Park.

 

June 21 - July 3, 2008 Tanzania Photo Safari

Sunday
May202007

High ISO article on dpreview

Dpreview.com has just posted a nice high iso article that is a good read for those who are interested in low light photography. As dpreview writes:

"It's rare these days for a compact camera to be launched without a high sensitivity mode / high ISO capabilities, but the truth behind the marketing hype is often disappointing to say the least. We believe consumers are often being misled by the manufacturers when it comes to the actual performance of most cameras at higher ISO settings and in low light. So we decided to put together a short article for the uninitiated on the truth behind those headline high ISO modes. If you're new to digital cameras or are in the market for a new one this is well worth checking out."
 

Compact Camera High ISO modes:
Separating the facts from the hype

Saturday
May192007

Photo of the Day

We were lucky enough to witness a short-eared owl while on the island of Genovesa, Galapagos islands, and had an opportunity to be within short range of this amazing creature. This was the only image I was able to capture before flying away, but take notice of the storm petrel in his grasp. The storm petrel is the most common food source for the short-eared owl in the Galapagos.

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Short-eared owl, Genovesa island, Galapagos, May 2007
Canon 1DsMkII, 100-400mm, 1/500sec @ f/7.1, ISO 320

Thursday
May172007

Gadgets and situational problem solving

I love gadgets. I admit it. I love it when I find a gadget that solves a valid problem in my daily life or in my photography career. Solving issues out in the field is something a field photographer has to deal with, using any and all tools available. Sometimes tools and gadgets aren't available, and that is when you need to have your McGyver hat on.

I came across a very funny page on Wikipedia, and thought it should have a place on my blog. MacGyver lives on.

List of problems solved by McGyver

Tuesday
May152007

Feature in Colorvision May 2007 Newsletter

I just noticed that I have been featured in the Colorvision (Datacolor) May 2007 newsletter. Since the information on the link points back to my own web site, you can click back and forth between the newsletter and my site all day long. Kind of like Clark Griswold from European Vacation: "Hey kids, look! Parliament. Big Bend." Say 500 times. Repeat. Wash hands. Repeat.

Thanks Colorvision!

Colorvision May 2007 Newsletter