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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.





Entries in Savuti (19)


Photo of the Day - Botswana Safari Group


Our Safari Group - July 2011


I love to take group photographs from each safari, and this one was no exception. It’s great to look back at so many happy faces after some amazing experiences out in the bush. On this particular safari we visited 2 camps in northern Botswana, Chitabe and Savuti, and came home with some stellar photographs.


Photo of the Day - Elephant in the Savute Channel


Elephant in the Savute Channel

Linyanti Concession, near Savuti Camp, Botswana. July 2011

Nikon D3x, 28-300mm, 1/2000 @ f/5.6, ISO 800. Processed in Adobe Lightroom and Nik Viveza 2


This was a very tricky image to process, I must say. I was shooting with my Nikon D3x that afternoon, and the camera isn’t well known for its high ISO capabilities. I needed to keep the ISO down, possibly 1600 or lower, but the main challenge was trying to balance blowing out the details in the sky with the deep shadows of my subject. I could only minimally process this image in Lightroom, and the bulk of the work was done in Nik Software’s Viveza 2. In Lightroom I only adjusted the white balance, exposure, black point and a small gradient on the sky. I brought the image into Photoshop as a smart object, which allowed me to go back to the original raw file to tweak some of those settings. In Viveza 2 I worked on tonal relationships, and the main thing I needed to work on was the exposure on the elephant. There was simply no way of getting detail in the sky with enough exposure on the elephant, at least from a global processing point of view. Viveza saves the day.

Tip: If you are interested in learning more about Nik Software’s tools, you can use my code ABIGGS during checkout for a 15% discount.


Photo of the Day - Elephant Family at Savuti


Elephant Family

near Savuti Camp, Botswana. July 2011

Nikon D3x, 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6, 1/320 sec @ f/9, ISO 400



Mombo and Little Mombo Best in Africa Again

I use many different safari outfitters throughout Africa, as well as other providers that help me in different areas of my business, and one of the most reliable organizations I work with is Wilderness Safaris. Their camps are always top notch, and their professionalism both at the camps and in the home office always exceeds expectations. It is no surprise that Mombo Camp and Little Mombo Camp in Botswana’s Okavango Delta are yet again the Number 1 Resort in Africa in the 2010 Condé Nast Traveler (USA) Readers’ Choice Awards.

Aside from Mombo’s chart-topping achievement, a number of other Wilderness Safaris camps were prominent in the Top Resorts in Africa: Other camps in Botswana that were rated highly by readers of the magazine were the Okavango camps of Jao Camp (at eighth place) and Vumbura Plains, and the Linyanti camps of DumaTau and Savuti. Namibian camps that featured in Top African Resorts included the Kulala and Ongava camps at Sossusvlei and Etosha respectively.

Destinations were rated on the following criteria: Activities/facilities, food/dining, location, overall design, rooms, and service - all of which Mombo performed almost perfectly according to the readers of Condé Nast! As the magazine states: “Africa at its finest, this camp on the edge of a floodplain has a perfect-scoring location so exquisite, a movie set couldn’t replicate it.”

Most of the camps listed above are camps that I visit on my photographic safaris with my customers. I always frequent properties that me and my business look good, and a huge congratulations goes out to my friends at Wilderness Safaris for this very exciting award. You guys deserve it.


Day 9 –Savuti Camp / Maun / Johannesburg

This morning some people decided to sleep in, as it was our last day out on safari. As a result, some of the vehicles had fewer spots taken, and we headed again towards the west, along the Savuti Channel. Kane and I decided we would try to locate the 3 lions from yesterday afternoon, and it took all of about 5 seconds to locate them once we had made it to the backflow area of the channel. They weren’t too interested in doing much, however they did make a half-hearted attempt at stalking some impala in the mopane. We took the opportunity to disengage and go looking for some nice landscapes in the warm morning light. The skies were a bit overcast, so it didn’t make for much. I love these types of casual game drives, as the pressure is off after having an extraordinarily successful safari.

We headed back to camp and arrived at 9am, which allowed for people to go back to their tents, pack their bags and get ready for the journey back to Johannesburg. We made it early to the airstrip and I promptly realized that my duffle bag was not present, so a mad dash back to camp to pick it up was in order. Close call. The bag made it to the airstrip before the 2nd airplane arrived, so no time was lost.

Nothing really exciting happened for the rest of the day, I must say, and that is a good thing. 2 days off and safari #2 begins. I look forward to both the chilling out as well as some more safari days!

I will write up a quick summary for tomorrow’s blog post, but for now it is time to call it a day.

Note: All images in these daily blog postings are very very rough edits of the things we have seen, and I often omit the photographs that take too much time to process. I don’t take much time off during the day, as I am working with people with their photographic needs. All of my images in these posts will have to be re-processed when I get back home, and they are only included in these blog entries for illustration purposes.



The Savuti Channel, filled up with water. This is one of the new bridges that have been built in the concession to make it easier for game drive vehicles to cross to the other side


Another view of the Savuti Channel


James Weis, Lets, Kane and Goodman


Joan and Joe


Lisa's big smile from ear to ear


Day 8 - Savuti Camp additional photo



Day 8 - Savuti Camp additional photo



Day 8 - Savuti Camp additional photo