Tag Archives: black rhino

A quick update and a quicky

Dear all,

It still being January, I allow myself to reflect a little on 2012. It has been quite a ride, with a Wild Eye competition mention, a picture on 1x (which also made it into their limited edition yearbook No Words), getting some good air in online Newspaper articles as well as Belgian print versions and getting a shot into the high level Geographic Expeditions catalog. In short, nice things happening (you can check out the concerned shots on my newly created Awards page), yet even more things to improve upon. With Ronja joining our ranks, I havn’t been out in the field as much as I would have liked, nevertheless, besides my non photography related day job, I am enjoying photography through the NYIP course, with now 2 out of the 6 units finalized. I just submitted my projects, consisting of 6 photo assignments (only prints are accepted, which is really nice thing, since it forces you to go the extra mile in delivering a finalized product):

  1. using shutter speed to express a sense of motion/speed by panning, stopping the action or using a slow shutter speed to capture motion in your frame;
  2. use selctive focus to make the subject stand out;
  3. create a feeling of distance by using a great DoF;
  4. emphasize a sbuject by its size and off center placement;
  5. use framing to focus attention on your subject;
  6. use leading lines to draw attention to your subject.

Meanwhile, you may have noticed I finally found a way that works for me in creating nice looking galleries in my WordPress blog, being the NextGen galleries whom blow me away for their actual simplicity amongst a whole bunch of way less user friendly plugins which do the same thing, only worse and without nice widgets, such as the random shots you can see to the right of this post now. And I can tell you that I’ve been trying quite a few of them over the past few months, none of them pleasing me, finally I found something that did please me. Have a look here, I would be happy getting your opinion.

Leaving you with one of my personal 2012 favorites.

Canon 7D, Canon 300mm f/4 L IS USM, 1/8000, f/4, ISO 800
Canon 7D, Canon 300mm f/4 L IS USM, 1/8000, f/4, ISO 800

As for 2013: it promises to be quite a ride for us, yet more about that in my next blog post, which will be up later this week, along with a first guest post for the year (one which I’m really excited about), so keep an eye on this space and my related social media, you can find the relevant links on the right of this screen.

For now, HAVE A FANTASTIC 2013, GREAT LIGHT and PLEASURE in doing what you do!!!

Warm regards,



The plight of the rhino

Dear all,

The plight of rhino’s worldwide has been worrying me for some time now. And this week was just another sad week, with the western black rhino officially declared extinct.

The demand for rhino horn and the consequent rhino poaching, gets press all-over. And it is never good press.

In Europe, people who make models for musea are being approached (and offered up to 5000 Euro) to gather information regarding the location of real horns. Rhino horns are being stolen from public and private collections, yet worse of all, here in Kenya, poaching (of both rhino and elephant) has gone up again since the arrival of the Chinese. They come here for road construction, yet some of them seem to have lucrative yet very unfortunate side businesses (China and Vietnam are 2 of the main markets for rhino horn powder). You can safely call this a flipside of ‘development’. And although the poachers are cruel (Save the Rhino last week shared some images of a life animal which horn had been cut, just the thought of it still enrages me), it is the people who use and buy the horn powder that are the real culprits. For a big 4 kg horn, merchants can touch up to 200 000 Euro. These same merchants would pay a poacher around 1000 USD for the same horn. In a country where the majority of the people has to survive on less than 1 USD per day, this is serious money and a quick win.

And all that for absolutely nothing, since the horns, being made from the same substance as your finger nails don’t have any medicinal value at all. It’s a sad story for a beautiful animal which future is uncertain, due to the pressure on their environment and due to the strong myths regarding the medicinal value of rhino horn powder.

Canon 350D, Canon 75-300 @ 150mm, 1/500, f/11, ISO 200

Let us do what we can to prevent a sad future. Let it not come to a point where their horns have to be removed on a yearly basis (they grow quite fast) to save them. I try do my part here by raising some tiny awareness, and there are great initiatives out there that do a lot more and which can use your support. Save the Rhino is one of them and The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust is another one (more about them in one of my future posts).

Canon 7D, Canon 300mm f/4 L IS USM, 1/60, f/5.6, ISO 320, handheld

As you can read, these matters get me going, yet for now I’ll leave it at this. Ending with a backlit picture, taken on the way out of Nairobi National Parc, a few weeks ago. The lesson learnt on this one is twofold: 1. do not be afraid to shoot into the sun and 2. keep your camera at hand, even when you think about calling it a day.

All the best and c-ya,


PS: as you can see at the top right corner of this page, I’ve added a facebook and twitter link for those of you who want to follow the developments on this site. Please feel free to like (specifically related to Pics from the Wild) and/or follow (my personal twitter, about wildlife and beyond, things that keep me busy, frustrate me, make me happy, …) and to share this with friends whom you feel might also be interested in this.