Kills are never an easy scene to photograph or capture. Blood and guts dripping from the jaws of a savage predator very seldom leave one’s audience wanting to come back for more… Those that do, well…. yeah.
Its a harsh reality of life in the bush though and is without a doubt a part of the story that we as wildlife photographers need to capture in order to tell a complete story.
During our recent wildlife photography seminar at Sabi Sabi we were fortunate enough to spend some time with two male lions that had killed a buffalo bull.
Even before we pulled into the sighting that night i had started to think about what images would be on offer and we very quickly got the standard side, and backlit images that photographers often dream of.
What I didn’t expect was this..
Side lighting from a second vehicle illuminated the scene perfectly, deep dark shadows of death punctuated only by the gaping mouth of the buffalo bull and a clump of Digitaria sp. grass.
We could even go deeper down the artistic rabbit hotel here and say that the image portrays the cycle of life as the death of a buffalo bull is juxtaposed against the life of the grass, ironically the substance which supported the life of the buffalo bull in the first place.
Hmmmm, maybe a touch too deep?
Regardless, for me, this tells the story of the kill and trumps many of the other images on offer that evening.
Sometimes the most compelling aspects of a story are not the most obvious so keep an eye open for opportunities that may not be glaringly obvious when it comes to scenes like this.