Nikon D3s, 300mm, 1/400, f/2.8m ISO 500
Madikwe Game Reserve, South Africa
With the advances of imaging technology and the amount of wildlife images we get bombarded with on a daily basis through platforms like Facebook and Twitter we sometimes get carried away with trying something new or creating images that stand out.
I would like to believe that there is still something to be said for a good, solid wildlife image. No fancy things. No panning motion or advanced layers and editing. Just a pure wildlife image.
This lion portrait, taken on a cloudy day in the Madikwe Game Reserve, is a good example of going back to basics. The face, and specifically the eyes that are wide open, are sharp and in focus. The face has been placed on a dynamic point in the frame and the repetition of the two legs, forming diagonal lines leading up to the face all work together to create an image that works.
From a processing point of view I only bumped the contrast a little bit, due to the overcast light we had on the day and I added a very soft vignette. I don’t normally like vignette, and I think many photographers mess up great wildlife images by adding strong vignettes to their images but there definitely is a use for them. In this case I felt that a very soft vignette, almost not noticeable, will add to the intimacy of the portrait and help to keep my viewer’s gaze in the middle of the frame.
Yip, just a good, solid wildlife image.
Until next time.
Gerry van der Walt
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