ENJOY the following images showcasing various wildlife and travel projects that I’ve created throughout my career. My hope is that these images provide inspiration for YOUR JOURNEYS ahead. All I ask is that as you travel, please help preserve our natural world by supporting local businesses whose actions protect wildlife and wild places.
LOCATION: Baja California, Sea of Cortez
WHEN TO GO: March, to see the widest variety of marine mammals
WHAT TO EXPECT: Get on the water to see hundreds of friendly dolphins porpoising along side your boat. Various tour operators offer on the water packages for a range of budgets.
PHOTO TIP: Focus on the wake of your boat. Dolphins love to play in and around your boat’s wake and will enter your focus field.
LOCATION: Antarctic Continent
WHEN TO GO: October through March
WHAT TO EXPECT: Most Emperor penguin colonies are inland a ways. Be prepared to walk on the ice. Snow Island is an easily accessible place to experience the penguins. Some operators have helicopters to transport their guests to the colonies without hiking. Expect winter temperatures–but not unbearable–stinky guano, and a cacophony of penguin calls that you’ll never forget!
PHOTO TIP: The white of the snow will most likely close your shutter down farther than you would like. To counter this, dial your exposure compensation up a couple of stops. Increasing exposure compensation (+/- button) will help to capture details in your shadows. With tricky lighting, always check your histogram in camera to make sure your exposure is correct.
LOCATION: Pacific Ocean, 2000+ miles West of Chile
WHEN TO GO: High season on Easter Island is between January and March. To avoid crowds on this tiny island, it’s best to travel in December or April.
WHAT TO EXPECT: Small Polynesian island with limited services which makes for a quaint experience. The island belongs to Chile and Spanish is spoken. Hire a local guide to get the full scoop on these ancient sculptures (over 900 moai) and the Rapa Nui indigenous people. Don’t forget to go stargaze as light pollution is minimal!
PHOTO TIP: A wide angle lens is a must to get multiple statues in on one shot. The golden hour is also the best time to photograph the Moai to eliminate distracting shadows.
LOCATION: Cheetah Conservation Fund Preserve, Otjiwarongo, Namibia
WHEN TO GO: I usually travel to Africa in early fall as the dry season encourages wildlife to drink at watering holes thus making them easier to spot and photograph. The Cheetah Conservation Fund (CCF ) is open all year and has cheetahs of all ages on site that can’t be reintroduced into the wild.
WHAT TO EXPECT: At CCF you’ll learn about the limited genetic diversity that is pressuring species survival as well as the efforts to help preserve this endangered species. There is housing on site as well as in nearby game ranches.
PHOTO TIP: A telephoto lens helps you get more intimate shots of the cheetahs. Some cheetahs at the CCF can be petted. If possible, photograph cheetahs at their eye level. If they are sprinting, make sure your camera speed is set high! I usually set mine at 1/2000 for fast animal action.