I'm delighted to share some more good news with you!
I've won the Greatest Maasai Mara Photographer Of The Year Contest, March 2019!
The winning shot is this male lion shaking raindrops off his mane after a downpour at the start of the rainy season. It is called 'Microclimate' and was taken during my latest tenure as Photographer In Residence at Alex Walker's Serian safari camps in Kenya.
March brings rain back to the Mara, so I was excited about the possibility of this shot. It proved frustrating as most days the lions just hunkered down and slept through the afternoon downpours until darkness fell. Finally, towards the end of my stay, this male woke up and shook the raindrops from his mane while there was still enough light to shoot - I was overjoyed that patience and anticipation paid off! As it happens the opportunity came up when I was out training the guides and drivers of Serian in what photographers need on game drives, so that session went pretty well!
The competition is sponsored by the Angama Foundation and the judges included wildlife photography legend Art Wolfe and Angama's Adam Bannister, so I feel really honoured to win.
The judges said:
"This is the type of photo that all wildlife photographers who visit the Mara want in their portfolio. It requires great skill, and lots of luck for an image like this to come into fruition. It's a huge deal as the competition was tough...it's a great shot."
The contest raises funds for some remarkable conservation and community projects in the Mara including the Maa Trust and the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust so it was a pleasure to enter.
Microclimate will now form part of the 2019 Greatest Maasai Mara Photographer of the Year exhibition and will be one of 12 in the running for the overall title at the end of the year...fingers crossed!
Thank you to Angama and everyone at Serian, especially driver Joseph Bajila, guide Mark Kasale & manager Ainslie Wilson for setting up the training - great photos are always due to a great team!