LIMITED to six (6) participants. All-inclusive (double occupancy). This is a SCOUTING TRIP offered at a special price — $6995 (all-inclusive; double occupancy)
This Botswana Wildlife Photo Tour ~ 2020 (SCOUTING TRIP) will take place in the wildlife-rich the Chobe River region and Okavango Delta.
Our tent camp in the Delta is perfectly located to find and lions (by the way: the lions of the Okavango Delta are the ). There are also leopards and cheetahs in the area. With our expert Bushman trackers we will have excellent chances to photograph these stunning creatures.
Only six (6) photographers on this trip. Grab it and growl: https://exploreinfocus.com/joinme/botswana-photo-tour/
Join award-winning wildlife photographer and naturalist Jacqueline Deely for an inspirational weekend of photography amid a spectacular setting along California’s rugged central coast. Camp Ocean Pines in Cambria is a rustic camp sitting on thirteen acres of Monterey Pine forest that nearly meets the ocean shore. Wildlife abounds, with seals and otters swimming by, and deer roaming through the property.
Throughout the weekend, explore how we can connect with nature, learn about our environment and make a difference through our experiences and the images we capture. Field activities visit nearby locations with specific goals in mind. We will take advantage of optimal light in the early morning and evening and when wildlife tends to be most active. Classroom sessions include illustrated presentations and discussions evolve around our own unique moments and encounters in the wild. Sharing our work allows us to delve deeper into the thought process behind our photographs and the stories they tell.
Although not required, staying on-site at Camp Ocean Pines is highly recommended to enhance the overall experience. Accommodations are shared in comfortable straw bale cabins, engineered for passive solar efficiency, and constructed from timbers and siding milled from wind-felled trees on the property. It will be a wonderful way to stay connected with nature and fellow participants throughout the entire weekend.
All meals are included except dinner on Saturday night, which will be free for participants to visit and dine in the quaint town of Cambria. Alcohol is not available at the camp, but you are welcome to bring your own.
Transportation to the various field locations will be in our own vehicles with the plan to carpool.
This workshop is tremendous value and open to anyone with a love of nature and photography. All levels are welcome: however, students must have a basic understanding of how to operate their own equipment.
$402 with meals and lodging / $350 with meals and no lodging
Josh Asel started wildlife and conservation photography in 2012 and has transitioned into an award-winning photographer, Ethics Committee Member at NANPA, large carnivore tracker, author, and instructor. He founded Wild Expectations, is represented by Wildscreen, and has appeared on multiple judging panels. Josh’s publications include Defenders of Wildlife, Improve Photography, National Geographic Education, Alaska Airlines Magazine, and The Press Democrat, among others.
Stories of hordes of Instagrammers descending on the super bloom attracted world-wide attention, including The Guardian from the UK. (Screen grab.)
California is in the midst of a wildflower super bloom and, along with vast fields of poppies come unruly hordes of people. The small town of Lake Elsinore was overwhelmed by “Disneyland size crowds” of up to 50,000 tourists last weekend, resulting in traffic jams, accidents and unruly behavior. “#poppynightmare” as one town official put it. This kind of chaos risks placing these locations off limits to everyone, including photographers.
Galapagos flycatcher landed on my finger because I was the tallest shrub around, Santiago/James Island, Galapagos National Park, Ecuador.
I love being close to animals. Their proximity reaffirms the fact that we are a part of nature, another thread in the tapestry of life, rather than something separate or apart from it. If my youth is any indication, this is an affinity we are all born with, but it gets lost if it’s not exposed to the right stimuli, wild stimuli. The first wild stimulus I’m aware of in my own upbringing was bears. My family was visiting Yosemite when I was three, and in those days the park had an open-air dump where bears would scavenge. Upon seeing the large animals, I set off running towards them, yelling, “Doggie, doggie!” My parents managed to overtake and control me before the bears could be traumatized by an overly enthusiastic toddler, but it was a near thing.
Being close to animals remains an incredibly precious experience for me, and it makes no difference what the species is—butterflies or bighorns, sea turtles or snakes, mice or moose (they’re all doggies to me). In Baja, I laid in the path of an approaching tarantula just to see what it would do, and to get some wide-angle shots, of course. After a few tentative steps on my arm, which was dry, flaky and hairy, the spider decided it did not care for the terrain and retreated to walk around me. Now approaching any creature closely is not something to be taken lightly. There is an element of danger involved any time you are near a wild thing, more for the subject than the photographer, for even if it’s the photographer who is injured, the animal will almost certainly be killed. And that’s one of the reasons NANPA decided to come up with some guidelines to help photographers make wise choices, ethical choices.
My degree is in Wildlife Biology, and I have worked at getting close to critters of all kinds for more than 50 years—50 years! Boy that makes me feel old—but even with that background, I know I would’ve benefitted from projects the Ethics Committee has tackled. In my early days as a nature photographer, the images I was trying to capture often took on a life or death level of importance to me. I’m sure I stressed subjects more than I should’ve and trampled things under my boots that I should’ve been more aware of. Three decades ago, there was rarely another person anywhere around me, so the impact I had was relatively light. Today, where one photographer goes, hordes are likely to follow, and our potential for disturbance and disruption is correspondingly greater. It’s been 20 years since NANPA first came out with a code of ethics for nature photographers, but the game has changed. And not only because there are so many more of us, but because newer research shows some of the old practices have the potential to harm the landscape or the creatures that live there. The original code of ethics is kind of paltry compared to the guidelines listed in the latest Ethical Field Practices, another indication of how much things have changed. Check it out. It’s worth looking over regardless of how experienced you are and how many covers you list on your resume. An ebook on ethical nature photography is also scheduled for release in the near future, and, with any luck, it will be out before the summit next February.
Another issue the Ethics Committee has worked on is the accurate captioning of images. At one time, this was something that pretty much only applied to editorial photography and contest entries. It was important to know if an animal or plant was captive, and if the photo had been manipulated in some way. There was a definite temptation to fudge the truth a bit just to get published or win a prestigious contest, and that temptation is still there. Not too many years ago, the winner of the Wildlife Photographer of the Year contest was caught using a captive subject for his winning image. At a time when we could have used both the money and the fame, my wife, Cathy, and I passed up an opportunity to have the cover of Defenders magazine by letting the editors know the wolverine they wanted had been photographed at a game farm. Not only was it the right thing to do, it wouldn’t have looked good for the person who wrote the original Truth in Captioning article for NANPA, as well as sitting in on the Truth in Captioning panel at the 1997 summit, to be caught cheating. Those were the early days of Photoshop, and its limits were still being tested. Today there is literally nothing that cannot be done to an image during processing. Between the incredible possibilities in photo manipulation and a new awareness of the nuances that exist between wild and captive, the Truth in Captioning Document is considerably more detailed than the one we arrived at back in 1997. Again, this something all of us should check out and be aware of.
These issues were not approached with the idea that NANPA is going to be a policeman or play referee, watching over all of our work to slap us down if we cross the line. The completed projects are there to help nature photographers better understand some of the implications of what they’re doing. We did not get into nature photography for the money or fame (if you did, you’re really barking up the wrong tree). We picked up a camera because we love nature, we love wildlife, and any help we can get is welcome, especially if it makes life easier for the wild landscapes and wild things that mean so much to us.