moutain gorilla holidays PHOTOGRAPHY & WRITING BY IAN WOOD
After 3 months work in Africa and India I'm back in sunny Sussex. Yesterday I held my first Sussex photography workshop for 2015 which was a one-on-one day with Claire from Brighton who wanted to get to grip with her new camera. Thanks for a lovely day and for sharing some of your photos below. For more info on my Sussex photography courses and workshops please click here.
One way to improve our photography is to question every time exactly why and when we press the shutter button which will differentiate your photos from the digital deluge of boring, unoriginal snap shots. It also leads to more of what I call 'lucky images'. I took the photo below last night on a deliberately low shutter speed (1/25th sec) to try and capture movement in the foreground, but when the cyclist crossed the road the image came together - perfectly framed through the open section of the blurred tut tut. Below are the 2 photos immediately before and after this to illustrate the element of luck needed in this shot. For info on my photography courses and workshops please click here.
Here are the 2 shots taken just before and just after this photo:
I have a few days off in between my 2015 Uganda mountain gorilla holidays and have just made a 2 minute video of our recent encounter with the Mubare group in Bwindi Impenetrable forest. This year we made a donation to Gorilla Doctors from this trip and were joined by Dr Fred and Dr Ricky who are vets with this wonderful organisation. For more info on the work of Gorilla Doctors please click here.
"We cannot tell the precise moment when friendship is formed. As in filling a vessel drop by drop, there is at last a drop which makes it run over."
7th to 17th Jan 2015 - Thanks to Adrian, Suzanne, Marta, Joc, Roy and Florent for making our time in Uganda so special - I'm writing this by the pool in Entebbe and already missing you all as you wend your way home to very different parts of the world. I have a theory (which I usually keep very quiet about) that people are rewarded with wildlife sightings which reflect their vibes as people. It's just happened so much on my different trips over the last few years that I can no longer label it as coincidence. In our time together in Uganda we were rewarded with an array of such intimate wildlife encounters that attempting to list them in words seems futile. I was going to only choose mountain gorilla photos below as that day in particular will linger in my soul for eternity. But Uganda has such a plethora of wildlife that I resisted the urge and have randomly chosen 10 photos from our trip to try and give a tiny sense of the beauty of this country. If you'd like more info about joining one of my future Uganda mountain gorilla holidays then click here and it will take you to that part of my website. You might also like "Why I love Uganda" and "Mountain gorilla numbers rise by 10%" or "Uganda bird haven"
There's a 2 minute video of our mountain gorilla encounter here too:
Kidepo national park which straddles South Sudan and Northeast Uganda was voted Africa's best national park recently and after my recent visit I can see why. Framed by cardboard cutout mountains on three sides this place melts your heart with its sheer beauty - but best of all, you'll virtually have the place to yourself. There's no queues of safari four by fours here - over the course of my week long stay I came across less than ten other vehicles in the entire park. I'm now back in Entebbe ahead of my Uganda mountain gorilla holidays (click here for more info) but from 2016 I'll be adding on an optional extension to explore this beautiful area too.
Here's a few photos taken on my Sussex photography workshop days last week ... My next ones will be in Spring and Summer 2015 so if you'd like more information click here to take you to my Sussex photography courses and workshop page.
Just put together a 2 minute video showing an encounter with the Rushegura mountain gorilla group, Uganda, on my last mountain gorilla holiday:
Manta rays have the largest brain of any fish by absolute weight and if you've been lucky enough to exchange eye contact with these incredible animals you'll know there's a lot going on in there. Their spacial awareness, social interactions and curiousity towards humans indicate a high level of intelligence. Sadly the global catch of manta rays has dramatically increased over the last decade due to demand for their gill rakers from China, where they are sold as medicinal products. For detailed information about the conservation of manta rays and whale sharks head to Marine Megafauna website (link here) The water is a bit murky as it's full of plankton but here's a 3 minute video I made of a manta ray feeding frenzy in Hanifaru bay..
Such a lovely week back in Borneo for my 2nd orangutan fundraising for this October - thanks to Jim, April, Nancy, Marcel, Carlijn, Geraldine and Jacinta for being so lovely and making this such a special trip. Together we rasied some more money for the Orangutan Foundation whose work is making a direct difference on the ground to ensure that orangutans have a long term future in the wild. I'm on my way to Sulawesi now and ihternet access isn't great but managed to put a few inages from this trip below (click on any one to view them larger). If you'd like informatiuon on joining a future orangutan trip with me then there's more info here. There's also a couple of 2 minute video clips if you scroll down below the photos which give you an idea of a typical day on these trips.
A short video of a day from this year's trips:
A 2 minute video of some of our wildlife sightings in one day on last week's Borneo orangutan fundraising trip. If you'd like to come on one of my future Borneo orangutan trips please click here for more info.
And here's a 2 minute video clip showing a typical day on one of last year's trips.