Please join me on a great African adventure, November 15th – 24th, 2017 | You can also join me March 3rd – 8th, 2018
3 Nights Ol Donyo Lodge | 3 Nights Mara Expedition Camp
Imagine the sun hanging low in brilliant shades of orange silhouetted with elephants on the horizon, just like a page out of a picture book. If Africa has been on your list of “must see places,” then this is a journey for you—especially if you want to photographically capture the moments of a truly life transforming experience. Set in one of the most pristine wilderness places on the planet, you will have the extraordinary experience of witnessing the majesty of this continent’s wildlife. Lions, leopards, elephants, buffalo, they are all there to awe and inspire you. Africa has long been my favorite place in the world, and I look forward to sharing its magical allure with you. Join me and the Great Plains Wild Studio Team on a uniquely curated safari that will tap into your true inner-photographer through the prism of mindfulness. Leave with a deeper sense of connection to yourself as well as the importance of being stewards of our wildlife.
Why this journey? I have been taking daily photographs with my iPhone of people, things and events that make me happy for about five years. So when the opportunity to do a safari with Wild Studio at the Great Plains Conservation Camps presented itself, I said an immediate yes! Wild Studio was founded by award-winning National Geographic filmmakers, Beverly and Dereck Joubert. Their studio teaching team is made up of professional photographers who live in Kenya, and have an intimate knowledge of the wildlife in the area.
On this safari, whether you are a budding photographer or professional, using a smartphone or DSLR, the professional photographic Wild Studio team will you show how to take exquisite wildlife photographs, along with helping to personalize a portfolio of your journey. This in combination with my mindfulness teachings will be the lens through which you immerse yourself into the African landscape.
Here is a snapshot of at what we have planned for you:
An Exploration of…
Mindfulness of the visual landscape
Mindfulness of the sounds of Africa
Mindfulness of your connection to the earth
Mindfulness of your inner-silence within the pristine wilderness
Mindful Conservation Photography
During your stay, you will be creating a photographic portfolio of your journey, which will describe the wildlife that you see, highlighting the need to conserve Africa’s wildlife.
Using photography to share your stories of the beauty of nature is an exceptional way to show how we all can contribute to conservation. You will become a wildlife photographer, taking on an ambassadorial role in conserving wildlife.
The Wild Studio workshops are designed for any level of photographer, whether using a smartphone or professional camera.
Ideally traveling with two formats, such as a zoom or wide angle, will allow for a wider range of images to photograph.
We will stay three nights at the Ol Donyo Lodge. The setting is between Kenya’s Tsavo East and Amboseli National Parks in the heart of the Chyulu Hills, this is a place of timeless wild beauty presided over by the magnificent summit of Africa’s greatest icon, Mount Kilimanjaro.
The remaining nights are at the Mara Expedition Camp, which is set in prime leopard territory. The experience here is to really connect you with Africa and live the explorer’s life, surrounded by wildlife, a perfect setting for this sojourn.
The majority of all activities will be using 4-wheel drive vehicles designed with photographic supports to accommodate saddle-style beanbags which have designed by Wild Studio.
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Day 1 Arrive and Overnight in Nairobi
Day 2 Ol Donyo Lodge
We will be picked up by our Wild Studio Photographer and Wildlife Guide and taken to Ol Donyo Lodge.
The first day is an acclimatization day.
Once settled in, we will have an introductory talk with our photographer before heading out for our first game drive. This evening is all about getting used to the vehicle, and mindfully appreciating our surroundings.
Every night, we will return to camp soon after dark, once the light is gone. After freshening up, we will talk about photography and mindfulness before dinner; how one views the African landscape through a 'mindful lens.'
Your Content is Core
On the first night, we will introduce creating the 'Contents' page of your portfolio.
We work backwards, like any professional photographer, by setting up a brief for the design of your portfolio. The theme of the portfolio will be about wildlife and conservation.
The contents will reflect on the wildlife you see in the area. Predators are always a favorite, however, we can't guarantee to find them on these workshops. The point is to look at a broad portfolio, and if we see a lion or leopard, then it becomes a real bonus.
Your portfolio title is a good one to be thinking about as we go. You may have an idea on day one, though let it evolve throughout the workshop. You may be surprised.
Days 3, 4, and 5 Ol Donyo Lodge
These are full days finding images to complete your portfolio and discovering the highlights of the area.
We will get up around 5 am and head out after tea or coffee, aiming to have breakfast in the bush mid-morning.
The return to camp will vary, generally around 11, allowing us time to back up and review your images.
Lunch may be around 12 or 1, which provides us with 4 or 5 hours to eat, relax, meditate, do some restorative yoga and breathwork, and look at images.
Each photographer will have their own desk, charging station, and place to store cameras.
There will be a Mac computer where you will be able to view your favorite images and start building your portfolio each day.
After refreshments, we will head out on our game drive until about 7 to return for dinner and have a relaxed evening around the campfire; this will include talks about photography and mindfulness.
Day 5 Ol Donyo Lodge to Mara Expedition Camp
Flight dependent we will have one final game drive in the morning before heading off the Mara Expedition Camp.
Days 6 and 7 Mara Expedition Camp
Will be a similar schedule of wildlife viewing, portfolio building, and discussions about mindfulness.
Day 8 Mara Expedition Camp to Return Home
Flight dependent we will have one final game drive in the morning.
Flights generally depart around mid-morning to noon.
Ol Donyo Lodge
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