WERNER REYNEKE

@w_reyneke Nikon D4 Nikon 600 mm lens

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WERNER WRITES: I took this photo in Chobe Na­tional Park in Botswana. I was on a river cruise and I had my cam­era mounted on a tri­pod with a gim­bal sys­tem to en­sure sta­bil­ity on the rock­ing boat. We were watch­ing a big herd of buf­falo and I iden­ti­fied this trou­ble­maker as my sub­ject. I asked our guide to po­si­tion the boat in a way that al­lowed me to take a photo of the buf­falo against a clean back­ground. It was very grumpy and took out its frus­tra­tions on ev­ery­thing around it. My set­tings: shut­ter speed 1/1 600 sec­ond, aper­ture f5, ISO 320. I de­cided to make the photo black-and-white to em­pha­size the tex­ture of the mud on the buf­falo. The scene is also sim­pler in mono­chrome – you’re not dis­tracted by any­thing that’s not im­por­tant.

TOAST SAYS: I think the de­ci­sion to con­vert to black-and-white was a good one. The buf­falo is al­ready black­ish-grey so you don’t lose any­thing in terms of colour. The light on the Chobe River can also be harsh at cer­tain times of the day, turn­ing the sky washed-out white. This is the ideal time to shoot in mono­chrome. Werner used a fast shut­ter speed and cap­tured the mud per­fectly. It feels like the buf­falo is about to ex­plode with pent-up en­ergy. The back­ground is out of fo­cus (this will al­ways be the case when shoot­ing with a can­non of a lens like Werner’s 600 mm) and the horns of the buf­falo stand proud of the hori­zon, sil­hou­et­ted against the sky. This gives the an­i­mal more im­pact. Great ac­tion shot!

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