Archive for South Africa

I am the 2014 European Wildlife Photographer of the Year!

Posted in African Wildlife, European Wildlife, Photography, Wildlife, Wildlife Photography with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 24, 2014 by Neil Aldridge

It’s with humility and immense pride that I can announce that my photograph ‘Living Rock Art‘ has won me the overall title of 2014 GDT European Wildlife Photographer of the Year.

The photograph is an artistic take on two blesbok antelope stampeding across the plains of South Africa’s Kariega Game Reserve. The shot was entered in the competition’s Nature’s Studio category before being awarded the overall title by the panel of judges. However, it’s a photo that very nearly didn’t happen…

I was in South Africa working on a story about the rhino poaching crisis and one particular rhino named Thandi that had survived a brutal attack by poachers. I think I had photographed Thandi from every possible angle so my guide – and now good friend – Brendon Jennings and I decided to take a break and explore the floodplains of the Bushman’s River. That’s when we found the herd of blesbok.

With the light on the plains fading fast, I decided to switch to a longer exposure and shoot in a more artistic style than my usual documentary approach. I stepped off the side of the vehicle to use the vehicle as a blind and to get a ground-level angle of the animals stampeding past. That’s when I heard a loud crack…

My ankle had turned in a hole. I landed in a heap in the dust. The pain was unbelievable but, fortunately, I had somehow planted my tripod and camera safely as I fell. I was able to sit up just in time to see the blesbok approaching. I grabbed my camera, locked my focus on them and panned smoothly as they careered past. Only once they had disappeared in a cloud of dust did I turn my attention to my injuries.

My fall may have been but the picture was no accident. It won’t be everyone’s cup of tea, I know that, but I was working hard to capture their movement in a still photograph. What I hadn’t banked on was that the shapes created by their striking black and white leg markings would so closely resemble Bushman rock art, which influenced the title of the image.

I collected my prize in Lunen, Germany at a ceremony marking the competition’s 14th year surrounded by incredibly talented photographers that I have nothing but respect for…which makes this win all the more special.

I’m pleased to say that my success in the competition was not just restricted to Africa’s plains. My photograph of a shoal of tiny Okavango robber fish swimming up the Selinda Spillway in northern Botswana was selected as Highly Commended in the Underwater category too.

All of the winning images can be seen on the competition’s website www.gdtfoto.de

You can see my winning shots and more on my website www.conservationphotojournalism.com

Putting images to good use – Wild Shots 2014

Posted in Conservation Photography, Photography, Wildlife Photography with tags , , , , , , , , on September 27, 2014 by Neil Aldridge

Join me in Cape Town on Saturday 15 November for the Wild Shots Wildlife Photography Symposium. I am fortunate to be taking the stage alongside leading editors and fellow photographers to deliver an exciting line up of talks and workshops at the University of Cape Town’s Percy Fitzpatrick Institute.

In my talk Putting images to good use – picture power for conservation, I will be using some of my photo stories from Africa and Europe to show the importance and power of conservation photography.

Other speakers include reigning Wildlife Photographer of the Year Greg Du Toit, editor Sophie Stafford of BBC Wildlife and WWF Action magazines, fellow photographer Morkel Erasmus and Sam Reinders, photography editor at South Africa’s Go! Magazine.

Be sure to register for your place on the Wild Shots website at wildshotsevent.com

Go! Magazine features my black & white portfolio…

Posted in African Wildlife, Photography, Wildlife Photography with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 29, 2014 by Neil Aldridge

I’m proud to say that June 2014’s issue of Go! Magazine features a portfolio of my black and white photography. The magazine is available across Southern Africa.

(c) Neil Aldridge

The portfolio includes some of my favourite photographs from Chobe, Botswana and South Africa’s Kariega Game Reserve and Kruger National Park. This is the second portfolio of my work that has featured in Go! Magazine after my African wild dog story Underdogs featured in November 2012.

(c) Neil Aldridge

Buy your June copy of Go! to see the full selection of images or head over to my website conservationphotojournalism.com to see more galleries and to buy prints of my black and white photography.

Six images in the Share The View competition…

Posted in Photography, Wildlife, Wildlife Photography with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 23, 2012 by Neil Aldridge

©NeilAldridge

Six of my photographs have been selected in the winning portfolio of the Audubon Society’s Share the View International Nature Photography Competition. It’s a shame not to have been amongst the winners but my sincere congratulations to Bence Mate (Grand Prize, Best Bird winner) and Suzi Eszterhas (Grand Prize, Overall winner).

©NeilAldridge

Those of my entries which made it into the top portfolio include a portrait of a Canadian bald eagle feeding, two little terns in courtship display, a zebra stallion biting the neck of an adversary, a portrait of a meerkat, a close-up wide-angle shot of a colourful painted reed frog in Botswana’s Okavango Delta and an intimate portrait of a white rhinoceros – a shot which also features in BBC Wildlife magazine’s 2013 calendar.

The winners and top 250 will be featured on the Share the View website in early January 2013, so be sure to check back then.

©NeilAldridge

2013 BBC Wildlife Calendar…

Posted in Photography, Wildlife, Wildlife Photography with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 19, 2012 by Neil Aldridge

The December 2012 issue of BBC Wildlife magazine goes on sale this week. As well as exceptional features on Ethiopian wolves and giant otters, and a portfolio on winter in Siberia, the issue includes the 2013 edition of the sought-after BBC Wildlife Calendar. I’m really proud to say that two of my photographs feature in the calendar – a malachite kingfisher snapped in the swamps of Botswana’s Okavango Delta earlier this year and a portrait of a white rhino, taken in the home of rhino conservation – South Africa’s Hluhluwe Imfolozi Park.

As you would expect from BBC Wildlife, the calendar – which marks the magazine’s 50th anniversary – is full of wonderful wildlife photographs taken from the equatorial waters of the Galapagos Marine Reserve to the frozen wilderness of the arctic circle. Pick up a copy and be inspired.

See these photos and more on my main website…

UNDERDOGS reviewed in Environment Magazine

Posted in African Wildlife, Conservation, Conservation Photography, Photography, Wildlife, Wildlife Photography with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 8, 2012 by Neil Aldridge

A review of Underdogs – my African wild dog book – features in the latest issue of the magazine Environment. The magazine is a collaboration between some of Africa’s leading environmental organisations, including the Endangered Wildlife Trust (EWT) with whom I worked while photographing Underdogs. The editor of Environment, Dr John Ledger, reviews the book and says:

“This is more than a ‘coffee table’ book because, although it is a large-format hard-cover edition, beautifully illustrated by the author’s excellent photographs, it also has a very informative text that imparts the scientific aspects of Wild Dog conservation…This is a lovely book to have and a very worthwhile read.”

To read the review of Underdogs in full, see the latest issue of Environment online at environmentmag.co.za/ebook/Env-12 or subscribe at environmentmag.co.za. Underdogs is now available across South Africa at leading stores, such as Exclusive Books, Estoril Books and PNA.

To order a signed copy of Underdogs, please visit my website.

Underdogs is on the shelves in South Africa…

Posted in African Wildlife, Conservation, Conservation Photography, Photography, Wildlife, Wildlife Photography with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 5, 2012 by Neil Aldridge

I am really proud and excited to announce that my acclaimed African wild dog book Underdogs is now available to buy in the shops across South Africa. This 156-page coffee-table conservation book focuses on the Southern African population of this endangered carnivore and so South Africa has always been a major market for the title.

African wild dogs suffered in 2011 with many packs being hit hard by poaching and persecution. 2012 has seen high profile support for the conservation of this iconic and charismatic carnivore in South Africa. I simply hope that Underdogs can add to people’s understanding of these creatures and play at least a small role in securing their future in South Africa and beyond.

Download a provisional list of outlets selling Underdogs (this list will be updated wherever possible).

You can see a gallery of photographs and read more about Underdogs on my website, where it is also possible to order a signed copy of the book.