It’s no secret that Mashatu Game Reserve is one of Africa’s wildlife photographic gems – with a variety of open habitats, relaxed predators, and intimate encounters with elephants at our photographic hide, it’s a photographer’s dream. It’s not only a destination for photographers – wildlife and nature lovers from around the world travel to Mashatu to experience the mind-blowing landscapes, remarkable game viewing and exceptional service, making memories that will last a lifetime.
Capturing these memories is not always about having professional photographic equipment and knowledge. In the words of Chase Jarvis, “the best camera is the one that’s with you,” and in many cases that is the camera on a phone or tablet.
Many clients visit our photographic hide armed just with their phones, mainly for the experience of being so close to the wildlife. They leave surprised at the quality of images they captured with some guidance from one of our resident photographers.
For this month’s blog, photographer, Janet Kleyn, shares some of her top phone photographic tips.
- Ensure the lens is clean – we often touch the lens of our phone cameras – always give it a quick wipe with a soft cloth before using the camera.
- Tap your finger on the screen where you want to focus. Swipe the screen up to increase exposure (make it lighter) or down to drop exposure (make darker).
- Avoid zooming too much. Newer phones have dual lenses so you can get closer without using the dreaded zoom. Alternatively, you can buy telephoto lenses that attach to your camera phone.
- When doing video or timelapse try using a tripod or something to support your phone.
- Most phone cameras have burst mode which can be used to capture action. Hold your finger on the record button and it will take a quick burst of photos (up to 10 photos per second).
Photographic basics regardless of camera:
- If possible get down low – Our underground photo hide has been designed with this in mind.
- Make the best use of golden light (early morning and late afternoon) for lovely even colors.
- Research photographic “rules of composition” and try apply them to your phone photography when possible.