A selection of the best readers’ photographs submitted to the Getaway Gallery photo competition for December 2016.
Getaway Gallery is a prestigious showcase of the best photographs our readers have to offer. This year we bring you our biggest competition yet, with travel and equipment prizes to the value of over R160000.
Submit your images here
Take a look at our November 2016 for more inspirational images.
On a recent trip to Botswana, I was spoilt with several sightings of large elephants herds on the banks of the Chobe River. I was looking for something unusual and saw the opportunity when the trunk of an elephant in the foreground framed the elephant’s eye in the background. I focused on the eye and was very pleased with the result! – By Prelena Soma Owen, Gauteng
Canon 1Dx, Canon 600mm f/4 II, ISO 1250, f/7.1, 1/500 sec
I had mentally planned this star trail for quite some time, and in July we did a photography trip from Cape Town to Lekubu, Botswana. Lekubu Island is a desolate place in the Makarakari saltpans. I scouted the area just before sunset and marked my tripod position and camera angle. What a surprise I received at 04h30 that morning when returning to the site, as nothing looked remotely familiar! In the cold and darkness of that morning, even to find my location was a struggle. I set up my equipment as best as I could in a southern direction and focused on infinity, taking 16 consecutive images. The timing was perfect as the last photo captured the warmth of the early morning giving softness to the whole picture. – By Fanie Jansen van Vuuren, Bellville Canon 5D Mark III,
Canon 24- 70 f/2.8L ll,
ISO 400, f/2.8, 4 min
This lion was using the thick cover of the grass as a way of hiding whilst periodically scanning the waterhole for possible prey. His camouflage was outstanding – when flopped down in the grass, he was nearly impossible to see. – By Mark Wiseman, George Nikon D4, Nikkor 600mm f/4, ISO 1100, f/4, 1/500 sec
This photo was taken in Satara Rest Camp in the Kruger National Park. The Red-billed Queleas were taking a bath in a small puddle of water left after a rain shower. – By Paul Keller, Kempton Park
Canon 1D Mark III, Canon 500mm f/4L I, 1.4x converter, ISO 400, f/7.1, 1/640 sec
The Spitzkoppe is about 40km northwest of Usakos in Namibia. There were a lot of people on the day that I visited, and I had to wait for them to leave. I was afraid that my time for a good shot was running out. Luckily I was fortunate and got a shot with no people in it just as the sun set. During the day, the granite rocks of the Spitzkoppe have a yellowish colour. As the sun sets the colour of the rocks starts to change to a very saturated red. This is a place that I have to visit again. – By Rust Brand, Windhoek Nikon D800E, Nikor 14-24mm f/2.8, ISO 100, f/4.5, 8 sec
This photo was taken in Etosha in Namibia. The giraffe came down to drink as the sun was setting. The setting sun as well as the reflection of the giraffe in the water created this image.
– By Paul Keller, Kempton Park Canon 5D MK1, Canon 500mm f/4 Mark 1,
ISO 800, f/4, 1/8000 sec
Two white rhino made their way across a pan in Khama Rhino Sanctuary, Botswana. As the sun began to set, the rhino moved slowly into the open area. It was an incredible opportunity to watch an animal under such threat completely at ease with our presence. The rhinos kicked up dust as they grazed, creating lovely silhouettes. Hopefully the analogy is not an ominous symbol that the sun is setting for this beautiful species. – By William Steel, St Helena bay Canon 70D, Sigma 150-600mm, ISO 400, f/6.3, 1/4000 sec
After three hours of hiking in the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest in the southwest of Uganda we were rewarded with a wonderful sighting of a gorilla group with six females, a silverback and two boisterous youngsters. I was touched by the grace and poise of these majestic creatures and I think this image encapsulates that. A life-changing experience, well worth the arduous hike back to the base. – By Prelena Soma, Gauteng
Canon 1DX, Canon 100-400mm Mark II,
ISO 1250, f/6.3, 1/ 400 sec
Whilst enduring the bitterly cold wind of the Atlantic in Walvis Bay, Namibia, these flamingos suddenly panicked (for reasons unknown to me). They took off in all directions causing a flurry of feathers, legs and pinks leaving me little time to capture the moment. What was captured was just the right amount of imperfection to make this shot different and a favourite. – Image by David Heath, Silver Lakes Canon 70D, Canon 18-200mm, ISO 1600, f/5.6, 1/160 sec
This image was taken on assignment in Namibia. The focus of my project was to capture the Himba and Bushman tribes in their natural environment. I spent a month traveling through and staying for extended period of times with both tribes. Bushmen are of special interest to me- the numbers of tribesmen are dwindling rapidly and the focus of my photography is cultural preservation. – By Aga Szydlik, Johannesburg, Canon 5D Mark III, Canon f/1.4mm, ISO 200, f 1.4, 1/640 sec
A Sunday afternoon birding trip at Langvlei near Wilderness yielded this bird after a long wait. I used the time to practice what I had learnt from some photography lessons and used the settings suggested by my camera guru. – By Peter Mullineux Canon 7D, Tamron 150-600mm f/5-6.3, ISO 400, f/ 6.3, 1/2000 sec
This was taken in the Linyanti, Northern Botswana. I was waiting for the sun to set when this lone bull elephant decided to cross the water right in front of the camp that I manage. The colours of the water, combined with the wading elephant, were just all perfect. – By Johan von Backstrom, Botswana Canon 700D, Canon 75-300mm, ISO 400, f/5.6, 1/800 sec
On our tour of the Namib desert near Swakopmund, Namibia, we were lucky enough to see this sidewinder adder. This venomous viper moves in a sidewinding fashion allowing them to traverse the loose dune sand. The action means that most of their body is off the ground at any given moment, enabling them to cross very hot sand without overheating. They are front-fanged and have both cytototix and neurotoxic poison. As the weather was damp, I only had my macro lens and old camera with me and I had to get close to take this shot . With adrenalin pumping, I used a shallow depth of field drawing the viewer to the sharply focused eyes on top of its head. – By Bev Dudley, Johannesburg
Canon 450 D, Canon 100mm f/2.8, ISO 400, f/3,5, 1/1000 sec
I visited Sabi Sands earlier this year. On the first night’s game drive we came across hyenas busy with a wildebeest carcass, dashing in and out in an effort to get something to eat. A second safari vehicle arrived and parked on the opposite side of the carcass. We requested our tracker to switch off his spotlight so that we could make use of the other vehicle’s spotlight as backlight. Then the battle started to capture a sharp image- the very low light, high ISO, slow shutter speed and constantly moving hyenas made for tricky conditions! I must say that the dust was a bonus. I got only two shots where the hyenas’ eyes were visible, and this is one of them. – By Freddie van Rensburg, Pretoria Canon 1D Mk IV, Canon 100-400 Mk II, f/5, ISO 3200, 1/160 sec