Gearing Up for My African Photo Safari

photography gear for african safari

If you're planning an African photo safari, you'll need to give yourself a bit of time to figure out what the best camera gear is for your trip and where you're going to get it. Everyone says good photography is not about the gear. It's about the photographer's skills and whether they can carry out their vision. I think that's true most of the time. But in some cases, it's … [Read more...]

Saguaros as Far as the Eye Can See

Distant Cactus by Anne McKinnell

Saguaro National Park, in Arizona, is a special place. The sheer density of the Saguaro Forest is captivating and I love how the cacti look against the red rock. Usually I photograph them from ground level, often from a low angle looking up to emphasize their immense size. But seen from above, you get a totally different feel for the place. To get a good vantage point, we … [Read more...]

How to Create a Good Composition in a Crowded Desert Scene

Saguaro Cactus in Quartzsite Arizona by Anne McKinnell

The Senoran Desert, in southern California and Arizona, is packed with all sorts of cacti and other plants. You never have to go far to find a good subject to photograph. In fact, deciding on which subject to photograph and isolating it from the rest of the plants is the most challenging part! Creating a good composition in a crowded desert scene is a matter of elimination, … [Read more...]

Desert Sunset at Joshua Tree National Park

Sunset at Joshua Tree National Park by Anne McKinnell

One of the reasons I like going down south in the winter (and there are many) is the incredible sunsets in the desert. It seems like every day is a clear blue sky day with no clouds and then, as the day goes on, the clouds move in just in time for sunset. There are stages to the sunset that we just don’t get on the coast. Or perhaps it doesn’t happen frequently enough … [Read more...]

The Echo of a Shape at Jumbo Rocks

Jumbo Rocks at Joshua Tree National Park by Anne McKinnell

When I am photographing, I always keep my eye out for strong shapes since they tend to lead to strong compositions. Any shape will do: circles, squares, triangles, curves. During my last visit to Joshua Tree National Park in California, I went back to a place I had been before, Jumbo Rocks, where there are all kinds of interesting rocks to photograph. But there was one rock … [Read more...]

Joshua Tree National Park Panorama

Joshua Tree Panorama by Anne McKinnell

Joshua Tree National Park in California is such a unique landscape that I really wanted to make a panorama image that would convey the vastness and the sheer quantity of Joshua Trees. The first few I tried didn’t turn out so well though! The trees looked so small and unimpressive. I realized that the perspective I was using made all the trees carry the same importance and no … [Read more...]

Pacific White-Sided Dolphin Encounter in Discovery Passage

Pacific White Sided Dolphin by Anne McKinnell

It was one of the best boating days I've ever had. My first time going through Seymour Narrows, up Johnstone Strait, to Kelsey Bay on an absolutely glorious day. Please click the images to view larger versions. On the way home though Discovery Passage I spotted some porpoises a little ways off on the starboard side, so I decided to take a swing over there and see what … [Read more...]

Haystack Rock, Cannon Beach, Oregon

Haystack Rock by Anne McKinnell

The photo in yesterday's post was made on a foggy afternoon at Cannon Beach, Oregon. The next day, the skies opened up and the sun shone on Cannon Beach's iconic Haystack Rock. But there was still just enough fog lingering behind the rock to give the photo lots of mood. Please click the photo to view a larger version. I found a spot where I could use a low angle to … [Read more...]