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Wild White Horses of the Camargue in monochrome

Portrait of fighting stallions typical of the type of image that may be captured during the NaturesLens Wild White Horses of the Camargue Photography Holiday

Earlier this year, I wrote a series of blog posts about the Wild White Horses of the Camargue. I will be heading out to the Camargue on Friday to lead our 2018 trip & thought it would be nice to showcase how these majestic steeds look in monochrome.

We always try to offer something a little bit different from other operators & in this case; we include a unique portrait session. This is an opportunity to photograph a white & a black stallion in a studio-like environment with both natural & studio lighting.

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Lake Kerkini’s Pelicans by Rosamund

A splendid group of Dalmatian Pelicans, with a single juvenile showing off his immature plummage photographed during one of the NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelican Photography Holidays

Rosamund was one of our guests on the last of our three trips to photograph Lake Kerkini’s Pelicans in Greece. She wanted to capture some stunning reflection shots, and I think it would be fair to say that she succeeded! Take a look at the colours in the image below – gorgeous.
A Dalmatian Pelican line up at dawnThe close up stare of a Dalmatian Pelican photographed during one of the NaturesLens Photography Holidays for photography of Lake Kerkini's Pelicans Continue reading

The Black Stallions of the Camargue

Black stallion prancing during a portrait session typical of the type of image that may be captured during the NaturesLens Wild White Horses of the Camargue Photography Holiday

One of the things that make our White Horses of the Camargue trip unique is the opportunity to photograph black stallions.

We will have a session with a black stallion on the beach/ dunes and in the sea plus a further creative portrait session. Each session lasts around 90 – 120 minutes so there will be plenty of time to capture some truly stunning images of these midnight steeds.

Serge and I will be on hand to provide advice on settings to help you get the best images possible. There will be a chance in between sessions to look at our pictures for those who would like some extra tuition.

We will stay in the medieval walled city of Aigues-Mortes during our time in the Camargue. In our free time, we can walk the ramparts and take in the fantastic view of the eerie red salt lagoons and enormous sparkling salt piles as well as the canals that skirt around the town. So much to do and see in just five days!

A black stallion canters in an arena during a special portrait session typical of the type of image that may be captured during the NaturesLens Wild White Horses of the Camargue Photography Holiday Continue reading

Wild White Horses at sunset in the Camargue

A perfect reflection of white horses walking in single file at sunset typical of the type of image that may be captured during the NaturesLens Wild White Horses of the Camargue Photography Holiday

Wild white horses at sunset have long been a popular romantic image. Our tour to the Camargue offers so many different opportunities from exciting action to intimate portraits; from high key images to gorgeous sunset colours (weather permitting!)

The essential thing to remember when photographing at sunset is not to go anywhere. Just when you think that the best colours are over, sometimes, they are just beginning, so keep that camera handy until the light is truly gone. There is often a pause of several minutes where all the colours fade from the sky only for incredible intense colours to return as the sinking sun lights up the clouds that are higher in the sky.

If we are lucky, we may even get some reflection shots. When composing for your reflection shot, make sure that the top of your subject is not cut off at the bottom of your frame. Also, remember to shoot low. Getting down close to the ground can reveal reflected colours that are not visible when you are standing up.

During each of our sessions with the horses, there will be several Gardians on hand to herd the horses. They will skilfully drive the horses towards our cameras, giving us the very best possibilities for some fantastic photography.

wild white horses at sunset typical of the type of image that may be captured during the NaturesLens Wild White Horses of the Camargue Photography Holiday Continue reading

The White Stallions of the Camargue

White stallion leaping out of the surf at sunset typical of the type of image that may be captured during the NaturesLens Wild White Horses of the Camargue Photography Holiday

Horses have long been depicted as a metaphor for the wild, the majestic, and the unbreakable. Their spirit and their loyalty have been used to inspire the imagination. The white stallions of the Camargue are both a well-known fixture and an inspiration for the people of the area.

The Camargue is a wetland area at the mouth of the River Rhône where the landscape is composed of vast areas of salt marshes. The legendary white horses have lived here for centuries, cared for by their “Gardians”. They are used to manage the bull herds and also provide visitors with the opportunity to explore the Camargue region on horseback.

Our tour offers you the opportunity to get up close and personal with these magnificent white stallions and capture images of them fighting and running in the surf as well as intimate close-ups. Unlike similar tours, our price also includes a special creative portrait session using daylight and continuous lighting. If you would like to capture images comparable to the ones below, why not join us?

White stallion leaping out of the surf at sunset typical of the type of image that may be captured during the NaturesLens Wild White Horses of the Camargue Photography Holiday Continue reading

Wild White Horses in the surf of the Camargue beaches

Wild white horses in the surf typical of the type of image that may be captured during the NaturesLens Wild White Horses of the Camargue Photography Holiday

Is there anything more evocative than the image of a herd of wild white horses in the surf? For me, it brings back memories of that iconic scene in the Lord of the Rings when Arwen summons the river horses. Quite appropriate when you consider that the Camargue horses are also known as “the horse of the sea”. They are not shod and their broad hooves are evolutionary adaptions to their wet environment.

These magnificent horses represent one of the oldest breeds in the world. It is believed that they are descended from the prehistoric horses which lived during the Paleolithic period around 17,000 years ago. Unbelievably, despite being an ancient species, the Camargue horses were only officially recognized as a breed in 1967.

You don’t need a long lens to photograph the white horses running in the surf or along the water’s edge. In fact, the longest lens you need for this trip is a 70-200mm!

Wild white horses in the surf typical of the type of image that may be captured during the NaturesLens Wild White Horses of the Camargue Photography HolidayA lone white horse emerges from the surf typical of the type of image that may be captured during the NaturesLens Wild White Horses of the Camargue Photography Holiday Continue reading

Special offer for the Wild White Horses of the Camargue

Wild white horses of the Camargue running in the surf typical of the type of image that may be captured during the NaturesLens Wild White Horses of the Camargue Photography Holiday

Due to a cancellation, we are running a special offer on our Wild White Horses of the Camargue Photography Holiday. For the next two places to be sold on this trip, we are offering a £200 discount – this means you will pay £1899 instead of £2099!

You can make a booking enquiry on the main event page. Make sure to enter CAMARGUESPECIAL into the offer code box to get the £200 discount.

SORRY, BUT BOTH SPECIAL OFFER PLACES HAVE BEEN RESERVED.

White stallion with windswept mane typical of the type of image that may be captured during the NaturesLens Wild White Horses of the Camargue Photography Holiday

 

We will be photographing during the best times of the day for light, i.e. early morning & late afternoon so that we can take advantage of sunrise & sunset.

The Wild White Horses of the Camargue have lived in the area for centuries in semi-wild conditions. The harsh environment of the marshes & wetlands has contributed to the development of their stamina, hardiness & agility for which they are known for today.

Even if you don’t ride horses, you won’t be able to help but appreciate their beauty & grace when they are in motion. They are magnificent, powerful & extremely exciting to photograph. We will be posting a series of blog posts, with more images, about these beautiful equines in the coming days.

Once the two discounted places have been sold the price will revert to £2099 so, don’t miss out & book today!

Wild white horses of the Camargue running in the surf typical of the type of image that may be captured during the NaturesLens Wild White Horses of the Camargue Photography Holiday Continue reading

Bookings open for Dalmatian Pelican Photography in 2019

Our trio of Dalmatian Pelican photography trips this year have been a massive success – the third group are out in Greece right now – some of the images that have been posted have been nothing short of staggering, summing up the beauty of the birds.

An image captured by Sean Weekly during the NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelican Photography Holidays

There will be blog posts from some of the guests forthcoming – & of course; Sean will be writing up his experience & posting images on the NaturesLens blog. The picture above & the one below are from Sean, who has created something moody & brooding.

An image captured during the NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelican Photography Holidays by Sean Weekly

If you would like to take the opportunity to join Sean in Greece to photograph these charismatic birds for yourself, you’d better be quick – the first set of dates for 2019 is already fully reserved, so we have opened up the second set of dates – you can view the details & make a booking enquiry here.

The NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelicans of Kerkini Photography Holiday is offered on a full board, non-shared room basis, & costs £1099 per participant.

To close – here are a pair of images from Annette, who was part of the first group that joined Sean on the lake for several days of Dalmatian Pelican Photography.

An image captured by Annette during the NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelican Photography Holidays

An image captured during the NaturesLens Dalmatian Pelican Photography Holidays by Annette

Sean reports in from our Spanish Raptors Photography Holiday

A Golden Eagle stares straight down the lens at the photographer photographed during the NaturesLens Spanish Raptors Photography Holiday

Last month saw me heading off to the mountains of the Sierra Morena in Spain leading the NaturesLens Spanish Raptors Photography Holiday.

I knew from the itinerary that had been planned that it was going to be an amazing week of photography with some great sightings & photo opportunities. After a very early flight, the group & I arrived in Spain meeting up with the local guides. After a couple of hours on the road we arrived in the local town of Adamuz, which would be our base & home for the duration of the trip. The town is situated in beautiful natural surroundings & is a very picturesque location. Due to the time we arrived, we decided we were going to explore a few wildlife locations that we would be working on over the coming days. It was a great afternoon exploring our surroundings & getting some ideas for the images to come.

The next day we split into two groups to keep noise etc to a minimum whilst working from the hides. A couple of us spent the day in the Golden Eagle hide.

A magnificent Golden Eagle photographed during the NaturesLens Spanish Raptors Photography HolidayA Golden Eagle peers around a log photographed during the NaturesLens Spanish Raptors Photography Holiday Continue reading

Another successful Japanese Winter Wildlife tour to Hokkaido & Honshu

No bird typifies time on Hokkaido more than the Red Crowned Crane photographed on the NaturesLens Japanese Winter Wildlife Photography Holiday

I’ve just returned from spending two weeks, in good company of some great NaturesLens clients, where we were on a trip to attempt photograph the fantastic Japanese Winter Wildlife, including the Blakiston’s fish owl, the red crowned crane, the adorable snow monkeys in their spa & in the snow, the fantastic Steller’s Sea Eagle, & their close relations the White-Tailed Sea Eagle, dreamy Whooper Swans & more in the wintery landscapes of Japan.

One of the young snow monkeys found in the Jigokudani Valley photographed on the NaturesLens Japanese Winter Wildlife Photography Holiday

This year, for potentially the last time, we started our Japanese Winter Wildlife trip with the snow monkeys; for next year, we will be starting on Hokkaido & finishing with the snow monkeys, this is mainly so that we can get into a truly wonderful hotel, that no-one should miss out upon. This year, as every year, the snow monkeys did not disappoint, all our clients captured some fantastic images of these primates in their hot spa & in the surrounding snow-clad valley.

A young snow monkey, as can be found in the Jigokudani Valley photographed on the NaturesLens Japanese Winter Wildlife Photography Holiday

The first photographic target species on Hokkaido are always the red-crowned cranes, every year, we try for sunset, sunrise & daytime images of these graceful birds – this year, we only had a decent sunset on the first day of two in the area, but the cranes obliged & flew over the tree-line & in-front of the setting sun.

No bird typifies time on Hokkaido more than the Red Crowned Crane photographed on the NaturesLens Japanese Winter Wildlife Photography Holiday

Moving on from the cranes, we spent several days photographing the beautiful whooper swans on their caldera lake, these are a subject people always fall in love with. Our hotel for the swans was one that boasts wildlife literally outside the windows, & we had a Blakiston’s fish owl & fox come up from the river. The next morning, sable & Hokkaido squirrel were spotted, along with another fox.

After a couple of days in the area, we moved on, northwards, three days of bitter cold, early morning starts & a plethora of eagle action was promised, & delivered upon. Each of the days was very different in conditions, with pack ice forcing us back into the harbour on the second day. Each day, the eagles kept us entertained & the memory cards just kept being filled with superb images of the birds diving, posing, performing flypasts & more.

One of the Sea Eagles soars over the ice laden seas of Hokkaido photographed on the NaturesLens Japanese Winter Wildlife Photography Holiday

A quick sojourn down the peninsulas on our way towards the south of Hokkaido, saw us photographing fox & deer in large quantities, & heading to a large frozen lake to photograph the morning squabble for fish amongst Black-eared Kites, White-tailed Sea Eagles & Steller’s Sea Eagles. This location produces some of the cleanest background images of the eagles that I believe are achievable, the action is frantic, like a kite-feeding station, the interactions often harsh, but the photographic opportunities are plentiful.

A steller's sea eagle flies over one of the frozen lakes of Hokkaido in the Winter photographed on the NaturesLens Japanese Winter Wildlife Photography Holiday

A Steller's Sea Eagles lands on the ice of one of Hokkaido's lakes photographed on the NaturesLens Japanese Winter Wildlife Photography Holiday

One of the Steller's Sea Eagles soars over the ice of one of Hokkaido's lakes photographed on the NaturesLens Japanese Winter Wildlife Photography Holiday

February 2018 is yet another return visit to Japan to photograph the various species on offer, including the blakiston’s fish owl, red crowned crane, snow monkey, stellers sea eagle, ural owl, white tailed sea eagle, whooper swan & more; so if you fancy photographing the wonderful winter wildlife & the amazing bleak landscapes, whilst absorbing the culture & everything else Japan in Winter has to offer, then join me for this spectacular Winter Wildlife experience, all the details of the Japanese Winter Wildlife photography holiday may be viewed here.

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