If There Is Much In The Window There Should Be More In The Room

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

On This Savanna

The East African savanna is truly a rich and striking landscape. Thickly trunked Baobab trees thrust their branches bravely towards the sun, while Umbrella Thorns shelter from the day’s baking heat under prickly canopies. Millions of years of tectonic activity have sculpted not only the majestic lakes Tanganyika and Victoria but also the continent’s tallest peaks: Mounts Kenya and Kilimanjaro.

But amid the natural beauty and anthropological significance, East Africa plays host to a grave contest. Away from the brash buzz of the vuvuzelas and the mass-merchandising of the 2010 FIFA World Cup, the competition that takes place daily on the grasslands and plains could have severe repercussions and mean the difference between survival and extinction for some of the world’s most recognizable animals.

1 Elephant Drinking

3 Zebras Turning Heads

4 Cheetah & Cubs

5 Wildebeest Arc

6 Lioness Against Rock

7 Baboons in Profile
8 Hippos on Mara River

9 Elephant With Exploding Dust.

12 Cheetah & Cubs Lying on Rock

13 Lion Windswept.

14 Sitting Lionesses

15 Cheetah in Tree
16 Giraffe Fan

17 Elephant Mother & Two Babies

18 Elephant Herd

19 Buffalo Group Portrait.

20 Portrait of Lion Standing in Wind

21 Giraffes Under Swirling Clouds.
22 Chimp Portrait With Hand II

24 Zebras Crossing River

25 Lioness with Cub Feeding

26 Lioness Looking Out Over Plains

27 Kudu Against Sky

28 Giraffe Looking Over Plains
29 Lioness In Crater

30 Giraffe Triptych

31 Leopard in Crook of Tree

32 Elephant Mother & Baby Holding Leg

33 Chimpanzee Posing

34 Elephant Ghost World

35 Rhino in Dust

36 Two Rhinos
37 Buffalo Blind in One Eye Resting

38 Elephant Cathedral

39 Giraffe & Baby in Trees



Buffalo With Lowered Head L
Elephant Exodus #2









Lion Before Storm II- sitting profile.







Think of African wildlife, and lions, cheetahs, rhinos, zebras and elephants will all burst into your consciousness, but disease, drought and poachers mean that many of these much-loved animals are even today facing extinction.

This is a predicament that fine art photographer Nick Brandt knows all about.
He became enthralled by the untamed inhabitants of East Africa while directing Michael Jackson’s Earth Song music video. Feeling unable to fully capture his vision on camera he switched to photography and quickly became dedicated to capturing the intimacy and struggle of these exceptional animals.

Like monochromatic Victorian portraits of long dead ancestors, his photographs have a haunting intangibility. There is a silent reverence to the poses of the captured subjects, but there is also an ethereal sadness that permeates them: “This is basically my elegy to a vanishing world,” says Nick. “This is a world that is disappearing and it’s my goal to record this world, to capture this world in my way before it disappears.”

Sadly, he is right.

Nick Brandt, the renowned British fine art photographer, has published his latest book, A Shadow Falls. Containing striking new portraits of animals, from chimpanzees to cheetahs, it focuses on East Africa’s vanishing wildlife.

The animals of East Africa hold a deep fascination for Nick Brandt. Since he first saw them, he felt drawn to photograph them, to capture their beauty and majesty. But he was also driven by a heartfelt desire to show how the animals' future is in serious threat.

A Shadow Falls (the book) is heartbreakingly beautiful and full of epic landscapes and iconic images. Pictured in black and white, the animals appear noble, even mythic in a way rarely seen before.

But there is also a strong sense of the plight of these animals. Dark clouds overhead suggest an ominous future. A strong wind on a lion's mane warns of the storm approaching. Animals trek across vast plains, like refugees from a disaster. Added to this, the edges of some pictures seem aged suggesting the animals are already extinct, already in the past.

The pictures convey the scale of the landscape and the majesty of the animals. But they also increase unease about the animals' vulnerability, that if we don't do something soon, the animals will be gone......

This world of struggle and survival is one that Nick Brandt becomes absorbed within: “I get extremely close to these very wild animals, often within a few feet of them. I don’t use telephoto lenses.

This is because I want to see as much of the sky and landscape as possible - to see the animals within the context of their environment. That way, the photos become as much about the atmosphere of the place as the animals. And being that close to the animals, I get a real sense of intimate connection to them.”

“I have no interest in capturing these animals in action. There are zillions of photographers who can do this. I’m trying to capture the animals in just being – their personalities, their souls – and photograph them in the exact same way if I was photographing a human being.”

Find out more about the artist and his work at his website, www.nickbrandt.com

*original post date 8/31/10*

**All Photography by Nick Brandt*


  1. Brandt sure does some nice work, Better; it's more real than real.


    1. Hi, M....

      This, I'd say, is,
      an incredible work of art!
      Mr.Nick Brandt utilizes
      a Pentax 67 with
      a short lens and
      makes good use of
      a software for
      the sepia effect.
      More than anything else,
      he is highly esteemed for
      his artistic genius
      animated by a fervent
      spirit of devotion
      immortalized through his
      photography as he promotes
      environmental awareness,
      encourage respect for our
      delicate animals and wildlife
      facing many varied pressures
      from not only the
      ebb and flow of nature
      but of utmost importance
      is sinister human behavior
      that wreaks havoc and
      destruction upon their existence
      and all across their habitats....