Michael Poliza (Germany)
Michael Poliza has won numerous awards for his ground-breaking work in digital photography shooting breath-taking wildlife and landscapes. He has a special love for the natural beauty of Africa. His first coffee table book, AFRICA, was published in 2006 and became the most widely discussed photo book of its time. Poliza took the pictures for his second volume, EYES OVER AFRICA, from a helicopter: exceptional shots that recorded graphical structures, natural landscapes, and the effect of human activity on them. In 2008, this work won an International Photography Award in the United States and was honored as one of the year’s best photo books in Germany.
Poliza is used to reinventing himself: he has been an actor, an IT-entrepreneur, an expedition leader, a professional photographer, and is now a travel designer for MICHAEL POLIZA PRIVATE TRAVEL. www.michaelpolizatravel.com
Colin Bell - (S.A)
Colin Bell landed his first job as a safari guide in 1977 (and is still involved in the industry today). In those days rhinos ranged free and wild across much of northern Botswana, and a cold beer came out of a wet sock tied to the side mirror of his Land Rover. And elephants were skittish and aggressive - not surprising because ivory poaching was relentless and widespread. But Colin's passion for elephants was ingrained and 40 years later that infatuation led to the co-production of the newly published book, “The Last Elephants” in partnership with Don Pinnock and with the support of some of this continent’s top wildlife photographers.
Chris Fallows (South Africa)
Chris Fallows is a world renowned wildlife photographer, guide and documentary host specializing in marine predators. Chris’s work has appeared in more than 50 international documentaries including the acclaimed BBC Planet Earth, Africa & Life series. Chris has also been the host and commissioned photographer for Discovery Channels’ most successful ever Shark Week series “Air Jaws” which has spanned 20 years. Chris and his wife Monique run Apex Shark Expeditions based in Cape Town and through their work hope to educate guests and audiences alike of the need to conserve sharks and wildlife globally. Chris’s photographs have been on the covers of many of the world’s most well- known newspapers and magazines and Chris has won numerous awards for his photography. www.apexpredators.com/
Jacques Marais (South Africa)
Jacques is a professional photographer and author who regularly contributes to a wide selection of premium adventure, travel and outdoor magazines, both in South Africa and abroad. He shoots global extreme events, covering disciplines as diverse as Trail Running, Adventure Racing, Mountain Biking, Rock Climbing and Wilderness Expeditioning.
Jacques is a Sony Ambasssador in South Africa and recent honours include both a Gold and Silver Award in the respected SONY Profoto Awards. His company Jacque Marais Media also coordinates media- & marketing projects for premium adventure sport companies and their related global brands, with a client list including Merrell, Silverback, Land Rover, CapeStorm, Re-Hidrate, Red Bull and Maserati. www.jacquesmarais.co.za
Janine Krayer (Germany)
Janine, originally from Germany, left the world of high finance in 2013 for a life of adventure and beautiful imagery in Botswana. Janine’s passion for wildlife and her keen eye for the finer details of her subjects has transformed her from a “happy snapper” to an award-winning photographer during her time in The Chobe and she now leads several expeditions to other iconic photo destinations further afield throughout the year. Janine’s passion for photography is evident in her teaching style which takes her clients on a creative journey finding the perfect shooting methods that suits their technical and creative attributes. www.pangolinphoto.com
Villiers Steyn (South Africa)
After completing a four year-long leopard movement study in Botswana’s Mashatu Game Reserve as part of his master’s degree in Nature Conservation, Villiers packed his bags and set out to explore some of Africa’s wildest and most beautiful game reserves and national parks as a travel writer and photographer. Over the next seven years he published over 100 feature articles in South Africa’s top travel magazines. Because of his love for people and teaching, adding photographic safari guide to his repertoire in 2010 was part of a natural evolution in Villiers’s photographic career. He currently leads photographic safaris for At Close Quarters. Follow Villiers on Instagram: @villierssteyn www.atclosequarters.com/
Aubrey Tseleng (Botswana)
Aubrey was a qualified art teacher when he discovered a store-room full of photography equipment and chemicals. He turned his bathroom into a darkroom and began developing his film and prints. He won a scholarship to study at the University of Cape Town towards a BA Fine Arts and majored in Photography. His work was recognised through several awards including The Katrine Harries Purchase Award and the Tierney Fellowship. His dream was to become a wildlife photography guide.
He persevered and showed up at Photo Mashatu to shadow Kyle and Ruth in 2015. From then he knew he wanted to take up nature photography as a career. He moved to Shakawe, a whopping 1000km away from his family, where he continued to teach art and take up Nature Guide Training part time. In 2017 he resigned from teaching and began a career as a nature photo guide and now guides for C4 Photo Safaris. www.c4photosafaris.com
Isaac Kalio (Zambia)
Photographic enthusiast, gifted storyteller and accomplished guide, Isaac grew up in a remote village in the Lower Zambezi. His childhood was spent dealing with wildlife raiding his family’s farmlands by day and night. He and his mother would spend their nights in a tree-house in the fields, waking up to chase elephants and hippos in the dark! “At that time, I had no idea that in the future this very wildlife would change my life and help me to pay for my kids’ school fees”.
He started his training as a canoe guide then completed his guide’s licence with the Lower Zambezi Conservation Trust in 2004. Three years later, Isaac spread his wings further into Zambia and began working for Wilderness Safaris in the legendary Busanga Plains in the Kafue National Park. Isaac is passionate about wildlife photography and his knowledge of the natural world is unsurpassed.
Jan and Jay Roode (South Africa)
Over the past ten years, Jay and Jan Roode have flown over one hundred thousand nautical miles in their light aircraft exploring and capturing the region’s most alluring wilderness spaces from above. Inspired by the adventure of life and with a deep reverence for nature their images invoke an emotional and spiritual response to the wonders of this world. Their award winning images have been widely published locally and internationally with many being used by conservation organisations to raise awareness on habitat conservation. They will be sharing their behind the scenes stories about the joys and calamities of exploring the African skies which have culminated in their latest book entitled Aerial Art. www.skyhawkphotography.com
Ian Michler (South Africa)
Ian has spent the last 30 years working as a safari operator, specialist guide, environmental photo-journalist and consultant across Africa. He now lives along the Garden Route in South Africa where he runs Invent Africa Safaris. His writing has appeared in a broad range of local and international publications, and he has published seven natural history and guide books on Africa. He is a past winner of the bird category in the Agfa Wildlife photographic competition (1997). He is involved in a number of conservation initiatives, including Blood Lions, and as a Director of Eden, and a trustee of the Conservation Action Trust. www.inventafrica.com
Mike Kendrick (UK)
Mike is an experienced senior leader in education, a Life Sciences and Photography teacher, and for over 25 years has specialised in teaching students from disadvantaged communities. He founded Wild Shots Outreach programme in 2015. In 2017 Wild Shots Outreach won SANParks prestigious Kudu Award for “environmental education and capacity building” and to date he has run more than 50 programmes for over 400 students.
Raised in Kenya, Nick is an award-winning wildlife photographer with a deep passion for the African wild dog (Lycaon pictus) aka painted wolves. He has spent much of the last six years following three packs on foot, living in his tent on the banks of the Zambezi in Mana Pools, Zimbabwe. He is the photographer and co-author of Painted Wolves: A Wild Dog’s Life and the founder of the Painted Wolf Foundation. His work is published in many journals and his picture entitled “Ahead of the Game” was highly honoured in last year’s Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition.
While always having a passion for photography, a previous life saw him trapped behind a desk as a fund manager in London and subsequently running his own marketing company. In 2011, he escaped the UK to find a much larger desk called The African Bush.