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Giraffe City

David Yarrow

Giraffe City

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GIRAFFE CITY
Amboseli, Kenya - 2016

The shimmering heat of the high sun, the mirage behind the giraffes, and the composition itself combined to create an almost surreal image. It was an “animal Broadway” or an “animal Times Square” in the heat of East Africa. I had never had this nu... show more
GIRAFFE CITY
Amboseli, Kenya - 2016

The shimmering heat of the high sun, the mirage behind the giraffes, and the composition itself combined to create an almost surreal image. It was an “animal Broadway” or an “animal Times Square” in the heat of East Africa. I had never had this number of giraffes all within 100 yards of me.

The composition fell kindly, but I had to be patient to allow the two lead players to be as close to me as possible. This was not my first rodeo. I also firmly believe that giraffes are best photographed in the company of other giraffes, and in an exclusive collective in a setting as raw and elemental as Amboseli, they remind us just how remarkable our planet is. Unless something lurks deep in the Costa Rican jungle, giraffes are the least vertically challenged species of all.

As I have mentioned throughout this book, I have an obsession with focus. If an image is not pin sharp because of camera shake or a poor use of focal point, there tends to be no picture. This photograph when printed large looks like there may be a focus issue, but it’s actually the heat—that’s something of a first for me.

Amboseli can be very hot—indeed the name means “place of dust.” The irony is that for most of 2018 and early 2019 there was so much rainfall that the dry lake on which this image was taken actually returned to being a lake. Those who know this area well would know this image could not have been taken during that period. Weather patterns are never constant here, and I have long given up trying to preplan trips on the basis of what is traditionally the dry or wet season. It is what it is.
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