The Makgadikgadi Migration is the second largest zebra migration in Africa; it usually starts in March and goes across the Kalahari Desert. The zebras migrate every year in search of better grazing pastures. Kobus Saayman, an old friend here at Outdoorphoto, takes us through his first experience of photographing this spectacular event.

A black and white high key photograph of zebras

This trip has always been a dream for Kobus

His obsession with photography first got serious about 6 years ago and you can say the rest is history. Photographing the Makgadikgadi Zebra Migration has been a dream for Kobus ever since! “I just love the whole mood of the scene; from the dusty backlight combined with the warm sunlight and the patterns of the zebras. It’s dreamy.” He goes on to say that it is the ideal place to photograph one of the most photogenic animals using his signature slow shutter speed technique to create motion blur images.

A photograph of a zebras running through the dusty plains with the sun illuminating the background

His inner artist comes to light

Kobus believes and suggests that his fellow photographers shouldn’t pack away their gear during midday, when the sun is harsh. “It is the perfect time to explore your artistic side and experiment with high key and motion blur photos.” He goes on to say that there is always artistic opportunity, whatever the time of day.

A beautiful motion blur photograph of a running zebra

Kobus’s list of essential gear:

  • Canon 5D Mk III DSLR Camera
  • Canon 500mm f/4 Lens (Close-up)
  • Canon 24-105mm f/4 Lens (Wide-angle)
  • Canon 70-200mm f/2.8 Lens (Medium range)
  • Signature pink tights and lens cover (of course)
A photograph of a zebra walking through the dusty plains with the sun illuminating the background
A photograph of a zebra walking through the dusty plains with the sun illuminating the background

His “lion’s share” of scary moments

He said that one of the scariest things that has ever happened to him while out on safari was when he had to sit in his tent for 2 hours, with a curious pride of lions right outside. He also recalls a time when a male lion roared about 5 meters away from where he was and that, in itself, was pretty scary.

A black and white photograph of two zebra

There’s a photographic opportunity around every corner

When he’s not out and about photographing, you can find this green fingers working in the garden. He says that you don’t have to be out on safari to see something astounding. “You can take a great image in your backyard, just remember to showcase it in a way never seen before.”

A beautiful photograph where you can se the dust reflecting in the sun

Kobus describes the perfect why to wake up as in the bush, before sunrise, with a cup of coffee and a rusk in hand, “close to the action.” He hopes to inspire people to see nature through his lens for many years to come, showcasing nature as art.

A beautiful landscape photograph of 9 zebra
A black and white photograph of a little zebra foal running down a hill
A photograph of zebra
A beautiful photograph of zebra
A photograph of a lone zebra standing in the plains
A photograph of guineafowl taking of in flight