Masai Mara is a national park of Kenya. It was named after the Masai, the inhabitants of this area.
This huge animal sanctuary covers 520 square kilometers (200 squares miles) created in 1961. It is a paradise for wildlife photographers. Indeed, in this reserve, you can photograph the « big five »; elephant, leopard, lion, rhinoceros, and buffalo.
But Masai Mara is more than that. There are more than 1,300,000 wildebeest; 500,000 Thomson gazelles; 97,000 topis; 200,000 zebras; etc. There are also more than 470 bird species. This national park requires all the superlatives.
When I entered the Maasai Mara for the first time, I was surprised by the immense meadows in front of me.
The second surprise was that Masai farmers lived in perfect harmony with these large animals. Indeed, the large flocks of goats are guarded by a single guard with his spear. Just like in the other African countries I visited, human still live in close harmony with the animal world. In our western world, it is an exception. I have managed to create invisible barriers with the animal world. As soon as we cross a deer or wild boar in the forests or meadows, he flees from my sight.
My first encounter was with a family of three black rhinos. It was a magical moment that I will never forget.
For me, Masai Mara can only be represented in black and white. To focus on the principles of the wild nature of this region, I did not want to distract the viewer with useless details. In addition, black and white is timeless. It highlights the attitudes and behaviors of large mammals in the park.
The most extraordinary experiences when photographing large mammals are their expressions. It is inexplicable, but a personal connection is immediately created. When you stare at a buffalo or a lion, it may take a long time for him to look away.
The animals of Masai Mara are also the perfect embodiment of grace and elegance. I can spend hours watching elephants or lions. It's an extraordinary show that I do not get tired of for a minute.
Masai Mara is an ode to beauty and nature. But these photographs are also an incredible way to convey my emotions, which is the key characteristic of artistic photography.
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