What's your most memorable wildlife experience?
"There are many special moments, but there are those few that you know you won't see again. In 2018 I was on a photo safari. We were at the bank of the Mara river waiting for a big crossing during a migration safari. I'm always looking around because when you start studying animal behaviour, you start noticing when predators are close, and I saw a disturbance and spotted a lioness lying flat on the ground. She was just waiting for the crossing. I was praying for the light to improve as it was very cloudy, and just when the crossing started there was this beautiful backlight at sunset, and the lioness began hunting. There were all these huge clouds of dust and it was such a dramatic frame. A scene I don't think I'll see again."
How important is understanding animal behaviour when it comes to photographing wildlife?
"It's so important. When you know animal behaviour, you can predict what is going to happen. It helps me get ready for the perfect frame, especially when photographing hunts. You must know the predator behaviour so you can be in the right place at the right time. If the action is already playing out, it's too late. Watching a hunt is amazing, it never gets old and every single one is different."
What would you say are the biggest challenges with wildlife photography?
"I would say the expenses. If you want to work in the Mara, you need at least two weeks to capture proper footage. You're paying for accommodation, and a private car or guide – that expense as a freelancer adds up. In terms of wildlife interaction, when I was shooting the tigers of India, that was the toughest time I've ever had. The parks are separated into different zones and I had not planned way in advance and for four days, I saw no tigers. I talked to the owner of the hotel I was staying at, and he told me most of the tigers are seen in a particular zone. I thought, I've come all this way from home, I need to see them! On the fifth day I finally saw them. But the process of getting that image was so tough, plus the weather was extreme – it was about 40°C."
What's been the most valuable lesson you've learnt during your career?
"In 2020, my studio in Nairobi where I do my commercial work was broken into. I was working until 10pm and went to sleep, and in the morning my kit had been stolen. My camera and lenses that I had worked so hard for were gone. The biggest lesson I learnt was to have several sets of back-ups. I had some hard drives from 2014 to 2019 and I lost that work. It was a very tough lesson to learn."