AFRICAN WILDLIFE PORTRAITS
“Through my eyes”
Murray Brott’s goal was to photograph wild animals in their natural habitat and portray them in a similar manner as Yousuf Karsh might have while doing a portrait study of humans. His journey on this project initially began in 2006, photographing the “Great Migration” of animals that extends from Tanzania’s Ngorongoro Crater, through the Serengeti Plains and on to Kenya’s Masai Mara. (He only shot the part from the crater to the Serengeti). It continued to Antarctica in 2008, then on to the mountains of Uganda and Rwanda in 2016, culminating in southern Africa (South Africa, Zimbabwe and Botswana) in 2018. Throughout these travels, Brott photographed a large variety of animals and chose to put together this collection of approximately fifty photographs of up close and personal African Wildlife Portraits from the two most recent segments of his journey. He wanted to show the essence of these great animals, as well as project his excitement at capturing the images and then printing them so viewers could see the animals, with the same excitement he had, “through his eyes.” Hearing and seeing a lion with an earthshaking roar, having a curious elephant walk scarily close or having a silverback mountain gorilla brush up against you certainly gets the adrenaline flowing. He was photographing a chimpanzee that posed like a model for about twenty minutes. Brott questioned to himself what the chimp was thinking and concluded that the very intelligent animal wanted to photograph him. He almost gave him his camera but ultimately decided against it. Often, we refer to an unappealing human as an “animal,” which does great injustice to the animals. After observing a fair amount of wildlife around the world, Brott came to the realization that the social life of animals is much like that of humans, however, they don’t kill for sport, some species show a great amount of emotions, they are no less caring for their young than humans and some are curious, fun-loving and very intelligent. Brott’s hope is that these traits will come through when viewing the images.
Accompanying the photographs will be haikus that Brott has written to complement the visuals as well as an introduction.