By Roberta Kravette
When we began our Destination: Wildlife journey we expected to encounter incredible wildlife in fabulous places. We were ready to be amazed. But what has been equally amazing are the people we have met. The men and women who bring the story of each animal into our lives. One such person is Amos Nachoum.
Not Just A Great Wildlife and Underwater Photographer
Trying to describe Amos is like trying to explain the sun. When he enters a room there is an explosion of light and laughter and excitement, and like with gravity, you are pulled into his orbit. But the minute you feel you can define this phenomenon, Amos is onto a new adventure.
Whether he is swimming in open ocean with polar bears or tracking an elusive snow leopard or gliding, zen-like, with sharks, Amos’ passion for wildlife is unbounded and unrestricted by what is “possible.” He is an explorer, and a champion for all wildlife on land or in the sea, he is their witness and through his images, he shares their stories. Amos is also a generous friend. He encourages us to join him.
The Sienna International Photography Contest
The Siena International Photo Competition is a yearly event held by Art Photo Travel. They are a non-profit association that promotes, “…art, monuments, traditions, cultures and natural beauty from all around the world.’
Not Just a Contest, This is an Experience
The aim is to enhance understanding and awareness of culture “in a mature, thoughtful way.” The Sienna International Photography Contest is open to all photographers, professional or amateur, long experienced or very new to the art. The founders are very clear, this is not just a contest, this is an experience. And a Festival.
The SIPA Contest Festival runs over an entire month. It features courses, seminars, conferences, workshops, and tours, culminating with, “Beyond the Lens,” an exhibition of hundreds of the best entries, and of course, the awards ceremony.
This year there were over 48,000 entries from 156 different countries.
The Wildlife Category
Amos Nachoum is the 2018 Sienna International Photography Contest winner in the Wildlife Category. His image of two snow leopards in Nepal entitled, “Love on the Rocks”, was a runner up.
This is his winning image, and in Amos’ own words, the story behind it.
Facing Reality – Leopard Seal and Gentoo penguin
Behavior, Preparation, and Passion – are the basic building blocks for working successfully with the camera in any wilderness and underwater in particular, since we are limited to only one camera and one lens at a time.
The predation behavior of the Leopard seal is long and elaborate…from the ambush in the shallow water by a colony of young chicks…moving back to the open water…The drowning of the penguin process is involved in a play time of catch and release…culminating in this apex moment of the already drowned penguin and still hungry Leopard seal…it took days of observation to pinpoint an action and about six hours of actual time on site from the start to end – in the freezing cold of Antarctic and in and out of the water…
The Equipment: Canon 1Ds mark III. Seacam housing. 15mm lens. 1/125 at F – 4. 400 ISO
I was so thrilled to learn that this image was recognized, after all I was not planning to compete, I am simply inspired by the wildlife behavior and sharing these unique lifetime moments. This image was taken 10 years ago.