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Photo Information
Copyright: Rob Nicholls (nixpix) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 67 W: 26 N: 121] (444)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2003-03-02
Categories: Mammals
Camera: Canon D60, Canon EF 300mm f2.8 USM IS
Exposure: f/2.8, 1/2000 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): _Fotos adicionadas por 5 ou mais membros [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2005-08-04 5:53
Viewed: 10970
Favorites: 6 [view]
Points: 96
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
As promised my note to this image, better late than never -
This image of a female lion was taken at Okonjima, a comfortable bush lodge in Namibia located about two hours drive north of the capital Windhoek. The image was taken in the early morning capitalising on the soft clear light. Using a long lens I was able to shoot from a distance and capture a sharp image with f/2.8 and at the same time take out the inoffensive background. The image posted is actually cropped from a larger image of the whole cat and in fact represents no more than about 1/8th of the full picture (the joy of 6.3 megapixels).

Lions yawn a lot and this always presents dramatic image opportunities. One must always be ready for it and start shooting early and keep shooting. Heads often move around so dont crop too tight. Also make sure you have enough film or memory to capture a full sequence. Know how many images your camera can take in a burst and pace your shots over that number. It is often towards the end of the yawn that the best shots are delivered. You get more tongue first but teeth later.

Okonjima is also home to the Africat Foundation.
Africat is a non-profit organisation committed to the long-term conservation of Namibia's large carnivores, especially cheetahs & leopards. Activities include the capture and relocation of large carnivores that come into conflict with human activity or are orphaned. Since starting out in 1993 Africat's statistics are:
Leopards rescued: 280 released: 260
Cheetahs rescued: 549 released: 436
Total cats rescued: 829 released: 696
Of those cats kept at Okonjima most will still be released once they have recovered from injury or where they have matured and been conditioned to the extent that they can take care of themselves in the wild once again.

Those cats based at Okonjima at any given time are animals that for some reason cannot be re-introduced into the wild or those awaiting relocation to a suitable area. Resident cats are great photo subjects and in general can be seen in a fairly natural environment, albeit within large enclosures.

For more info on the lodge and Africat check out:

Hope you like the image, kind regards Rob

dew77, thistle, chiliu, red45, scottevers7, ddg, TAZ, wallhalla15, dsidwell, Signal-Womb, AndyB, AdrianW, gerhardt, hummingbird24, rlortie, puffy, gregoire, mlines, gelor, firelord, peter_stoeckl, snowfalken, vanderschelden, SMYRNA, vinaymms has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To rlortie: Tanixpix 1 08-10 21:08
To sAner: Gaaapnixpix 2 08-08 14:23
To red45: Tanixpix 1 08-05 09:49
To halki: Lion GAAP notenixpix 1 08-04 20:57
To electra: Lion GAAP notenixpix 1 08-04 20:51
To janhendrik: Lion GAAP notenixpix 1 08-04 20:48
To paulbright: Lion GAAP notenixpix 1 08-04 20:34
To slrnovice2: Lion GAAP notenixpix 1 08-04 20:33
To optic: Lion GAAP notenixpix 1 08-04 20:31
To marhowie: Lion GAAP notenixpix 1 08-04 20:30
To sway: Lion GAAP notenixpix 1 08-04 20:30
To coasties: Lion GAAP notenixpix 1 08-04 20:28
To cafecrem: Lion GAAP notenixpix 1 08-04 20:27
To chiliu: Lion GAAP notenixpix 1 08-04 20:26
To Jancie: Lion GAAP notenixpix 1 08-04 19:46
To dew77: Lion GAAP notenixpix 1 08-04 19:46
To zakiwi: Lion GAAP notenixpix 1 08-04 19:45
To softflower: Lion GAAP Notenixpix 1 08-04 19:44
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Critiques [Translate]

Superbe photo Rob !
La lumière est magnifique.

Hey Rob,

Yet another fabulous shot of the big 5. Well done. I love it

  • Great 
  • dew77 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4432 W: 248 N: 4028] (13270)
  • [2005-08-04 6:01]
  • [+]

Hello Rob!
Very nice image.Moment you caught,details,POV,lighting,DOF and composition are excellent.A studio quality at action shot.Very well done!TFS...:-)

I'm bored, she says. Great portrait, Rob, very sharp, good colours and composition. Well shown. I like it very much, thank you.

Hi Rob,
Great quality portrait, excellent colour and details.

Great portrait in sweet moment, amazing light and BG!

Hello Rob

What's not to like? Just a bit bored with the Paparazzi! Nice detail, especially the tongue. Impressive work. Thanks.

  • Great 
  • sway Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 305 W: 85 N: 319] (1276)
  • [2005-08-04 7:00]
  • [+]

HI Rob.
This guy could be singing in an opera!
Great timing.
NIce sharp shot.
Good BG colours.

Nice "Gaaaap" profile Robert ;-) I've got a similar shot of a Sumatran Tiger yawn but the BG is a bit busy..Perfect light, Excellent details, sharpness, DOF, POV & colors. The clean OOF BG works very well here..Very well done!

What a great photo very well composed, nice colours & razorsharp details, dof & pov are perfect.


Hi Rob, fanastic shot and great timing! Your focus point and DOF really bring out the details and textures. Can you imagine this big cat licking you? Lovely job :)

wooww! super shot! super sharp and clear, perfect exposure, perfect bg. TFS!

This is a very warm picture and I love it. The lighting is either late afternoon or early morning; fantastic. The sharpness is spot-on. The lioness looks so contented. This is on par with your usual high standard. Well done, Rob!

Hi Rob,
this is funny and cute. I like the warm light. Wonderful shot. Good work.

  • Great 
  • halki Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 242 W: 9 N: 105] (471)
  • [2005-08-04 17:15]
  • [+]

Hello Rob!
Great moment! Excellent details ,clours and composition.Thanks for posting...

Wow, Rob... amazing photo. The details on the tongue are marvelous. The coloring is very true and I appreciate your informative note. Exceptional :-)

Well timed, superb detail and sharpness, excellent use of the light and good colours...this is about as good as it gets. TFS

Superb shot Rob!
It seems that you are a photographer which exactly know what he wants to capture - not just waiting for oportunity but seeking it.
The photo has excellent details and lighting -the fur looks very natural. I like the idea of cropping the photo too.
Your note about yawning animals is very usefull - I don't have any wild cat nearby, but I think my home cat will be perfect for practise ;)
Overall, great post.

  • Great 
  • red45 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2636 W: 74 N: 9091] (31094)
  • [2005-08-05 9:37]
  • [+]

Wow, I don't know how but I saw your photos just today! This one is amazing. What a pose, what a face, what a superb quality and light. Great portrait Rob!

  • Great 
  • livios Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2150 W: 319 N: 4263] (16942)
  • [2005-08-05 10:58]

Rob, excellent sharpness and composition; a lovely portrait.

Great blurred background; besides, you captured a very nice moment.

A great picture, Rob.
The sharpness is great. Well composed, good POV.
Well seen from the BG the wideopen aperture pays off here.
Excellent work.

BTW, Great lens, on my wish list.

Hi Rob,
Superb capture. The light is indeed very soft. A beautiful portrait.

  • Great 
  • ddg Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 867 W: 24 N: 1008] (5507)
  • [2005-08-07 2:06]

Bonjour Rob, c'est une excellente capture !! avec beaucoup de piqué malgré le fait que ce shot ne représente que le 1/8 ieme de l'image initiale.Belles couleurs et composition. Félicitation Didier.

  • Great 
  • sAner Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1455 W: 74 N: 1426] (4750)
  • [2005-08-07 10:05]
  • [+]

Hi Rob,

Well what can I write about this picture!? For me it's perfect! The details are razorsharp, pose is great, composition is great and the photo has a crisp & clear touch. Colors and exposure are fantastic and I love the BG. Not a single nit from my side. I am curious about one thing though; why did you use the Dutch word for "yawn" (is that also South African?)? :) Well done & TFS!


Rob, a very nice capture. Excellent colours and very good sharp detail. Composition and DoF are great also. Very well done.

Very fun and engaging image, Rob! You captured just the right moment for an interesting and unique portrait of this cat! Seems slightly dark, but I like it that way.

Excellent image quailty with perfect sharpness, revealing amazing details in the fur. Effective DOF nicely isolates the subject from BG. Great timing and composition on this beautiful portrait Rob. Its an excellent post, well done. 7/10

  • Great 
  • AndyB Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1366 W: 32 N: 1351] (3982)
  • [2005-08-07 19:47]

Hello Rob,
This is a very nice shot.
Excellent detail,even the surface of the tongue!
A superb post and great note.
Well done.


  • Great 
  • TAZ Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2241 W: 47 N: 3167] (10926)
  • [2005-08-08 4:23]

What a lazy lion that you have well captured ! I like this funny portrait. Colors, details and sharpness are very good ! Thanks for sharing Rob.

This a quality shot. The DOF at F2.8 is very nice. Love the OOF BG and the magical light. This is tack sharp. Exceptional portrait, Rob.

What is not to love in this incredible photo, Rob!

You have captured an amazing moment, and to my eyes, everything is perfect.

Congratulations and thank you.

  • Great 
  • japie Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1814 W: 100 N: 1904] (5187)
  • [2005-08-10 11:14]

This lady is in superp condition and you capture does her justice. I love the lighting and the sharpness is excellent.

Very well done and thanks for posting

Excellent shot. Perfectly lit subject on a very nice soft background. DOF is outstanding for F2.8.

  • Great 
  • puffy Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 289 W: 0 N: 339] (1351)
  • [2005-08-11 16:07]

Wooooow... Rob, this is superb shot!!! love those yawn... so cute! excellent details, DOF, sharpness and colours, just fantastic! Thanks for sharing.. :D

  • Great 
  • Walt Silver Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 12 W: 0 N: 0] (0)
  • [2005-08-12 11:20]

Great shot Rob... I love those big cat yawns as photo ops... the best time to get teeth shots without having them directed at you! Well done.

Hi rob,
No doubt this is good photograph. Congratulations Rob . Very nice capture. Colors, POV, DOF, sharpness, expression on face and composition are wonderful. Thanks for sharing.

  • Great 
  • gelor Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Note Writer [C: 124 W: 3 N: 12] (523)
  • [2006-01-31 12:25]

Bonjour Rob,
Un superbe portrait de cette lionne qui semble s'ennuyer. Une MAP remarquable ! Félicitations. Gérard.

bonne nuit !!!! ;-)
très belle prise, au bon moment!

  • Great 
  • aido Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor [C: 1044 W: 156 N: 1218] (4046)
  • [2006-04-23 10:06]

Hi Rob,
A beautiful shot, technically everything is spot-on which kind of makes it hard to 'critique' :-) The textures and colours are excellent, as are details. Great timing too, excellent work.

an outstanding masterpiece of animal photography, perfect on focus, delightfully soft and tender in potraying the lioness in her beautifully relaxed pose of yawning, magnificently shaded colours of of a wisely reduced spectre of green, red and yellow, providing a feeling of harmony very rarely met in photography - just as in very good classical paintings.
Great notes, too. What a beautiful discovery for me after months it was posted to TN. Thank you!
Best regards,

Amazing picture! Very sharp, great colors, exposure and composition! One of the best pictures of lions I've seen on TN! Congratulations and TFS!


wonderfull capture , nice portrait

Hi Gaap it's a beautiful photo with wonderful color and a beautiful pose
good bye

Hello Rob,
Excellent image. Very good note as well.
Well done

Wow perfect image!!!


Nice photo !!!

Hi Rob,

This is one of the finest lion shots I have seen. The image is sharp with beautiful colors and background.

Thank you for sharing.


Very beautiful portrait!

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