This week over at Paula’s Thursday’s Special she is inviting us to break rules with our photo taking. This shot of a camera-shy, and thus fleeing male ostrich was taken in Nairobi National Park. I expect when I started to focus on him, he was facing the other way; after all, who wants a snap of an ostrich bum. (I should say that ostriches, so G tells me, are the only birds with external genitalia, and believe me they are surprisingly impressive when glimpsed, though thankfully not visible here).
Also one of the main rules of photography in Africa, particularly when you are close to the Equator, was simply not to bother trying during the middle of the day. All colour tends to leach away; there may be a heat haze and also dust in the air; and the landscape maddeningly flattens out and stops looking magnificent.
But that is all very well. What else can you do when you find yourself in a Kenyan game park is in the middle of the day. It’s the kind of thing mad dogs and English persons do. Photos had to be taken, and of course later discarded.
The thing I like about this photo, being hooked on Karen Blixen’s Out of Africa, and the ‘I had a farm in Africa, at the foot of the Ngong Hills’ line, was that while I was concentrating on the ostrich, I inadvertently captured the Ngong Hills in distant blue profile. Though largely static, earth tremors apart, they were also hard to photograph. Here, though, I caught them, and you can well appreciate how they got their name, derived from a Maasai word meaning fist. See those four clenched knuckles.
Otherwise, nothing much is in focus here except perhaps for big bird’s blousy white feathers. All sense of movement is truncated, ‘frozen’ in time under the fierce tropic sun. I still like the photo though.
copyright 2015 Tish Farrell
19 thoughts on “Out in the Midday Sun: Running Ostrich and Ngong Hills”
It is a great moody picture. It captures a feeling, of heat, of the plains. The big sky.
External genitalia? I will have a closer look next time I am at a zoo 😀 This is a great composition Tish 🙂 🙂 I love your landscapes especially when they have a significant animal element in them 🙂 Thank you dearly.
Thank you, Paula.
I like it too!
I can feel the heat:) Another fascinating post. Janet
I, too, like the photo
So do I !
I had no idea that ostriches different in that way from other birds; and I am obliged to state that the thought of a large one having external genitalia is quite … oogy.
Yes M-R, I shall definitely not inflict upon webland my photo of same. It would be too, well, oogy.
Rules are meant to be broken, especially in art…
It provides a fresh dimension and an interesting end product 🙂
We have a very nice example here, Tish 🙂
That’s nice of you to say so, Sreejith 🙂
It seems strange that the Ostrich has no camouflage. Since it can’t fly it has to be able to run. Do you know if it’s the fastest creature on the plane?
I know it has pretty mean feet that can do a lot of damage if you have an argument with one. And yes they can run. Maybe cheetahs are faster though.
A very impressive sight, Tish. 🙂
I like the photo too! And now you have intrigued me into examining all our photos from this park…I just need to see if I or Hubs have inadvertently captured Ngong Hills too 🙂
Now you know that is a very big diversion, Tiny. Fun, though 🙂
Fantastic. Interesting about the light as well for photographyl but as you said you’re there when you are there and what choice do you have. A wonderful experience.
Hello Irene. Thanks for your comment.