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Canon Safari Event 2007
African Safari
Published : Thursday, November 1st 2007
Written by Dennis Hissink
Introduction "Flying to Nairobi"
When you are offered the opportunity to work with the latest digital equipment on a location you will probably never visit again; you do not have to think twice! I am talking about an invitation from Canon on a press trip to Kenya with a number of colleagues from the Netherlands and many other countries. No less than eighty journalists from Europe, among them four colleagues from the Netherlands, were flown to Nairobi, Kenya, at the invitation of Canon. In Nairobi small groups were formed to fly to the Borana ranch in the Laikipia area, north of Nairobi and situated by the Mount Kenya. The Canon EOS Safari trip coincided with 20 years of EOS; a unique memorable moment in the digital world!
Canon EOS Safari Adventure Photographer Dennis Hissink
Canon Kenya Safari Event Safari Helicopter Flight
Safari Tent Helicopter Safari
The Borana ranch Laikipia Canon Consumer Imaging Europe
The Borana ranch in the Laikipia area usually consists of a few lodgings where guests can stay. The large group of Canon guests required far more than the available room so an entire tent camp had been built including dinner rooms and a main building for presentations including a bar for some relaxing hours. It may be clear that this location was one of a kind and that everybody was in the best mood and ready to start the EOS Safari 2007 adventure. Mogens Jensen, Head of Canon Consumer Imaging Europe, was one of the speakers to officially open the Canon EOS Safari 2007. Besides Mogens Jensen some special guests of Canon were flown in also. Among them Tsunemasa Ohara, Senior General Manager Camera Development Center and Image Communication Products Operations, Kazuhiko Noguchi, General Manager Photo Products Marketing Management Division and Camera Products Group and Hiroto Kato, Product Planner Lens Products Marketing Division & Lens Products Group.
Canon Professional Photographers
Canon Professional Photographers
In addition to the Canon delegation a few professional photographers were invited too. They shared their experiences with us and gave a special presentation every night by showing their pictures taken in the field on a large screen. The stories around the pictures were impressive, humoristic and at times touching. Michael Nichols, nature photographer for National Geographic among others, held a fantastic presentation while showing part of his collection. The story around the shooting of certain events was indeed entertainment on a high level. Ziv Koren, Polaris Images was another Pro who shared his job, capturing missions of the Israeli army, with us and explained the pictures as we watched them. Some unexpected very beautiful results in special situations occurred when the flash was not used shooting the picture. Gary Knight from VII, finished the evening with a presentation of impressing pictures shot at missions in Kosovo and other regions. I will never forget the astounding images of the occurrences in these regions.
Capture wild animals from the air
Safari Helicopter Flight
My group, formed by my colleagues Dirk van der Spek (Focus Media), Jan van der Schans (NIDF), Wouter Diemer (Zoom.nl), Marije Groenenboom (Canon Nederland) and myself, took off with an EOS 40D around our neck and besides that we had one of the first EOS 1Ds Mark III models at our disposal. On top of that Canon made sure a large assortment of lenses was available, varying from ultra wide to bright telephoto lenses (f/2.8 400 and f/4 600mm). That way we would not be able to blame the equipment in case we did not digitally capture any wild animal. During the various 'game drives' we met zebras, giraffes, buffalos, elephants, lions, rhinos, various birds, hyenas and crocodiles. Absolutely a fantastic variety of wild life at a beautiful location with the latest digital equipment... I suppose I could have been worse off!
Canon EOS Helicopter Safari Flight
Canon EOS Safari Helicopter
One of the absolute peaks during the EOS Safari 2007 was undoubtedly the helicopter flight. The flight, carried out with open doors, led to the Mount Kenya where we flew over its top (around 5300 meters altitude) and around the mountain with a breakfast break before heading back to the camp again. This flight gave me some insight of how an air photographer must feel when carrying out air photography on a professional high level.
Kenya Al-Jiju Primary School
Kenya Al-Jiju Primary School
Our group ended the week with a visit to the Al-Jiju Primary School. To be honest, given the choice I would have chosen a 'game drive' again, but looking back on the school's visit I can only say that it was most impressing and that I would not have wanted to miss out on it. The children, varying in age from a few years up to 14, allowed us a glance in their daily life. Some children walked two hours to even get to the school and they do this every day. The children overwhelmed the large group of journalists with their happy and attractive smiles, their curiosity and sweetness; moments that I will cherish for the rest of my life.
Unique Africa Safari Event
Canon EOS Kenya Safari Trip
Kenya at night Safari Photographer Dennis Hissink
Kenya landscape photo Canon EOS Safari 2007
Every evening, around an open fire, happenings of the day were remembered and spoken through again under a dark sky with millions of stars, while enjoying a drink. New contacts were established, stories were shared and almost traditionally the Dutch delegation was always the last to call it a day. The EOS Safari 2007 was being experienced to the optimum. I would hereby like to thank Canon for this absolutely unique event. The organization was smooth and faultless which I think is a top achievement. I would also like to thank my fellow travels for a unique week in which there was not only time for photography but also for fun and moments of friendship. Looking back on the Canon EOS Safari 2007 event I want to say: when is the reunion planned?
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