better travel photography•COM

Newsletter 33 - sent on the 21 October 2019



Photograph the unique wildlife of Madagascar!


Dear [Name,fallback=],

Travel in Madagascar always presents many unique challenges - not least the fact that domestic flight schedules change, and many routes don't fly every day. The schedule covering next years trip to Madagascar has just been released, and as such we have had to make a few changes to the itinerary. Nothing has been missed out, but we have had to add an extra day to make everything work. You can see the revised itinerary on the trip pages, on this link.

Although the official final booking date for our Impressions of Laos trip at the end of the year has officially passed, we do still have a female roomshare place and a male roomshare place available. Laos is a fantastic country, and we cover all of the highlights. If you are interested in grabbing one of these final places, then please do fill out the booking form as soon as possible.

I am just heading out to Jordan to lead our photography tour there for the next eleven days. I will be posting pictures from the trip on this gallery as I travel.

Impressions of Madagascar

Our revised itinerary to Madagascar allows us even more time to explore this fascinating and unique island. Madagascar truly is like nowhere else on earth, and as well as fitting in with the domestic airline schedule, our extra day means that we can be a little more relaxed and not have to travel quite so frenetically.


We cover some of the best wildlife reserves in the country, giving you an incredible chance to see and photograph much of the wonderfully varied animal species that have evolved on the island. Much of the wildlife of Madagascar is endemic: you will find it nowhere else on earth. Madagascar is best known for the engaging lemur, and we should encounter many different species, including the iconic ring-tailed lemur and the dancing sifaka lemurs in the Isalo National Park in the South.


As well as lemurs we will be able to photograph a number of species of chameleon, birdlife and possibly even the fossa - a carnivore that is endemic to the island. Our revised schedule should allow us the option to go whale-watching in Ifaty, although this will be dependent on whether the whale migration season begins on time.


The landscapes of Madagascar are stunning. We will be able to photograph the incredible Avenue of Baobabs at both sunrise and sunset, and will also explore the Tsingy of Bemaraha. These fantastical eroded limestone landscapes are hailed by many as the top thing to see in the country. The journey to Bemaraha is an adventure on its own: a 4WD mission, which includes a section on a local raft ferry. The result is that you will truly feel that you have arrived somewhere special, a place that few visitors to the country get to see.


Our itinerary doesn't just show you the wild places of Madagascar. We spend time exploring some of the atmospheric and historic towns, and learning about the culture of the people of the island. Wherever possible we will visit markets and villages as we travel, and have timed our itinerary to see the austere Christian village of Soantanana where the faithful process to church, dressed entirely in white.

We have worked hard to create a balanced itinerary that takes in the higlights of Madagascar. Along our route we visit some incredible places, and stay at some atmospheric and remarkably comfortable accommodation to give you a comprehensive vison of this most unique of countries.

Impressions of Madagascar departs from Antananarivo on the 4 June 2020 for 16 days, and costs from 3795 per person based on twinshare. To see all of the fantastic places we visit on this trip, and the fantastic places that we will be staying, check out the full itinerary here, or you can find the booking form here.


Impressions of Namibia

Our wildlife theme continues with a completely different style of African journey in the desert country of Namibia. This stunning country offers a completely different wildlife experience to the more familiar safaris of East Africa. In the Etosha National Park, we will spend two nights staying at the incomparable waterhole at Etosha National Park, one of the best places in the world to see the endangered Black Rhino. We also search for the rare desert elephant in the north, and photograph the vast Cape Cross Seal colony on the Skeleton Coast.


Namibia is about more than wildlife though. We will photograph hidden salt pans amidst the sprawling sand dunes of the Namib Desert, the deserted ghost town of Kolmanskop and the atmospheric Quiver Tree Forest where we will learn to shoot star trails. We also get to photograph the Himba people in the North of the country, and ancient rock art.

We have two dates organised for Impressions of Namibia: departing Windhoek on the 23 September and 14 October, each for 15 days. The first trip is led by Steve Davey; the second trip by photographer Jamie Marshall. The cost is from 3995 per person based on twinshare. Already well over half of the places on these trips have already been booked.

To see more of the amazing places that we visit on this exciting photography tour, you can see the full itinerary here, or if you want to book up a place on the trip, you can find the booking form here.

The pdf for this trip can be downloaded on this link.


Lightroom tip 06 - Follow a preset route

Developing your RAW files in Adobe Lightroom can take a lot of time, but there are a number of tools to allow you to streamline your workflow. One of the most flexible are the develop presets. These allow you to save all of your most used commands in a preset that can then be applied to pictures with a single click.


Once you have made your corrections - which can include the profiles and lens corrections that we have covered in past newsletters, then click on the + icon in the Develop Module preset panel, and then select Create Preset... Name your preset and then make sure any of the commands that you require are checked. These presets can be automatically applied on import, so that they will be applied to the initial previews that Lightroom creates on import.


It is also possible to download many third party presets - many for free. These can help you to apply a creative look to your pictures. Often many of these are quite over the top, but sometimes you will find a preset with a great new look. You can preview the effect of any preset by hovering the cursor over its name. The presets are accumulative, so you can make some edits to your image before applying them, and if you click on more than one preset you will get a completely different effect.



Better Travel Photography


If you have any questions at all about anything on this email or would just like to say hello, then please do get in touch. The simplest way is to reply to this email.

Best wishes,

Steve Davey



If you would like to know why you are receiving this email, please feel free to email us and ask! We will be able to tell you exactly when and how you signed up! If you want you can unsubscribe here.