I have known Hilton Kotze, 2007 Fuji /Getaway wildlife photographer of the year, for many years. He recently hosted two safari’s for Outdoorphoto which I attended – One being to the Masai Mara. Here I took the opportunity to ask him a few questions about his experiences , joys and highlights as a photographer.
Hilton is a dynamic wildlife and sport photographer with an exceptional passion for Africa and its wildlife. His love for nature and wildlife enables him to seize the moment and capture creative, unique and exciting photographs.
Hilton is fortunate to travel to remote areas of Southern Africa regularly. This allows him to capture some of the most beautiful moments of the African bush and its wide variety of inhabitants.
When he isn’t chasing those magical bush moments, he is busy capturing our sport hero’s making history in various sporting events.
Hilton has won various wildlife awards and has also achieved the highest photographic honor in south Africa, that of 2007 Fuji /Getaway wildlife photographer of the year. His 12 years of experience in the bush, love of people and his ability to share his knowledge make him a very successful photographic host.
How long have you been in the photography industry?
I have been in the industry now for almost 10 years.
Is there a specific moment you can recall when you decided “this is what I would like to do professionally?”
There is no specific moment, I love photography so much that it evolved into a second career
Is there a specific photo you feel “I wish I had taken that one?”/ or still want to take
It will definitely be something challenging….like bird photography
If in an emergency you are able to save only one piece of equipment, what would that be?
Definitely my 600mm lens
Which photo theme do you prefer capturing? Sport / portfolio/ wedding/ nature etc
I prefer capturing nature and sport.
What would your best piece of advice be to young aspiring photographers?
My advice to them would be to never give up and never be afraid to ask pros for advice. You are never too good to learn!
Do you have a blog/ website where people can view images captured by you?
What do you regard as the best magazines to read to sharpen your skills in photography?
Digital Camera and Pix
What do you regard as the best websites to browse to sharpen your skills in photography?
Scott Kelby and Yanik Photo School
If money is no issue – and you can go any place in the world to take as many photos as You wish to – what place would that be?
Africa for sure! And more specific the Serengeti in Tanzania, Masai Mara in Kenia, The Okavango Delta, Busanga Plains in Zambia and Luangwa Valley in Zambia.
What is your favorite software for retouching?
I use Lightroom and Photoshop
What times during the day do you think are best to take photos?
During the golden hours for wildlife.
If you could buy any camera and lens, which would it be?
Nikon D3s and 200-400mm