Below a Maasai walking his cattle to get something to drink in the Amboseli area.
The stick they use to make sure the cows and goats stay close together.
The leaves is what was used to slaughter the cow or goat
The Oloirka is one of the items mainly used by the elderly Maasai men. It’s a small stool made of black wood found in the middle of a tree. For me it was an important item to capture. For one It reminds me of elephant skin when looking at it from the top. And again this is an item not every Maasai has in its possession.
I collected a lot of newspaper articles these last few months regarding human wildlife conflict as well as factors that greatly influence this problem in Kenya. These are some of the things the people experience daily and where the importance of wildlife organizations are critical in “solving” these kind of problems.
We kept track in what area the lions were mostly active. The dispatch teams would write down all the information they got along the way and would return with pages full of areas where different kinds of animals are approaching “human habitats”. The word Simba means lion in Swahili (the names in the movie the Lion King have different meanings in Swahili and helped me a bit along the way).
It has only taken 11 years of going on safari, but thank you Zambia, South Luangwa, for treating me to my first ever wild dog encounter. Albeit a brief encounter but it was wonderful to see these beautiful creatures up close! Until the next time...
One, if not the most amazing experience in my life ➡️ Visiting an elephant sanctuary in Chiang Mai.
With this blog post I would like to raise awareness about what's happening in so many African countries ⚠️⚠️⚠️
African Elephants are the bigges living animal in the world. They are not only the biggest animals on earth, but Elephants are among the most intelligent creatures on the planet. Their complex social relationships, kindship bonds, and capacity for emotions makes them unique in the animal kingdom!!
Can you imagine a world without them ⁉️⁉️⁉️⁉️⁉️ When they are simply non existent? I can't!!!
In the past 100 years African elephant populations have been reduced by 97%!! More than 50% of Africa's remaining elephants could be killed in the next 10 years if illegal poaching continues at the current rate ⛔
Ivory poaching is a multi million dollar business and the fewer elephants are left, the more the prices for their ivory rises.
We are the solution! The fate of elephants lies in our hands. So let's do something because if we don't, your grandchildren will live in a world where Africa Elephants are only a part of history books!!
are working on an amazing project to raise awareness of what is happening every day to hundreds of elephants. They are being killed for their Ivory day after day.
❗If you are interested in making a difference, message me privately. Together we can make safe these unique animals ❗
Over the last couple of months I’ve shot around 150 rolls of film. First I have to do some more preparations before it’s time to let these be developed. Can’t wait to see the results and continue my work!
After, give or take, 2,5 months today is the day I’m leaving Kenya. I have seen a lot, the good and the bad! Experiences I will never forget.
Now the time has come to process every experience and create a tangible visual diary.
All of this wouldn’t be possible without one man!
A special shout out to Joshua who became my close friend and brother. My man Joshua, thank you for your patience and time. It wasn’t always easy but without you this whole project wouldn’t be possible. You and your family made me feel right at home and I will be back to go on another adventure with you! Sere!
Approaching the end of my project I’ve been in the company of a lot of Maasai. Some of whom became my friends. One of them is Daniel, the man who helped and trained me in the process of preparing the goats and showed me the technics the Maasai still use to survive in the bush. He’s always been a very patient and cheerful guy always giving me a high five upon seeing me. For this I’m very grateful!
In these last few months I’ve seen a lot and experienced a lot. It made me think about different approaches to the project and how to visualize them.
This is one of the images I’ve been working on so far.
Title: aftermath #1
For the Maasai nowadays a lot of Maasai women and men don’t dress or mark themselves with the long hair (mainly Moraans), circles on their cheeks or stretch their earlobes. It reminded me of Jimmy Nelson’s project, Before they pass away.
It’s slowly fading away because the country is getting more and more educated.
This of course is a very positive thing but it also made me a bit sad to realize that there will come a time that these traditions will no longer exist.
Will it benefit the areas these people currently live in? I don’t really know. Had a lot of discussions and all of them with different outcomes. There is always two sides to a coin.
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Yesterday, me and 9 other Maasai men prepared ourselves for the slaughtering of a cow. As usual with the Maasai there were only men and no women allowed. Especially at this period when the men leave their homes for 3 to 4 weeks to camp in the bush with friends and family to regain strength for the year to come.
They regain their strength by eating meat (cows and goats) and by drinking their special herb tea. Everything is done according to their traditions.
The thing that kept me busy is how I noticed how fast I’m getting used to the whole slaughtering and butchering of animals here in Kenya. Especially when I was holding the cows heart in my hand and handing it over to the person next to me I was surprised by how little it affected me. At that point I got annoyed with myself wondering if I was turning into someone that doesn’t appreciate the life of an animal that’s just been killed.
The only thing that made me feel better in some sort of way is the way the Maasai use everything of the animal and the respect they have for these animals.
Watching Orca’s hunt dolphins this week has been one for the record books. Rarely do encounter pods like this sticking around for this long. It’s not too late to hop on one of our trips!! Slots open on our website!!
During my stay here in Kenya I met a lot of farmers. Everyone with their own story and almost all of them experience the same problems and challenges.
First of all providing for their family’s is the most important thing and secondly protecting their crops.
These are some of the farmers I met along the way!
One of the most remarkable features of an elephant in my opinion is how silent they move for an animal this big. When an elephant hears something approaching it will stop moving until the “threat” is gone or in a worst case scenario it or you will bump right into one.
When you’re walking through the bush this makes it very hard to spot an elephant. For the communities in these kind of areas encounters like these are common and may end up in one having to pay with his/her life.