On February 14, 2010, the Chinese lunar calendar moved into the Year of the Tiger,an animal that has captivated me with its beauty from the moment I received my first wildlife book as an 8 year old,with the face of a roaring Tiger on the front cover-I was hooked.This book started my love and interest for wildlife and more so the Tiger,as I’d trace around the Tiger,copying it on all my school books.The book is an integral part of my younger years and forms one of the many images on my ‘Profile’ .So with this year being the year of the Tiger it was a wish of mine to visit India and hopefully photograph these beautiful creatures in the wild,so at the beginning of the year I contacted my friend and fellow wildlife photographer Ganesh H Shankar who lives in India, asking could he help in this matter.
Ganesh has a brilliant ‘Compositinal’ eye with stunning vision,he strives very hard in the field to create a unique and artistic composition, not bound by the rules of conventional composition.We met on ‘Flickr’ some two years ago and have become friends over the years,where we share the same vision in our photographs we take.Below are a few images Ganesh has taken,showing his unique style of wildlife photography
Ganesh wrote a few words “Close usual portraits of subjects in nature stopped impressing me long back and found myself a comfort zone in portraying my subjects small in the frame yet drawing enough visual attention. I didn’t know any nature photographer who liked her subject small in the frame till I discovered Craig through a nature photo forum Yes, Craig and me seem to share some common
interests when it comes to composition and treatment of light in our images. Very happy to know Craig is visiting India to to see tiger through his lens.
Looking forward to see his wonderful creations in the new future !” Ganesh April 2010
His help and advice on my four coming trip to India has been second to none.I am flying from London to Delhi then a 5 hour train journey to Sawai Madhopur,a district of the North Indian state of Rajasthan and staying with his good friend Aditya ‘Dicky’ Singh who owns and runs a small lodge on the outskirts of the Ranthambhore tiger reserve in India.Aditya’s help and advice has also been great and it promises to be a trip I will never forget whether I see a Tiger or not.The title ‘Raw India’ will be the name I’m giving to the blog entries I’ll make covering the trip,as I am doing it alone,going to heart of India in a ‘Raw’ manner,hoping to seeing parts of India far removed from the tourists eye.
My wish is to capture some beautiful Tigers images and help the profile of this beautiful creature,as the plight of wild tigers is suffering greatly where three subspecies having already been driven to extinction in the past century alone and experts estimate there are as few as 3,200 tigers left in the wild.Tigers are being persecuted across their range – poisoned, trapped, snared, shot and squeezed out of their homes,there is hope for them in this Year of the Tiger,as there has never been such a committed, ambitious, high-level commitment from governments to double wild tiger numbers alongside top wildlife experts,photographers all helping in their respective ways by highlighting the Tigers case both domestically and worldwide.
The WWF are doing brilliant work in raising the plight and profile of the Tiger.They are securing habitats with their partners,working with local communities trying to give sustainable alternatives to logging,also they are creating forest ‘corridors’ to allow Tigers to roam and breed.The programmes are working and have helped the Amur Tigers in Russian come back from a population of around 40 to its present day total of 500.The WWF with your help can save the Tiger by just giving what you can, also you can Adopt a Tiger for as little as £3 pounds a month,with all the money going towards helping the world in which Tigers live and roam
21st Century Tiger do a great job in Giving wild tigers a future whilst raising funds for wild tiger conservation since 1997 with 100% of funds raised going directly to wild tiger projects. Tiger Awareness founded by Phil Davis from Leicestershire do a brilliant job also,a voluntary non-profit making charity, giving free talks to schools, the public, and other organisations with all donations and funds raised going towards tiger projects.I spoke to Phil recently and I’m hoping to help him with this charity anyway I can in the future when I return from my trip as I feel we can all do a little to save this stunning animal from disappearing from the wild,with only captive ones to remind us of the beauty and what they looked like,not a choice in my book as its never to late to do something to save these beautiful animals
I will update my blog on how I got on India with my ‘Raw India Dairies’ once I have come back.