Q&A WITH OUR GUIDE FOR AMAZON RAINFOREST PHOTOGRAPHY WORKSHOPS
Mark Fernley is a professional wildlife photographer, who´s been based in the stunning Peruvian rainforest for the past years. We asked him about his passions and methods and to share some of his favourite wildlife images.
What sparked your interest in photography?
When I was 13, I took a trip to the Everglades and with a roll film disposable camera, I captured images of alligators with babies. From then on, I began photographing wildlife wherever I went – just as a hobby, ranging from the land mammals of Africa to the fish of the coral reefs of the Red Sea. This became a personal documentation of all the species I encountered.
What was your first camera, and what equipment do you use now?
My first camera was a roll-up disposable camera, but at the age of 17, I bought my first professional camera, the EOS Canon 400D with a 200mm lens. I currently use the Canon 5D Mark 4 with lenses such as the Sigma 150-600mm lens for long distances. For macro work I use the Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L IS USM Macro Lens. For ultra macro, I use the Canon MP E 65mm f2.8 lens with a focusing rail. For all other wide-angle related work, I like to get close to my venomous subjects with a Louwa 15mm f/4 wide-angle 1:1 macro lens.
Why wildlife photography?
I have always had a strong passion to capture as many different species as I can and turn nature into artwork. I like expressing every animal’s shape, pattern and colour to spark interest in nature.
What are your main goals with your photography?
My goal is to make people interested in wildlife and aware of our fight for the conservation and preservation of natural environments. By producing high-end images that portray each animal’s natural way of life, I hope to get people around the world interested in the incredible wildlife that lives in the Amazon.
Who are some of your favourite photographers (past or present)?
With regards to wildlife photographer favourites, Paul Nicklen is at the top with his stunning sea lion photography. Myself and Paul were both some of the winners of the Wildlife Photographer of the Year Competition by the Natural History Museum. Steve Bloom is also a wildlife photographer who has really taken my interest. When it comes to general photographers, Kevin Karter is my favourite photographer; I studied him at college and his photographs are very powerful – though completely different to my own.
Any secret techniques you can reveal?
Patience is key!