David Yarrow’s pursuit of capturing close and active encounters with the natural world has led him to overcome the challenges of shooting in some of the most remote and inhospitable locations on the planet. Creating pure and distinctly dynamic images as a result of his unique eye and perseverance, he photographs the majestic natural world by exposing the inherent beauty in the wild. In one particular location, Yarrow has returned over a dozen times through the years: Amboseli. The area in Kenya near the Tanzania border is an arid and raw terrain which suits Yarrow’s clean, from the ground up style of photography. He goes there with the principal purpose of working close to elephants out of a jeep and on the ground, but has also captured remarkable images of other magnificent wildlife. Each year at the end of the summer dry season in October, some of the largest herds and biggest elephants in the world make their way across Amboseli’s dry lakebed in search of water. Ten years ago this was a common occurrence, but recently the elephant behavior in Amboseli has been affected by the growing number of Masai moving to the area with their cattle dominating the landscape. Yarrow is still determined to capture this fleeting phenomenon. During one day a herd numbering over twenty-five was spotted five miles away making it the biggest group the locals had seen for some time. He explains:
“As we sped to the west side of the dry lake, I was emotionally focused but equally aware that the light was patchy with the sky dominated by localized rain clouds. I knew that this could compliment any ground content perfectly – much better to have threatening clouds at midday than a high sun. Those twenty minutes I spent that Sunday with the herd were spectacular. One image stood out and the reaction from those I first showed it to noted the image’s grace and serenity. The composition has spirituality to it and in retrospect I made great, quick decisions on both camera bodies and lenses. The detail is very pleasing and the composition is a gift that perhaps the hours of persistence deserved.”
Thoroughly committed to Africa, Yarrow is an integral contributor to the conservation group Tusk and its efforts to preserve the incomparable wildlife and environments of the extraordinary continent. Next year, Yarrow will exhibit at Stockholm’s photographic museum Fotografiska and at London’s esteemed Saatchi Gallery. He continues to use photography as an effective tool to celebrate both the natural variety and wonders of the world as well as mankind’s challenge of living in harmony with it.