Force of nature

Hamish Mitchell is a landscape and wildlife photographer originally from Vancouver, Canada. After travelling throughout southern Africa in 1993, he was captivated by the continent and now returns annually to explore its beauty and cultures.

The inspiration for his work is drawn from a passion for the outdoors, a love of travel and the creative process and the visualisation required to capture a beautiful image. Each photograph is the result of many hours of planning, exploring and waiting patiently for the lighting and conditions to be just right in order to turn the landscape before him into a work of art.

Be it through his landscape or wildlife photography, Mitchell’s ultimate goal is to make every image engage the viewer and enable them to see the beauty of the world as he’s had the pleasure of experiencing it. [All words and pics by Hamish Mitchell].

Antelope Canyon

Antelope Canyon, Arizona USA

Located in the Navajo lands of the American south-west, Antelope Canyon is an attraction not to be missed. The natural walkway running the length of the slot canyon is the result of numerous flash floods over the years that carved the dramatic rock formations out of the indigenous sandstone. Every day offers a unique spectacle as the sunlight cascades throughout the canyon and creates a beautiful, rich and ever-changing palette on the naturally textured walls.

Steptoe Butte, Washington, USA

Steptoe Butte, Washington, USA

Often referred to as the “Tuscany of America”, the Palouse region of Washington state offers one of the most scenic drives in the USA. The seemingly endless rolling fields of wheat, lentils and canola display year-round beauty in this spectacular landscape.

Cayo Jutías, Cuba

When most people think of Cuba, images of vintage cars, cigars and Fidel Castro come to mind. Exploring the countryside and vast coastline proves the country has much more to offer. Endless fields of sugar cane, gorgeous beaches with shimmering turquoise water and spectacular mangrove forests are just some of the spectacles visitors can discover by getting off the beaten track.

Deadvlei, Namibia

Deadvlei, Namibia

Located in the Namib-Naukluft Park in Namibia, Deadvlei is a white clay pan surrounded by some of the biggest sand dunes in the world, some reaching 350m high. Dotting the surface of the pan are dead camelthorn trees, some believed to be 600-700 years old. Cut off from water by the dunes so long ago, the blackened trees make a surreal spectacle hidden in the desert.

Kruger National Park

Kruger National Park, Mpumalanga, SA

The Kruger National Park, almost equalling the size of Israel or Belgium, is by far the largest and best-known game reserve in SA. It provides visitors with numerous options in terms of accommodation and opportunities to see the Big Five. From upmarket lodges and professionally guided safaris to self-catering campsites and self-driving, Kruger promises the experience of a lifetime for every budget.

Hamish Mitchell Eastern Cape

Wild Coast, Eastern Cape, SA

SA’s Wild Coast comprises 200km of untamed coastline stretching from the Mtamvuna River in the north to the Great Kei River in the south. The dramatic waves crashing against the rocks, as well as the undeveloped, endless green hills dotted with traditional rondavels, allow visitors to step back in time and truly feel as if they’re a part of this magnificent wilderness. The village of Qunu on the Wild Coast is also the birthplace and resting place of SA’s late former President Nelson Mandela.

Hamish Mitchell

Hamish Mitchell out in the field. All images courtesy Hamish Mitchell.

This photo essay appears in the June 2016 issue of Sawubona magazine, download here, for free.

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