Nirav Shah

Camera: Canon 450 D

Lens: 70-200mm f4 L Lens

Aperture: f4

Shutter speed: 1/320s

ISO: 800

Description: A portrait of a cute young lion cub sitting alert in the grass of the wild Masai Mara, Kenya.

Story from behind the lens: Having likely spent the night in the safety of the bushes while its mother hunts, this young adorable cub sat up in the soft glow of the morning light and looked to the horizon probably seeking to rejoin with its mother or the pride and bond through play. While the golden hour affords the photographer an ethereal kind of light to work with in nature's studio, it's not a sufficient condition to get the desired shot. Other elements need to work together; the subject has to be illuminated by the light in the right way, the normal exposure contraints associated with working in low light need to be navigated and of course composition matters too. In this case, everything came together, the cub faced the direction of the sunrise, my camera settings and the situation meant working with a shallow depth of field but that works well for portraiture because of nice background blur. I like this photo because the tones and colours perfectly evoke the serenity and stillness when first light breaks in the wild plains of the Masai Mara...good morning!