Vicki Santello

Camera: Canon R5

Lens: EF600mm f/4 III

Aperture: f/4

Shutter speed: 1/1000

ISO: 400

Description: A male lion, wet with morning dew, calmly evaluates his territory.

Story from behind the lens: We came upon a single male lion walking in early morning light. My guide, Sammy Kaleku, immediately drove ahead of the lion and then positioned the vehicle sideways with my doors-off access facing the approaching male. Watching his powerful stride and calm demeanor was inspiring! He was in his prime and wet with dew which created strong contrasts in his dense mane. At the same time I was absorbing the experience, I was concentrating to make sure I had the best possible settings and was in focus for the opportunity. My camera was set up on a tripod, with legs extended flat, for the low angle.