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Kaziranga Tiger Reserve - March 2018

About Kaziranga
Kaziranga National Park lies partly in Golaghat District and partly in Nagaon District of Assam. It is the oldest park in assam covers an area of 430 Sq kms along the river Brahmaputra on the North and the Karbi Anglong hills on the South. The National Highway 37 passes through the park area and tea estates, hemmed by table-top tea bushes. One can even see the rhinos and wild elephants straying near the highway.

Kaziranga National Park a world heritage site is famous for the Great Indian one horned rhinoceros, the landscape of Kaziranga is of sheer forest, tall elephant grass, rugged reeds, marshes & shallow pools. It has been declared as National Park in 1974. Kaziranga National Park is one of the last areas in eastern India undisturbed by a human presence. It is inhabited by the world's largest population of one-horned rhinoceroses, as well as many mammals, including tigers, elephants, panthers and bears, and lots of birds.

Recommended Equipment
Kaziranga offers varied photography opportunities including birds, mammals, landscape and even night photography. Here are the recommended lenses for the tour.

100-400mm Zoom Lens
This is a versatile range to capture mammals and birds and can also act as a landscape lens at 100mm.

300mm f/4 + 1.4x Converter
You can use this at 300mm or with the converter to get a good range of 420mm or even 600mm+ on a crop factor body. This being a prime lens, the quality of the images will be good and you can easily hand hold it. The lighting conditions at Kaziranga will be excellent and you will get good shutter speeds depending on lighting conditions and ISO used.

400mm f5.6
This is a very sharp lens and suitable for bird photography and excellent for birds in flight. You can make good portraits of the Rhino and other mammals in the open grasslands.

70-200 f2.8 + 2x converter
I would highly recommend this lens over the 100-400 as you can get two different ranges of focal length and even with a tele-converter, the quality of images is good. At 70mm it can also act as a decent landscape lens. Also excellent for birds in flight. 

This is the Sigma 150-500mm zoom lens with a Canon and Nikon mount. Though this is a slow lens, this works well in good lighting conditions and will be an excellent choice for Kaziranga given the good lighting conditions. The open grasslands gives you a great opportunity to make some close portraits of various mammals with this lens at 500mm.

300mm f2.8 + 1.4x or 2x converter
This offers the flexibility of multiple focal lengths and is a light-weight lens which can be used for hand held shooting.

500mm + 1.4x converter
This lens is highly recommended for a place like Kaziranga. Excellent for birds and also mammals. You will need a good tripod and a ball head / gimbal head to support this. A bean bag is also recommended.

600mm or 800mm
These are super telephoto lens and will be an excellent choice if you can manage to get them.

Along with the above recommended lenses, you can also get wide angle lens or any other lens of your choice for making landscape images. You could also rent an additional body as a second body to ensure you have two sets of camera / lens ready to shoot at all times.

Sudhir Shivaram Photography recommends www.bookmylens.com in case you want to rent any of the above lenses. Please do visit BML website to make your rental booking.


Wildlife Photography related learning during the workshop:
Today's Wildlife Photography is all about action, creativity and uniqueness. The aim of this tour is to ensure on-the-field knowledge sharing & instruction with respect to bird and wildlife photography, enabling participants to master creative photography skills and handle dynamic subjects such as birds and mammals with greater confidence.

During the workshop your mentor Sudhir Shivaram will help you master the core principles and concepts of Wildlife/Bird Photography. The sessions will help you to progress from taking images to making images. You will understand the concepts of storytelling images and what it takes to get your images published.

The below topics will be covered and the participants will learn how to apply these concepts in Wildlife photography.

  • Manual and autofocus (focusing points, autofocus lock, single or continuous focus)
  • Manual exposure (ISO, shutter speeds, f/ stops and the light meter)
  • Metering modes (evaluative, matrix, spot metering) 
  • Depth of field (shallow, deep, hyper focal distance)
  • Motion (freezing, blurring and panning)
  • Picture styles / picture control (colour, black and white, sepia etc…)
  • Aperture priority, shutter speed priority and program modes 
  • Understanding exposure - the 18% concept
  • White balance (pre-set and custom)
  • The temperature of light (natural and artificial colour cast)
  • Composition (framing)
  • Elements of design (seeing v/s looking)
  • Lenses and perspective (the right choice of focal length)
  • Pre-visualization
  • Completing the story

During the course of the workshop, you will be taken through the fundamentals of image processing and the following topics will be covered:

  • Colour management policies (colour settings, working space, ICC profiles etc.)
  • Working with RAW files
  • Cropping and image editing
  • Levels, curves, contrast, saturation adjustments
  • Image sharpening, cloning, dodge and burn
  • Noise reduction.
  • Saving for web/ printing

During the Field Outing: 

During the field outing, your mentor Sudhir Shivaram will help you make memorable images. Inputs provided on the field will enable you make the most of the opportunity.

Before the Workshop (An e-mail will be sent to you to collect all these data before the workshop)

  • Your camera / lens details needs to be sent to Sudhir so that he can prepare a chart of best practices for that set of equipment which you can use in the field.
  • Your photos / portfolio to be sent to Sudhir for him to review the images and arrive at the areas of improvements for each of the participants.
  • Your expectations from the workshop - This needs to be sent to Sudhir to ensure these are addressed during individual interactions with the participants.

During the Workshop

  • Sudhir will demonstrate the best way to approach and shoot the subjects and also give deeper insights on the behaviour of the subjects.
  • He will introduce to the participants the advance custom function settings of the camera and teach them to shoot like a professional based on the chart he would have prepared for each individual.
  • He will continually guide participants during the hands-on field outing, review images and provide feedback.
  • Knowledge sharing and image review will continue through the evenings in the conference room where he will interact with participants to further reinforce the day's learning.
  • Assignments will be given to individuals which needs to be completed during the course of the workshop. This will enable better learning for the participants as they will have deliverables as a part of the workshop.

After the Workshop

  • Participants will select and upload their best images from the photo tour in the '"SSP Community" Facebook group.
  • Sudhir will personally review them and provide detailed inputs.
  • The learning continues through facebook and e-mail interactions, where doubts and queries related to their learning from the tour will be addressed and resolved.
  • The facebook group will also facilitate peer group interaction and contribute to the overall learning experience.

Day 1: Arrival, briefing and Introductons
- Upon arrival in Guwahati, transfer to Kaziranga ( a 5 hr Drive, Lunch Enroute) and check in to the very hospitable IORA resort.
- A brief introductory session between the participants and your mentor, Sudhir Shivaram.
- Post snacks, Sudhir will lead an interactive session on the tips and tricks of Wildlife/Bird photography to reinforce core concepts and tips for next day's morning safari.
- Dinner and overnight stay at the resort.

Day 2 to 4:
- Morning Jungle Safari followed by a hearty breakfast.
- Relax and meet to review images and interact.
- Sumptuous lunch and possibly a quick power nap in preparation for afternoon/evening safari.
- Following evening activity, back to the resort. Continued learning sessions including post processing over some snacks.
- Dinner and overnight stay at the resort.

Day 5:
- Morning Jungle Safari followed by a hearty breakfast.
- Check-out, Lunch enroute.
- Depart to airport/railway station.

There are no questions related to this program!

Rs. 39,750/- per person (Indian Nationality) 

Cost Includes :
- 5 days and 4 nights stay in IORA-Retreat resort on double occupancy basis with all Meals.
- The accommodation will be in Luxary AC Rooms.
- 7 Jungle safaris with 4 People in a Gypsy.
- All Meals, National Park Entry, Mandatory guide fees.

Cost Excludes :
- Any other services or meals which are not mentioned in the above "Includes" section.
- Rail Fare or Air Fare.
- Camera Fees if applicable.
- Surface transfers from/to Guwahati in AC SUV can be arranged on the actual cost.

Expense of personal nature such as mineral water, tips, laundry, telephones, beverages etc.

Nestled amidst rolling hills of lush green tea gardens and conveniently located just off National Highway 37, IORA is a luxury resort at Kaziranga, a perfect blend of the tranquility of Assam and the comforts of a modern Luxury resort. IORA offers a serene, rejuvenating experience with liberal doses of warm Assamese hospitality and supported by the best in state-of-the-art amenities.

This 20 acre resort with 4 star amenities, landscaped gardens, a small tea garden for the "tea" experience, is the perfect place for a perfect holiday. Whether you are sipping a cocktail on the private balcony of one of the 42 spacious rooms or chilling out in the beautiful swimming pool with a water cascade or in the spa or working out in the gym, you will find total relaxation. Warm bonfire & folk dances with snacks & beverages in our lawns is the perfect ambience for a winter evening. The multi-cuisine restaurant Scarlet Flame and Assamese specialty restaurant Bhatbaan are the perfect places for food lovers. The indoor and outdoor activities make IORA a comfortable family holiday destination.
The multicuisine restaurant and Assamese speciality restaurant is the perfect place for food lovers.The indoor and outdoor activities makes IORA a comfortable family holiday destination. 

Each room is equipped with modern amenities like tea / coffee making facilities, cable television, internet connectivity, air conditioning and mini bar. 

75% fee to be refunded if cancellation is done 45 days prior to the event.
No refund if cancellation is done between 0-44 days of the event.

Please note: The date of written (email) communication of intent to cancel is the date considered for calculation of the cancellation fees.