Desré PickersCameraCanon EOS 20DLens28–105 mmFocal length, digital105 mmISO200F-stop5.6Shutter speed1/500White balanceOutdoorAbout the shotTo capture this feat, multiple camera angles were needed. For the film crew (and myself) to avoid aviation authorities and fly below the 1,500-foot minimum flight limit, the paddlers had to set off across the crocodile- and hippo-infested waters above the falls before sunrise. The paddlers approached the edge of the mile-wide, 350-foot-high falls to scout the rapids below. This moment was captured from a helicopter circling 500 feet above the falls, battling with mist and wind blowing up from the narrow canyon. Challenges included extreme air turbulence and constantly having to wipe water from the spray off of the lens. I had initially planned to shoot wide at 15 mm, but a last-second in-air lens change in these conditions rewarded me with this shot. download wallpaperBiographyI was born in 1977 in Durban, South Africa, and I have spent five years shooting professionally in the outdoor industry. Specializing in whitewater and kayaking, I have worked as the photographer on many film and photo projects, including Red Bull Recon, the “Focused” series and other projects for Matchstick Productions, and various filming projects for Scott Lindgren Productions. My photos have been published in GQ, Surfing, Men’s Journal, Outside, and many kayak industry magazines and catalogs. I was a finalist in the Vail Mountain Games Photo Competition in 2005 and won the People’s Choice Award at the same competition in 2004. Since 2000, I have been world traveling — I now spend summer based in North America and my other summer based in Africa (mainly Uganda and South Africa). I believe that if you want to get an image that no one else can get or has thought of, you need to be willing to do what no one else is willing to do; even if it means hanging off the back of a jetski, swimming down rapids, or balancing on the top of Victoria Falls. The harder you work for an image, the more rewarding the result will be. Following this advice as best as I can has given me my favorite shots.