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Meet Lalindra De Silva

Today we’d like to introduce you to Lalindra De Silva.

Alright, so thank you so much for sharing your story and insight with our readers. To kick things off, can you tell us a bit about how you got started?
Born and raised in Sri Lanka, the pearl of the Indian Ocean known for its famous Ceylon Tea and Spicy seafood, looking back I never have imagined what life or you can call it fate (whichever you like) would have in store for me! Being the only child in the family and raised as an urban kid, never did I dream I would end up on the East Coast of Africa. Since my teenage years, I always had a keen eye for numbers. As a result, I entered the world of Finance and never looked back.

But it was in 2017 when I moved to Kenya, I found a passion that I’m truly proud of. I visited Tsavo East National Park for the first time was a life-changing moment for me. To spot a majestic male lion during the morning golden hour just near your car, was love at first sight. Since then, I have visited many parks in Kenya and captured moments that I will never forget. I slowly moved into wildlife photography to capture the true beauty of mother nature and share it with the world.

For many visiting Kenya and doing a safari would be a bucket list moment but for me, it’s a monthly trip! I became a self-thought photographer wanting to capture the emotion and soul-piercing looks of my subject. As said by Ralph Waldo Emerson, life is a journey and not a destination. I want to make the journey an unforgettable one!

I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle-free, but so far would you say the journey has been a fairly smooth road?
Well, photography can be an expensive passion. You need to invest your time and money and it takes time to reap the rewards. For me, finding the right combination of camera gear to suit my pocket had been a challenge. Next, photography is not my primary source of income. I have a day job. Balancing your work life with time required for Safari’s and other photography work has also been a challenge for me.

Sometimes, life throws a curveball at you when you least expect it! Back in 2019, I was diagnosed with a severe case of fatty liver. The doctors warned me that I could end up with diabetes or worse cirrhosis. I was over 275 pounds at my heaviest.

Today, I have lost over 70 pounds and my liver is back to normal. Years of unhealthy lifestyle had held me back and today, I feel proud of what I have achieved.

Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your work?
I consider myself a wildlife photographer. Since I live in Kenya, my work revolves around national parks such as Tsavo, Masai Mara, and Amboseli. I usually visit one of these parks once a month. I love shooting portraits of animals. Especially, capturing the moment where the subject stares directly at you. Gives you that soul-piecing look. Big cats are my favorite to shoot followed by the big tuskers.

But the animal which has always captivated me is the leopard. Such a mysterious animal and elusive, the leopard has always captivated me. I mainly post my work on IG and FB. I do prints on special requests. To widen my scope as a photographer, I have ventured into covering events and even portraits of people.

Photography is such a wide subject and I feel I have only dipped my feet in the shallow end. I hope I can create awareness of the need to protect our wildlife through my work and capture moments that will last forever.

We’d be interested to hear your thoughts on luck and what role, if any, you feel it’s played for you?
Thomas Jefferson says “I m a greater believer in luck and I find the harder I work the more I have it”. As a wildlife photographer, you tend to be a bit superstitious. We have a saying called first timers luck when we go on Safari. We tend to take someone who has not been to that particular park expecting to see something spectacular.

So far our hit rate has been very good but when you think about it, lady luck doesn’t hand memorable moments on a silver platter. So much of planning goes into a safari. The first time I saw a live kill, we waited for over five hours patiently. In my experience, you only get lucky when you keep working hard on your goal and lady luck would definitely reward you!

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