Austrian conservation photographers Christine Sonvilla and Marc Graf have photographed wildlife all over the planet. From the Austrian alpine lynx to the elusive Bengal tiger, they have created hundreds of images that have captured the public's attention. The two met at the University of Vienna where they were both studying conservation. They discovered their shared interest in photography, and realised it was a way to give nature a voice.
Marc gives an example of how this can make a difference: "In late 2016 we published the first high-resolution photo of an alpine lynx captured in the Austrian mountains, which was really exciting for us because there are only 10 to 15, over the whole of Austria, and there had been two cases of lynx poaching around that time. We tried to get that message of lynx conservation spread over Austria through all kinds of media. We were interviewed by radio and television, and had several cover stories in Austrian newspapers and magazines."
Christine takes up the story: "We figure that roughly 1.5 to 2 million people had exposure to that particular topic. Plus, we're also doing a lot of live presentations using photography and film and talking live to an audience. Our work really is about bridging the gap between the public and the nature organisations, NGOs, scientists, all those people out there in the field."
While the couple have travelled to far-flung and exotic locations, for a recent project they focused their attention on urban nature in Vienna, photographing rabbits, hedgehogs and squirrels to raise the profile of wild creatures living on city-dwellers' doorsteps.
"Nature really is just around the corner, and this is where our connection to the environment starts," Christine urges. "I strongly believe that once you build this connection, you will want to contribute to conservation."
Marc and Christine experimented with the Canon EOS M200, a lightweight, easy-to-use camera perfect for beginners wanting to explore their creative side, and the Canon EOS 250D, the world's lightest DSLR with a movable screen,* which also offers 4K movie capture.
"If you're just starting your journey into nature photography, you don't need a pro-level camera with lots of high-end specs," says Marc. "Your kit and ambitions can grow together." With a wide choice of available lenses and shooting controls, both of the cameras they used will take you a long way along the path.
Here, Christine and Marc share their tips for taking wildlife photos with impact.