WPY 2018

Photograph Details

Highly commended 2018

Creative Visions

Paul Mckenzie, Ireland / Hong Kong

The Upside-Down Flamingos

Lying prone in a quagmire of thick, gooey mud, Paul spent an hour quietly nudging closer to this flock of flamingos. Eventually, he focused on the birds’ red legs, framing the shot to include their reflection. In post-production he rotated the image 180 degrees to create, as he describes, ‘a more abstract reflective image’.

Lesser flamingos find safety in numbers and tend to gather in large groups to protect themselves against predators. They feed almost entirely on blue-green algae, but will also feed on crustaceans. Gathering food by holding their beaks upside down in the water, they often synchronise, raising and lowering their heads to feed in orchestrated mass movements.

Technical specification

Canon EOS 5D Mark IV + 600mm f4 lens; 1/1600 sec at f9; ISO 1250; Canon angle finder + Visual Echoes Panning Plate


Lake Bogoria, Kenya: latitude 0.2648, longitude 36.1002 Lake Bogoria, Kenya: latitude 0.2648, longitude 36.1002

Lake Bogoria, Kenya

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Paul Mckenzie

Paul Mckenzie, Ireland / Hong Kong

Paul is a semi-professional photographer based in Hong Kong, where he has lived most of his life. He has been photographing wildlife for 20 years - on land, from the air and underwater. He is widely published and leads photographic workshops primarily in Africa, Asia and Australia.

  • Delta Design
  • Flamingo doodles
  • Realm of the flamingos