Behind the lens

Benjamin Rutherford: Nyama

How old are you?


Where are you based?

I am currently based in the UK

How do you make a living?

As a professional photographer

What camera do you use?

Canon 5D mkII and Mamiya RZ67

How has travel made an impact on your life?

The testing nature of travel and the adventure it brings helps me focus on what I want to achieve. It brings back the realisation of what I view as important in my life, instead of getting caught up in the rat-race, chasing other people’s dreams. It has completely shaped my career, my friendships and who I am.

What does adventure mean to you?

Adventure is a personal journey. The fear of the unknown is what holds many back, getting out there is challenging, it’s not supposed to be easy. But you will never get the experiences you dream of from your desk. Adventure to me is about risk-taking, embracing the potential of the unknown, and pushing your own limits.

A farm worker takes a moment to rest during the creation of a fire break to combat frequent and devastating bush fires deliberately started by poachers to clear preferred hunting grounds of thick bush. Zambia, 2015.

A herdsman brings in sheep from a day of grazing. Sheep and cattle are sometimes targeted by poachers, however the penalty for rustling is considerably higher than it is for poaching wildlife. Zambia, 2015.

A young man holds up the head and skin of a Baboon, shot for stealing maize. Very few people eat primates here due to religious taboos, yet driven by the hunger for meat, some do despite fears of Ebola. Zambia, 2015.

Zambia has one of the worst deforestation and air pollution rates in the world, almost solely due to its huge charcoal Industry.

Game guards on patrol along the Kafue river, which borders the reserve they protect. legally armed anti-poaching patrols come at a huge financial cost. Zambia, 2015.

At 25 years old, this young man left school two years ago after grade 8 due to lack of funds. He found a job as a game guard on this property and has managed to apprehend 3 poachers. When asked if he would consider joining a national park anti-poaching team, he replied, “No, it is too dangerous.” Zambia, 2015.

A farm manager watches as a deliberate bushfire tears through dry winter grass to create a firebreak to combat larger fires caused by poachers. Zambia, 2015

Unoffical waterfalls guide. Mosi-oa-Tunya. Zambia. 2015

Kafue river sunset on a week long fishing trip into the Kafue National Park. Zambia. 2015

Fishermen Rodrick Siakanoko and Robert Machia who both featured on National Geographic’s documentary on fishing in the rapids above the Falls. Victoria Falls. Zambia. 2015  |  @benjaminrutherford