The Pannar Delmas Extravaganza!

Last week I got to go to some places in South Africa that I have never been to before! I went on tour to the likes of Parys, Nigel and Delmas for Pannar Seed where I photographed sunflowers, maize and soya crops. I also got to experience my first Pannar Extravaganza show! Every year, Pannar host a number of shows around the country where their experts give the local farmers and students ‘talks’ and advice on the various crops as well as their new seed varieties. This highly informative and popular agriculture show also includes Demo plots, showcasing all Pannar’s maize and soya varieties. Here are a few images of the 2020 Delmas Extravaganza!

2020 Delmas Extravaganza (3)

Pannar Seed (6)

Klaas Van Wyk (2)

2020 Delmas Extravaganza (15)

Delmas Extravaganza (16)

Pannar Seed (1)

Delmas Extravaganza (30)

Delmas Extravaganza (9)

These images are commissioned by Pannar Seed.

Lianne provides agricultural imagery for websites, advertising, training manuals, webinars and imagery for editorial purposes.  If you would like to know more about Lianne’s packages and rates, contact Lianne here with your enquiry or request.

Photography of Rice cultivation in Senegal

I got another fantastic opportunity with AgDevCo this December and went right across to Senegal to photograph one of their company partners, CNT S.U.A.R.L. CNT are an agricultural company that specialise in farming rice. They operate 7000 hectares of rice in the Senegal Valley region. 6000 of these hectares are operated by the local smallholder farmers who have partnered with CNT.

Senegal Rice harvest (2)
CNT smallholder farmers harvesting rice in the Senegal Valley region
Fatou, Algui, Khoury (2)
Senegalese women

This project is located in Thiagar, near Rosso and the border of Mauritania. The farmers operate just inland from the Senegal River, using a network of canals to irrigate their rice plots. Due to the existence of a large irrigation dam (Barrage de Diama) and the use of canals for irrigation, farmers are encouraged to take advantage of this by planting 2 crops a year.

I was there during their dry season in December just before harvesting was due to begin. I spent 2 insightful days with CNT and their farmers. Not only did I thoroughly enjoying working with the Senegalese people but I found it a fascinating region in the way of agriculture and culture. At first sight, it’s hard to imagine how they achieve what they do. But thankfully, with a good supply of water from the Senegal River and with the support and assistance offered by CNT, these farmers have succeeded in creating a robust and dynamic rice sector.

CNT was founded in 1987 by Mr Ibrahima Sall. The project started small, as a 5 hectare plot. Then in 1989, CNT expanded their project to 40 hectares of rice and worked with the refugees in the region. It’s gone from strength to strength and has uplifted the community and given the smallholder farmers who were not eligible for funding, access to funding and a sustainable opportunity to cultivate rice commercially.

Harvesting rice in Senegal (4)

Meeting with extension officer
Early morning training session with traditional mint tea!

CNT offer their members support and assistance in a number of ways from growing through to harvesting, processing and marketing. Last year, AgDevCo’s Smallholder Development Unit (SDU) partnered with CNT, to help them achieve an increase in their production capacity. AgDevCo provide technical assistance in the way of training in seed production techniques, IT software support that will assist CNT’s planning and management for their intended expansion and the initiation of Demo plots.

Sadly I missed the main harvesting season when an impressive 8 combine harvesters belonging to CNT fire up their engines and harvest 8000 smallholder plots of rice! Though I missed this action, I did manage to capture the initial harvesting by hand that starts in the run up to the harvesting start date. My shooting conditions when on these shoots are often a challenge in that they can happen in the middle of the day, which I can assure you is very bright especially with Senegal’s white, sandy soils. I was lucky to have Cherif Diallo as my interpreter and who turned out to be a great lighting assistant too! On these shoots, it is as much about the ‘people’ I meet and connect with as it is about the photography. To get those ‘uplifting shots,’ I need to connect with the people I am photographing on some level. The fact that my French and Wolof is too terrible for words (!) this made Cherif a very important factor with regards to the success of this shoot in the way of communication! Cherif is an Economics masters student at the University of St-Louis. He is originally from the Republic of Guinea but has lived most of his life in Senegal. Cherif was easy to work with and went out of his way to help me with my lighting challenges and has an excellent command of English, French and the local language ‘Wolof.’ It was interesting to work with Cherif as he provided me with a wealth of information about Senegal’s history, culture and geography. Though I was in Senegal for a mere 5 days, thanks to Cherif I feel I got to know so much more about Senegal than I would normally on such a short visit. As well as an interpreter and a lighting assistant, it was like having my own personal tourist guide! A real win for me!  So this is a big shout out to Cherif! I can highly recommend him as an interpreter and I see him having a very bright future in Senegal!

Chasing birds from rice crop (1)
Keeping the birds away from the rice crop!
Smallholder farmer in Senegal
CNT farmer

Although our time was short in Senegal, this visit has really sparked an interest for me in West Africa. I really had no idea what to expect! The west of Africa seems so far away from us in these Southern parts of Africa. Though short and sweet, it was such an incredible opportunity for me to go there with AgDevCo.  The history is fascinating, the fabrics and people are so colourful and they have a beautiful culture of hospitality. Their agriculture is fascinating especially with their climatic challenges. To do what they do is admirable. It’s definitely somewhere I would like to go back to and to get know. I just need to work on my French!

Senegalese woman farmer
Senegalese woman farmer

* All images are licenced to AgDevCo

NGO Photography; Harry Gwala Agri mentorship program for smallholder farmers

I’ve been doing a number of shoots for Harry Gwala Agri recently.  Harry Gwala Agri is an NGO that coordinates mentorship programs and training for smallholder farmers and agriculture TVET students with the help of local commercial farmers in the area.  This particular shoot was just down the road from me in a spectacular valley that is dotted with giant aloes in full bloom. It’s really quite beautiful at this time of year.

I met smallholder farmer Ghela Mngoma. Gehla has a few hectres of cabbages, tomatoes and pumpkins. His farm is situated alongside a river, giving him access to plenty of water and a successful irrigation scheme. It looks like he’s going to have a bumper cabbage crop this year!

Over the years Gehla has been mentored by Beesie Stone, a long time commercial farmer in the Ixopo district. Everyone knows Beesie here! Beesie is a perfectionist when it comes to farm operations. He’s been farming for over 40 years and has recently retired. He has dedicated much of his time to mentoring Gehla, helping him to get where he is now and paving the way for a future in farming for him and his family.

These images are of Ghela himself and his cabbage crop which should be ready for harvest in the next few weeks. Shortly after I started the shoot, Ghela’s family arrived. It was a particularly colourful shoot with the aloes in the back ground, blue skies, big smiles and pumpkins! I’m looking forward to capturing the harvest in a few weeks time and following this family’s future in agriculture.

Smallholder farmer in Ixopo

Harry Gwala Agri Mentorship program for smallholder farmers
Harry Gwala Agri Mentorship program for smallholder farmers

Tomato harvest

Harry Gwala Agri

Harry Gwala Agri Mentorship program for smallholder farmers

Lianne has a special interest in smallholder farmers and has done work for the likes of AgDevCo and Backsaver Farm Equipment. She has a good rapport with the farmers she is photographing and is able to make them feel comfortable and relaxed while being photographed. Her work includes both documentary and directed shoots. Lianne has photographed smallholder farmers in a number of Southern African countries and is available to travel.


Harry Gwala Agri mentorship program for agriculture TVET student with Carisbrooke Valley Citrus

Another album for Harry Gwala Agri! This time it was of agriculture TVET student Tumeka Sapo who has been getting work experience at the Carisbrooke Valley Citrus packhouse.

Student at Carisbrook Packhouse
Student at Carisbrook Packhouse
Student at Carisbrook Packhouse
Student at Carisbrook Packhouse
Student at Carisbrook Packhouse
Student at Carisbrook Packhouse
Student at Carisbrook Packhouse
Student at Carisbrook Packhouse
Student at Carisbrook Packhouse
Student at Carisbrook Packhouse

If you require photography of your agriculture operations or programs, please use the contact form below to make your enquiry.

I have photographed a number of agricultural operations around Africa, including feedlots and cattle operations, groundnuts, paprika and soya crops, Macadamia Orchards and processing plants, Dairy, maize and potatoes, training/mentorship programs and product photography. These shoots have been of both Large Commercial operators and of Smallholder Farmer operations. I am available to travel.


Murray Roberts Bladesmithing

Murray Roberts is an old friend of mine. A few years ago, he stepped out of the rat race in pursuit of following his passion of Bladesmithing. As a young boy he’d watched and learned from his father who had spent long hours in the workshop handcrafting knives. 30 years later, he decided to take his interest further and attended a number Blacksmithing, bladesmithing and Stock Removal knifemaking courses. A good Blacksmith friend of his, Guy Sterling of Sterling Wrought Iron kindly offered Murray the opportunity to share his workshop space, tools, Blacksmithing machinery and Bladesmithing knowledge. A couple years later, Murray is now an accomplished Bladesmith who makes tailor-made knives to order. Some of his recent creations include hunting knives, chef knives and steak knives. To know more about Murray’s business and services, click here to read the full story…

Bladesmith in Dargle

Forging a knife

Murray required imagery for his website and for marketing purposes. For this shoot, I mostly went with a documentary approach with the intention of capturing the feel of the space, the mood and the passion Murray has for Bladesmithing. An art that requires skill, precision and a whole lot of patience! I take my hat off to people who have the courage to take the risk to start a business and follow their dreams.  What better pleasure is there than to wake up everyday to a job that you love! Here are few of the images I took of Murray Roberts Bladesmithing.

Stock Removal method used to shape a stainless steel knife

Bladesmithing in Dargle

Bladesmith in Dargle

Murray Roberts Bladesmithing Facebook Page 

Photography for small businesses

If you are a small business and looking for imagery for your website or for marketing purposes and would like a quote for a commercial or documentary shoot, please use the contact form below to send your enquiry. I particularly have a special interest in small businesses  and would love to hear from you!