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Photographer Peter Delaney reveals the shots he’s taken of African elephants he’s most proud of

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A photographer who has taken tens of thousands of pictures of elephants has revealed some of the shots he is most proud of.

And they’re absolutely jaw-dropping, as we reveal here – fine art photographs of one of the most-loved creatures in the animal kingdom.

The photographer, Peter Delaney, told MailOnline Travel: ‘There is something magical and beautiful when you observe elephants. It touches your soul and pulls at your heartstrings.’

On the march: A row of elephants stomping through the undergrowth in Namibia’s Etosha National Park

Peter told MailOnline Travel: ‘There is something magical and beautiful when you observe elephants.’ He snapped this amazing shot in Etosha National Park and called it Elephant Ridge 

Peter photographed this herd in Addo Elephant National Park in South Africa. He said: ‘Like humans, elephants create bonds that last a lifetime – they are capable of showing emotions from love to anger’ 

This curious baby elephant was snapped by Peter in South Africa’s Addo Elephant National Park. He joked that he hoped the young calf would grow into his huge ears

Peter called this image Bonds of Love and says it is one of his favourite-ever pictures. He explained: ‘Elephants are very protective of their young. In times of a threat, the family will close ranks, and the young are pushed to the middle.’ He captured the scene in Addo Elephant National Park

When watching elephants while taking his pictures, Peter says it ‘touches your soul and pulls at your heartstrings’. He snapped these two in Kenya’s Mara Triangle 

Peter, who is originally from Ireland but now lives in South Africa, quit his job working in the finance industry in London and Tokyo in 2001 – and decided to go travelling across Africa, taking pictures.

In 2007, he became a professional wildlife photographer, with Africa continuing to be a favourite subject, particularly its eastern and southern regions.

During his travels, he became fascinated with African elephants – falling in love with the majestic creatures. And over the years he has accumulated a vast amount of knowledge about their behaviour.

The 49-year-old, who has been a category winner in the Wildlife Photographer of the Year contest three times, explained: ‘Like humans, elephants create bonds that last a lifetime. They are capable of showing emotions from love to anger.

Peter described this elephant as looking very serene when he photographed it in the Mara Triangle 

This elephant was snapped by Peter in Etosha National Park. He says his favourite places to photograph the creatures are Namibia and South Africa 

Most of Peter’s shots are in black and white, which he believes elevates the image to a form of art. He photographed this elephant in Etosha National Park 

Peter came across this family of elephants in the Mara Triangle. He started travelling across Africa taking photos in 2001

Before moving to Africa and deciding to go travelling across the continent, Peter, who is originally from Ireland, worked in the finance industry in London and Tokyo. This beautiful shot was taken in the Mara Triangle 

Peter said: ‘Black-and-white photography allows me to express my vision and creativity by creating visual depth by playing or adjusting the luminance values of light and shadows (the contrast) within a photograph’ 

‘Elephants are very protective of their young. In times of threat, the family will close ranks and the young are pushed to the middle.

‘Loud calls will be trumpeted and ears will flap as the herd gathers around to protect the most vulnerable.

‘This can be seen in one of my favourite elephant images called Bonds of Love.’

This incredible shot of seven trekking elephants was captured by Peter in Etosha National Park

On the left is a majestic elephant in Etosha National Park. On the right is another of Peter’s favourite-ever images, which he called Queen of the Mara. It was taken in the Mara Triangle

Peter said: ‘Elephant prints are ones that connect emotionally with me and the viewer.’ He took this image of a ‘contemplative’ elephant in Kenya’s Masai Mara

Peter said: ‘In the digital darkroom, I can breathe life into a photograph using my vision and tools that are only available in black-and-white editing’ 

An extreme close-up that Peter has called Big Foot. It was captured in Mapungubwe National Park in northern South Africa

Many of Peter’s favourite elephant images from his spellbinding portfolio are black-and-white shots, which he believes elevate the image to a form of art.

Peter explained: ‘Black-and-white photography allows me to express my vision and creativity by creating visual depth by playing or adjusting the luminance values of light and shadows (the contrast) within a photograph.

‘Cameras are tools that have no consciousness or feeling. In the digital darkroom, I can breathe life into a photograph using my vision and tools that are only available in black-and-white editing.

This incredible picture shows an elephant taking a dust bath in Etosha National Park. Next, Peter intends to travel to Tanzania, when it is safe to do so, to seek out some of Africa’s stunning big tusker elephants

Peter snapped this beautiful image as the sun began to set over Etosha National Park. It is another of his all-time favourite elephant shots

‘This combination moves the image a step away from reality and into the realm of art.’

Next, Peter intends to travel to Tanzania, when it is safe to do so, to seek out some of Africa’s stunning big tusker elephants.

He added: ‘My favourite elephant prints are ones that connect emotionally with the viewer and me.’

  • To see more of Peter’s work and to buy his stunning prints visit his website and Instagram page.

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