Who are award-winning wildlife photographers Ernest Porter and Karen Blackwood, aka Eagle Eye Safaris?  

Eagle Eye Safaris’ photography has been featured in Africa Geographic, National Geographic Daily Dozen, NatGeo Your Shot, Best of Africa, and Wild Card Magazine. Ernest and Karen are regular contributors to Canon, National Geographic Photography, NatureGraphy and Naturalist’s Notebook, which feature the best wildlife photos and stories in the world.

Ernest Porter


Ernest Porter is an award-winning bird and wildlife photographer from South Africa. He’s one of the best birds-in-flight photographers on the continent of Africa, and he’s happy to share his knowledge. Ernest is a staff photographer for the Black Eagle Project Roodekrans, based in Walter Sisulu National Botanical Garden in Johannesburg, South Africa, where he documents the juvenile development of Black Eagle fledglings at the Gardens. Ernest leads public and privately guided photo tours to the Gardens and up the hill to the overlook to ethically see the Black Eagles’ nest. He is a sought-after speaker at birding clubs, photography clubs, and in the wildlife photography community. Ernest is an Expert-Level Instructor in Lightroom and Photoshop. He’s available to teach you in live, one-on-one online sessions! You can sign up for affordable live, online, one-on-one Lightroom and Photoshop lessons with Ernest via Zoom or Skype, or you can go on a personally guided Black Eagles tour, by clicking HERE.

Ernest’s achievements include:

  • 2022 Top 101 finalist in Africa Geographic’s Photographer of the Year contest
  • 2021 Highly Honored in Nature’s Best Photography Mkapa African Wildlife Photography Awards
  • 2017 Africa Geographic Photographer of the Year Top 5 finalist
  • 2015 & 2016 Africa Geographic Photographer of the Year Top 15 finalist
  • Winner of the July 2016 Tamron South Africa photography contest
  • Best of Africa featured photographer
  • Prominently featured in Yahoo’s “Animals in Flight” Photo Gallery
  • Multiple VotoArt wins.

He is Canon-sponsored, and his photos have been published in numerous wildlife books, magazines, and guides including “Animals of the Greater Kruger.”


Karen Blackwood

Karen Blackwood is a wildlife photographer, world traveler, and retired airline pilot. With over 30 years of teaching experience, she is able to break down the most complicated subjects into easily understood modules. She is a former volunteer as a Bald Eagle monitor for the Raptor Education Foundation in Colorado, coaches young equestrians in basic horsemanship, and has taught many people to be more effective in the use of their camera. She’s passionate about wildlife conservation, particularly rhino. She invites you to share the beauty of the natural world through her lens.

Karen’s photography credits include:

  • Top 20 Finalist in the 2021 Africa Photographer of the Year contest
  • Finalist in 2021 and 2020 Top 250 NANPA Showcase competitions
  • NatGeo Daily Dozen
  • 2017 Africa Geographic Photographer of the Year Yearbook finalist
  • Finalist in Best of Africa’s monthly contests
  • Finalist in Nature’s Best Photography Africa contest
  • Multiple features in Naturalist’s Notebook and in NatureGraphy
  • 1st Honorable Mention in the Kodak National Photo Contest
  • Multiple winners in the Amigo Airshow Photo Contest

Karen’s photos have been included in multiple gallery showings in Colorado and Africa. Her photos have been used in promotional videos and specialized publications.


Now you know who we are. Here’s why you should choose us for your safari!

Do you dream of being on a small-group safari, taking breathtaking photos of wild animals? Would you like to take the kind of photos you see in NatGeo, but aren’t sure how to get what’s in your mind’s eye to the camera? Do you want professional-grade photos in your home–photos that YOU took–but they never come out the way you wanted? Or do you just want to sit and watch wildlife from the best position with the clearest view possible?

If you said yes, book your safari spot with Ernest and Karen! Click HERE to see our full safari schedule, and let’s go get those shots!

Ernest and Karen will teach you all about your camera while we are on safari. We will be by your side to help you with your settings and to suggest composition and framing at every sighting. We’ll tell you what to look for in every situation. We’ll make sure you understand how to  adjust exposure compensation to properly expose a dark subject in a bright environment, or the correct settings for night spotlights. Do you want more artsy shots like high key or low key? We will teach you how to do it. When do you need aperture priority versus shutter priority, and when should you use manual? We will tell you. Some safaris include classes on editing in Lightroom and Photoshop!

You spent a lot of money on your equipment.  We’ll teach you how to get the most from it, and we’ll do it in a way that you’ll remember when you are back at home without us by your side.  We can help with Canon, Nikon, Sony, or any other camera you might have, including phones and tablets.

Our small-group safaris are almost all-inclusive with full board and activities. Our bases are beautiful lodges or luxurious cruise ships which employ local staff. Not only do we create jobs, we create conservation-minded trips designed to leave delicate footprints on the environment. You’ll eat like a king with our private chefs, then you’ll sleep like a baby on your premium mattress. You can relax by the pool or waterhole in between game drives with a cocktail and nothing on your mind. On every trip, Ernest and Karen work directly with dedicated local rangers and guides to ensure the best possibility of seeing the widest variety of wildlife and birds, while getting you into position for dramatic photographs. It’s a complete package. All you have to do is show up.

We’ll create once-in-a-lifetime memories on our safaris, stories you’ll tell again and again. Ask any of our past guests! Read their reviews and hear about it in their own words on our Testimonials page.

Check out our 100% 5-Star Reviews on Trip Advisor and Safari Bookings. Keep up with our adventures on Facebook and Instagram. If you haven’t signed up for our monthly newsletter, you’re missing interesting articles about wildlife and conservation, new safari announcements and special discount coupons, and more. It’s always a quick read, and you can always unsubscribe. We NEVER share your email address and we swear we won’t spam you!

Do you have any questions? Ask us at info@EagleEyeSafaris.com

It’s time to book an affordable WILDLIFE SAFARI in Africa and Beyond with Ernest and Karen!