March 19, 2014

Spring Herd

Photograph by Tariq Sawyer, National Geographic Your Shot

"I traveled to the Altay Mountains in Mongolia to photograph the Kazakh nomads known for their eagle-hunting traditions," says Your Shot contributor Tariq Sawyer, whose picture was recently discussed in Your Shot's new Weekly Wrap feature.

"This photo was taken on the first morning I spent with the nomads. Waking up to experience a harsh spring blizzard, I respected the family’s resilience to the subzero temperatures and freezing winds as they continued their daily routine.

"After completing the morning chores, the family went to tend their herd. As the nomad opened the gate of the pen I saw the sheep forming an orderly charge toward the mountains on the horizon. I went ahead to frame the shot and waited for the nomad, who was frantically herding the sheep, to come into the frame. Just as he appeared the sheep had aligned with the landscape and it all came together."

This photo was submitted to Your Shot. Check out the new and improved website, where you can share photos, take part in assignments, lend your voice to stories, and connect with fellow photographers from around the globe.

Listen to Your Shot editors discuss their favorite images in the Weekly Wrap »

51 comments
Tong Tan
Tong Tan

The photographer is probably riding a horse while he took the photo.

Adnan Mujawar
Adnan Mujawar

Unusual and excellent composition, its difficult to figure out where you were standing,while taking the shot.

jack stewart
jack stewart

nice shot, makes you feel like your really there, expereincing the cold and witnessing the scene. Awesome Shot Tariq

claudia arrua
claudia arrua

I feel like I can reach and touch the snow. It's a great picture. Thanks for taking me to a distant land.

Rochelle Wolf
Rochelle Wolf

Life's hardships captured beautifully.

Beauty comes in many forms.

The hardships and determinate nomad sprite ,is inspiring.

Ting Luo
Ting Luo

hard-working nomads, ans so as the Your Shot contributor.

Adela S
Adela S

Is lookig like a piece of art, but this is the unreal reality!

Sandra Hickman
Sandra Hickman

Great shot and looks extremely cold. Your hard work paid off for an exceptional photo.

Mairead K.
Mairead K.

Beautiful composition! I'd said the timing was perfect!

As a high school student with a passion for photography Nat Geo is always inspirational!

My work can be found here: http://maireadkahn.wordpress.com/

TOM MARTIN
TOM MARTIN

I would love to see the meta data from this fabulous shot...

Tiger Douglas
Tiger Douglas

This photo is amazing. I wish i had one of those shaggy haired sheep.    :)

Estelle Hudson
Estelle Hudson

I know that reindeer eat lichens which I believe are on rocks? They also dig through snow with their noses and hooves to get at shoots and roots. The people, I presume, eat mainly lamb/mutton, with other dried meats, nuts, seeds and berries...?

Joy Saldanha
Joy Saldanha

More than commenting on the picture,I wondered what they, both humans and sheep have to eat over there. It  is pretty desolate, very cold and seemingly lonely. Never the less, the shot is more than a very good one and the photographer to be congratulated on it.  j.e.s.         

Zander Fuzessery
Zander Fuzessery

Breath taking in , and at its best. Great shot., Love to see it in the flesh.....

Diana Pulschen
Diana Pulschen

Yes, a beautiful shot, but, where is your humanity?  You say the nomad was frantically herding the sheep while you wait for the perfect shot.  Had you thought of helping the poor man herd them and then get a shot?  I hope you send the monies you earn from this to that poor family.  We can afford to see the beauty of the photo, but I'm quite sure he and his family are more concerned with living day to day.

Farhan Shariff
Farhan Shariff

Wow Amazing shot. If everyone is moving forward together, then success takes care of itself.


Hansraj Shah
Hansraj Shah

Oh, wish to be there...What a shot...... 

Lawrence Sibley
Lawrence Sibley

This photo portrays very clearly the harsh conditions of sheep herding in Mongolia.  Looking at this image, I think of the person behind the camera, and contemplate your dedication to your art, Tariq, and the hardships you must have endured in the pursuit of this photo.  Truly admirable!


On a minor note, I wondered how the photo achieved an elevated point-of-view in this flat plateau of snow, but the commentary explains that you would have been standing on the rungs of the sheep pen.


The photo has an excellent composition, and a great sense of forward motion.

Luci Capeleanu
Luci Capeleanu

@Diana Pulschen What is your problem??

photographers photograph, they do not get involved. That man is doing this every day perfectly without his help.

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