“South African Photographer of the Year’s vision is to be known for promoting, inspiring and supporting South African photographers. We aim to exist because we care about conservation and hope that through awareness and art, we can encourage more conservation efforts within South Africa.”


South African Photographer of the Year’s mission is to give photographers of all levels with an interest in wildlife and nature a prestigious platform to compete and showcase their work taken in South Africa by creating a unique wildlife and nature competition that aims to make a difference.


The South African photographer of the year (Pty. Ltd) was co-founded and established by two uniquely different nature photographers and all-round nature lovers!

William Steel is a professional wildlife photographer and tour leader from South Africa. Raised in Botswana, he was able to explore and discover the beauty of the untamed wilderness, and it sparked in him a love for nature. His early fascination with birdlife is where his photographic journey began. After finishing an MBA in the UK, William decided that corporate life was not for him, and he moved back to Africa. His extensive knowledge of Southern Africa secured him a job in the filming industry, working on projects for industry giants such as the BBC and The National Geographic. William realised that his real passion lay in teaching and sharing his love for photography, wildlife, and travel, and began leading photographic tours internationally.

Andries Janse van Rensburg is from a corporate background, but he is a truly passionate hobbyist photographer who has nurtured his photographic skill over the past couple of years. Andries has an implicit love for wildlife and nature and was inspired to take up photography by viewing images in the nineties from world-class photographers like Gerald Hinde and Roger de La Harpe. His style of work has changed over the years, and he now specializes in black and white nature and wildlife photography where he can use the absence of color to tell a story.

These two dedicated photographers, who represent the professional and hobbyist photographers within South Africa, hope that their different skills and expertise levels can encourage others to share their love for wildlife photography. Andries and William Set out to establish the South African Photographer of the Year company to promote, inspire and contribute to tourism, photography, and local conservation.



Wildlife and nature photographer



Wildlife photographer and tour leader


We started this business because we believe in promoting South Africa’s incredible nature and wildlife photography at both a professional and hobbyist level. We want to innovatively make a difference in the tourism industry through showcasing photography as an art form as well as ensuring we are involved in conservation. We have a passion to be known for cultivating a space where our love for South African photography becomes infectious to others.

It is our responsibility to do our bit to reverse the decline of South Africa’s wildlife species by supporting its conservation efforts. Donating funds is a vital focus for SAPOTY, but the competition itself has the potential to inspire people around the globe to care for and help support the country’s ongoing struggle to educate the future nature ambassadors, conserve our wildlife, and help protect the land that supports them. You can learn more about our conservation purpose and find out how you can help us here!