This past Friday night I was commissioned to photograph the Durban launch of a premium brand of Vodka, namely Snow Leopard Vodka.
The product itself is very interesting as it has been developed by philanthropist, Stephen Sparrow, primarily to assist in the conservation of the critically endangered Snow Leopard, of which there are estimated to be less than 5000 left in existence. 15% of all the profits of this unique vodka are donated to the Snow Leopard Trust International who run on-the-ground research and conservation projects to save this beautiful cat from extinction.
The product launch was set to take place at Miami BLVD, a night club in the busy Florida Road hotspot of Durban. Unfortunately Mother Nature had other plans and at around 7pm a deadly tropical storm passed over the city. With winds of over 50km/h and heavy torrential rain, the city pretty much came to a standstill as trees were crashing down, roads were flooded and manhole lids were literally popped off their covers as the storm water system battled to cope with the deluge. Of the estimated 500 or so guests who the organisers were hoping would attend the launch only about 40 had arrived by the time my coverage of the event came to an end. It was quite a sad turnout, but considering that 5 people lost their lives in the storm that night, it’s not surprising that most people decided to stay indoors rather than risk it outside.
And here’s a short video I took of the havoc that was being unleashed on the city: