Who We Are
Filmmaking, conservation and technology
Founded in January 2019 by the complementary duo of Brent Leo-Smith and Wium Dörnbrack, Painteddog.tv is a technology-driven wildlife and conservation film production company.
Brent and Wium’s over 30 years of combined wildlife, conservation, and film-making experience has helped them guide Painteddog.tv to achieving some remarkable feats in a surprisingly short time.
After having established the Painteddog.tv as wildlife documentary film-makers and the “go-to” wildlife media film-crew in South Africa’s Lowveld region during 2019, in 2020 the company developed unique live broadcast capabilities which allowed us to achieve the following world firsts during that year:
- Live elephant collaring in the Greater Kruger National Park
- Live rescued painted dogs release into a protected reserve
- Live painted dog collaring in the Greater Kruger National Park
- Private & corporate live virtual safaris in the Greater Kruger National Park
- 24 hour live-streaming wild hyena den camera
THE PEOPLE THAT KEEP PAINTEDDOGTV ALIVE AND GROWING
CEO & Co-founder
Brent grew up on Ihanze Ranch (part of Karkloof Spa) and Phinda in South Africa, as well as and on Kwando Safaris in Botswana. Few people have lived the bush life in the way Brent has, with time spent throughout the wild areas of South Africa, Botswana, Zambia, Tanzania, Kenya and Gabon. His actual life has been way more interesting and exciting than most books written about living in Africa. Brent is an experienced safari guide (having worked for Great Plains, Singita, Londolozi, etc.), cameraman and presenter. Since 2010 and before co-founding Painteddog.tv, Brent worked on wildlife film productions both behind and in front of the camera, having featured on Animal Planet and NatGeo Wild, where he presented over 50 episodes of the NatGeo Wild SafariLive series.
CTO & Co-founder
Wium grew up in Pretoria and spent his childhood holidays exploring South Africa’s wild areas with his family. Wium began his filming career as a cameraman for the South African Broadcasting Commission from 2008-14, where he filmed sport and news events. He was also a part of the team that installed over 110km of fibre optic and coaxial cable into South Africa’s soccer stadiums for the broadcasting of the 2010 World Cup. In 2014 Wium became a member of the world famous WildEarth production team, where not only was he an excellent cameraman, but more importantly also a broadcast engineer designing and building broadcasting systems, including outside broadcast units onboard 4×4 safari vehicles.
Charles Collocott, CFA
Charles grew up in Botswana, where weekends and holidays away with the family were often spent exploring the Makgadikgadi Basin, the Central Kalahari, and the Okavango Delta. After moving to South Africa as a teen, Charles graduated with a bachelor’s degree in politics, philosophy and economics from the University of Cape Town. He then went on to become a stockbroker, during which he also acquired the sought after Chartered Financial Analyst designation. After 8 years in financial markets, Charles spent four years as an economic policy analyst at the renowned South African civil society group, the Helen Suzman Foundation. Charles joined Painteddog.tv in February 2019.
Bavukile, who most of you know as just Bavu, was born and raised in the Lowveld. The bush has been a part of his whole life, but with a passion for business and entrepreneurship he went straight into corporate work after completing school where he worked in finance and marketing to gain some necessary skills he hoped would help him run his own business one day. He later decided to pursue Information Technology which landed him an internship with Painted dog TV. However, upon completion of his internship he didn’t feel ready to take up a full time position out here in bush and returned back to corporate to gain more skills and the necessary experience he felt he needed. Bavu returned as the General Manager at Painted dog TV in July 2021 and we look forward to having this dynamic young leader pushing us into new spaces and growing alongside the rest of the team.
Bryan grew up in the suburbs of Johannesburg, but while navigating his way through the concrete jungle, an opportunity to film meerkats in the Southern Kalahari presented itself, and being immersed in nature completely captivated him. Bryan studied 3D animation at Boston Media House, and before joining Painteddog.tv was a wildlife cameraperson at WildEarth for 5 years from 2012 to 2017. Bryan joined Painteddog.tv in June 2020.
Presenter & Guide
Yuka is from Japan and always dreamed of working in the wildlife conservation field. When she came to Africa for the first time she instantly fell in love with the bush, and decided to pursue a career as field guide to try and help spread conservation awareness to Japan. Yuka has a bachelor’s degree in tourism from Japan’s Rikkyo University, completed a full-year EcoTraining safari guide training course in 2015 and is a fully qualified lead trails guide. Prior to joining Painteddog.tv in July 2020, Yuka worked at Forest Camp Lodge and African Impact.
Born and raised in Cape Town, Matthew has tinkered with film since he was in school. He started live streaming school sport in 2015 and has grown his trade since then. After school he worked as a gimbal tech in aerial cinematography, high-end advertising and on the live international sports scene. He has also had a few gigs as camera operator for local TV. Matthew joined us in March 2021 and this is his first wildlife gig. We are excited for what he brings to the team.
Presenter & Guide
The Combination of Khaya’s name and surname, meaning ‘home of the elephant’ predestined him to work amongst wildlife, as a tracker, presenter and safari guide.
Khaya’s life motto of “follow the birds” gives one an idea of the depth of love this presenter has for the bush. He was also featured on a SABC series ‘Africa From Within’ – a first of its kind for South African television. Khaya Tlou is a welcome addition to our team.