Nature Photography Day Celebrated by 10 Wix Photographers
Take a deep breath of clean fresh air and keep your eyes wide open, because today is Nature Photography Day! This day was designated by the North American Nature Photography Association (NANPA) to promote the enjoyment of beautiful nature photos, and contribute to the conservation of plants, wildlife and landscapes. An initiative enjoyed by millions on the Internet and in real life, since its first celebration in 2006.
Yet for some, nature photography doesn’t only occur on June 15th. For many professional photographers, it’s an everyday mission. And they will do everything it takes to fulfill it – facing endangered (or dangerous) species, traveling to the most remote places on earth, or simply revisiting the neighborhood park’s fauna with a fresh look. Here are 10 of the most fascinating nature photographers, and a sample of the stunning work we’ve seen on their Wix online portfolios.
For the last four years, Geert Weggen has been photographing the wild squirrels approaching his home. To get unique shots, he had the idea of preparing tiny toys for his new companions to play with. The results are insanely cute, as you can see below. Yet one day, the furry acrobats just had enough of modelling, and decided they would take command of Geert’s gear. The series propelled the Swedish nature photographer into the realm of social media superstars, and his work has already been showcased in more than 20 publications around the globe.
Some were lucky enough to be born with a DSLR in their hands. For others, their calling took a bit more time to be heard. This is the case of Lisa Michele Burns, who was a travel journalist for Lonely Planet, until a magical trip in Marrakech in 2007, where she opened her heart (and eyes) to photography. Now, she continues to travel the world but documents it with images instead of words. A great move, since Lisa is clearly very talented when it comes to capturing lights, as demonstrated in the series below, shot in Iceland and Sweden. Chilling, in a good way.
So you thought nature photography was all about caressing deers and photographing sleepy leopards form a jeep? Sorry to tell, but you were wrong. After working as a war photographer in Bosnia and Rwanda for a decade, Amos Nachoum gave up on humans and started focusing on an (ironically) more pacific crowd, composed of crocodiles, white sharks and polar bears. His bold and captivating shots made him one of the leading names of underwater photography, with features in the most prestigious outlets – including National Geographic. His fame grew, but the mission stayed the same: “take people from their homes, and bring them to the edge of the wilderness”.
Meg Farrar is a young photographer based in Ontario, where she slowly but surely develops her unique artistic signature. Her secrets? Experimentation, experimentation, and some more experimentation. She endlessly tries new approaches until she finds the perfect shot. Meg mostly takes portraits, but she’s not indifferent to the charm of nature photography, as can be seen from this series of sumptuous macro shots of flowers and aquatic species. The lights are subtle, pretty unconventional for this genre, and remind us of the delicate atmosphere of a Sofia Coppola movie. The result tells the ignored perfection of nature.
Hilary O’Leary is driven by passion. A passion for photography, because it allows her to grow an artistic approach of the world. A passion for wildlife conservation, simply because the matter is more urgent than ever before. And a passion for Africa, since it’s her home continent. She often describes it as, “delightfully chaotic”. With her nature photos, she gives us just a small taste of this chaos. Example? This baby rhino gently licking the hand of a petrified soldier. Brace yourself, because in Africa, the unexpected is bound to happen.
Eugene Kitsios is a 25-year-old Dutch photographer, with a background in ecology and marine biology. Although insolently young, his pictures already bear witness of an excellent mastery of his gear, and a sharp understanding of fauna habits. The jury of the Sony World Photography Awards spotted him in 2017, and we’re sure that it’s only the first of a long series of distinctions. Technique-wise, Eugene shoots mainly in color, but as you can see here, he also knows when black and white will be just as striking.
Matteo Andrei is predominantly a commercials and portrait photographer. As a pure child of the Instagram generation, he spends a lot of time on post-production, in order to get the sleekest photos possible. The same goes for the shots he takes while visiting the world, which somehow give the impression of unreal, yet highly satisfying, landscapes. Flashback 2,500 years ago, when the wisest of Greek philosophers were fiercely debating the question: should art simply imitate nature, or try to improve it? We’ll let you be the judge of that.
Edgar Hempen is an acclaimed photographer who, among many achievements, was featured on the cover of Olympus UK magazine. As his artistic name suggests, he has a sweet tooth for the northern world. From Iceland to Svalbard, he travels thousands of kilometers in search of capturing the perfect pictures. On the way to the North, Edgar caught some sneak peeks into the life of animals, in their environment. A true celebration of nature.
Despite its apparent lack of vegetation and wildlife, the desert is actually a rich source of inspiration for nature photographers. As a matter of fact, an isolated tree, snake or bird will inevitably stand out, when surrounded by dry rocks. From the ruins of Petra to the Dead Sea, Tomasz Solinski demonstrates that there’s nothing that can’t be revived, when seen through the lens of a talented photographer.
Cute monkeys gossiping, a peacock proudly exposing its splendor, or a cow proceeding to its personal routine: animals have their little weaknesses, too. Photographer Rosie Litterick unveils them, in some of the most soulful and touching nature photos we’ve seen so far. A unique approach, admirably served by excellent photography skills.
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By Jonathan Sitbon
Editor-in-Chief of the Wix Blogs