Another Photo Chat

It's almost time for me to head out to Papua New Guinea. I'm submerged in my normal pre-trip chaos (which, come to think of it, is inevitably followed by trip-long chaos, and then post-trip chaos), trying to sort through which bits and pieces to take along, and which other bits and pieces to leave behind. The fact that I have so much junk equipment and so many crazy notions photo ideas doesn't help much.

Despite my discombobulated state of being, I did manage to catch my friend Jon Cornforth for another photography chat yesterday, along with another photographer friend, Steven Kazlowski.

Jon and Steve were on a trip together recently to photograph stuff in Alaska, shooting images like this one that Jon sent me:


Sea otter on an iceberg in Prince William Sound, Alaska
Sea otter on an iceberg in Prince William Sound, Alaska


Adorable, but brrrrrrrr.....

Jon manages to get to reasonable climates (read: warm places) on occasion, but Steve specialises in cold-weather stuff. Like, all the time. (You can hear the incredulity in my voice if you listen to our conversation.)

Among Steve's images, I particularly admire his photographs of polar bears, perhaps because he makes them look so cute:


Polar bear cub along a barrier island, Alaska
Polar bear cub along a barrier island, Alaska


I can you not fall in love with that furry face and floppy paw raised in ursine salutation?

Anyway, the three of us spent just over an hour talking about a range of topics, including:

  • - The ins and outs of polar bear photography;
    - The importance of understanding/ relating to your subject for nature photography/ animals;
    - Equipment we use for photographing polar bears, humpback whales;
    - The role of pig-headedness in developing a sixth sense for animal behavior;
    - How we address requests for free images; and
    - The outlook for the professional nature photography market.

If you're interested and can bear (like the pun?) listening to us ramble for over an hour, here's the recording:

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I've posted the audio file to my iTunes podcast as well, and here's a direct link (80MB, m4a file) if you prefer to download a copy of our mellifluous voices for later listening pleasure.

To close out this post, here's a photograph I took in Papua New Guinea, where the water is blue, warm and filled with pretty fish...just the way I like it:


Lush, colourful coral and pretty fish in papua new guinea
I prefer warm blue water with lush, colourful coral and pretty fish!


Here are links to equipment, places and people mentioned in our discussion:

Nikon 12-24mm f4
Nikon 500mm f4
Nikon 200-400mm f4
Nikon TC-20E II
Nikon D700
Canon 500mm f4
Canon 400 f4 DO
Canon 70-200 f2.8 + Canon 7D
Canon 100-400mm f4.5-5.6 + Canon 1DMkIV
Zen Domes
Light and Motion Sola 1200 light
xit404 tripod tray, legs and quad ball adapters
Ultralight Control Systems

Misool Eco Resort
Jim Abernethy
Mike Ball
Golden Dawn
Walindi Plantation Resort

Upcoming Trips:
- Steve: Svalbard polar bears, glaciers, etc. 1 spot left for 3-24 July.
- Jon and Steve: Polar bear trips, 23-26 Sep; 26-29 Sep; 30 Sep - Oct 3.
- Tony: Minke whales: 28 Jun - 7 Jul 2012. Trip full.
- Jon and Tony: Humpback whales in Alaska + Tonga: 23 Jul - 1 Aug 2012 + 21-28 Aug 2012.