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Friday, 8 October 2010

The importance of photography

An old friend of mine, renowned wildlife photography Koichi Fujiwara, is busy preparing for a big exhibition of his photos which opens later this month in Japan. The images he captures are a mixture of stunning, cute, and thought-provoking but they all have one thing in common – they tell the story of the environmental crisis our world is currently facing.

In ‘The Earth is calling us – listen to Nature’s voice’, a special exhibition to coincide with the COP10 Biodiversity Conference in Nagoya, Ko shares a stark snapshot of the state of the planet.  Through beautiful photos he shows how our actions are completely shaking up the world’s ecosystems, and the impact that is happening on some of our most treasured animals.

As a perpetual traveller and the only person to have photographed every species of penguin in the world, he is taking the planet’s pulse first hand. From Komodo Dragons in Indonesia and Giant Spiny Chameleons in Madagascar, to Orang-utans in Borneo and seals in Antarctica, Ko has brought back a suitcase full of visual treasures from his travels, but with a frightening message about what we might find (or not) if we travel to those same places next year, next decade, next century.

If you happen to be in Nagoya, do check it out. If not, you can always see some of Ko’s photos on his website Nature’s Planet or peruse one of the many books he has written.  (The site is in Japanese but is easy to hop about and find photos)

He got me thinking about the importance of photography not just to capture beauty, stash away memories and catalogue history as it happens, but also to influence the future. The seemingly inevitable doesn’t necessarily have to become history, if the images are powerful enough to make us change how we live in the present.

What powerful images of our time have you seen lately? Do share with a link!


PS Back soon with more US adventures (Portsmouth, NH, New York & Chicago). And advance notice that THE GREAT BIG STITCHED POSTCARD SWAP IS BACK! It will launch on Tuesday 19 October, bigger and better with more sparkly bits – watch this space…


  1. Ko's photos are AMAZING!!! I must hunt down some lovely inspirational shots for myself.

    Thanks for finding these for me - a delight! :)

  2. Really amazing work. Thank you for the links.

    I just finished a podcast with Richard Woldendorp. He has been photographing Austrailia from the air. The pictures are really beautiful. You can see how the aboriginal dot art was influenced by the landscapes of Austrailia.

  3. That image reminds me of the work or Gregory Colbert who created the amazing exhibit Ashes and Snow. I'm sure you've seen it by now but if you haven't here is a link:

    i'll be checking out your link to Mr. Fujiwara now - thanks for sharing it!!

  4. Powerful image: work of Albert Farnós

  5. Off to look at yoyur link now.

    I am a fellow blogtoberfest participant & am finding my way around all the blogs (hopefully). Tis a fabulous way to find new blogs.

    Would love you to visit mine



  6. What fantastic links, thanks ladies!

    Nelly - Richard's work is stunning. So many of those images would make fantastic fabric designs!

    Monica (@Creative Beast) - the Ashes and Snow images are breathtaking. Those colours, the texture, and what he has actually captured, wow

    Judit (@Pilgrim of the Moon) - I can almost feel the heat of those pictures. Love the one of the girls dancing in the white skirts

  7. yippee, I have been waiting for the postcard challenge to return. I loved the first one.

  8. LOVE Ko's photography and evenmore so that he has photographed every species of penguin, i think that is SOOOO SUPER COOL. :-)


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