You know those incredible slowmo scenes of a crocodile snagging a buffalo out of the water? Or that close up shot of an owl where you can see every intricate detail of each feather? There’s a good chance John Benam is the guy behind the camera. He won an Emmy for his work on “Great Migrations,” a seven-episode series that aired recently on the National Geographic Channel. We asked John to give us the inside scoop on what it takes to capture those incredible moments on film.
We watched with disbelief as the mountain of plantains rose higher and higher and higher. But the young woman didn’t seem to struggle a bit as she balanced the load on her head and wove her way through rows of idling diesel trucks and disappeared into the dusty chaos of the slum.
Dump trucks full of sand race to the beach every day in Cape May, New Jersey. A desperate effort is underway to save the red knot shorebird, whose fragile existence is threatened by the same hurricane that swept away the sand. Given enough time, the beaches might be able to restore naturally. But the red knots don’t have the luxury of time.
The moon glows overhead as Maisara, 15, prepares to sleep under a rock outcropping in observance of chaupadi in Kalekanda village, Achham, Nepal, December 18, 2012. ©Allison Shelley
At Still Life Projects we love to see people using their skills to create beautiful work with a worthy purpose. Our friend Allison Shelley is a talented photographer who has invested the last two years of her life documenting the complex and pressing issue of maternal health around the world. We caught up with Allison this week to find out more about her work.
Every autumn in this part of northwest Wyoming, the earth trembles with the pounding of hooves. For thousands of years pronghorn antelope have been making their annual journey from the high meadows of Grand Teton National Park to their winter habitat in the upper Green River Basin. The fastest land animal in North America, pronghorn can complete the astonishing 100-mile trek in just three days. But today’s pronghorn face a much more perilous route than their ancestors did.
“I found you a subject. He sells sugarcane juice. Come meet him.” It was Tay on the cell phone, just 100 meters away from us in a bustling street market. Tay is the Bangkok blogger for the Informal City Dialogues, and it was one of his stories that brought us to the market that evening. We were scouting the following day’s shoot with another subject, Ae.
At Still Life Projects, we’re excited when our friends create inspiring films. J.J. Kelley recently traveled to East Africa to expose the tragic effects of the ivory trade on Africa’s elephant population. J.J. and investigative journalist Aidan Hartley went undercover and posed as ivory buyers to catch poachers red-handed. The one-hour special J.J. produced, Battle for the Elephants, airs tomorrow on PBS. We chatted with J.J. the other day about his time in East Africa and about the show.
With a 24-hour flight finally behind us, we arrived in Bangkok feeling stiff and groggy. The city blurred around us like a scene from one of way too many in-flight movies. The elevated train rumbled past overhead. On the street, the dim lights of tuk-tuks blended into the brighter ones of taxis, cars and buses. Crowds of people funneled through rows of street vendor stalls and past glass buildings of international banks. Ahead, we spotted an oasis: a cart piled high with ice-cold coconuts.
We’ve walked through the Adams Morgan neighborhood in D.C. a hundred times. But until recently we had no idea that tucked among the quirky boutiques and salsa clubs exist two of the most unique and love-filled homes we’ve ever stepped inside.