Photography

Frans Lanting at work, Luangwa Valley, Zambia, 2005 Now 67, Lanting continues to explore the world with as much enthusiasm and even more of a sense of urgency as when he started out. ‘In the last three decades, the world’s population and the level of consumption have increased dramatically,’ he says. ‘We’re not making enough progress when it comes to protecting these crucial habitats – we can’t continue to damage ecosystems to the point that they’re not serving humanity; we need to keep the planet alive for all of us.’

Frans Lanting, photographer.

 Lionesses at twilight, Chobe National Park, Botswana, by Frans Lanting

Wandering albatrosses courting, South Georgia Island, 1987  Lanting camped on the island, in the southern Atlantic Ocean, having waited weeks to capture this key moment of courtship when all the right circumstances came together: ‘It’s not just the behaviour of the birds, it’s the brooding clouds that help to define the environment. When the male spread those gigantic wings, I knew what was about to happen and chose a position right behind him. You can see the reluctant female, who’s not quite sure whether she wants to become part of his dance.’  

Water lilies, Okavango Delta, Botswana, 1989 Lanting originally went to Botswana ‘at a time when very few people knew where Botswana was’, and he brought a lot of attention to the Okavango Delta. This image depicts water lilies from underneath, so the viewer is looking up at them as if they are suspended and reaching to the sky. ‘I wanted to express an exuberance of life, and  to emphasise the fact  that the Okavango Delta is just a thin sheet of water on top of the Kalahari desert – and that is what these water lilies symbolise for me,’ he says.

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