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Date: Friday, 27 Aug 2010 14:55

Wow, we thought we had a serious jones for photo bags. Check out this hilarious video where Magnum photographer and apparent bag hoarder David Alan Harvey continues his quest for the ultimate photo satchel.

Bag World from Stephen Alvarez on Vimeo.

Author: "Dan Havlik" Tags: "Fun, Products"
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Date: Friday, 27 Aug 2010 13:53

Long-time National Geographic contributors Cary Wolinsky and Bob Caputo have just launched PixBoomBa.com, a web site of photographic tips delivered in a humorous, self-deprecating style through video, illustrated text and blog formats.  Pixboomba  

The goal of the site is "to make both technical and aesthetic elements of good photography accessible to anyone interested in making better images, no matter their skill level, equipment, or budget," the two photographers explain in their press kit.

"PixBoomBa is a family business with Italian/Jewish roots," Wolinsky tells PDN. "It is never just the two of us. We have an insanely dedicated team of freelancers and volunteers working around the clock."

The demo version of the site was geared primarily to beginner/intermediate level photographers, with a tutorial on white balance, basic portraiture, and depth of field. The videos are intended to be as entertaining as they are informative. Wolinsky and Caputo ham it up in one video about how not to photograph strangers (a corresponding "Actual Info" article provides the useful tips).

To support the site, Wolinsky says he and Caputo will run advertising by the artisans and institutions that support PixBoomBa. They are also looking for partners interested in licensing PixBoomBa content.

Author: "Holly Hughes" Tags: "Blogs, Products"
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Date: Thursday, 26 Aug 2010 16:36

To paraphrase George Costanza, worlds have collided!

Nikon-cake Microsoftie Josh Weisberg, the guy we wrote about earlier this year who rose to fame when he secured a coveted Canon lens mug at the Vancouver Olympics (sorry, that original post was destroyed when our blog went down), recently celebrated his 40th birthday with, get this, a birthday cake in the shape of a giant Nikon digital SLR.

Josh's friend Mia made it for him, basing it on an old D200 he loaned her. (Ok, so maybe he's not a Canon guy, after all.)

Josh reports that the entire cake is edible, including the printed labels which are made of edible ink; the plastic on the LCD panels; the lens; and the back cover which are made of sugar.

Happy birthday Josh! And maybe for your next one Mia can make a cake shaped like a Canon lens mug. Talk about worlds colliding.


Author: "Dan Havlik" Tags: "Food and Drink, Fun, Olympics, Products,..."
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Date: Wednesday, 25 Aug 2010 21:56
As media organizations have rolled out apps for the iPhone and other smart phones, their treatment of photographic content (and those who create it) has varied.

A programming glitch has thus far prevented the New York Times from including photo credits and captions with the photographs that appear at the top of articles in their iPhone app. “It’s a bug we’re working on fixing,” the Times’ deputy director of photography Beth Flynn told PDN via email.

On other news apps, credits get minimal attention. For example, captions for photographs that accompany BBC News articles in that organization’s iPhone app appear under the image, but the credits, which appear in the bottom corners of the photographs, mimicking the BBC News Web site’s credit treatment, are too small to read.

Captions and credits for images accompanying USA Today articles on that organization’s iPhone app appear when users press on the photographs and enlarge them in a new window. A plus symbol over the lower right corner of the images encourages readers to enlarge them. USA Today also dedicates a section of their app to pictures, with features that include the “Day in Picutres” and “Week in Travel,” but readers must open a caption window to see the credits for those images.

The News section of NPR’s iPhone app functions similarly to USA Today’s, with a plus symbol over the top corner of the images on their site. However, when users enlarge the image, no photo credit appears and any caption running longer than six lines is truncated. NPR photo credits run instead at the end of the article.

Of course, all of the writer credits managed to make it into the apps.
Author: "Conor Risch" Tags: "Media, Newspapers, Web/Tech"
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Date: Wednesday, 25 Aug 2010 14:02

Photographer Brett Gundlock, one of several journalists arrested in June during the G20 protests in Toronto, had all charges against him dropped during a brief court appearance on Monday in Toronto.

Gundlock, a photographer Canada’s National Post newspaper, says his appearance before a judge took less than a minute, and all that was said was that the charges against him had been dropped.

The charges against another National Post photographer, Colin O’Connor, who was arrested during the protests, were also dropped, according to Gundlock.

“Out of all of the media they arrested and detained, they were obviously trying to influence the coverage of their actions,” Gundlock asserted in an email to PDN. “Media is there as observers, not participants. There were too many stories from the [G20] summit where media was targeted before the protesters.”

Government-issued Press Credential Didn’t Stop Arrest, G20 Photog Says
Photojournalists Arrested in G20 Clash

Author: "Conor Risch" Tags: "Current Affairs, Legal, Media, Newspaper..."
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Date: Tuesday, 24 Aug 2010 01:22
Hope Photographer Mannie Garcia has withdrawn his claim of copyright ownership to the photograph behind the famous Barack Obama "Hope" poster image.

The image is at the center of a lawsuit between Associated Press and and artist Shepard Fairey, who used the photograph without permission to create the campaign poster. AP sued Fairey for copyright infringement in 2009, but Garcia joined the lawsuit soon afterward claiming that he--and not AP--was the rightful owner of the image.

Garcia shot the image of then-Senator Barack Obama at the National Press Club in 2006.

Garcia alleged that because he was a freelance photographer on assignment for AP when he shot the image, and not an employee, he owned copyrights to the image. He also accused AP of acting in bad faith for registering the copyright to the image under its own name.

The AP has maintained all along that Garcia was an AP employee when he shot the image, making AP the rightful owner of the image. (Under US Copyright law, employers own the copyrights to works created by their employees.)

"The AP is pleased that Mr. Garcia voluntarily withdrew [his claim] without any payment or consideration of any kind -- this was not a settlement," the AP said when announcing Garcia's withdrawal.

One of Garcia's attorneys, Warren Zinn of Miami, says Garcia decided to drop his claim because "he didn't want to be consumed by it anymore."

When pressed about whether Garcia withdrew for lack of money to pursue his claim or because of doubts that he would win, Zinn said, "It wasn't anything like that. It was taking a toll, so he said, 'Forget it, I'm done, they can have the image. I just want to get back to my life.'"

Garcia was not immediately available for comment.

Garcia's withdrawal leaves AP's infringement claim against Fairey intact. A trial date has been set for March 21, 2011.
Author: "David Walker" Tags: "Copyright, Legal, Photos In The News"
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Date: Friday, 20 Aug 2010 15:58

Vimeo, the video hosting site, will announce the 20 finalists in the nine categories of its first ever Festival and Awards at a special event taking place September 10 in Amsterdam. The finalists will then be viewable online through Vimeo.

Vimeo says over 6500 videos have been submitted to the contest. The top 20 finalists in each category will be evaluated by a panel of judges who will then select a winner in each category. Among the judges are designer Neville Brody (Experimental category);  documentary filmmaker Morgan Spurlock (Documentary category); director Roman Coppola (Music Video category) and photographer Vincent Laforet (Narrative category). 

The grand prize winner, chosen from among the nine category winners, will receive a $25,000 grant towards a new video project.

 The winners will be announced during the two-day Vimeo Festival, taking place in New York October 8 and 9. 

Planning to be in Amsterdam on September 10? Be sure to RSVP via Vimeo before turning up at the Bioscoop Het Ketelhuis for the party:  vimeo.com/awards/invite


Author: "Holly Hughes"
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Date: Thursday, 19 Aug 2010 22:34
A Detroit area ad agency has put out a call for photographers to shoot car beauty shots on spec. Latcha + Associates of Farmington Hills, Michigan has distributed an electronic brochure called "Shoot a Sample" that tells photographers they can "assist in collaborating and evolving the style of a major automotive brand!"

That brand happens to be Lincoln, and the fine print informs photographers that "by participating in this exploratory project, you are agreeing to do so without reimbursement from Latcha or Lincoln."

If Latcha likes your sample, you might become eligible to bid for actual jobs. "We will create a talent pool of those who hit the mark," the brochure says.

It's a new and brazen approach. Normally agencies invite photographers to bid for jobs on the basis of what creative directors and art buyers see in the photographers' portfolios. It's a time-honored method that's fair and efficient. What Latcha offers is a test of desperation. And when the bidding starts, they know they'll be negotiating with a pool of photographers who are willing to work for free.

Author: "David Walker" Tags: "Advertising"
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Date: Thursday, 19 Aug 2010 15:20

Each year,  the non-profit Aftermath Project awards two $20,000 grants to photographers exploring the lasting effects of conflicts on civilian populations, in order to encourage conversation about the value of journalism that goes beyond the headlines to study the aftermath of war and strife.  Grant winners and two finalists  are published in a book. Applications for the 2011 grants are now available online on the web site of the Aftermath Project. Applications must be received by November 1, 2010. Bulaj  

The Aftermath Project is funded by donations from institutions and individuals, and does not charge an application fee for entry.

The 2010 winners were Polish-born, Italy-based photographer Monika Bulaj, who won for her project “Afghanistan: Not Only The War,” which explores Sufism and other minority religions in the country; and American photographer Danny Wilcox Frazier, who is working on “Wounded Knee: Generations Endure a Massacre,” a project examining the effects of both the 1890 Wounded Knee Massacre and the 1973 uprising, during which armed Native Americans reclaimed the Wounded Knee land and held it during a 71-day standoff with Federal authorities. 

(Photo © Monica Bulaj)

Related stories: 

What it Takes to Win an Aftermath Grant

After the Headlines: Sara Terry on the Aftermath Project

Author: "Holly Hughes" Tags: "Contests, Photojournalism"
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Date: Wednesday, 18 Aug 2010 15:47

Several agencies that supply celebrity photographs taken by paparazzi to People magazine have banded together to demand additional compensation for the use of photographs in People’s forthcoming iPad app, according to Hollywood Reporter.

The entertainment trade publication says the negotiations are delaying the release of People’s iPad app, an assertion Time, Inc., owners of People, deny.

“Photo agencies are taking a keen interest in the iPad because while online usage of their snapshots commands a fraction of what their fees earn from print usage, they recognize the potential for the tablet market to be a game-changer,” the article says.

If a recent study commissioned by a consortium of publishers that includes Time, Inc. is to be believed, the tablet market could drive $3 billion in revenues by 2014. According to a report published yesterday by Folio, digital consortium Next Issue Media, which includes Condé Nast, Hearst, Meredith, News Corp. and Time Inc., hired a consulting firm to evaluate the demand for tablet subscriptions. The firm found that the tablet market for newspapers and magazines could create $3 billion in revenue.

If the market for tablet editions of publications does realize this potential, photographers and their agents are likely to press publishers to negotiate additional compensation for tablet usage over the next few years.

Related: Wired iPad Edition Launches, But Will Photographers Get More For Ads

Author: "Conor Risch" Tags: "Business, Celebrity, Magazines, Media, M..."
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Date: Monday, 16 Aug 2010 18:20
Leonard1 Herman Leonard, who shot iconic images of jazz greats including Duke Ellington, Billie Holiday, Miles Davis and others, died August 14 in Los Angeles. The cause of death was leukemia.  He was 87.

Leonard attended Ohio University to study photography in the 1940s, and served in the medical corps during World War II. After finishing college in 1947, he drove to Ottawa and knocked on the door of Yousuf Karsh. The famous portrait photographer told Leonard he didn't need an assistant, but they hit it off over lunch, and Leonard ended up apprenticing under Karsh for a year.

"[It was] a most life turning event for me," Leonard said in a KPBS interview in 2008.

In 1948, Leonard struck out on his own in New York, where he made deals with jazz clubs for access to rehearsals. In exchange, Leonard provided the clubs with  marquee photographs. It was in those clubs that Leonard developed a signature style, backlighting his images for three-dimensional effect.

"I had to do my own lighting in these clubs because the natural lighting was terribly insufficient and unflattering," he told KPBS. He put one light behind the subject, and another in front of the subject, balancing them so the backlight wasn't overwhelmed. "It made the picture more three dimensional," he said.

"I considered him a living treasure," says photographer Douglas Kirkland, who became friends with Leonard in recent years. "He used some of the earliest electronic flash in the 40s and 50s, with wet cell batteries, and shot with a 4x5 Speed Graphic. He would have only a dozen sheets of film for the night. It was extraordinary what he was able to do. He knew the people he was photographing, and they liked him."

Kirkland says Leonard "had the dream life of a photographer," living in New York, Paris, and eventually on the Spanish island of Ibiza. He "lived partially by his archive," but continued to shoot for various publishers, including Playboy, Kirkland says. "He always found ways of making a living."

Leonard returned to the US in 1987, and settled in New Orleans in the early 1990s. He relocated to Los Angeles after Hurricane Katrina, which damaged his home, studio, and more than 8,000 of his archive prints. His negatives, which were stored at the Ogden Museum of Southern Art, were undamaged.

Kirkland says Leonard's notoriety built over time. "He was discovered after he returned to States. His work was more valued in his later years. He also got attention after Katrina."

Leonard has published several collections of his work in the last 25 years, beginning with "The Eye of Jazz" in 1985 and "Jazz Memories," in 1995. In 2008, he released "Jazz, Giants, and Journeys" in 2008. Another book, "Jazz," is scheduled for release this November.

His work has been exhibited at the Fahey/Klein Gallery in Los Angeles, the Morrison Hotel Gallery in La Jolla, California, and most recently at the Lincoln Center gallery in New York.

Leonard is survived by four children and several grandchildren.
Author: "David Walker" Tags: "Celebrity, Music"
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Date: Monday, 16 Aug 2010 17:11
Today is the last day to submit work to the PDN Pix Digital Imaging Contest. Now in its 16th year the Pix Digital awards have highlighted the best in digital imagery each year.

2009 saw the introduction of the popular multimedia category, which honored a film by the Wade Brothers for British fashion house FLY53.


Judges for this year’s contest are: Anna Goldwater Alexander, Deputy Photo Editor, Wired Magazine; Brian Storm of Media Storm; Saatchi & Saatchi Art Buyer Katie Johnson; Aaron Padin, Head of Art at JWT; and Jennifer Santiago, Associate Director, Art Buying, G2 USA, Grey Advertising.

For more information on prizes and to enter the contest visit: http://www.pixdigitalimagingcontest.com/

Author: "Conor Risch" Tags: "Contests, Multimedia, Self-Promotion"
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Date: Monday, 16 Aug 2010 15:24

We're a fan of the classic 24 Hours of Le Mans car race and classic Leica cameras, so add the two together and you should have a winner, right? Um...no.

Leica-X1-lemans Leica's special limited edition Le Mans version of its X1 digital camera -- reviewed here last February -- is underwhelming to say the least. Basically it's a Leica X1 with what looks like a sticker placed on top.

The Le Mans X1 was released back in June to commemorate the race and has a limited edition run of 50.

Not clear if all 50 have sold out yet but it's still up for sale at the Leica Store Paris.

On the bright side, the mark-up for the Le Mans version of the X1 is pretty slight. It's selling for 1590 Euros which converts to about $2035. So, in other words, that Le Mans sticker adds about $35 to the list price. Oh, there's also a version sold with a leather case for 1690 Euros or approximately $2163.

We say skip it and save up your pennies for something more extravagant like this gold-plated Leica MP.

(Via Leica Rumors.)



Author: "Dan Havlik" Tags: "Products, Sports"
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Date: Friday, 13 Aug 2010 20:06

Life magazine may have folded for good three years ago, but its parent company, Time Inc., has continued to crank out photo books and themed issues using its photo archive as material. And now a Life publication is available to readers via the latest publishing technology: the iPad.

Life Wonders of the World is the digital version of the new photo book in the Life series. It includes over 100 photos, most of them scenics and landscapes. It sells for $5 on the Apple iTunes store (while the book costs $30 in bookstores).

A review posted of the iPad app, posted on iLounge, complains that the photos only appear in horizontal mode: Turning the iPad does not reorient the image. Instead a big black screen with the words, “Turn to Read Wonders of the World" appear.

That problem aside, Min, the trade magazine for publishing and PR, notes that “the sharp and luminous nature of the iPad display" makes it a natural fit for photo-heavy publications and "Life’s trove of images."

Author: "Holly Hughes" Tags: "Books, Media, Multimedia"
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Date: Thursday, 12 Aug 2010 21:53

Lens Culture has announced its 2010 International Exposure Awards Competition of the best in global photography. The competition is designed to find, nurture, and promote emerging as well as established talent from all over the world. It is open to all photographers working in genres ranging from documentary to fine art and fashion photography. Two categories are open for submission: Portfolio Awards and Single Image Awards. An international jury of photography experts will review each entry and choose six grand-prize winners as well as 25 Honorable Mention Awards. Some of the judges are creative and marketing consultant Mary Virginia Swanson, photographer and gallerist Christopher Rauschenberg, and National Geographic’s Kathy Moran.

Six photographers will win top honors and cash grants of up to $2,500. In addition to grants and prizes, the winning photographs will be featured in Lens Culture and exhibited in the International Exposure Awards traveling exhibitions at galleries in Paris, New York and San Francisco.

The deadline for application and image submissions is September 18th, 2010!

Find out more about the competition, awards, rules and guidelines here:

—Khrystyna Chekhlata

Author: "Conor Risch" Tags: "Contests"
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Date: Wednesday, 11 Aug 2010 15:53

Business is apparently grim for NB Pictures, the agency that represent Sebastiao Salgado, Simon Norfolk, and 8 other photographers. Owner Neil Burgess, who was previously head of Network Photographers in London and the New York and London offices of Magnum Photos, has jumped onto the "photojournalism is dead" bandwagon in a dispatch to the EPUK blog. "I’m stepping forward and calling it," he wrote. “Photojournalism: time of death 11.12. GMT 1st August 2010. Amen."

The gist of his argument is that (news flash!) print publishers don't support photojournalism anymore. Burgess allows how "there are some things which look very like photojournalism," and then goes on to say, "but scratch the surface and you’ll find they were produced with the aid of a grant, were commissioned by an NGO, or that they were a self-financed project, a book extract, or a preview of an exhibition."

And what, pray tell, is wrong with that? At best, it's an argument for calling photojournalism by a different name (suggestions, anyone?). In the meantime, photojournalists are simply facing reality, and finding new ways to make it work. Witness the efforts of Magnum, VII, Noor, and other NB Pictures competitors, not to mention the explosion of documentary stories all over the web. (See also our story about alternative funding for photo-j in the August issue of PDN.) Burgess is correct that photojournalism is a terrible way by itself to make a living, and we owe it to every aspiring photojournalist to make that clear. But photojournalism isn't static, and until the passion for it dies, it certainly isn't dead. By the looks of things, that passion is as robust as ever.

Author: "David Walker" Tags: "Photojournalism"
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Date: Tuesday, 10 Aug 2010 13:45


The explosion of the Deepwater Horizon oil rig and the subsequent oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico killed 11 workers, destroyed wildlife, did untold harm to the Gulf coast ecosystem and brought economic hardship to communities dependant on the fishing and tourism industries. 

And as Steven Meisel points out in a new fashion story in Vogue Italia, the oil spill is also super-duper yucky. 

The new issue contains a 24-page story, “Water & Oil,” showing model Kristen McMenamy covered in thick, crude oil and collapsed on a rocky coast like an oil-drenched shorebird, if a shorebird wore designer clothes. 

The fashion blog Refinery29.com has blasted the layout in terms widely quoted on other Web sites:

“Creating beauty and glamour out of tragedy seems quite fucked up to us, not to mention wasteful and hypocritical, seeing as thousands of dollars of luxury clothing was flown in, and then subsequently ruined for the shoot. Glamorizing this recent ecological and social disaster for the sake of "fashion" reduces the tragic event to nothing more than attention-grabbing newsstand fodder.”

To me this story misses the mark as either social commentary or fashion photography, but not everyone agrees. As of last night, the post on Refinery29.com had 107 comments. The reactions generally fall into one of five categories (with some overlap between them):

1.    It’s a brilliant artistic or political statement,  that raises awareness of the costs of the disaster by using the model as a metaphor for all the fauna and flora that have been destroyed.  The commentators in this category either thought a fashion magazine was a great venue for such a topic, because it brings an important message to a new audience, or saw no connection between the consumerism a fashion magazine encourages and the demand for more fossil fuels at any cost. 

2.    It’s a great effort to bring a serious topic to Vogue Italia readers, but it would have been more effective if the text included suggestions where readers could donate to support those on the Gulf Coast affected by the spill.

3.    It’s an insensitive exploitation of a tragedy. 

4.    The photos are bold, brilliant and beautiful. 

5.    Steven Meisel is a misogynist. 

OK, only two commenters so far fall into category 5.  One notes, however,  that the last time Meisel gave a gloss of topicality to photos he shot for Vogue Italia, it was for his story concerning surveillance, national security, and the curtailing of civil liberties. That time, he showed beautiful women being manhandled by uniformed police. It’s disturbing that when Meisel references an environmental or social problem, he does so by portraying women as victims. 

(Image:  © Conde Nast/photo by Steven Meisel)

Author: "Holly Hughes" Tags: "Current Affairs, Fashion, Magazines, Med..."
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Date: Monday, 09 Aug 2010 22:19

Photojournalist Lee Lockwood, who gained exclusive access to regimes in Cuba, North Vietnam and other communist countries during the 1960s, died July 31 near his home in Weston, Florida, The New York Times has reported. The cause of death was complications from diabetes. He was 78.

Lockwood is best known for a week-long interview he conducted with former Cuban leader Fidel Castro in 1965. From that interview he published Castro’s Cuba, Cuba’s Fidel: An American Journalist’s Inside Look at Today’s Cuba in Text and Pictures in 1967. He also spent 28 days documenting life in North Vietnam in 1967, as the Vietnam war intensified. His story appeared on the cover of the April 7, 1967 edition of Life magazine.

Lockwood was represented for many years by the Black Star photo agency.

Author: "David Walker"
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Date: Thursday, 05 Aug 2010 14:41

Friedlanderproof Book publisher D.A.P. offers a behind-the-scenes look at the process of printing Lee Friedlander’s latest book, America By Car, through images taken by Director of Title Acquisitions Todd Bradway.

Bradway’s photos show the 50-foot long Heidelberg Speedmaster press at Meridian Printing in East Greenwich, Rhode Island, the prepped printing plates, buckets of metallic inks, and the foil stamp used on the jacket of the limited edition.

There are also a few shots of Friedlander himself documenting his involvement in the proofing process. Friedlander analyzed each completed print after it was inspected by Meridian Printing technicians.

The complete set of photos can be found here.

—Cameron Handley

Author: "Holly Hughes" Tags: "Books"
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Date: Wednesday, 04 Aug 2010 19:50


This month on Ask the Experts, award-winning landscape and nature photographer Robert Knight is taking your questions on  landscape photography, shooting RAW,  handling a variety of environments and conditions, workflow and image storage. 

To submit your question, view the new Ask the Experts page on PDNOnline.

A member of the San Disk Extreme Team, Knight has won many prestigious awards for his landscape and wildlife photography, including the "Wild Places" award in the BBC Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition, and editorial awards from Nature's Best and National Geographic. His work has taken him to Antarctica with its cold, wet air, and across Africa, with intense, dry heat. A gallery of his wildlife images from all over the world can be seen on our Ask the Experts page.

You can email your questions to editor@pdnonline.com. We'll screen them, forward them to Knight,  and post his answers and comments  throughout the month.

Author: "Holly Hughes"
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