Conservation Photography in the Digital Age

Conservation photographers play a critical role in world of conservation.  They combine nature photography, photojournalism, and advocacy to draw the public’s attention to the most critical environmental issues in today’s world.  Unfortunately, it’s getting harder for conservation photographers to make a living.  That could have serious consequences, especially in light of the growing urbanization of the general public.

Conservation photography can be a lonely profession, but plays a critical role in conservation.  Ty Smedes at The Nature Conservancy's Broken Kettle Grasslands - Northwest Iowa.
Conservation photography can be a lonely profession, but plays a critical role in conservation. Ty Smedes at The Nature Conservancy’s Broken Kettle Grasslands – Northwest Iowa.

In some ways, photography is getting easier, and it’s certainly accessible to more people than it used to be.  Today’s cheap digital cameras have many features that, just a few decades ago, were found only on very expensive high end cameras.  As a result, novice photographers can often capture great photos from situations that used to flummox the most veteran of photographers.  In addition, of course, nearly everyone carries a camera with them, nowadays – most often in their phone – so being in the right place at the right time (with a camera) is a much more common occurrence than it used to be. 

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