Paul Nicklen

Posts tagged
with Paul Nicklen


Dozens of Photographers Gather For ‘100 For the Ocean’ to Support Marine Research and Advocacy

May 2, 2023

Kate Mothes

A seal with seaweed in its mouth.

Tom Cannon, “Playtime” (2019), Jurien Bay, Australia. All images © the photographers, courtesy of 100 For the Ocean, shared with permission

Bringing together 100 wildlife photographers from around the world, 100 For the Ocean is a month-long fundraiser “to empower those on the frontlines of ocean conservation and to create a powerful, collective voice to impact policy and drive change.” During May, prints featuring André Musgrove’s underwater dives, Dmitry Kokh’s atmospheric documentation of polar bears, and Caine Delacy’s encounters with curious whales are available for purchase, with all proceeds going to research charities.

100 For the Ocean was established by photographers and marine biologists Paul Nicklen and Cristina Mittermeier, founders of SeaLegacy, a visual storytelling and advocacy platform with a mission to restore ocean habitats and reduce pollution in response to the climate crisis. For this special project, the duo collaborated with Chase Teron and invited Kathy Moran, the former National Geographic Deputy Director of Photography, to curate the selection.

Prints start at $100 and are available on the project’s website through May 31. See more on Instagram.


Two whales.

Caine Delacy, “Curiosity” (2023), Dominica

A polar bear and her two cubs.

Ruth Elwell Steck, “A Mother’s Love” (2020), Wapusk National Park, Manitoba, Canada

A leaping penguin.

Paul Nicklen, “Icy Flight” (2011), Ross Sea, Antarctica

A close-up of a tropical bird's eye and feathers.

Joel Sartore, “Edward’s fig parrot (Psittaculirostris edwardsii),” Loro Parque Fundacion

A grizzly bear half-submerged in a stream.

Lianna Nixon, “Emerald Dreams” (2019), Katmai National Park, Alaska, U.S.

A breaking wave.

Andrew Semark, “Distance”

An abstracted surge of water.

Chris Byrne, “Medusa”

A surfer in front of a mountain.

Chris Burkard, “Aleutian Juice” (2013), Aleutian Islands


Jean Simon Begin, “Strong Together” (2022), Ontario




Photography Science

Paul Nicklen Photographs the Colorado River as It Etches Itself Like Veiny Branches into the Landscape

September 27, 2022

Gabrielle Lawrence

“Written in Water.” All images © Paul Nicklen, shared with permission

It is a common understanding in writing studies that to recount a disastrous event in literal and graphic detail may damper the purpose of the story by pushing the reader away. In order to elicit experiential feelings, writers often learn to employ tools and strategies such as metaphor, poeticism, and structure. This could also be understood as an exercise in empathy because rather than force the reader to feel by summarizing the experience for them, the writer creates an environment where one can reach for closeness and camaraderie in their own ways.

Paul Nicklen, pioneering conservation photographer (previously), calls nature “the first and greatest artist” in his latest collection, the Delta Series. To expand Nicklen’s statement across disciplines, nature may also be the first and greatest writer. In the series, he captures the vestiges of the Colorado River that trickle, roar, and finally, crawl their way down to Baja, Mexico. Though the silt itself is the site of tragedy, traces of freshwater gorgeously spread like branches, or fingerprints, or lungs, or as Nicklen writes, like veins.


“Arbol de Vida”

These lines not only tell the story of the “megadrought,” a term scientists use to describe the impact of the climate crisis since the year 2000 on an already dry West—as of June, both the U.S. and Mexican governments have agreed to release water from irrigation canals and restore the ecosystem in Baja—but they also craft the effects of reduced snowpack, thirstier soil, and higher temperatures into a grand metaphor for the interconnectedness of life. Even in the midst of ruin, nature speaks in symbols. With its last breath, the river reaches for its kin: the ocean. Unable to meet that immense body, the water carves its final words into the landscape. The familiar shape of its sprawl reminds us that we are inseparable, intimately woven into each other, and share responsibility for every living thing around us until the very end.

Nicklen’s Delta Series is on view as part of Evolve, which opens on October 1 at Hilton-Asmus Contemporary in Chicago. See more of the photos on his website and Instagram.


“Arterial Shadows”

“Amber Crossroads”

“Painted Forest”

“Arterial Poetry”




Origins: Striking Photos Document the Sights of Contemporary Conservation Efforts

September 1, 2021

Grace Ebert

“Ice Waterfall” by Paul Nicklen. All images courtesy of Hilton Asmus Contemporary, shared with permission

Spanning the icy downpours of the Norwegian archipelago Svalbard to the intimate portraits of the people of Papua New Guinea, the profound photographs that comprise an exhibition at Hilton Asmus Contemporary in Chicago are a perceptive consideration of the issues at the center of today’s conservation efforts. Titled Origins, the show brings together the work of artists and marine biologists Cristina Mittermeier and Paul Nicklen, who pair their creative practices with their work at the nonprofit Sea Legacy.

Co-founded by the duo in 2014, the organization is dedicated to preserving the oceans, using “their inspiring imagery to convert apathy into action and to drive powerful conservation wins across the globe,” a statement reads. A testament to the landscapes and ecologies worth preserving, the stunning photos document global crises and the tender, joyful moments of people around the world, and their subjects range from a Lisu woman in China’s Yunnan Province carrying her pet duck to the crumbling icebergs of Antarctica.

Origins is up through October 2 both virtually and in-person at the Bridgeport gallery. You can find more from Mittermeier and Nicklen on Instagram.


“Bubblegum” by Cristina Mittermeier

“Lady with the Goose II” by Cristina Mittermeier

“Megaptera” by Paul Nicklen

“Adrift” by Cristina Mittermeier

“Frozen Highway” by Paul Nicklen

“Alone Together” by Cristina Mittermeier

“Leap Of Faith” by Cristina Mittermeier