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@paulnicklen Paul Nicklen
Co-founder of @SeaLegacy. @NatGeo contributor. @SonyAlpha
|I keep trying to find the words to express my anger and sorrow over the murder of George Floyd. Then, I saw the profound and poetic words by my friend @conrad_anker and as usual, he says it better than anyone. Thanks Conrad and thanks to all of you for having a voice. “There comes a time when silence is betrayal.” Martin Luther King, Jr. "After George Floyd was murdered on Monday night by a Minneapolis police officer with a track record of violence and racism I realized I need to speak louder and more frequently about systemic racism in the United States.
The privilege I was born into as a white person has led me to a life of climbing. There were no road blocks to finding my passion in life. I recognize this and am also aware of how our society has marginalized my fellow citizens that don’t look like me. It pains me when the system goes unchecked with repeated distrust, suspicion and violence towards people of color. From the indigenous to the immigrant we are all equal. Racism is against the law and will not be tolerated. We need our leaders to stand up.
The United States has the responsibility to be the beacon of justice in this world. We need to be the voice that stands up for those less fortunate. I need to be this voice. I am going to use my voice leverage equity and to call out injustice. We start by learning about privilege & racism and how one feeds the other. The first step to break this cycle is to be aware and call out racism when we see it.
Strangers are people that we haven’t had the opportunity to meet. Once we have the good will to be with our fellow humans and set aside our prejudice we have the capacity to love one another.
I’m going to raise my voice and support the friends that I haven’t met. This starts in November when we vote. The power structure of this nation needs a seismic shift. We need to show up and let the white patriarchy know we care about our fellow humans. I will not stand by in silence. Racial injustice matters. Black Lives Matter. George Floyd mattered.
We started with a quote from MLK. Here is one more. “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter." Images of George Floyd reposted from the
|The Gitga’at First Nations of the Great Bear Rainforest call her Ma’ah which means grandmother. This was the first day that I ever met her and she was so beautiful. Her cubs were down below while she climbed trees to feed on crabapples. Everything she did was gentle and elegant. On this same night, I managed to photograph her in a way that ended up landing her on the cover of National Geographic Magazine. A place of honor that she deserved. Please see the cover image in the next photo. I was excited because being on the cover elevated her story, her habitat and her future. We pushed hard on this campaign to keep the Northern Gateway oil pipeline and countless oil tankers from coming into her territory. Thanks to many First Nations and many non-profit groups who came together in one collective voice and strategy, we won. It always feels good to say those words in conservation. Thanks to all of you who played a role in this victory. I took these images ten years ago and she is a very old bear now. Her gentle demeanor has not changed, and I am so grateful to have her memorialized in these photographs forever. With @gitgaatspirit and @jedweingarten #nature #win #naturelovers #bear #love #beauty #forest||2020/05/28 01:52:04||125,298||837|
|Stand up, stretch, breathe, dream, set some goals, achieve new heights and imagine a world where we all align, work together and create lasting change for humanity and this planet. #love #nature #polarbear||2020/05/31 22:53:13||119,229||587|
|Although I wish it had, the threat of climate change hasn't melted away just because we're all confined to the safety of our homes. This photo reminds me there are thinking, feeling species out there, quietly suffering in the background as we continue to neglect our responsibility to protect them. I hope the conversation about our receding ice caps can once again return to the forefront where it belongs as this epidemic passes, and we begin to recognize normalcy in our lives. As stewards of this planet we all call home, we must never give up the fight. #climatechange #polarbear #extinctionendshere #stewards #weekendthoughts||2020/05/25 00:07:52||107,108||511|
|Did you know that harbour seals are evolutionarily related to dogs? You can probably spot the similarities now that you know. They bark, their whiskers seem oddly familiar, and they have big, beautiful eyes that help them hunt in the murky, green depths of the west coast. Here’s something else I find fascinating – unlike humans, they breathe out before diving. While underwater, they subsist solely on the oxygen already in their bloodstream and lower their heart rates from 100bpm to just 10. That’s an astounding one beat every six seconds. It all goes to show – sometimes there’s so much wonder around us, we don’t always recognize it for the gift it is. Shot on my @sonyalpha a7R IV and a 600mm Sony lens. #oceanschool #harbourseal #britishcolumbia #evolution #wonder #nature #sonyalpha #a7RIV #600mm||2020/05/29 03:51:21||101,985||667|
|On this “Fine Art Friday,” I am excited to share a newly released fine art print: “Bear Scents” // Every day, this female grizzly would reach high up into her favourite tree and leave her scent for all the other bears in the area. It was no easy feat, but I wanted to capture the look of satisfaction on her face as she rubbed against the trunk. At the beginning of the year, I announced I would be taking a deep dive into my fine art catalogue. Releasing new work for my limited edition series has always been a special part of this artistic journey. With new gallery relationships and projects in the works, it’s a rewarding time that I would never have imagined possible. I’ve been so fortunate to have my photos hung in collections and museums around the world. Most important to me is the thrill of knowing they hang in the homes and offices of many of you. Selecting and editing work for this privilege is never easy. It took hours of deliberation to decide which version of my newest addition, “Bear Scents,” I would release. Do you prefer colour or the more minimal aesthetic of black and white? Let me know in the comments, then click the link in my bio to see if we agreed. #fineart #grizzlybear #bearscents #decisions #privilege #gratitude||2020/05/30 03:09:36||91,612||804|
|What started out as a huge mistake, quickly became one of my favorite artistic creations. As the wonderful and incomparable Bob Ross used to say, “there are no mistakes, only happy accidents”. Earlier in the day, I had been using long shutter speeds to photograph blowing ice and snow during a blizzard near Ellesmere Island, Nunavut. I put my camera away and carried on traveling across the sea ice on my snowmobile. It was near midnight and the sun was low on the horizon when I spotted this polar bear running across the sea ice. I grabbed my camera and took a single picture and my heart sank when it went clunk….pause…clunk. The shutter was open for a full second. I changed the settings, scolded myself for not being ready and then put the camera away. It wasn’t until two months later when the film came back from the lab that I saw this image. It captures the feeling, mood, light, and energy of this incredible Arctic nomad. #happyaccidents #gratitude #nature #polarbear #fineart||2020/05/24 07:23:08||86,091||577|
|Like a stealth submarine, this adult female fin whale silently cruises just below the ocean's inky surface. While COVID-19 has caused great harm to many, it has also allowed our planet and several species a much-needed reprieve. @sealegacy, @hardtoportorg, and, most importantly, YOU, have lobbied hard to end the slaughter of endangered fin whales in Icelandic waters. Your heavy lifting pushed this issue to the edge, and the pandemic nudged it over. Hvalur, which hunts fin whales in Iceland, has announced it is cancelling the season due to export issues and difficulties at its processing facilities as a result of the coronavirus. The ocean is resilient, adaptable, and strong, but it is not invincible, and this news finally grants whales a respite. With your help, and alongside a coalition of organizations, we will continue working to #StopTheHunt and end the brutal, unsustainable whale hunting practices in Iceland. Whales are #WorthMoreAlive and bring many more dollars to the whale watching industry than the whaling industry. They're also highly sentient beings worthy of our compassion and protection. #finwhales #COVID #coronavirus #hvalur #iceland #compassion #gratitude||2020/05/26 00:12:32||71,976||621|
|As these walruses know, there is precious little time to snooze in the sun when you live in the Arctic. For the rest of us, spring is finally rounding the corner and long, lazy, summer days are close at hand (in the Northern Hemisphere, anyway). I hope you all have the opportunity to wander outside and enjoy nature in all her glory. Please remember to keep your distance and stay safe. 💙🙏🏻 #fineart #arctic #walrus #summer #nature #COVID #physicaldistancing||2020/05/27 00:08:52||68,783||288|
|Are you like me and fall in love with dogs everywhere you go? We met this adorable puppy while on assignment for @sealegacy in #Timor-Leste last year. She was the perfect distraction during our surface intervals between dives. We were doing up to 6 dives a day and I wish we could have stayed down there forever. We are about to release a series of films and conservation initiatives on our new @onlyone platform from this incredible part of the world. Thank you for the continued support @zodiacwatches. With @fizzyfarfaraway @andy_mann @mitty and @samkretch @timorfixer||2020/05/31 00:19:34||55,045||662|
|Warning: Tragic but emotionally uplifting content. // I think Django Hopkins is a hero. He is the good samaritan seen in this heartwarming and powerful video saving the life of a baby humpback whale that had become tangled in one of the lethal and ineffective shark nets common to the beaches of Australia. But to Fisheries Queensland, he is a criminal. To thank him for his service, they served him with two Fisheries Infringement Notices for entering the exclusion zone around equipment. “To be clear…the actions we saw earlier this week were reckless and completely unnecessary,” they said in a statement. What was the ‘necessary’ course of action from your perspective? What do you think he should have done? What would you have done? Leave this vulnerable member of a historically endangered species to starve to death in a slow and terrifying way? I know what I would have done. 300,000 cetaceans die every year from being caught in nets and derelict fishing gear. Go see the series we did on an entangled whale at @sealegacy to learn more. There is no excuse for the use of these barbaric shark nets as they are not ‘shark’ nets at all – at some beaches, up to 97% of the marine life caught is whales, dolphins, manta and eagle rays, turtles, and species of shark that pose no threat to humans.
Together, we can bring this brutal and pointless slaughter of precious marine life to an end. I’m asking you to stand with Scott, Australians, and countless citizens of this planet. Write Queensland’s Premier, @annastaciamp of @qldlabor, and ask them to remove these nets! Please make your voice heard in her DMs, or send an email to her office directly by clicking the link in my bio. Please, be respectful but firm.
Footage by @scottwilsonimagery and @blaze_parsons.
|Video with @andymaser and @kyle.roepke // Honesty. Integrity. Respect. I measure the decisions in my life against these core principles, which makes it especially frustrating to see a corporation like Northern Dynasty Minerals deliberately mislead us regarding their #pebblemine project in Alaska’s Bristol Bay. A proposed route to their mine has been open to comment for several years. Now, at the end of the process, they have suddenly altered their plans, bypassing any further attempt at public discourse. Tragically, this new route puts the local salmon populations at risk, endangering a critical food supply for McNeil River brown bears. Does this sound like a fair process to you? If you’re like me and think it’s an injustice, join me, and we’ll speak up for these bears together before they become another notch in a long tally of nature’s most extraordinary animals cast aside in favour of profit. Visit the link in my bio to help . #honesty #integrity #respect #alaska #mcneilriver #bear #northerndynastyminerals @usacehq||2020/05/27 04:26:40||33,835||312|