Who is Paul Nicklen

Paul Nicklen – if you’re into photography and nature, you probably know about him. Paul is a Canadian (repping for my home country!) photographer, filmmaker, and marine biologist who has documented the beauty and plight of our planet for over twenty years. As an assignment photographer for National Geographic magazine, Nicklen perfectly captures the imagination of audiences on a global scale.

Paul is uniquely qualified to create his brand of documentary photography which informs and creates an emotional connection with wild subjects in some of the most extreme conditions. His work delivers audiences to an underwater realm witnessed by few. Nicklen’s sensitive and evocative imagery has garnered over 30 of the highest awards given to any photographer in his field, including the BBC Wildlife Photographer of the Year and the prestigious World Press Photo for Photojournalism.

A unique childhood among the Inuit in Canada’s Arctic and a professional background as a biologist in the Northwest Territories gave Paul the tools he needed to take on the most inhospitable places on our planet – what a job, right? Whether ice diving among leopard seals in Antarctica or covering hundreds of miles of terrain in minus 40°F temperatures, Paul has specialized in photographing polar regions since the mid-1990s. His images reflect a reverence for the creatures inhabiting such isolated and endangered environments. Through his work, he aims to generate global awareness about wildlife issues and beyond. Outdoor Photography Magazine voted him one of the 40 most influential nature photographers.

Nicklen is equally recognized by the conservation community for his outspoken work, and has been awarded the Natural Resources Defense Council BioGems Visionary Award. Most recently, Nicklen was bestowed an honorary PhD at the University of Victoria, for the impact his photography has had on climate change. Talk about racking up the credentials! 

In addition to all of this (it just keeps coming), Nicklen is a sought-after speaker, a TED Talks legend, an author, and National Geographic Fellow. In the past two decades, Paul has continued to collaborate with scientists, filmmakers, conservationists, explorers and more to bring awareness and inspire action for global issues, such as climate change. As a co-founder of the non-profit, SeaLegacy, Paul Nicklen is turning the tide and opening a fresh, progressive chapter in the story of ocean conservation. Through visual storytelling, Sea Legacy inspires millions of people to stand up and have a voice for the pristine places threatened by climate change, one of which being our oceans.

Paul Nicklen at the Lowcountry Speaker Series

In 2017, James Lamar, had an idea to bring the world’s finest thought leaders and storytellers to the low country community to explore new insights and perspectives through open conversation and dialogue to provide a forum to exchange unfiltered ideas. This is where Paul Nicklen, amongst others, comes in.

The Lowcountry Speaker Series brings global experts to the local stage to present a wide variety of subjects, from world affairs and politics, to business and economics, education, and the arts and entertainment and we were invited to create photo and video content to use on social media and web for not only the speaker series, but other local media and news outlets on site at the event, including the Hilton Head Chamber of Commerce

Lowcountry Speaker Series founder and host James Lamar stated, “Our vision of creating a forum for community conversation, to discuss today’s most important topics, is coming into focus. I am most proud of the fact that the Lowcountry Speaker Series program is supporting broader community participation through the Our Doors Are Always Open foundation. The success of the Lowcountry Speaker Series is dependent on the community’s support, so I encourage residents and businesses to invest alongside me to make it part of our community’s fabric.” 

So, how did I get involved? Well, Lisa Staff Photography and Fusion Photography were contacted by James Lamar to capture these events and community forums through photo and video content. What a dream gig! In all truth, having the opportunity to create content for such enigmatic events and be around so many educated and open-minded people is an opportunity of a life-time and we are excited to be part of the ongoing series.