Next time you spend a few minutes trying to get that perfect picture of your dog or cat for Instagram, take a second to think about how difficult it is to be photographer Joel Sartore.
Taking portraits of the world’s captive species for preservation’s sake as part of National Geographic’s Photo Ark, Satore’s day to day life is an interesting one to say the least. Currently, the ark has photos of around 5,000 species but the goal is to make it as complete as possible and document the world’s 12,000 captive species. So Satore travels the world setting up a mini studio and spending his time inches away from all manner of species which doesn’t always go as planned.
The highlight video above from National Geographic’s YouTube channel showcases some of the daily challenges that Satore and his team face when trying to get that perfect photo. Anyone who’s ever casually used a camera or even been in a photograph knows that getting a shot right the first time out is tough, but imagine staging a perfectly coiled snake or a excited ferret. It’s hard enough to get a group of adults to look in the right spot all at the same time and that’s usually with everyone understanding what’s going on; animal photography seems to be a an exercise in incredible patience by comparison.
Despite this being a highlight reel, one can imagine the situations in the video are a daily occurrence for Satore and we can’t help but be thankful for the work he’s doing. Some of these photos – on a long enough timeline – might be the only thing we have to remember of a species so it’s important work that will hopefully stand the test of time even if (sadly) the animals don’t.
Image: National Geographic