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Expert Interview: Thomas Marent – Wildlife Photographer

Expert Interview: Thomas Marent – Wildlife Photographer


My name is Thomas Marent I’m from Switzerland, and I work for ten years
as a wildlife photographer. I work as a biologist and I also do photo workshops
in different rainforests. It’s a lot of research. If I want to get a picture
of a certain species, I have to find out where is
the best place to find it, where they are used to people so they will be less shy. And then I have to find
a good local guide and I have to be there
in the right season. It needs a lot of luck. Sometimes, you know, you can
get a good shot in one minute or you need maybe one day
or one week. I was once in Sulawesi,Indonesia building a tower, 18m high,
with scaffolding, to get pictures of a hornbill,
nesting in a tree hole. I went down for sleep, but yeah, I was waiting there
for one week. It needs a lot of patience
and endurance, I think is even more important;
not to give up. And just experience,
how to handle the camera, the equipment,
how to handle the animals, and an artistic eye. For me,
working in the rainforest, there are many mosquitos, which is sometimes,
not so comfortable. Also, getting bitten by mites, mosquitoes, ants,
horseflies, all kinds of blood-sucking
insects can be quite annoying! And especially the humidity, I think makes my work
pretty tough. If it’s very humid and you have to walk
with heavy equipment, going up and down, it’s very tiring
and you sweat a lot and the sweat attracts
the insects and so on. There are some scary moments. I almost got kidnapped by
Guerrillas. Once, at night, I was
running away from a caiman because I was trying to
take pictures of her babies. Unpleasant moments, when my
whole equipment got stolen and the pictures,
which is the worst. I especially like monkeys,
frogs, butterflies. That’s why I also did books
on that topic. Sometimes, you know, I’ve been looking for a species
for 10 or 15 years, never found it, but I know
it exists is in this country. And then it can happen
(it happened to me) that one day, suddenly,
unexpectedly, I find this species and
I’m so surprised and so happy! These are really wonderful
moments. And then I photograph it.

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