A few words about the images in the galleries:

 

While most of the color images have been scanned from 35mm positive transparencies, some of them were scanned from analog prints.The depth of some colors and the blackness of the shadows varies between those two, with the deeper tones in some cases a little lighter in the images that were scanned from the transparencies. All of the black-and white images were scanned from analog prints.

 

For the transparencies, I used a Prime Film 7200 35mm slide scanner; it has performed well enough but has tended to give a color cast to some of the images, affecting different colors and densities within those photographs in different ways. I have worked -- and am yet working, it would be fair to say -- on better balancing the color in these various galleries' images. If you happen to end up 'seeing red'  or 'feeling a little green' as you scroll through the photos, for that I apologize.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Natural World

   

Our World Through an "Explorer’s" Eyes

 

THIS GALLERY is a compendium of images from a wide array of assignments over a 30-year period. I always felt that this was the kind of work I was meant for. To be absolutely frank, I have a lingering sense of disappointment that I did not do more of it. When I was working in the wild I became so intensely concentrated on the photography that  I invariably lost track of time, would forget to eat, and could barely sleep. In some instances I had initially looked at the locations to be photographed and the stories to be told as unattractive or featureless, but in every case came away with a new knowledge and a new respect for what I had seen and photographed. While working in some of the remote, difficult locations was indeed exhausting, there was always a sense of loss -- a sadness in the parting -- when it came time to leave and return to the grey urban maze of contemporary Tokyo with all its 'modern conveniences.'

 

In many cases I was working alone or with only a single individual helping me (as driver, coordinator, occasional photographic assistant, translator/interpreter where needed, etc.).  This allowed me to slip more easily into the rhythms of the place than I could if I had a large crew with me.  I far preferred to be out in the wild alone, away from cities and crowds of people. There I could make photographs that would draw the viewer into the place as if he were a modern explorer seeing it for the first time.

Duneside flower, Spain.
Duneside flower, Spain.
Looking straight up from the bottom of the grotto beneath the blue holes at Ngis, Palau.  A challenge was controlling my breathing so that my backlit, shimmering exhalation bubbles were not visible.
Looking straight up from the bottom of the grotto beneath the blue holes at Ngis, Palau. A challenge was controlling my breathing so that my backlit, shimmering exhalation bubbles were not visible.
Drying puddle; near Tres Cerros, Patagonia, Argentina.
Drying puddle; near Tres Cerros, Patagonia, Argentina.
A Mediterranean tortoise pauses as he crests the top of a dune; Coto de Donana, Spain.
A Mediterranean tortoise pauses as he crests the top of a dune; Coto de Donana, Spain.

There is no particular order to most of the photographs in this gallery. Occasionally a few related images may be in sequence because of they are in series or in some other way drawn from the same topic. I may in the future add a few galleries that each center on a specific place or species.  For the nonce I think this random selection provides a good introduction to my work in this field.

Aspen grove on a spring afternoon; Colorado Rockies, USA.
Aspen grove on a spring afternoon; Colorado Rockies, USA.
Just inside the outer edge of the reef, Marcus Island, Japan.
Just inside the outer edge of the reef, Marcus Island, Japan.
An Iberian lynx, one of the rarest cats in the world; Spain.
An Iberian lynx, one of the rarest cats in the world; Spain.

Since so much of our planet is covered with water, I have long thought it unnecessary to divide work into, say, 'terrestrial' or 'dry' and 'underwater' or 'wet' genres.  Although there are obviously specific and disparate technical aspects to these, in the final analysis they are indeed complementary.  In many cases, both are absolutely necessary to tell a full story, especially when the topic is a wetland or coastal area.  Even when shooting in a desert environment, I would carry at least one set of basic underwater gear just in case we came across an oasis, a pooling spring, or a billabong.  There is no telling what interesting images might result.

An Okinawan coral outcrop covered with various species of Acropora.
An Okinawan coral outcrop covered with various species of Acropora.
The blossoms of the iwa-kagami, a tiny jewel of Japan's mountain forests; Nagano Prefecture, Japan.
The blossoms of the iwa-kagami, a tiny jewel of Japan's mountain forests; Nagano Prefecture, Japan.
Yuzen butterflyfish school near the wreck of a sunken WW II vessel; Bonin Islands, Japan.
Yuzen butterflyfish school near the wreck of a sunken WW II vessel; Bonin Islands, Japan.
A thunderstorm over Idjwi Island; Lake Kivu, on the border between Rwanda and the DRC.
A thunderstorm over Idjwi Island; Lake Kivu, on the border between Rwanda and the DRC.
Morning flowers; Everglades, Florida, USA.
Morning flowers; Everglades, Florida, USA.
Streamside in the yanbaru monsoon forest; small kawanina snails cling to a boulder as the clear stream water rushes past. The white lines are reflections of the dappled sunlight, recorded as streaks by the camera's slow shutter speed.  Okinawa, Japan.
Streamside in the yanbaru monsoon forest; small kawanina snails cling to a boulder as the clear stream water rushes past. The white lines are reflections of the dappled sunlight, recorded as streaks by the camera's slow shutter speed. Okinawa, Japan.
Juniper roots; Spain.
Juniper roots; Spain.
An Eastern chimpanzee, one of three genetically distinct chimpanzee subspecies,  munching on breakfast; Mahale, Tanzania.
An Eastern chimpanzee, one of three genetically distinct chimpanzee subspecies, munching on breakfast; Mahale, Tanzania.
Protecting his small herd of females and young as they leave their nighttime foraging grounds at the edge of the Little Rann of Kachchh,  a male Indian wild ass - in local parlance, 'gudhkadh' - sizes up an intruder.  Near Zainabad, Gujarat, India.
Protecting his small herd of females and young as they leave their nighttime foraging grounds at the edge of the Little Rann of Kachchh, a male Indian wild ass - in local parlance, 'gudhkadh' - sizes up an intruder. Near Zainabad, Gujarat, India.
A young male American alligator patrolling his 'gator hole,' Big Cypress Swamp, Florida, USA.
A young male American alligator patrolling his 'gator hole,' Big Cypress Swamp, Florida, USA.
Resting in the dappled shade of the dry-season teak trees, two Asian lionesses and their cubs escape the intense heat of the day.  Sasan Gir, Gujarat, India.
Resting in the dappled shade of the dry-season teak trees, two Asian lionesses and their cubs escape the intense heat of the day. Sasan Gir, Gujarat, India.
Deep in the mangroves; Babeldaob, Palau.
Deep in the mangroves; Babeldaob, Palau.
A Mastigias jellyfish rises to the morning sun.  These jellyfish do not eat, but draw sustenance from algae living in their tissues, hence the need for sunlight.  In a marine lake, Eil Malk Island, Palau.
A Mastigias jellyfish rises to the morning sun. These jellyfish do not eat, but draw sustenance from algae living in their tissues, hence the need for sunlight. In a marine lake, Eil Malk Island, Palau.
Mamba; Rwindi, DRC.
Mamba; Rwindi, DRC.
Mangrove crab; in the tidal flats off Pirotan Island, India.  This crab was caught far from his usual muddy mangrove haunts by the falling tide.
Mangrove crab; in the tidal flats off Pirotan Island, India. This crab was caught far from his usual muddy mangrove haunts by the falling tide.
A blossom of the hoshi-tsururan, a critically endangered species of orchid found only in a single small location on Hahajima in the Bonin Islands, Japan. At the time the photo was taken, only 8 wild specimens remained.
A blossom of the hoshi-tsururan, a critically endangered species of orchid found only in a single small location on Hahajima in the Bonin Islands, Japan. At the time the photo was taken, only 8 wild specimens remained.
Three young lions; Rwindi, DRC.
Three young lions; Rwindi, DRC.
Dawn silhouettes a wild cork oak and a pair of nesting spoonbills; Coto de Doñana, Spain.
Dawn silhouettes a wild cork oak and a pair of nesting spoonbills; Coto de Doñana, Spain.
Amazingly dense, untouched stands of coral in the inshore shallows of North Cinque Island, Andaman Islands, India.
Amazingly dense, untouched stands of coral in the inshore shallows of North Cinque Island, Andaman Islands, India.
A feral bull asian buffalo; Northern Territory, Australia. These animals were introduced by 19th-century settlers.  The settlements failed; the buffalo thrived.
A feral bull asian buffalo; Northern Territory, Australia. These animals were introduced by 19th-century settlers. The settlements failed; the buffalo thrived.
We might call this a view of "captive nature." The photo was shot inside the main tank of the Miami Seaquarium, looking up at the resident turtle swimming overhead and wondering who this new diver might be.
We might call this a view of "captive nature." The photo was shot inside the main tank of the Miami Seaquarium, looking up at the resident turtle swimming overhead and wondering who this new diver might be.
An unnatural lineup of Liguus tree-snail shells. There are 5 distinct species in Florida and the Caribbean, with almost countless color variations within each. These are some of them in a research collection.  Everglades National Park, Florida, USA.
An unnatural lineup of Liguus tree-snail shells. There are 5 distinct species in Florida and the Caribbean, with almost countless color variations within each. These are some of them in a research collection. Everglades National Park, Florida, USA.
The lunar-looking volcanic landscape just inland from Kitano Point, Iwo Jima, Japan.
The lunar-looking volcanic landscape just inland from Kitano Point, Iwo Jima, Japan.
Horseshoe crabs mating on a turtlegrass flat; Florida Keys, USA.
Horseshoe crabs mating on a turtlegrass flat; Florida Keys, USA.
A bull southern elephant seal; Valdez Peninsula, Argentina.
A bull southern elephant seal; Valdez Peninsula, Argentina.
Tree ferns; Amami-Oshima, Japan.
Tree ferns; Amami-Oshima, Japan.
Commensal shrimp in matching black and white raiment frequent the feathery arms of a similarly-colored crinoid.  On crinoids of other colors, the shrimp match their respective host.
Commensal shrimp in matching black and white raiment frequent the feathery arms of a similarly-colored crinoid. On crinoids of other colors, the shrimp match their respective host.
The moment our eyes first met -- a silverback mountain gorilla; Djomba, DRC. During the savage wars that swept through east-central Africa in the 1990s, this alpha male (named Rugabo by researchers) was killed by poachers.
The moment our eyes first met -- a silverback mountain gorilla; Djomba, DRC. During the savage wars that swept through east-central Africa in the 1990s, this alpha male (named Rugabo by researchers) was killed by poachers.
Sea fan bent in the current; Palau.
Sea fan bent in the current; Palau.
Giant Euphorbia; Ishango, DRC.
Giant Euphorbia; Ishango, DRC.
A Palau giant gecko, usually a creature of the night; Babeldaob, Palau.
A Palau giant gecko, usually a creature of the night; Babeldaob, Palau.
Chum salmon in their death throes after spawning in the clear waters of a Yukon River tributary stream; near Kaltag, Alaska, USA.
Chum salmon in their death throes after spawning in the clear waters of a Yukon River tributary stream; near Kaltag, Alaska, USA.
Dawn through the leafless branches of a dry-season monsoon forest; Kathiawar, India.
Dawn through the leafless branches of a dry-season monsoon forest; Kathiawar, India.
A terrestrial hermit crab checks out the camera; Akajima, Okinawa, Japan.
A terrestrial hermit crab checks out the camera; Akajima, Okinawa, Japan.
High over the East China Sea a thunderstorm begins to drop a sudden, dense curtain of rain.
High over the East China Sea a thunderstorm begins to drop a sudden, dense curtain of rain.
Storm waves; Iwo Jima, Japan.
Storm waves; Iwo Jima, Japan.
The shadow of the Kabasha Escarpment reaches eastward across its forested lower flanks as the afternoon sun sinks low; DRC.
The shadow of the Kabasha Escarpment reaches eastward across its forested lower flanks as the afternoon sun sinks low; DRC.
Lagoon shallows; Marcus Island, Japan.
Lagoon shallows; Marcus Island, Japan.
Foraging on a beach at sunset, a boar pulls succulent meat from a clam he has cracked open.  Whales' ancestors must have done the same millions of years ago, gradually venturing into deeper waters.  Near the mouth of the Guadalquivir River, Spain.
Foraging on a beach at sunset, a boar pulls succulent meat from a clam he has cracked open. Whales' ancestors must have done the same millions of years ago, gradually venturing into deeper waters. Near the mouth of the Guadalquivir River, Spain.
Pufferfish feeling distressed; in the shallows off Narara Island, Jamnagar, India.
Pufferfish feeling distressed; in the shallows off Narara Island, Jamnagar, India.
Storm over Mt Nkungwe and Lake Tanganyika; Tanzania.
Storm over Mt Nkungwe and Lake Tanganyika; Tanzania.
Though it originally ranged from Iberia to Central Asia, the white-headed duck is now an endangered species.  Coto de Donana, Spain.
Though it originally ranged from Iberia to Central Asia, the white-headed duck is now an endangered species. Coto de Donana, Spain.
An old lava flow in the shallows of Lake Kivu, DRC.
An old lava flow in the shallows of Lake Kivu, DRC.
Early spring snow; Colorado, USA.
Early spring snow; Colorado, USA.
The setting sun silhouettes an acacia tree above the flat hardpan of the Rann of Kachchh, Gujarat, India.
The setting sun silhouettes an acacia tree above the flat hardpan of the Rann of Kachchh, Gujarat, India.
A white-necked raven soars over the dense Albertine Rift montane forest cloaking the lower slopes of Mt. Nyiragongo; DRC.
A white-necked raven soars over the dense Albertine Rift montane forest cloaking the lower slopes of Mt. Nyiragongo; DRC.
Not really a 'nature' shot: an early morning catch about to become breakfast; Ngeriungs Island, Kayangel Atoll, Palau.
Not really a 'nature' shot: an early morning catch about to become breakfast; Ngeriungs Island, Kayangel Atoll, Palau.
Hooked! A male steelhead trout begins his long fight. Elwha River, Washington, USA.
Hooked! A male steelhead trout begins his long fight. Elwha River, Washington, USA.
Safe beneath a distillery's roof, a 'whiskey cat' rests from his rodent-hunting labors.  Islay, Scotland.
Safe beneath a distillery's roof, a 'whiskey cat' rests from his rodent-hunting labors. Islay, Scotland.
The Everglades' 'River of Grass': only a few centimeters deep but over a hundred kilometers wide, it flows slowly southward from the center of the Florida peninsula to the Gulf of Mexico; Florida, USA.
The Everglades' 'River of Grass': only a few centimeters deep but over a hundred kilometers wide, it flows slowly southward from the center of the Florida peninsula to the Gulf of Mexico; Florida, USA.
Summer thunderheads over the East China Sea.
Summer thunderheads over the East China Sea.
Asian lioness; Sasan Gir, India.  Just over 300 Asian lions survive in a patch of monsoon forest in the Indian state of Gujarat.
Asian lioness; Sasan Gir, India. Just over 300 Asian lions survive in a patch of monsoon forest in the Indian state of Gujarat.
Moonrise over a hunters' camp; near the Katharine River, Northern Territory, Australia.
Moonrise over a hunters' camp; near the Katharine River, Northern Territory, Australia.
Alpine flowers on the edge of Mt. Nyiragongo's crater, with its fuming, basalt-crusted lava lake below.  Virunga Range, DRC.
Alpine flowers on the edge of Mt. Nyiragongo's crater, with its fuming, basalt-crusted lava lake below. Virunga Range, DRC.
A fissure leading upward from an undersea cavern; Kerama Islands, Japan.
A fissure leading upward from an undersea cavern; Kerama Islands, Japan.
A study in blue: the river mouth at Lubugwe; Lake Tanganyika, Tanzania.
A study in blue: the river mouth at Lubugwe; Lake Tanganyika, Tanzania.
Turtle hatchlings run for the surf; Nakatajima, Shizuoka, Japan.
Turtle hatchlings run for the surf; Nakatajima, Shizuoka, Japan.
Almost there...; Nakatajima, Shizuoka, Japan.
Almost there...; Nakatajima, Shizuoka, Japan.
Into the sea and safe for the moment; Nakatajima, Shizuoka, Japan.
Into the sea and safe for the moment; Nakatajima, Shizuoka, Japan.
Rainbow wrasse; Kerama Islands, Japan.  Because of their fast and erratic way of swimming, wrasses are amazingly difficult to photograph well.
Rainbow wrasse; Kerama Islands, Japan. Because of their fast and erratic way of swimming, wrasses are amazingly difficult to photograph well.
A young Thomas kob surrounded by his larder, DRC.
A young Thomas kob surrounded by his larder, DRC.
An Eastern chimpanzee mother and her baby; Mahale, Tanzania.
An Eastern chimpanzee mother and her baby; Mahale, Tanzania.
Coral trout; Kerama Islands, Okinawa, Japan
Coral trout; Kerama Islands, Okinawa, Japan
Sunlight on snow; Tokyo, Japan.
Sunlight on snow; Tokyo, Japan.
With one eye keeping lookout and the other on the camera, this sand perch takes a rest on the sandy bottom of a coral lagoon; Okinawa, Japan.
With one eye keeping lookout and the other on the camera, this sand perch takes a rest on the sandy bottom of a coral lagoon; Okinawa, Japan.
Table coral underside detail; Okinawa, Japan.
Table coral underside detail; Okinawa, Japan.
Waterfall detail; Ituri Forest, DRC.
Waterfall detail; Ituri Forest, DRC.
Shoal water; Marquesas Keys, Florida, USA.
Shoal water; Marquesas Keys, Florida, USA.
Semiwild (apparently meaning some of them get rounded up once in a great while)  horses in the late-evening summer sun; Tierra del Fuego, Argentina.
Semiwild (apparently meaning some of them get rounded up once in a great while) horses in the late-evening summer sun; Tierra del Fuego, Argentina.
A simian Madonna and Child? Mama and baby Japanese macaques relaxing in a hotspring; Jigokudani, Nagano Prefecture, Japan.
A simian Madonna and Child? Mama and baby Japanese macaques relaxing in a hotspring; Jigokudani, Nagano Prefecture, Japan.
The still surface of the lagoon mirrors a hermit crab pausing a moment to stare at the camera as he trundles across a table coral. You can see his eye stalks peering from beneath the lip of the shell he calls home; near Gahi Island. Okinawa, Japan.
The still surface of the lagoon mirrors a hermit crab pausing a moment to stare at the camera as he trundles across a table coral. You can see his eye stalks peering from beneath the lip of the shell he calls home; near Gahi Island. Okinawa, Japan.
Weaverbirds and their nests; by the road from Beni to Kisangani, DRC.
Weaverbirds and their nests; by the road from Beni to Kisangani, DRC.
Perito Moreno Glacier; Argentina.
Perito Moreno Glacier; Argentina.
Young water moccasin; Everglades, Florida, USA.
Young water moccasin; Everglades, Florida, USA.
Approaching storm; Uncompahgre Plateau, Colorado, USA.
Approaching storm; Uncompahgre Plateau, Colorado, USA.
Geothermal spring in infrared false color; Mayi ya Moto, DRC.
Geothermal spring in infrared false color; Mayi ya Moto, DRC.
Sea fan detail; Okinawa, Japan.
Sea fan detail; Okinawa, Japan.
Spider web after a short summer shower; Picos de Europa, Spain.
Spider web after a short summer shower; Picos de Europa, Spain.
Indigo wrasse; near Tokashiki Island, Japan.
Indigo wrasse; near Tokashiki Island, Japan.
Rainforest study in infrared; Koror, Palau.
Rainforest study in infrared; Koror, Palau.
Life at the peak of an undersea pinnacle; Kater Group, Bonin Islands, Japan.
Life at the peak of an undersea pinnacle; Kater Group, Bonin Islands, Japan.
Looking across the DRC-Rwanda border from one equatorial volcano to another; Mt Karisimbi seen from Mt Nyiragongo.
Looking across the DRC-Rwanda border from one equatorial volcano to another; Mt Karisimbi seen from Mt Nyiragongo.
Saltwater crocodile; Babeldaob, Palau.
Saltwater crocodile; Babeldaob, Palau.
Storm clouds scud low over the heath; Scotland.
Storm clouds scud low over the heath; Scotland.
Winter "satoyama" mixed forest; Niigata, Japan.
Winter "satoyama" mixed forest; Niigata, Japan.
Just a few centimeters beneath the undulating mirror of the lagoon water's surface, two cushion starfish browse in the warm shallows of a seagrass flat, Tonaki Island, Japan.
Just a few centimeters beneath the undulating mirror of the lagoon water's surface, two cushion starfish browse in the warm shallows of a seagrass flat, Tonaki Island, Japan.
Sunset over the unbroken, horizon-to-horizon carpet of the central African rain forest; DRC.
Sunset over the unbroken, horizon-to-horizon carpet of the central African rain forest; DRC.
The sheer walls of the Black Canyon of the Gunnison; Colorado, USA.
The sheer walls of the Black Canyon of the Gunnison; Colorado, USA.
A feathery black crinoid snug amid the branches of a red gorgonian coral;  near Zamami Island, Okinawa, Japan.
A feathery black crinoid snug amid the branches of a red gorgonian coral; near Zamami Island, Okinawa, Japan.