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All Take No Give

Most photographers take pictures because they love doing so. However, are we constantly taking without giving anything back? Peter Cairns expresses his thoughts on protecting nature

A few years ago I was part of a major photographic project – Wild Wonders of Europe – which sent me, along with 69 other photographers, to every European country to reveal the natural crown jewels of this unknown continent; to bring it to life for an audience that many never have heard of Latvia or Svalbard; those who may not know that Europe has wolves and blue whales, deserts and glaciers. The fruits of Wild Wonders included a flagship book published in eight languages and an outdoor exhibition, which still tours major European cities. And of course, a nice warm fuzzy feeling that we had done some good.

For me that sentiment was tempered slightly by an uneasiness that initially took hold on a flight home from Sweden, my final assignment for Wild Wonders. Here I was, part of a team of 70 photographers that had carried out a photographic smash and grab raid across Europe, all delivering a hefty carbon footprint. Until that flight I had convinced myself that …

Read this and many more articles in High Definition in-side Issue 53 of Landscape Photography Magazine.

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About Author

Peter Cairns

Based in the heart of the Cairngorms, Peter Cairns is an award-winning nature photographer with over 10 years’ professional experience under his belt. He is a founding director of The Wild Media Foundation, the social enterprise behind the 2020VISION multimedia project.

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