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Parks & Wildlife

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Published Jun 17, 2016 | View the Assignment | Features Photos From 19 Contributors

    19 photos selected by

    Charlie Hamilton James
    National Geographic Photographer

    While driving in Torres del Paine National Park in Chile, a quick break for lunch led me to disco...

    #birds #landscape #wildlife #travel #autumn #fall #caracara #patagonia #protecttheselands

    Charlie Hamilton James was one of six contributors to our special Yellowstone issue of National Geographic magazine. After you view the Parks & Wildlife story, see the work Charlie produced involving wildlife that reside in Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons. Learn about the power of our parks on natgeo.com.

    This was a tough assignment. Wildlife photography is a hard discipline at the best of times, which makes getting something out of the ordinary very difficult. I was really keen to see images that not only showed animals but showed them where they lived—images that were evocative and even emotional. I have to say that the majority of images I saw didn’t fit these guidelines, but a few really stood out. 

    I could have never thought that I can disregard cold, snow, hunger and many other inconveniences ...

    #wildlife #japan #snow_monkeys #joshinetsukogennationalpark #jigokudani_monkey_park

    Editor's Note

    Right away I'm drawn into the expression on the faces of the two macaques in this image. I'm glad you were able to survive the elements and have the patience to make this image happen during your t... More

    Matt Adams
    Senior Producer, Nat Geo Your Shot

    Early morning Yellowstone River crossing

    #reflection #river #nature #landscape #park #fog #yellowstone #bison

    Editor's Note

    Just nice! Moody and emotional. It's about cold and solitude and wilderness. I like it a lot.

    Charlie Hamilton James
    National Geographic Photographer

    A group of elephants appearing from the clouds of a sandstorm.

    #storm #landscape #sand #family #elephants #namibia #sandstorm

    Editor's Note

    Bjorn - as you confirmed to me that little post processing had been applied to this image I can only congratulate you - it's stunning! Well done - great work

    Charlie Hamilton James
    National Geographic Photographer

    A young silverback mountain gorilla in Rwanda pauses as the clouds lift to reveal rugged Mt Miken...

    #gorilla #grounds #rwanda #volcanoes_national_park #drc #mountain_gorilla #senecio #mt_mikeno

    I also like Bjorn Persson’s image of elephants in a sandstorm in Namibia. It’s a very powerful image. It is out of the ordinary, but not in a gimmicky way—in an evocative and beautiful way. Of course, this image is about being in the right place at the right time, but Bjorn managed to pull it off technically and see the image he wanted to capture. It represents the power of nature. 

    I would like to have seen more images of landscapes with wildlife in them. There were some, but many didn’t mention if they were shot in national parks or protected areas or they fell short technically or compositionally. As I mentioned in the original assignment, wildlife photographers must realize they are photographers foremost. A snap of an animal on holiday or in a zoo is not good enough to really cut the mustard. I wanted to see images where I knew the photographer had really thought about what they were doing and why they were doing it—during the moments of taking the picture, editing the picture, and submitting the picture.

    The Serengeti is a vast place to be alone....this bull elephant though seems to enjoy his lonelin...

    #africa #safari #wildlife #serengeti #elephant #savannah

    On first glance this photo might look like a polar bear relaxing at sunset. It's not. What you'...

    #moon #safari #travel #sunrise #canada #lunar #manitoba #fullmoon #tundra #polarbear #churchill

    Spent some time with these wonderful foxes in Algonquin park around Christmas time. They were so ...

    #nature #wildlife #animals #fighting #fox #playtime #algonquin_park_canada

    Editor's Note

    This is a powerful image. Its ruined slightly by the tracks in the snow but made up for by the drama and action - well done!

    Charlie Hamilton James
    National Geographic Photographer

    I spotted a herd of approximately 80 elephants walking through the fields of the Serengeti. It wa...

    #nature #safari #wildlife #animals #tanzania #serengeti #elephant #elephants #minimalism

    Editor's Note

    There is an argument that a little imperfection actually can make an image better - we know what I'm talking about here. In this case that argument is right on the edge! I still like it though and ... More

    Charlie Hamilton James
    National Geographic Photographer

    The abundance and diversity in Raja Ampat ,part of the Birds Head Seascape Marine Park is illustr...

    #blue #indonesia #fish #reef #ocean #animals #underwater #jetty #diversity #letsexplore #raja_ampat

    Dream shot at Masinagudi (Mudumalai National Park) - India, when in search of Big Cats. The morni...

    #blue #forest #green #nature #beautiful #wildlife #bird #flight #animal #fog #peacock

    Free Himalaya Wild Park , Qiangtang Tibet

    #sheep #free #motion #tibet #himalaya #parkswildlife

    I was at Sossusvlei in the Namib-Naukluft N.P. of Namibia, photographing the dunes at sunrise, bu...

    #desert #africa #nature #landscape #wildlife #dune #namibia #oryx #namib_naukluft_national_park

    Editor's Note

    Nice shot! Beautiful scene setting wild animal in wild landscape - exactly what we want for this assignment. Also - I love that place!!! Had a great time there, nice to see someone nail the shot th... More

    Charlie Hamilton James
    National Geographic Photographer

    Taken at Pilanesberg National Park. Elephant walking away into the sunset. Al natural lighting of...

    #sunset #nature #wildlife #animals #elephant #fairytale

    Wild life California, U.S.A. Brown Pelicans are superb hunters,agile and strong. Their hunting su...

    #birds #green #usa #travel #pelicans #wildelife #california_beach #bestspringtrips #happyplanet

    I spotted this giant tortoise on the last day of our trip, literally during the very last hour be...

    #moon #reflection #nature #pond #galapagos #bw #tortoise #national_park

    Editor's Note

    Nice image - always grabs my eye on the page of thumbnails. Well done.

    Charlie Hamilton James
    National Geographic Photographer

    non stopping fighting sessions between white-tailed eagle all for food but crows are smarter wait...

    #birds #nature #wildlife #animals #fight #travel #eagle #photography #prey #hungary

    Editor's Note

    This is a great capture of a moment of action and drama. Its loaded with aggression - the power o... More

    Charlie Hamilton James
    National Geographic Photographer

    As I flew over these migratory birds at the Great Rann of Kutch, these flamingoes took flight. He...

    #birds #nature #animals #places #migration #flamingoes #birds_in_flight

    Editor's Note

    The form and composition of this image makes it stand out. The shadows and sky make it other worl... More

    Charlie Hamilton James
    National Geographic Photographer

    I made this image at Katmai NP, Alaska. This scene reminds me of Katmai more than any other image...

    #bear #grizzly #alaska

    Editor's Note

    Great use of a wide angle lens to grab this perspective.

    Charlie Hamilton James
    National Geographic Photographer

    Of the photos that really stood out, I believe some of the photographers had really gone out to shoot and some had lucky moments. Either way, the people behind the camera made frames that pulled it off and presented to us wildlife shot in interesting and exciting ways. Well done all!

    About the Editor
    Charlie Hamilton James
    National Geographic Photographer
    Charlie Hamilton James is a National Geographic Photographer who is constantly staggered and inspired by nature both in its design and its beauty; it's led to a life long obsession to understand, document and save it. This obsession led to him studying and documenting kingfishers since he was a teenager. ...

    Photographers Published In the Story