Humans are harming the planet and putting animals in danger all across the world, but one photographer is raising awareness of the consequences.
We understand that the plight of endangered animals is a worldwide issue, but for many of us, it remains an abstract concept. We don’t see these animals’ faces every day but thanks to photographer Tim Flach’s work, we do. These mammals, reptiles, fish, and birds are shown in captivating pictures that make it impossible to look away. Endangered, his devastating series (and book), displays these creatures locking eyes with us—a far cry from the conventional animal photographs which show them in their grandiose natural surroundings. Flach, on the other hand, juxtaposes them against a harsh backdrop, isolating them from their natural surroundings.
It was a deliberate decision to visually remove some of the endangered animals from their natural habitat. “The romanticizing, free, wild images [of animals] weren’t necessarily encouraging people to take action,” Flach said NPR. “I wanted to consider what kinds of imagery people engage in and how you build a tale to get people to connect with [the animal],” The “mild anthropomorphizing” of animals makes us feel more connected since the creatures have characteristics we can relate to. “Images that were frequently done in a manner and depiction that was more human were more likely to make us care.”
Although the close-up shots of endangered animals are impressive, some of Flach’s images move away from the subject and look at the animals in their natural habitats. “A sense of the habitat is vital for a book with a lot of portraits,” he added. We owe it to the species to help preserve their habitats safe; it is not only for their sake but also for ours. “We have animals that turn the soil or forests that provide fresh water. They are crucial to our future. Actually, it’s quite simple.”
All of these animals took two years to photograph. Abrams published Endangered in 2017, and it is currently accessible on Amazon.
Tim Flach spent two years photographing endangered species on the verge of extinction.
The endangered animal photographs that arise give these species a human-like existence.
Flach hopes that it will inspire us to take efforts to ensure the survival of these animals.