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March 30th, 2009

Tips from a Science Photographer 9

Posted by Chris Linder

Check out the rest of this series from Chris Linder, who went from writing grants as an oceanographer to getting NSF grants to visually document scientists. His insights range from grant writing to packing for the extreme conditions of Arctic and Antarctic expeditions. Here he outlines his upcoming expedition to the Bering Sea. To learn more about the trip, register now for his webinar live on location and see daily photo essays from the expedition. Chris will also be documenting the expedition here with a photo each week and an explanation of how it was made.
My favorite thing about the Arctic Ocean is undoubtedly the ice. It comes in a myriad of colors, shapes, and sizes. It can stop an icebreaker in its tracks and make you feel insignificant.

Chris's favorite thing about the Arctic Ocean is the ice. It comes in a myriad colors, shapes, and sizes. It can stop an icebreaker in its tracks and make you feel insignificant. ©Chris Linder

The fifth Live from the Poles expedition starts on April 3 and runs through May 11, 2009. Science writer Helen Fields and I will be joining a large research team studying the impact of climate change on the Bering Sea ecosystem aboard the U.S. Coast Guard icebreaking ship Healy.

The Bering Sea is one of the most productive regions of the world’s oceans, accounting for nearly half of the total U.S. fishing catch. Climate models are forecasting substantial warming for the southeastern Bering Sea shelf region, which will dramatically alter the distribution of species of fish, seabirds, and marine mammals. Understanding this ecosystem and how it will respond to rapidly rising temperatures is of critical importance to both commercial and native fisheries. The 40+ researchers aboard the Healy will be deploying instruments and collecting samples in round-the-clock shifts for six weeks straight. Our two-person media team will be in the thick of the action, whether it’s collecting cores of sea ice or lowering high-tech plankton microscopes into the icy water.

In addition to the still photography, I plan to spend more time collecting professional-quality audio during this expedition. Although I have collected ambient sounds during previous trips (see the Polar Fun pages on the Polar Discovery website under each expedition), for this trip I plan to add interviews. I will continue the time-lapse photography I experimented with on the last few expeditions and perhaps even dabble with videography.

All of the photographs I take on this expedition will be tagged with the latitude and longitude using a GPS tagger, which will make them particular useful to the science team. But the core objectives of the project will remain the same—to deliver cutting-edge polar science to the public online through professional still photography and science writing.

One Comment

  1. April 1st, 2009 at 9:54 pm

    Thinking more on the project @ word.

    […] are a few blogs that interested me: science photography, picture stories no comments yet.« More Project Leave a […]

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