On Assignment in Manu National Park

Here's a short interview I did at the National Geographic about our coverage of Manu National Park in the Peruvian Amazon. I have spent over twenty years working in Manu (mainly filming giant otters). When I was sent there on assignment for NG Magazine my mission was very different; although I did have to shoot images of Manu's incredible wildlife, key to the story was covering Manu's indigenous people and communities. The trip in June and July 2015 took us to some of the remotest and most wonderful places in the Amazon. Click below on the otter to take a look.

The green curtain

When I'm shooting in the Amazon I use a range of kit. One of the problems inside the rainforest is lack of light; the forest canopy shuts down most of the light. I tend to shoot my Canon (I use a 1DX MK1) at high ISO - up to around 16,000. When I'm photographing people I swap between my Canon and my Leica M. The Canon is awesome as it's like a machine gun it's so fast. However when I am shooting sensitive images and don't want to 'burst the bubble' I will switch to the Leica which is quieter and less intrusive. All my images of people were shot with either a Canon 85 f1.2, Canon 24-105mm f4 or Leica Summicron 35mm f2.

On assignment

Here's a few clips of working in the indigenous communities of Yomibato and Tayacome. Both are Machigunega (Matsigenka) villages deep inside Manu National Park and are closed to the public. Access was granted by the National Park and the community. Flu jabs were of course essential.

The disease diaries

As well as being a keen photographer and naturalist I also collect diseases and parasites. I don't plan to, to be honest but I seem to attract them and provide housing for them whenever I visit the tropics. Click on the picture above to read all about them.