NatGeo’s Photographer flips the lens to focus on visual storytellers


NatGeo’s new series, Photographer gives us a glimpse behind the lens.

National Geographic is justly renowned for its incredible photographs and eye-popping video footage, capturing all manner of natural marvels in gorgeous, jaw-dropping detail. Now the people behind those amazing shots are getting their moment in the spotlight with the documentary series, Photographer.

If you’ve ever wanted to know more about what it’s really like to be a NatGeo photographer, this series will take you behind the scenes as the photographers strive to meet the challenges and inevitable surprise obstacles to get that timeless shot. Each episode focuses on a different photographer, combining vérité footage with in-depth interviews and archival footage to help viewers see the world through their eyes—whether it be capturing a hummingbird in flight, chronicling a campaign against oil rigs in the Bahamas, or recording protests, rocket launches, tornadoes, or the behavior of whales, to name a few.

The exclusive clip above features photographer Anand Varma, who started out studying marine biology, intent on following in his father’s footsteps as a scientist, But after taking a job as a camera assistant, he fell in love with photography and has carved out his own niche at the interface of science and art. His latest project is a photographic series centered on metamorphosis—in this case, trying to capture the formation and hatching of a chicken embryo on camera.

That’s a daunting challenge, and as the opening scene reveals, Varma’s first attempt failed. “The Saran Wrap eggs are not doing very well at all,” he tells the camera after working well into the wee hours. Environmental conditions have to be tightly controlled but overnight both the main humidifier stopped working and the backup humidifier didn’t kick in. That made the embryos’ environment 18° F hotter than it should have been. But Varma perseveres and eventually succeeds, commenting that a new growing embryo after 12 days resembles “a little velociraptor foot.” The embryo is actually blinking inside its unshelled yolk.

Photographer premieres on the National Geographic Channel on March 18 and will be available for streaming on Disney+ and Hulu on March 19.

Official trailer for NatGeo’s new series, Photographer.

Listing image by YouTube/National Geographic



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