Conservation photography has recently become a buzzword. In my case it seems I was already a conservation photographer long before I knew it myself. Inspired by my father as a naturalist and as a trained biologist I have always felt a deep connection with nature and recognized the importance of conserving it. Photography began as a hobby for me but after realizing how effective it could be as a tool for conservation I began to pursue it feverishly and dedicate my life to it. I did not appreciate at the time that one day this would be coined ‘conservation photography’, only that it could make a positive impact on the world I loved and that I personally was capable of initiating such change.
MY JOURNEY AS A CONSERVATION PHOTOGRAPHER
I am fortunate to have worked in many of the world’s most pristine and remote wildlife and cultural destinations as a conservation photographer. Furthermore to have my images appear in most of the major magazines of the world in the field including National Geographic, BBC Wildlife, Time, International Wildlife, Smithsonian, Geo, Nature’s Best, Terre Sauvage, Outdoor Photography, The Economist, Geographical, Ranger Rick and Airone as well as being featured ten times in the BBC Wildlife Photographer of the Year Awards. I have lived with my wife and partner Reneé Bish, as a resident of Ecuador for 31 and 24 years respectively. Together we have published thirteen books, mostly on Ecuadorian conservation themes. We work primarily on conservation related subjects in the hope that the power of the image will help further such efforts around the world. I was considered by Outdoor Photography magazine to be among the top 40 most influential nature photographers in the world and am a proud Founder Fellow of the International League of Conservation Photographers and in 2009 I was selected as part of the Wild Wonders of Europe ‘Dream Team’. In 2014 I was awarded Ecuadorian Photo Journalist of the Year plus the IUCN Melvita grant. In 2015 I was named Ranger Rick Photographer of the Year, and won the IUCN/Terre Sauvage ‘Man in Nature’ photographic prize. I am a contributing photographer for the Annenberg Space for Photography and a Gitzo ambassador, a board member of the marine conservation-based magazine SevenSeas and work in partnership with the Orianne Society. In 2017 I was a judge for the prestigious Big Picture Competition run by the California Academy of Sciences. I am also a Fellow of the Royal Geographic Society.
Reneé and I are co-owners and operators of Pete Oxford Expeditions, leading responsible travel to some of the world’s richest cultures and most biodiverse and pristine areas of our planet.