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Leaders


Gary Alt is recognized as one of the leading bear research biologists in North America. His work with bears has been featured in People, Sports Illustrated, Reader's Digest and National Wildlife, as well as a variety of national television programs. Gary's training in natural history consists of four ecology-related degrees, including a Ph.D., and extensive experience in the field. He has presented hundreds of educational and entertaining natural history lectures throughout the country, and has used wildlife photography in his work for years. Among our clients, Gary is renowned for his amiable sense of humor. Gary lives in California.
 
Patrice Aguilar is a professional nature photographer who lives in Marseille, France. As a life-long Provençal, Patrice knows the Provence and Camargue regions intimately. His images are regularly published in a variety of French periodicals including Terre de Provence and Pays de Provence, as well as a number of brochures, posters, calendars and postcards. In addition to his photography, Patrice is also a proficient birder and has worked as an ornithologist in the Parc Régional de Camargue. He has presented his delightful images at numerous photographic exhibitions throughout France including the International Nature and Wildlife Photo Festival of Montier en Der.
 
Paul Bannick, an award-winning wildlife photographer who worked successfully in the computer software industry before concentrating on his passion for wilderness conservation, is currently the Director of Development for Conservation Northwest, a nonprofit dedicated to protecting wild areas from the Pacific Coast to the Canadian Rockies. His first book, The Owl and the Woodpecker, was published in 2008. In 2011, Paul took first place among professionals in Birds and Their Habitat category in Audubon's prestigious annual photography contest. His images can be found in numerous bird guides and have been featured in Audubon, Sunset, Birds and Blooms and Pacific Northwest, among others. Paul lives in Seattle.
 
Daniel Bergmann lives in Reykjavik, Iceland, where he works as a professional nature photographer. He has authored a number of books, with the latest one being Iceland Landscapes (2011), which is considered one of the finest collection of landscape images from Iceland. While the landscape is his passion, birds are his obsession. Not only photographing them but also working on their behalf in conservation as a board member of BirdLife Iceland. Apart from working as a photographer, ornithologist and conservationist, Daniel has been leading photography tours in Iceland for over a decade.
 
Paulo Boute is one of the pioneering birders and ornithologists in Brazil. Paulo has over 20 years of experience guiding birders and photographers throughout Brazil and abroad, but his first love is the wildlife-rich Pantanal—an area he knows intimately. Paulo has led private wildlife expeditions for such legendary birders as Roger Tory Peterson and Robert Ridgely. He also shares his knowledge and wry sense of humor with Brazilians on his weekly radio program concerning birdwatching and environmental education. Paulo lives in Cuiabá, Brazil—gateway to the Pantanal.
 
Mike Byrne has worked as an independent photographer and filmmaker for over 20 years. Raised among Alberta's Rocky Mountains, he counts hiking, skiing and photographing the famous landscapes and wildlife of the Banff–Canmore–Lake Louise area among his longtime passions. These days, when not creating images of wildlife and nature, Mike is busy photographing a variety of sports events. He shot for the International Olympic Committee at the 2010 Vancouver and 2012 London Olympic Games. The official photographer for several sports teams and for a series of international triathlons, Mike's work has taken him through much of Europe, Africa, South America, 47 of the United States and all 10 Canadian provinces. Mike lives in Victoria, British Columbia.
 
Perry Conway is a veteran leader of photographic workshops and tours. His photographs have appeared in a variety of publications, including National Wildlife, Audubon, National Geographic, Outdoor Photographer, Newsweek and Sierra Club calendars. Perry has photographed and edited multimedia educational programs including Rainforest Wildlife and Conservation, Prairie Dog Ecosystems, Learning to Live with Wildlife, Colorado's Endangered Species and Colorado's Watchable Wildlife. Perry was the grand prize winner in National Wildlife's photo contest and took first place in the National Educational Film Festival for his multimedia show, "Eagles on the Wind." With a background in both teaching and biology, he is well suited to interpret natural history as well as to help others capture these events with their cameras. Perry lives in Boulder, Colorado.
 
María Cecilia Costa is a professional photographer and birder from Argentina. Cecilia grew up in Buenos Aires where she received a BA in education, as well as a degree in natural sciences and professional photography. She is a licensed trekking guide, certified first responder and co-founder of the El Chalten Birdwatchers Club. As an enthusiastic member of Aves Argentinas, Cecilia has traveled all over Argentina and to other destinations. She has published several guides to the flora and fauna of Patagonia. Since 1998, Cecilia has made her home in El Chalten—located at the foot of Mt. Fitzroy—and leads trekking, birding and photography tours all over southern Patagonia and throughout Latin America.
 
Chris Edwards spent three summers and two winters stationed in Stonington and Alexander Islands in Antarctica in the early 1970s. As a geologist for the British Antarctic Survey, he regularly traveled hundreds of miles by dogsled, camping for six months at a time away from base, to conduct his field research. His doctoral studies based on this research resulted in a Ph.D. in 1981 from the University of Birmingham. This experience and his knowledge of the geology, botany, wildlife and exploration history of Antarctica, the Arctic, and the British Isles make him a sought-after lecturer, field guide and expedition leader. Chris lives in Aberdeenshire, Scotland.
 
Julie Eggers, a professional photographer and a native of Seattle, has been pursuing her love of nature and landscape photography since 1992. Since leaving her job in investment banking in 1999, she has been a full-time nature and landscape photographer. Julie has been published in many nature and landscape calendars, including Inner Reflections, Audubon, Teldon, Avalanche, as well as several Reiman Publications. She has also been a tour leader for the past 10 years. Julie and husband, Terry, also conduct many speaking engagements and seminars together. Julie is represented by three stock agencies, including Corbis.
 
Terry Eggers has over 20 years of experience as a professional outdoor nature and stock photographer. His work has appeared worldwide in numerous publications, including Sierra Club, Nature Conservancy, Inner Reflections, Audubon and Reiman Publications. His images are represented by four stock agencies including Corbis International and Panoramic Images. For the past 13 years, Terry has been leading tours and teaching photography throughout North America and Europe. Terry and his wife, Julie, also conduct speaking engagements and seminars to share their vision and knowledge of digital photography. He lives in Seattle.
 
Jeff Foott is a California native who studied biology at San Jose State University. Following school he worked as a researcher at Moss Landing Marine Laboratories where he studied sea otters and published several scientific papers. Jeff has also worked as a park ranger in Yosemite National Park, a professional climbing guide and on the ski patrol at Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Around 1970 his interests in photographing and filming nature and wildlife led to a new career direction. Since then he has filmed for Nova, National Geographic, BBC and the US Fish and Wildlife Service. His still images have appeared in hundreds of magazines including Audubon, National Geographic, National Wildlife and International Wildlife as well as numerous books, calendars, posters and note cards. Jeff spends summers in Jackson Hole, Wyoming and winters in Moab, Utah.
 
Darrell Gulin is an accomplished photographer as well as a highly in-demand speaker, teacher, 2005 NANPA president, and photo tour leader. For nearly two decades he has been creating and marketing images and has spent the past 18 years as a full-time nature photographer. His work has been published in numerous nature and wildlife magazines including Outdoor Photographer, Outdoor & Nature, Newsweek, National Geographic, Audubon, Wilderness, National Wildlife, Birder's World, Sunset, Nature Conservancy and Popular Photography, as well as in major nature calendars. Darrell is a veteran photo tour leader and he has both taught and been a featured speaker at photography seminars and workshops worldwide. He is one of Canon's elite Explorers of Light, which includes the top 60 photographers in North America. Darrell lives in Seattle, Washington—his lifelong hometown.
 
Don Lyon has led more than 200 photographic tours around the world since 1979. A lifelong love of travel and photography has taken him to over 130 countries and 50 states including graduate work in International Relations in Beirut, Lebanon and stints living in England and the South of France. Don apprenticed with Thru the Lens Tours, and then established Close-Up Expeditions, providing both nature and travel photographers the opportunity to create "National Geographic" like story-telling images. Don is an Associate of the Photographic Society of America and is the 2008 recipient of their "International Understanding through Photography Award." Don creates stunning audiovisual programs that tell stories of traditional cultures—people and places that are fast disappearing. He delights in helping other photographers capture their images and was a popular camera club and salon judge in the San Francisco Bay Area before moving, in 2006, to a 19th C. farmhouse in rural Willamette Valley of Oregon.
 
Joe & Mary Ann McDonald are accomplished naturalists, professional wildlife photographers and writers. Joe has written how-to books on wildlife photography, digital photography and Photoshop. Mary Ann has written more than 29 children's books on natural history topics and she is a two-time winner of categories in the BBC Photographer of the Year award and Nature's Best annual competition. Together they have led numerous tours to the Falkland Islands and are very familiar with the islands' best spots for photography and wildlife viewing. For years Joe and Mary Ann have led tours and taught photography workshops to people of all skills.
 
Kevin McNeal is a landscape photographer who resides Olympia, Washington. Kevin has a great compositional eye and happily shares his imaging skills with fellow photographers during photo tours, photography workshops and Adobe Photoshop classes. Kevin describes his photography style as "surreal," using stacked focusing of several 35mm images to attain relative "large format" sharpness throughout his images, plus an extensive use of graduated filters and extreme saturation in post processing to attain his distinctive flair. He has photographed widely in the American West as well as Scandinavia, Tuscany, Mexico and the Caribbean. Photographing the light in a storm's aftermath has produced some of his favorite images. Kevin is a popular program presenter for camera clubs in the Pacific Northwest and his images have appeared in numerous photography magazines, including Outdoor Photographer and National Geographic.
 
Mehmet Özbalci is an exceptional English-speaking guide thoroughly versed in Turkish history and culture. He is a wonderful travel companion, knowledgeable in the needs of getting photographers to the right place and best times to create iconic images of Turkey and its people. An excellent photographer himself, his charming, funny and personable demeanor make it very easy for you to meet and photograph the local people and visit "behind the scenes" locations throughout your tour. Mehmet lives in Istanbul with his wife and three children.
 
Alejandro Ronchetti is one of Argentina's most renowned wildlife photographers. His images have been published in numerous books, magazines, corporate publications and educational materials in several Latin American countries. Alejandro is also an enthusiastic interpretive naturalist with almost 25 years of experience leading groups of photographers and birders throughout Argentina and South America. He is the author of several conservation projects that have created numerous protected habitats in his country. His special conservation interests include tropical wetlands and Patagonia. Alejandro has also worked for the Argentine Tourism Board assisting local communities and government agencies in their development of ecotourism and sustainable tourism.
 
Len Rue, Jr. is a nationally known photographer whose work has been featured in hundreds of publications worldwide. He has traveled extensively throughout North America and internationally, using his intimate knowledge of nature to create his distinctive style of wildlife stock imagery. Len's photo work has appeared on dozens of magazine covers and in numerous catalogs, brochures, advertising and educational materials. In addition, he is the business manager of Len Rue Enterprises, which specializes in photographic products for wildlife and nature photographers. Len lives in Pennsylvania's Pocono Mountains where he lectures and teaches photography at East Stroudsburg University of Pennsylvania.
 
John Shaw has been hailed by American Photographer as "one of the best nature photographers around" and we agree! John's beautiful images are regularly published in a variety of magazines including Audubon and National Wildlife as well as being used in advertising, books and calendars. He is the author of six books on nature photography techniques, and four eBooks about Photoshop. His latest paper book, The Nature Photography Field Guide, may just be the best photo equipment investment you will ever make for under 25 dollars. John is a great teacher both in workshops and in the field. He makes his home in McMinnville, Oregon.
 
Monika Schillat is a historian and naturalist who has been guiding groups to some of the most remote regions of the earth for the last 15 years. Dedicated to ecotourism, she has been the Expedition Leader for tours to the Antarctic, the Falkland Islands and South Georgia, as well as Spitsbergen. Originally from Germany, Monika immigrated to South America in 1989 and is currently a lecturer on Latin American history at the National Univeristy of Tierra del Fuego, Argentina, specializing in Patagonia, Tierra del Fuego and the South Atlantic islands. Monika has published several books on the history of the region, as well as travel guides and has contributed to volumes of polar essays on Antarctica and the Arctic. Monika’s unique Antarctic Bestiary, describing the animal species of the White Continent, is illustrated with her watercolor sketches done in the style of medieval bestiaries. Monika is fluent in English, Spanish and German and resides in Tierra del Fuego.
 
Anna Sutcliffe is a wildlife ecologist with a deep commitment to developing environmental awareness through education and interpretation. With a degree in geography and ecology from Reading University, she has participated in research projects in the UK, Canary Islands and Russia and has extensively studied a variety of seabirds. For more than a decade, Anna has been a naturalist and/or expedition leader on expedition cruises to Antarctica, South Georgia, the Falkland Islands, the Arctic, Norway, the Seychelles and coastal Britain and Scotland. She has particularly strong knowledge of the ecology, birds and sea mammals of Antarctica. She lives with her husband Steve in West Wales, UK.
 
Mark Thomas left the pharmacy profession more than 20 years ago to pursue his passion for wildlife photography. Since then, he has photographed on every continent. Images from these trips have appeared in numerous magazines, calendars and field guides, including Audubon, Sierra, National Geographic, National Wildlife and Nature's Best. Mark's images have won many awards, including 1st Place in the National Wildlife Photo Contest, 1st Place in the Outdoor Writers of America Contest, and his recent work with hummingbirds in South America yielded a 1st Place "Small World" category win in the Nature's Best Photography prestigious competition. His winning print will hang in the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History through 2015. Mark is also an accomplished underwater photographer, is well-versed in Photoshop, and processes and prints all of his own work for art show exhibitions across the country. His images hang by the thousands of private collections. Mark lives in Pembroke Pines, Florida. You can view Mark's images at blueiceberg.com.
 
Steve Turner's upbringing in the wildlands of East Africa fostered an intense interest in, and extensive knowledge of, the natural history and tribal communities within these rich environments. His passion for culture, wildlife and nature has taken him throughout the African continent, and as far afield as Australia, Asia, the Amazon, the Arctic and Antarctica. Steve has led countless nature, cultural and photo tours in Kenya, Tanzania, Ethiopia and Rwanda. He has received several awards for his in-depth photography of endangered mountain gorillas in Rwanda and Democratic Republic of Congo (Zaire), and his extensive photographic collection of Africa's disappearing tribal people has been published worldwide. Steve lives in a suburb of Nairobi.
 
Rinie van Meurs has been the leader on hundreds of expeditions in the Arctic and Antarctica over the past 25 years—more than 120 to Spitsbergen, alone! No one else has led so many expedition cruises throughout this archipelago—and Rinie knows it like no other. In addition to his expedition leader duties, he is also a talented nature lecturer and an affable shipmate. Rinie studied forestry and civil engineering before finding his passions for travel, wildlife and nature photography. He has traveled the world extensively and once spent a year in the Falkland Islands photographing and observing seabirds and wildlife. Rinie has published several books featuring his photography of polar bears and the diverse polar regions encountered on his numerous voyages.
 
Joe Van Os has been director of Joseph Van Os Photo Safaris for over three decades. His lifelong interest in nature has been the driving force in Joseph Van Os Photo Safaris, an enthusiasm that continues to influence new trip development to the world's most spectacular nature photography locations. Joe is a seasoned tour leader, having led hundreds of tours and cruises worldwide. He is also a proficient and avid nature photographer. Thousands of his photographs regularly accompany advertising and articles in books, magazines and corporate publications around the world, represented as photo stock by Getty Images. Joe lives on rural Vashon Island surrounded by Washington State's Puget Sound.
 
Jeff Vanuga is a photographer based in Dubois, Wyoming. His images have been published in National Geographic Magazine, Outside, National Wildlife, Nature's Best, New York Times and Wyoming Wildlife, and have appeared in Wyoming Tourism, Patagonia, Frontier Airlines, Ford, Nissan, and Early Winters advertising. His photography has won many awards, including first place in the National Wildlife Photography Competition, first place in BBC Wildlife Photographer on the year, Nature's Best, Outdoor Writer's Association and many other photographic competitions. Jeff's images were recently published in the Compass Guide to Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks. You can see more of Jeff's work at his website www.jeffvanuga.com.
 
Stuart Westmorland is recognized as one of the leading marine photographers in the US. His marine, travel, lifestyle, and natural history images appear in a variety of books, magazines, posters, calendars, brochures, aquarium displays and private art collections. He has led photo and natural history trips for nearly two decades, and conducted many photography seminars at yearly film festivals, camera clubs and nature group gatherings. His images have been published on more than 200 magazine covers including Time, Outside, National Wildlife, Islands, Nature Conservancy and Ritz Carlton. A fulltime photographer since 1992, Stuart has traveled the world on assignment for many magazines. His recently published coffee table book (with text by Barbara Sleeper)—Seattle: A Photographic Portrait II—showcases his stunning images that skillfully capture the creative energy and jubilant spirit of this beautiful Pacific Northwest city.
Website: www.stuartwestmorland.com


Joseph Van Os Photo Safaris, Inc. P.O. Box 655, Vashon Island, Washington USA 98070
Phone: (206) 463-5383 Fax: (206) 463-5484 Email: info@photosafaris.com
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