Focus on a career in the wild behind the camera

Doug Allan filming at an Emperor Penguin Colony in the Antarctic.
Doug Allan filming at an Emperor Penguin Colony in the Antarctic.

Join multi-award winning wildlife cameraman Doug Allan for an evening of behind the scenes stories for all the family, with highlights from the most challenging assignments of his 35 years filming wildlife in the remotest places on earth.

What’s scarier, a snow leopard or a leopard seal? How do you get close to the biggest fish in the sea? Is it true your eyeballs freeze at minus 50?

Find out in Doug’s latest show, Wild Images, Wild Life, which visits Mitchell Library, Glasgow, on Wednesday, October 17.

This presentation also traces Doug’s personal journey, as he discusses how he’s seen pollution and climate change affect the natural world. How do we turn the tide?

Doug said: “I am well aware of the changes in the Poles – I have seen them taking place over the last 30 years, such as longer seasons and winters not so cold. I have seen it with my own eyes.

“There are changes happening across the whole world. Look at this year – it has been a year of extreme weather.

“I give talks to people in the hope they can reconnect with nature and make a difference themselves to help the environment.

“But change is not happening quickly enough and if we are not careful, it will end up with Mother Nature having the last laugh and something very bad will happen which we can’t undo.”

Doug Allan is one of the world’s best known and respected cameramen. He was born in Dunfermline, Fife, and spent eight years in Antarctica as a research diver, scientist and photographer for the British Antarctic Survey, before changing direction to full time filming in 1984.

He specialises in natural history, expeditions and science documentaries in some of the wildest and most remote places on our planet, particularly the polar zones.

Over his career, he’s filmed for series like The Blue Planet, Planet Earth, Frozen Planet, Ocean Giants, Operation Iceberg and Forces of Nature, as well as making programmes for the Living Oceans Foundation in the USA about coral reef conservation and overfishing.

He’s particularly enjoyed opportunities to film polar bears and whales.

“Polar bears are exciting, big, sexy animals which live in a challenging environment and when you see one, you never forget it,” Doug said.

“I also enjoy getting up close to marine animals. When you work in the water you have to get close to your subjects. You can’t hide from it.

“It is a different technique in the water: you have to interact with the subject, you have to understand it and you have to be giving off the right vibes.

“But when you get an animal coming over to you being extra friendly, like it wants to spend time with you, when that happens, it’s a great privilege.”

Doug’s photographic work has earned him a host of awards, including eight Emmys and five BAFTAs, the most recent for Outstanding Contribution to Craft (Cinematography). He has four Honorary Doctorates from the universities of Stirling, St Andrews, Edinburgh Napier and Falmouth in recognition of his camerawork, as well as two Polar Medals.

He’s an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Scottish Geographical Society and of the Royal Photographic Society.

And his book Freeze Frame – A Wildlife Cameraman’s Adventures on Ice is on track to sell 10,000 copies by the end of this year.

Tickets for Doug Allan’s Wild Images, Wild Life at Mitchell Library, Glasgow, on Wednesday, October 17, are available at www.glasgowlife.org.uk. Full tour details can be found at Doug Allan