As I mentioned in my last blog post, traveling is a passion that I am returning to this year. One of the best parts of traveling, is the freedom and flexibilty I have to not only see the world, but also expand my photographic portfolio and book jobs in the places I visit. An added benefit is making time to see old friends and collegues such as when I saw my old friend Earl.
So while in Milwaukee, I went back to my roots. As some of you know, I come from an animal training and behavior background which led me to work with dolphins, whales, and a little bit of elephants and big cats thrown in there too. And when in Milwaukee, I met up with my old friend Earl, whom I haven't seen in probably 16 years.
Earl and I first met while interns at Kewalo Basin Marine Mammal Lab in Honolulu where we were training dolphins and assisting on different research projects involving dolphin cognition and humpback whale photoidentification studies. We have kept in contact ever since our first stint at the Lab, and yearly exchange holiday cards with notes of our most recent adventures and trips around the world. Luckily today he was free and took me around the Milwaukee Zoo where he has worked the last 17 years. It was so much fun catching up in person on where our individual paths have led us, and our continued mutual love, respect and advocacy we do for the animal kingdom.
Even though my path no longer includes working hands-on with these animals as does Earl's job, it is still rewarding to know I can capture such beautiful animals with my camera and still bring awareness, education and respect to their dying habitats and threats of extinction. I am so excited to be taking that to another level this year by fulfilling a life-long goal of photographing the Masai Mara in Kenya later this year.