The LIFE Project is a poetic collection of photographs that tell the story of our planet, from its eruptive beginnings to its present diversity by celebrated nature photographer Frans Lanting. Covering seven continents and 4.5 billions years, Lanting followed a mixed scientific/artistic approach to document selected milestones for the evolution of life evolution through his pictures. He says:
Nature's my muse and it's been my passion. As a photographer for National Geographic, I've portrayed it for many. But five years ago, I went on a personal journey. I wanted to visualize the story of life. It's the hardest thing I've ever attempted, and there have been plenty of times when I felt like backing out. But there were also revelations. And one of those I'd like to share with you today.
I went down to a remote lagoon in Australia, hoping to see the Earth the way it was three billion years ago, back before the sky turned blue. There's stromatolites down there — the first living things to capture photosynthesis — and it's the only place they still occur today. Going down there was like entering a time capsule, and I came out with a different sense of myself in time. The oxygen exhaled by those stromatolites is what we all breathe today.
Stromatolites are the heroes in my story. I hope it's a story that has some resonance for our time. It's a story about you and me, nature and science.
The images are part of Life: a Journey through Time, a dream collection for outdoors photography lovers. At Lanting's site you can take a tour of this project, and learn more about the LIFE Project educational curriculum.
Watch the full narrated video below.
[image Frans Lanting, Dancing Bears]