Instructors


Alex Wild
 is an Illinois-based entomologist who studies the taxonomy and evolutionary history of ants. In 2003 he founded a photography business as an aesthetic complement to his scientific work, featuring imagery depicting the diversity and behavior of social insects. Alex holds a Ph.D. in entomology from the University of California at Davis, and he conducts research and teaches at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. His natural history photographs appear in numerous magazines, websites, apps, books, and museum exhibits. Alex blogs about entomology at myrmecos.net and about photography at Scientific American.


Thomas Shahan is an Oregon-based artist and macrophotographer with a specialization in high-magnification photography, especially of jumping spiders. He is recognized as a master of arthropod portraiture, with pieces featured in National Geographic, Popular Photography, and NBC’s the “Today Show” in addition to other magazines, television segments, newspapers, and publications around the world. With a B.F.A. in traditional printmaking from the University of Oklahoma and a fascination with the diversity and personalities of insects and spiders, Thomas offers an innovative, Do-It-Yourself approach to photography.


John Abbott is the director of the Wild Basin Wilderness Preserve in Austin, Texas, and his research focuses on dragonflies and damselflies. He has been photographing nature for over 20 years and is known for his skill with specialized techniques including focus-stacking and high speed flash. John’s worldwide travels have emphasized the New World tropics where he has amassed a collection of insect and other animal photographs. He has authored two books on dragonflies and damselflies, and his photographs appear in numerous natural history books, magazines, newspaper articles and museum exhibits.


Piotr Naskrecki is an entomologist, photographer and author based at Harvard’s Museum of Comparative Zoology. His research focuses on the evolution of singing insects (katydids and relatives), and the theory and practice of nature conservation.  As a photographer, Piotr strives to promote appreciation of invertebrate animals – insects, arachnids, and their kin – by capturing both their beauty and roles as vital, often critically important members of the Earth’s ecosystems. He is a founding member of the International League of Conservation Photographers (ILCP).