British photographer Tim Flach is known for taking human-like portraits of animals. “More Than Human,” his latest award-winning body of work, captures the emotions of wild creatures through intensely close shots — like the stunning picture of a gorilla on the right.
The intimate animal portraits, which feature everything from a forlorn-looking lion to a chimpanzee cradling its child, are meant to illuminate the similarities between animal poses, gestures, and gazes, and our own.
He looks at the way we assign human emotions and thoughts to animals, even though we don’t know what they think or feel.
“What underlines my work in this project are the questions about how we shape nature and how it shapes us,” Flach writes on his website.
Photographing animals on a set, as opposed to in their natural habitat comes with a unique set of challenges.
“You can never predict an animal’s mood,” Flach says. “So you have to plan beforehand to get what you want.”
To make the animals feel as comfortable as possible, Flach may adjust the temperature of the studio or play music.
You can purchase a hardcover copy of Flach’s animal portraits here or visit his website to see more of the award-winning photographer’s work.
Flach's previous work focused on horses and dogs, but 'More Than Human' features a variety of wild animals.
Flach zooms in on his subjects so that we can 'read their poses and gestures as we would the body language of a human figure, face or hand.'
Unlike traditional wildlife photography, Flach photographs his subjects in a studio instead of their natural habitat.
This line of photography is notoriously challenging since the behaviour of an animal is often unpredictable.
Flach may adjust the temperature of the studio or play music to make an animal feel more comfortable.
Though you can't be certain how an animal will react on camera, Flach usually plans his angles and framing ahead of time.
Flach meticulously researches his animals before the shoot to better understand how they will behave on camera.
'These animals place us in an intimate relationship with their protagonist,' Flach writes on his website.
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